MLK: Religion and Racism

Topics: Martin Luther King, Jr., God, Religion Pages: 3 (1134 words) Published: October 15, 2013
Thomas Hanlon
29 September 2013
“Pilgrimage to Nonviolence” Essay
MLK: Religion and Racism
Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of the most intelligent minds and greatest leaders in United States history. His work as an activist is what he is most known for but his work as a philosopher and writer are equally as important. Among his works is the theological sermon “Pilgrimage to Nonviolence” which highlights his thoughts on different types of religion and how he views his own faith. King explains how his experiences as a persecuted people have changed his views on religion and even strengthened his beliefs. Dr. Martin Luther King, in his sermon “Pilgrimage to Nonviolence”, comes to his philosophic conclusions because of his experiences with racism and injustice.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Why “Dr.”? What is he a doctor of and how did he receive such a title? In reality, King received his Ph.D. in systematic theology so his title of “Dr.” fits. He knows just about every religious theory known to man and has tried almost every one of them for himself. But what if he is not only a literal doctor, but also a figurative one? Doctors heal, fix, and reconstruct major parts of the human body. Martin Luther King not only knew religion but also knew how to heal, fix, and reconstruct people’s major ways of thinking; how to bend their unwavering minds to accept the “new systems of justice and equality” (MLK 96). In “Pilgrimage to Nonviolence” he leads the reader through a journey of religious idealisms, which help us understand his thoughts and philosophic approach to life.

Fundamentalism is the beginning to King’s journey and one of the oldest beliefs there are. It implies a fundamental belief that whatever is said, written, or phrased is true to it’s word. For example, the bible is taken literally by a fundamentalist Christian. The pessimism towards human nature is a large part of fundamentalism. Everyone is born with original sin and must learn to accept it but...
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