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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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Dr. King notes that Kierkegaard reversed the Hegelian dialectic.


Dr. King paraphrases Homer's "The Odyssey" and quotes some prose entitled "The Bible."


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

Augustine (Concept of Evil)

Dr. King quotes theologian St. Augustine's "Confessions."

Barth, Karl

Dr. King comments on Karl Barth's view that Christ assumed fallen human nature.


Dr. King quotes Shakespeare's "Hamlet."

Athanasius, St.

Dr. King records a short biography of the theologian St. Athanasius, identifying him as the defender of the Nicene faith.

Social Gospel

Dr. King defines social gospel with a quotation from Shailer Mathews and G. B. Smith's "A Dictionary of Religion and Ethics."


Dr. King highlights a quote regarding the distinction between Reform, Orthodox and Conservative Judaism.

Immortality (Aquinas)

Dr. King references Saint Thomas Aquinas regarding the topic of immortality.


Dr. King describes the challenge of the Protestant Church as finding a balance between objective and subjective worship.


Dr. King quotes Blaise Pascal's statement that there is no "medium point" as it relates to God.


Dr. King defines predestination.


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


Dr. King outlines principles of Hegelian Philosophy regarding the ideal German State.

DeWolf, Harold

Dr. King references Harold DeWolf's book, "A Theology of the Living Church."

History: Voltaire

Dr. King references a quote from the philosopher and historian Voltaire.

Third Level (Cont.)

Dr. King quotes Paul Tillich’s “Systematic Theology.” 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.”

Schleiermacher, Friedrich

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


Dr. King documents a quote by Robert Flint, a Scottish theologian and philosopher in reference to "materialism" from the "Baird Lectures."

Schleiermacher (What Is Revelation)

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

Judgement or Justice

Dr. King quotes a book entitled "Sea Dreams," by Alfred Lord Tennyson, regarding judgement and justice.


Dr. King quotes theologian Reinhold Niebuhr on his perception of sin. Niebuhr discusses the creativity and uniqueness of man with his relation to God.


Dr. King cites a page in "The Personalist" on the existentialism in Kierkegaard's philosophy.

God (Niebuhr Conception)

Dr. King quotes American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr regarding the subject of God.

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.

Different Meanings of Prehension

Dr. King outlines the different meanings of "prehension" in Alfred North Whitehead's books Science and the Modern World and Process and Reality.

Church, Negro

Dr. King provides insight on the interaction between the church and the Negro youth.

The Kingdom

Dr. King references New Testament passages related to The Kingdom.


Dr. King records a quote from Proverbs 13:24 regarding discipline and corporal punishment.