Together, Dr. King and his movement worked courageously for the benefit of all who suffer from the triple afflictions of poverty, racism, and militarism. His life shows the heights people working together can achieve. I plan to set aside time today to celebrate and reflect on Dr. King’s lifework. I hope you do, too.
Let’s be grateful for the life and legacy of Dr. King. As we know, his work stands as a shining example of the fundamental goodness we share. Moreover, it’s good to be reminded often in these difficult, anxiety provoking times that Dr. King and the movement of ordinary, mostly oppressed people that he led made enormous, humanizing changes in our country.
Dr. King on Poverty
“There is nothing new about poverty. What is new, however, is that we now have the resources to get rid of it. The time has come for an all-out world war against poverty … The well off and the secure have too often become indifferent and oblivious to the poverty and deprivation in their midst. Ultimately a great nation is a compassionate nation. No individual or nation can be great if it does not have a concern for ‘the least of these.”
Dr. King on Racism
“Racism is a philosophy based on a contempt for life. It is the arrogant assertion that one race is the center of value and object of devotion, before which other races must kneel in submission. It is the absurd dogma that one race is responsible for all the progress of history and alone can assure the progress of the future. Racism is total estrangement. It separates not only bodies, but minds and spirits. Inevitably it descends to inflicting spiritual and physical homicide upon the out-group.”
Dr. King on Militarism
“A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war- ‘This way of settling differences is not just.’ This way of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation’s homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into the veins of peoples normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.”
Source: “Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?” by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; Boston: Beacon Press, 1967.
Celebrate and Reflect on Dr. King’s Lifework
A wonderful, free resource devoted to Dr. King’s life and legacy and to promoting his work in the world today is The King Center. You will find a lot to reflect on at this site: thekingcenter.org/about-king-center
And here is a link to a 24-minute video reflection on nonviolence, simple living, birth and death, and that near the end (18-minutes in) shows Thich Nhat Hanh and Brother David Steindl-Rast reflecting on there times with Dr. King. The video is soothing, calming, deeply reflective and inspiring. I hope you’ll watch and enjoy.
Finally, if you are able I hope you’ll participate in the celebration of Dr. King’s life and legacy at the Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church today, January 15, 2018. Here is a link to today’s MLK Celebration: gloucestermeetinghouse.org/event/2018-01-15-martin-luther-king-day-celebration
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I hope you have a wonderful week!