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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Atheism

Dr. King ponders atheism by quoting a short anecdote of L.P. Jacks' shoemaker.

Meister Eckhart

Dr. King outlines a brief history of German mystic philosopher Meister Eckhart.

Original Sin

Dr. King writes a definition of original sin.

Daniel

Dr. King discusses the meaning of the Book of Daniel, namely to reinforce the idea of the kingdom of God.

Evil - Psalms

Dr. King writes on the subject of evil according to the book of Psalms.

God

Dr. King quotes Plato's views regarding God.

Science (Its Limitations)

Dr. King notes that while man’s actions as an animal are biological (science), his actions as a person are spiritual and require a spiritual cause, suggesting there is a Creator God.

War

Dr. King quotes the Executive Committee of the World Council of Churches on war in an atomic age being a sin against God, as reported in The Christian Century.

Christianity

Dr. King writes about the concept of Christianity.

God

Dr. King wrote these notes on the concept of God while reading "Science and the Modern World" and "Religion in the Making" by Alfred North Whitehead. He quotes Whitehead, stating that God is the "perpetual vision of the road which leads to the deeper realities."

Immortality

Dr. King quotes philosopher John Fiske regarding the topic of immortality.

Jainism

Dr. King notes a quote regarding the philosophy of Jainism.

Christ

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

Lincoln

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

Wisdom

Dr. King quotes and comments on Proverbs 2:6, saying that wisdom is a supreme virtue for the author of Proverbs and involves moral character and knowledge.

Justice

Dr. King provides his views regarding the concept of justice.

Ethics

Dr. King records some notes on ethics and the book of Micah.

God

Dr. King references the Old Testament book of Numbers regarding the topic of God.

Knudson, Albert C.

Dr. King cites a work by Christian theologian, Albert Knudson.

Apocalyptic Religion

Dr. King quotes John Oman's "the Natural and The Supernatural."

God

Dr. King references the book of Job by discussing the immense and power of God.

Location & Situation

Dr. King compares the meanings of "location" and "situation."

Prayer (Definition)

Dr. King quotes William James' definition of Prayer.

Sin

Dr. King notes that in Ezekiel 18, the prophet establishes himself as the father of individualism, unlike his predecessors who focused primarily upon the nation.

The Uniqueness of Jesus

Dr. King reflects on the virgin birth of Jesus and how this attribute was used to contextualize his "uniqueness." This reflection later appeared in his essay entitled "What Experiences of Christians Living in the Early Christian Century Led to the Christian Doctrines of the Divine Sonship of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Bodily Resurrection" that he completed during his time at Crozer Theological Seminary.

Man

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

Schleiermacher (Relation of Morality to Religion)

Dr. King outlines Friedrich Schleiermacher's view on the relation of morality to religion.

Erasmus

Dr. King writes about Erasmus, a Dutch scholar, who lived during the Reformation period.

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.

God (His Existence: Psalms)

Dr. King references the Old Testament biblical Book of Psalms regarding God's existence.