Monday, January 21, 2008

Today is Martin Luther King's birthday and I was reminded how important this day is by fellow blogger Kansas Bob Thanks Bob for reminding me of the significance of King's vision. I don't really have anything to add about King that probably hasn't been said by others so I'll add my tribute by leaving you to ponder some of my favorite quotes by Martin Luther King.

The words of a modern day Prophet......

A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.

A riot is the language of the unheard.

All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem.

Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.

Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can't ride you unless your back is bent.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.

Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies - or else? The chain reaction of evil - hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars - must be broken, or else we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.

I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.

It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that's pretty important.

Means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek.

Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him.

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: "If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?" But... the good Samaritan reversed the question: "If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?"

The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be... The nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.

We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.


Kansas Bob said...

Thanks Bill for the link. I wonder if one could substitute terrorism for riot in this quote:

"A riot is the language of the unheard."

Not to say that one would have to agree with terrorism to understand it a bit.. sometimes I hate to comment for fear of being misunderstood.

Bilbo said...

Hi Bob,

I appreciate the probing questions you raise and I feel the same way...It's really difficult...because...I don't want to support any of the methods and means used by some of the radical terrorist...but...on the other hand, I do want to listen, hear, and be open to why they feel the need to take such drastic do otherwise, is to demonize them, imo...and quite frankly, I seriously question if some of our responses towards their radical actions is not just as bad...there I said it...

Kansas Bob said...

This stuff is just not as black and white (good and evil) as I want them to be.. maybe my gray hair is influencing me too much :)