Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. day. It has been 34 years since today was designated a national holiday by President Ronald Reagan, 13 years after it was introduced by Rep. John Conyers and Rep. Shirley Chisholm.
More than ever, I feel like we need MLK Jr. now. If you want inspiration to live a life of compassion, read this man's words. And once you familiarize yourself with his speeches and life story, then go read the words of the people who inspired him (e.g., Neibhur, Gandhi, Jesus Christ). Why do we need him now, more than ever? We are in challenging times -- times of fractious and contentious discourse -- it would be incorrect to say debate. Let Dr. King's words speak for themselves. And let them settle in to your deepest consciousness.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality... Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
Mankind must put an end to war, or war will put an end to mankind.
Faith is taking the first step, even when you don't see the whole staircase.
From thekingcenter.org website,
Drawing inspiration from both his Christian faith and the peaceful teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. King led a nonviolent movement in the late 1950's and '60s to achieve legal equality for African-Americans in the United States. While others were advocating for freedom by "any means necessary," including violence, Martin Luther King, Jr. used the power of words and acts of nonviolent resistance, such as protests, grassroots organizing, and civil disobedience to achieve seemingly-impossible goals. He went on to lead similar campaigns against poverty and international conflict, always maintaining fidelity to his principles that men and women everywhere, regardless of color or creed, are equal members of the human family.
This is a national holiday, and these days, we need it more than any other. I invite you to spend time with the words of Dr. King today, in quiet introspection. Find a connection with his words and your actions.