Today I woke up to a beautiful dreamy snowstorm, a day filled with appointments and responsibilities, and a more than back-of-mind acknowledgement that today is Martin Luther King Day. How to connect the three? Here are some of the lessons I've learned by one of America's great teachers and communicators.
Mission and mindfulness. I'm still trying to figure out what my personal mission is... what my purpose is for being here. Dr. King had a single, mindful purpose: justice and equality for all people, "to take whatever adversity we are faced with and be intelligent in our planning and our actions towards that." That's why I love being a Unitarian Universalist... it gives me ideas, knowledge, resources and motivation to act on what moves me.
Love and peace. His methods unconventional yet rooted in spirituality, King made change happen by lifting us all up together, regardless of race, gender, etc., and leveraging love and peaceful means for a greater good.
Kindness. More than the Christian "turn the other cheek" proverb, King believed in justice can be achieved through nonviolent means, and spouted HOPE over militaristic methods.
Nobel Peace Prize Speech, Oslo, Dec. 10, 1964:
“I refuse to accept the cynical notion that nation after nation must spiral down a militaristic stairway into the hell of thermonuclear destruction. I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant. I believe that even amid today’s mortar bursts and whining bullets, there is still hope for a brighter tomorrow. I believe that wounded justice, lying prostrate on the blood-flowing streets of our nations, can be lifted from this dust of shame to reign supreme among the children of men. I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality and freedom for their spirits. I believe that what self-centered men have torn down men other-centered can build up.”
Posted by Julie Dennehy