When we look at individuals that have displayed compassion in their own life and are exemplary in their doings we must look at Aan San Suu Kyi. She is an example of an outstanding human being that has been able to merge the ideologies of many great leaders such as Gandhi and her father together. Her title is ‘the lady’, a term used to pay her respect; she has endeavored to bring democracy to Burma and after many years of struggles and imprisonment has been successful in her efforts.
Her story is one of Courage and Integrity, compassionate skills that make a great leader. Gandhi termed it ‘satyagraha’; the polite insistence on truth or in this case the rights of the Burmese people. She initially returned to Burma to take care of her ailing mother but soon realized the instrumental role she could play in bringing democracy to the Nation. The Military Junta stood in fierce opposition to her efforts putting her under house arrest at every opportunity they could. However she persevered making many sacrifices along the way. The Junta would not allow her husband Michael a Visa to enter the Country and for fear that she would not be allowed re-entry into the country she never left to visit him. He had been diagnosed with Cancer and could not even be with him when he passed away.
In 2008, when she was under house arrest the cyclone Nargis hit Burma and the roof of her house was destroyed. Aan Suu Kyi was still under house arrest at the time and lived without water, electricity and gas for many days using candles for light by night. A mindful leader who lived by example was able to make the best of her situation. When under house arrest she would engage herself in activities including meditation, exercise, improvement of her French and Japanese, and played Bach on the piano.
An accomplished woman; she won many accolades of encouragement that aided her to continue her mission including the Nobel Peace prize in 1991. Moreover, her altruistic nature allowed her to make the ultimate sacrifice where she carried on in honor of her people forgoing watching her son grow up. San Kyis last house arrest ended in 2010 when she was able to meet her son after a decade.
Eventually Aan San Suu Kyi won 43 out of the 45 seats in parliament in 2012. A moral victory after having dedicated half her life to the cause of freedom for Burma; she was able to reap her reward. San Kyi is an empowered compassionate woman of the twenty-first century, who thought with her heart for the people of her country and was able to bring change by means of non violence and peace. She has worked tirelessly to singlehandedly bring forward a democratic Burma. She is truly a hero in our midst.