Do you know the meaning of the word "invictus"?

Most of us associate the word invictus to the movie Invictus, which depicts part of the Life of Nelson Mandela; but invictus is a Latin word that means "undefeated".

Actually Nelson Mandela recited to himself and other prisoners the poem "Invictus" to bolster their spirits, while imprisoned in Robben Island Prison.  The famous quote that is attributed to Nelson Mandela: "I am the master of my fate; the captain of my soul" was part of the poem Invictus, written by the famous british poet William Henley in 1875.


by William Earnest Henley

"Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud,
Under the bludgeoning of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul."

Some times in life we feel defeated, without hope; we lose faith and we cannot see the end.  We don't need to be imprisoned like Nelson Mandela was, to be inspired by the words of the poem Invictus.  We can be in the state of mind of feeling invictus, reminding ourselves, that we cannot control life, but we can control how we react to life's circumstances. When we do that, we become owners and not victims of our circumstances, and we feel empowered.

Wishing you a year filled with "invictus" moments.


Sebastian NaumComment