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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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Religion

Dr. King quotes Ferre's view on religion.

War

Dr. King cites a quote concerning "war" from Oswald Spengler's "The Return of the Caesars," an article featured in The American Mercury.

Christ

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

Nationalism

Dr. King refers to Jeremiah 1:5, explaining that this passage represents a departure from nationalism toward a more universal emphasis.

Freedom

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

Philosopher (definition)

Dr. King quotes poet William Wordsworth's definition of a philosopher.

Nietzsche

Dr. King quotes German philosopher Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche.

Schleiermacher (Where Religion Is to Be Found)

Dr. King quotes Friedrich Schleiermacher’s “Speeches on Religion.” The full title of this work is “On Religion: Speeches to Its Cultured Despisers.”"

The Nationalism of Ezra

This note card outlines Ezra views on "mixed marriages."

Marxism

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

Schleiermacher (The Church and State)

Dr. King quotes Friedrich Schleiermacher’s “Speeches on Religion.” The full title of this work is “On Religion: Speeches to Its Cultured Despisers.”

History: Ecclesiastes

Dr. King examines the "author's philosophy of history" recorded in the biblical text Ecclesiastes 1:9. He notes that Ecclesiastes' view of history as "a series of endless cycles which has no underlying theology" is in stark contrast to general Bible philosophy, and is more in line with a Greek view of history.

John of Damascus

This notecard contains historical information regarding John of Damascus and outlines some principles of his religious philosophy.

Schleiermacher, Friedrich

Dr. King records a note on Friedrich Schleiermacher's "Speeches on Religion."

Sin

Dr. King notes that I Chronicles 21:1 says that Satan ordered David to conduct a census but that another account indicates it was the Lord. He questions why it was regarded as sinful to take a census.

Apollinarianism

Dr. King defines Apollinarianism.

Revelation as a Way of Knowing

Dr. King quotes and discusses Henry Nelson Wieman’s view of revelation and knowledge as described in “The Source of Human Good.” He used this quote in his doctoral dissertation, “A Comparison of the Conceptions of God in the Thinking of Paul Tillich and Henry Nelson Wieman.”

God

Dr. King uses a series of scriptures from the Book of Psalms and I Chronicles to show God's abiding love and faithfulness.

Colwell, Ernest Cadman

Dr. King references Ernest Caldwell's book "Toward Better Theological Education."

Bible

Dr. King quotes John Ruskin and Thomas Carlyle on the significance of the Bible.

Death

Dr. King meditates on death and a quotation from Thomas Carlyle in which Carlyle compares the death of his mother to the moon sinking into a dark sea.

God

Dr. King notes that Jeremiah 9:23 speaks of man's ability to know and understand God in contrast to modern theology's claim that God is beyond knowing.

God (Malachi)

Dr. King writes notes regarding the prophet Malachi in the Old Testament of the Bible.

Otherworldliness

Dr. King quotes the Epistle of Clement and Friedrich von Hügel's "Eternal Life."

Jesus

Dr. King relates a quotation from General Douglas MacArthur to Jesus. According to General MacArthur, "Nobody can stop the irresistible influence of a sound idea." Dr. King argues that, though Jesus was killed, his ideas still live.

Anglicanism

This note card briefly compares Anglicanism to Roman Catholicism and Calvinism.

God

Dr. King cites a scripture from the biblical book of Isaiah which demonstrates the eternalness and holiness of God.

God

Dr. King writes about God, according to Isaiah 6:1.

God (His Love)

Dr. King writes that the answer to F. W. H. Myers' question about whether the universe is friendly lies at the basis of religion. His cites E. C. Wilm's "The Problem of Religion."

Matter (Aristotelian Concept)

Here, Dr. King discusses the functional differences between matter and form.