My Life Lesson Learnt at the Mandela Capture Site

The Mandela Capture Site is situated in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, South Africa. It marks the place where Nelson Mandela was captured, at a roadblock, by the police on 5 August 1962, after being on the run from the South African Government for 17 months. There is a remarkable sculpture and a small (sadly unremarkable) museum to be found there. What really caught my interest were postcards and magnets depicting a thought-provoking quote by Nelson Mandela:

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”

The life lesson here is an obvious one. If we truly want freedom then we must respect others. Instead of shouting others down or intimidating them if they dare speak up against us, we need to allow them to have their own ideas and opinions. We don’t have to agree with them, but we must show tolerance and respect towards them.