Themes

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Note Cards

Education was essential in the development of the mind of Martin Luther King, Jr. From his matriculation at Morehouse College through his doctoral studies at Boston University, Dr. King took notes on various subjects and referenced some of the most important philosophers of all time. The note cards shown in this section give you a glimpse into the molding of one of the world’s most brilliant thinkers and orators. Religion, natural law, metaphysics and the meaning of wisdom are just a few of the topics highlighted. These subjects and many more helped Dr. King’s capacity to expand his intellectual and spiritual capacity three dimensionally.

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Greeks

Dr. King shares his personal insight on Greek and African "ability," relative to African-Americans.

Worship

Dr. King defines worship.

Christ

Dr. King quotes Albert Knudson's thoughts about how the disciples viewed Jesus Christ.

Communism

Dr. King quotes a statement from Jacques Maritain's "True Harmonism" regarding communism. Jacques Maritain was a famous French Catholic philosopher.

Numbers

Dr. King cites several verses from the Book of Numbers.

Comte (A Criticism by Dr. R. flint)

Dr. King quotes a statement from Robert Flint's "Philosophy of History in France and Germany" which criticizes French philosopher, August Comte. Robert Flint was a Scottish philosopher.

Schleiermacher (The Church)

Dr. King quotes Friedrich Schleiermacher’s “The Christian Faith.”

God

Dr. King references the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy to illustrate God's perfection.

Fear

Dr. King quotes John Watson's "Behaviorism" on the two things that incite fear.

Angels

Dr. King writes on angels, according to Daniel 10:13, 21, and 12:1.

Lenin

The role of State in Society is described as Dr. King documents a quote from the book "The State and Revolution" written by Vladimir Lenin.

Religion (Definition)

Dr. King cites Vergilius Ferm’s “First Chapters in Religious Philosophy.”

Barth

Dr. King writes about Karl Barth's theology regarding revelation.

Buddhism

Dr. King quotes James Bissett Pratt's "The Religious Consciousness: A Psychological Study."

Man

Dr. King writes about man's estimation of finiteness and freedom.

Man (Cause of Sin)

Dr. King quotes Reinhold Niebuhr’s “The Nature and Destiny of Man.”

Schleiermacher (Christianity)

Dr. King cites a quote by philosopher Schleiermacher regarding "the God-consciousness."

Lincoln

Dr. King gives a brief description of the timeline for Abraham Lincoln. He describes Lincoln's many defeats and eventual presidential triumph.

Sin

Dr. King writes about sin, according to Jeremiah 31: 29, 30.

God: Hosea

Dr. King explores God as it relates to the book of Hosea.

Religion

Dr. King quotes Robert Flint’s “The Philosophy of History.”

God

Dr. King quotes St. Thomas Aquinas on the concept of God.

Mysticism

Dr. King cites Psalms 17:15, surmising that the vision of God is a mystical union with God.

The Secular in Relation to the Holy

Dr. King quotes theologian and philosopher Paul Tillich's "Systematic Theology." Dr. King's doctoral degree is in systematic theology from Boston University and his dissertation is on Paul Tillich. According to Tillich, secular and holy correlate and cannot act separately. Tillich states, "The holy embraces itself and the secular."

Social Ethics

Dr. King cites the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy and expresses that "the death penalty is applied to anyone who steals from his brother or carries him away in slavery."

Judaism

Dr. King quotes a statement from Joseph Klausner's book "From Jesus to Paul" regarding Judaism. Joseph Klausner was a Jewish historian.

The Servant of Jehovah

Dr. King writes that Isaiah 41:1-6 seems to describe the servant of the Lord as the personification of Israel, whose task is to bring peace and prosperity to Israel and knowledge of Him to the entire world.

Plato's Psychology

Dr. King outlines Plato’s psychology.

Freedom

Dr. King quotes from Hegel's "The Philosophy of History."

Theology

Dr. King quotes William Ernest Hocking's "The Meaning of God in Human Experience."