I am in the middle of reading Bill Clinton’s autobiography ‘My Life’ and I have been struck by one of his conversations with Nelson Mandela.
On a visit to South Africa, Mandela took Bill to Robben Island where he had spent many years in captivity. Bill asked Nelson Mandela if he hated his jailers to which Nelson replied that yes he did because “They took the best years of my life.” He then went on to say “Then one day… I realised that they had already taken everything from me except my mind and my heart. Those they could not take without my permission. I decided not to give them away.”
They then talked about what it was like leaving prison for the last time and Nelson Mandela said that he did feel the hatred again “Then I thought to myself, ‘They have had me for twenty-seven years. If I keep hating them, they will still have me.’ I wanted to be free, and so I let it go.”
What thoughts, feeings and emotions do you need to let go of?