Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Ubuntu: I Am Because of You

Image courtesy of somalilandpress.com
On December 5, 2013, the world mourn for loosing one of his geniuses and greatest leader with a big heart - Nelson Mandela.

Although I never really met Mandela, I felt I already had my personal encounter with him. This Nobel Peace Prize awardee and former President revolutionize my perspective on ubuntu. I have known Ubuntu as a simple, fast and open-source Linux-based operating system. Had the opportunity to use it for more than five years as a secured alternative to the Apple and Microsoft's dominance. But for Mandela, Ubuntu is a way of life, an energy you could choose to deliberately stand for, he owned it and made it his life's statement.

Ubuntu is a South African philosophy which means 'humanity to others'. It also means 'I am what I am because of who we all are'. The word promotes our interconnectedness and the responsibility to each other that flows from our connection.
There is a word in South Africa -- Ubuntu -- a word that captures Mandela’s greatest gift:  his recognition that we are all bound together in ways that are invisible to the eye; that there is a oneness to humanity; that we achieve ourselves by sharing ourselves with others, and caring for those around us.
Snippet from Barrack Obama's eulogy to Mandela            

Aside from Ubuntu philosophy, Mandela also left us with manifold of inspiring thoughts and quotes, below are some of my favorites:
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.
A good head and a good heart is always a formidable combination.
I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.
The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.
It always seem impossible until it's done.
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.
If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.
As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
Mabuhay ka Mandela! For relentlessly fighting for peace and unity not only for your own country or race but for the entire humanity. This noble act of yours is more than enough to keep you immortal in our hearts.

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