250px-Louis_Oosthuizen_Telkom_PGA_Championship,_Fourth_round,_24_Feb_2008.jpgSunday 18 July was the 92nd birthday of Nelson Mandela and fittingly the British Open Championship was one by a South African, Louis Oosthuizen (pronounced “woost-hazen”). He walked down the 18th fairway, accompanied by his caddie of seven years, Zack Rasego; white and black walking together to victory. Oosthuizen was raised by farmers and needed help from the Ernie Els Foundation to afford to play golf. Zach calls them the “Rainbow Team.”

This is South Africa’s greatest sport summer, first with the World Cup and now with one of their own winning one of Golf’s Major Championships. During apartheid, South Africa was banned from International sport. 
Oosthuizen maintained his composure on the world’s biggest golf stage to extend his 5-stroke lead going into the final round. One commentator described the round as “boring” but I found it quite riveting. Would this 27-year-old kid, ranked 54th in the world, be able to maintain his composure and his lead? This is extraordinarily difficult. Many before him have faltered.
“It was a battle for me to keep calm round this course. That was the biggest goal for me, to keep calm. It’s probably going to hit me tomorrow or the week after what I did,” said Oosthaizen after his victory.

He did so, in part, by focusing on a red dot applied to his golf glove. This red dot served as a trigger to bring him to mindfulness before he made his swing. By his own admission, his thoughts are all over the place, but this dot helped him to draw his attention to now. The results were remarkable. He finished 7 strokes ahead of his closest competitor, leaving names like Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in the dust (he beat them by 14 and 18 strokes respectively). 

Upon receiving the Claret Jug, his first words of thanks were Happy Birthday to Nelson Mandela

To read more, visit PGA Tour.com
More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

An unexpected book arrived in the mail the other day. A gift from my friend’s at Wisdom Publications. Zen Master Raven: The Teachings of a Wise Old Bird. by Zen Master human form, Robert Aitken. Here the koans are told by and to animals of the forest: raven, porcupine, owl, woodpecker, badger, black bear, and […]

Good things come in small packages especially when it is The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy edited by the poet John Brehm and published by Wisdom. Wisdom has a habit of producing beautifully crafted books, packed with, well, wisdom! By way of disclosure, two of these books are mine (108 Metaphors for Mindfulness and […]

A surfer and a shrink, sounds like the start of a joke … walk into a bar … . What do they talk about? Turns out the surfer dude is an expert on fear, has even written a book about it and the shrink is a crack snowboarder. They’ve got a lot to talk about. […]

Stephen Batchelor: Secular Buddhism: Imagining the Dharma in an Uncertain World contains twenty-five years of his writing. You may be familiar with some of these articles from his contributions to Tricycle and I recently enjoyed reading his article arguing for a Buddhism 2.0 in a Buddhist academic journal. This book contains three new contributions, making the book […]

Close Ad