January 17th is the national holiday commemorating the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday.
To celebrate Dr. King’s birthday, enjoy reading the quotes below. His words continue to inspire even after his life was cut short more than five decades ago.
Quotes from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
1. “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”
2. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
3. “Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude.”
4. “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
5. “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”
6. “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”
7. “Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness.”
8. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
9. “We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.”
10. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
11. “Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”
12. “Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.”
13. “There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.”
14. “Let no man pull you so low as to hate him.”
15. “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
16. “Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.”
17. “Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope.”
18. “The time is always right to do what is right.”
19. “Be a bush if you can’t be a tree. If you can’t be a highway, just be a trail. If you can’t be a sun, be a star. For it isn’t by size that you win or fail. Be the best of whatever you are.”
20. “We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now because I’ve been to the mountaintop… I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the promised land.”
21. “For when people get caught up with that which is right and they are willing to sacrifice for it, there is no stopping point short of victory.”
22. “I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. This is why right, temporarily defeated, is stronger than evil triumphant.”
23. “True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.”
24. “There is nothing more tragic than to find an individual bogged down in the length of life, devoid of breadth.”
25. “Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.”
26. “A lie cannot live.”
27. “There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love.”
28. “Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.”
29. “There comes a time when people get tired of being pushed out of the glittering sunlight of life’s July and left standing amid the piercing chill of an alpine November.”
30. “We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.”
31. “Nonviolence is absolute commitment to the way of love. Love is not emotional bash; it is not empty sentimentalism. It is the active outpouring of one’s whole being into the being of another.”
32. “We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”
33. “Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think.”
34. “We must build dikes of courage to hold back the flood of fear.”
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