Nelson Mandela was the modern father of Africa and an icon who emerged from prison after 27 years to lead South Africa out of decades of apartheid.

Affectionately called “Madiba,” Mandela’s defiance of white minority rule and incarceration for fighting against segregation focused the world’s attention on apartheid, the legalized racial segregation enforced by the South African government until 1994. Through Mandela’s fight, he became a moral compass and conduit to heal a nation. In honor of Nelson Mandela’s birthday, we’d like to honor him.

Here are 10 uplifting quotes 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.”

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”

“Even if you have a terminal disease, you don’t have to sit down and mope. Enjoy life and challenge the illness that you have.”

“I detest racialism, because I regard it as a barbaric thing, whether it comes from a black man or a white man.”

“We pledge ourselves to liberate all our people from the continuing bondage of poverty, deprivation, suffering, gender and other discrimination.”

“Our single most important challenge is therefore to help establish a social order in which the freedom of the individual will truly mean the freedom of the individual.”

“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.”

“People respond in accordance to how you relate to them. If you approach them on the basis of violence, that’s how they’ll react. But if you say, ‘We want peace, we want stability,’ we can then do a lot of things that will contribute towards the progress of our society.”

“Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace.”

In honor of Nelson Mandela’s life. July 18, 1918-December 5, 2013

Thank you for your sacrifice, humility, and vision. May you rest in peace.

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