The tributes to the character and accomplishments of Nelson Mandela continue to flow even as his failures are assessed.
He famously quipped that he was a sinner who played the part of a saint in public. Addressing a British Labour Party Conference in his post-presidency he described himself as an unemployed pensioner with a criminal record.
Mandela was wary of efforts to elevate him to pedestals. He knew all too well his inner struggles and clay feet.
He was not a moral giant because he was different from the rest of us. He was such a giant because of his capacity for unceasing struggle leading to a certain transcendence over fear, and baser instincts.
His capacity for reconciliation and forgiveness was extraordinary given the personal indignities and deprivations, and the murderous and vicious depravities of the apartheid regime assaulting him and the mass of South Africans.