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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Repentance

Dr. King clarifies the meaning of repentance according to the Old Testament.

Jesus Christ

Dr. King quotes Karl Barth's "Dogmatics in Outline" on Jesus and his relationship to God.

Worship

Dr. King notes some attributes and results of worship.

Cyprian of Carthage

Dr. King briefly outlines the life of Saint Cyprian of Carthage.

Resurrection (Barth's View)

Dr. King quotes a passage from Hugh Mackintosh's "Types of Modern Theology" concerning Barth's views on resurrection.

Love

Dr. King quotes Ames' 1933 book entitled "Art" regarding the topic of love. "Love is the true life of man. God is love, and the kingdom of God is within us."

Extreme Unction

Dr. King defines extreme unction from the perspective of the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthadox church.

God (Knowledge of)

Dr. King references St. Thomas Aquinas' "Summa Contra Gentiles" in a quotation focusing on man's "threefold knowledge of divine things."

Tillich's Method

Dr. King quotes Paul Tillich’s “The Protestant Era.” 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.”

Arnobius

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

Dr. King gives information on fourth century teacher, Arnobius and his conversion to Christianity.

Crisis of Culture

Dr. King refers to his note card on "morality" and cites an example of the crisis of culture.

Pantheism

Dr. King writes about an unknown author's view of pantheism.

Jeremiah

Dr. King records several scriptures from the biblical Book of Jeremiah.

The Third Level of Ontological Concepts

Dr. King writes notes regarding the third level of ontological concepts, which "expresses the characteristics of being which are conditions of existence."

Toynbee

Dr. King highlights a quote from Arnold J. Toynbee's twelve-volume analysis of the rise and fall of civilizations, "A Study of History."

Sin

ISRAEL

Dr. King paraphrases the teachings of Amos about sin. Dr. King writes that Amos condemns Israel for the sins of bribery, oppression of the poor by the rich, sexual immorality and the "self-indulgent use of what has been wrung from the helpless."

Progress

Dr. King writes that progress has to do with value in human life.

Philosophy

Dr. King writes about the proper function of philosophy.

Time

Dr. King highlights a quote regarding time. [This quote is attributed to Henry Austin Dobson.]

Existentialism

Dr. King explains the philosophy of existentialism.

Science

Dr. King's notecard addresses the analytical method of science. King interprets Alfred North Whitehead's "Science and the Modern World" to mean "[t]he method of science is to diversify or break up this experience into its component elements." He quotes Whitehead coining the term 'diversification of nature.'

Freedom (Of Choice)

Dr. King quotes Thomas Huxley's "Collected Essays" on the freedom to do right and to do wrong.

Sin

Dr. King offers two possible interpretations of Psalms 53:1.

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.

Latitudinarianism

Dr. King defines latitudinarianism, a term "applied to a liberal opinion which allows the diversity of opinion."

Ritschl and Schleiermacher on Method

Dr. King sketches his view of methodologies employed by German theologians Friedrich Schleiermacher and Albrecht Ritschl.

Nature

Dr. King quotes Aristotle's "Physics, Book II" and notes Spinoza's view of nature.

Metaphysics

Dr. King quotes F. H. Bradley’s “Appearance and Reality.”

Ezekiel and Sin

Dr. King paraphrases the biblical verse Ezekiel 20:21. He states that the prophet makes it clear that among the greatest sins of the Israelites was "profaning the Sabbath."

God (His Existence)

Change title to conform to Dr. King’s filing system.