The day is January 15, 1929. A baby by the name of Martin Luther King, Jr. is born in his family home in Atlanta, Georgia. His mother is Alberta Williams King, and his father is Martin Luther King, Sr., a Baptist minister.
What this new life doesn’t know on this day is that he, with his future vision for a truly just and free America, will shape the world. This new life is unaware that in 1955, the same year he will receive his doctorate in theology from Boston University, Rosa Parks will be arrested for refusing to vacate her seat to a white man on a bus.
The astoundingly brave and dignified opposition of Rose Parks will spark the civil rights movement, and Dr. King will emerge as one of the movement’s most influential leaders.
Today, nearly six and a half decades since the civil rights movement began, Dr. King’s legacy lives on in every heart that beats for justice in the United States of America and around the globe.
January 21 serves as Martin Luther King Jr., Day, an official U.S. holiday. To commemorate Dr. King’s vision, good Samaritans across the country serve their communities, and often team up to volunteer with nonprofits like Islamic Relief USA for a day of service.
To best inspire, we are sharing our favorite words of wisdom from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
#1 – Humanitarianism
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?'”
#2 – Silence
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
#3 – Good vs. Evil
“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.”
#4 – Service
“Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”
#5 – Society
“We must come to see that the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience.”
#6 – Freedom
“When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, ‘Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!’”
#7 – Hate
“Let no man pull you so low as to hate him.”
#8 – Forgiveness
“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.”
#9 – Justice
“Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality.”
#10 – Humanity
“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”
Hold these words close. Do good for your neighbor today. Do good for humanity every day.