Martin Luther King Jr., Statement on House Committee on Un-American Activities Hearings on the United Packinghouse Workers of America, June 11, 1959

The House Un-American Activities Committee was an American judicial commission that was established in 1938 under the Roosevelt presidency. HUAC vociferously attacked FDR even though the majority of the nation supported FDR and his social reforms at a time when the nation was emerging from a deep economic depression. HUAC targeted the growing peace movement in the United States, leading inquisitions against freedom-fighters like Paul Robeson and W.E.B. Du Bois, among others, for their support and sympathy with the cause of the Soviet Union. Like the people of the Soviet Union who overcame tsarist rule, Robeson and Du Bois were … Continue reading Martin Luther King Jr., Statement on House Committee on Un-American Activities Hearings on the United Packinghouse Workers of America, June 11, 1959

Martin Luther King Jr., Peace on Earth

Dr. King delivered “Peace on Earth” at Ebenezer Baptist Church, his home congregation, on Christmas Eve, 1967. See here for audio This Christmas season finds us a rather bewildered human race. We have neither peace within nor peace without. Everywhere paralyzing fears harrow people by day and haunt them by night. Our world is sick with war; everywhere we turn we see its ominous possibilities. And yet, my friends, the Christmas hope for peace and good will toward all men can no longer be dismissed as a kind of pious dream of some utopian. If we don’t have good will toward … Continue reading Martin Luther King Jr., Peace on Earth

On the Philosophy and Methods of Non-Violence: Martin Luther King Jr. to William Nelson

NOTE In the following letter, Dr. King writes to Dr. William Nelson, dean of Howard University, a historically black university in Washington D.C., in order to ask whether he knew of any books or pamphlets on the caste system in India. Here, King comments upon the significance of his trip to India, which he deems “full of meaningful insights,” decisively re-anchoring his commitment to non-violence. He expresses his desire to dialogue on these matters to Nelson. The letter is yet another testimony to the unity of India and African-America in the great freedom struggle of the twentieth century, when the … Continue reading On the Philosophy and Methods of Non-Violence: Martin Luther King Jr. to William Nelson

In Search Of Satyagraha: Richard Gregg, Gandhi, and King’s Pilgrimage to Nonviolence

Dr. King imprisoned for his leadership of the Montgomery bus boycott, 1956 In the following letter to Richard Bartlett Gregg (1885-1974), a white American pacifist and social theorist, presents his thoughts on Gandhi had a significant influence on Martin Luther King Jr., the leader of the American Civil Rights movement responds to an offer of assistance from Gregg, who had written to King inquiring if he could help with arranging the publication of his account of the Montgomery bus boycott, Stride Towards Freedom: The Montgomery Story. When asked to choose the five books that shaped his philosophy after his leading … Continue reading In Search Of Satyagraha: Richard Gregg, Gandhi, and King’s Pilgrimage to Nonviolence

The Moral Government of the World: On Faith, Reason, and Truth

I. THE SOUL-FORCE IN HISTORY In his spiritual message to the world, notable because it is one of the rare extant speeches Mohandas K. Gandhi gave in English, the satygrahi remarked that There is an indefinable mysterious power that pervades everything, I feel it though I do not see it. It is this unseen power which makes itself felt and yet defies all proof, because it is so unlike all that I perceive through my senses. It transcends the senses. God is indescribable and ominpresent for Gandhi, capable of being sensed without manifesting physically. Love is perhaps the most important … Continue reading The Moral Government of the World: On Faith, Reason, and Truth