Every journey is inspired, and every inspiration has a source. Being people of different strokes, we all have different sources of inspiration; The someone or something that makes us do or gives us the drive, the passion, the enthusiasm, the motivation to do things as simple as smiling, laughing, giving, caring etc. but first a little history about inspiration.
Inspiration comes from the Latin Inspiratus (the past participle of Inspirare, “to breathe into, inspire”) and in English has had the meaning “the drawing of air into the lungs” since the middle of the 16th century. However, before inspiration was used to refer to breath it had a distinctly theological meaning in English, referring to a divine influence upon a person from a divine entity; this sense dates back to the early 14th century. The sense of inspiration often found today (“someone or something that inspires”) is considerably newer than either of these two senses dating from the 19th century.
Looking back at our inspirational predecessors, there are those that lived to inspire and those that were inspired in turn inspiring others. Giving an example of Nelson Mandela, a great African leader who lived to inspired others after being inspired himself, determined to make positive changes in his homeland then the world; we begin to see how a little touch of inspiration can go a long way in making a difference for the world.
Nelson Mandela was and continues to be even after his passing a great source of inspiration to the world. He had commitment to global issues such as; the fight for civil rights, promoting peace and women equality, demanding an end to atrocities and supporting initiatives to address humanitarian crises, and promotion of democracy. In addition to advocating for peace and equality on both a national and global scale, in his later years, Mandela remained committed to the fight against AIDS—a disease that killed his son.
We learn many great lessons from Nelson Mandela; Endurance, Determination, Commitment, courage, etc. and we see these attributes best going back to his story back at the prison where he contracted tuberculosis and, as a black political prisoner, received the lowest level of treatment from prison workers. However, while incarcerated, Mandela was able to earn a Bachelor of Law degree through a University of London correspondence program. This goes to show that we should not let our situations limit or restrain us from growing and becoming exceptional members of the society. We are the ones with control and we have the power to decide our destiny.
We are all leaders in our own merit. We might not notice but just that simple command from your brain to your leg to make the first step towards the door is leadership; governance over your body.
It is an old saying that Charity begins at home, and it is about time we took charge along with those before us and became advocates for constructive change. Nelson Mandela was determined to make a difference not just in his homeland but in the world. Now if that’s not inspiration enough, I don’t know what is.