Nelson Mandela: Most Popular Quotes

( [email protected] ) Jul 19, 2013 07:17 AM EDT

The revered former South African President Nelson Mandela is spending his 95th birthday in Pretoria hospital, as events take place in South Africa and around the world in honor of his 67 years of public service.

Nelson Mandela, who was recently admitted to hospital in "critical" condition but has made "dramatic progress" and is "steadily improving," has overcome 27 years in jail to become South Africa’s first black president and bring an end to decades of whites-only rule and led reconciliation in the deeply divided country.

23 Quotes from Nelson Mandela:

“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.”

"It always seems impossible until it's done."

“And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

“I dream of an Africa which is in peace with itself.”

“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.”

“A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.”

“There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children.”

“Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.”

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

“I've never had a single moment of depression, because I know my cause will triumph.”

“I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.”

“As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison.”

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

“Lead from the back — and let others believe they are in front.”

“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.”

"Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world."

“Where you stand depends on where you sit.”

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

"We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference."

“After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.”

“One of the things I learned when I was negotiating was that until I changed myself, I could not change others.”

"When a man is denied the right to live the life he believes in, he has no choice but to become an outlaw."