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Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream – #MLKDay

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“I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.” Martin Luther King Jr., I Have a Dream, 1963.

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream - #MLKDay

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream – #MLKDay

Martin Luther KingI Have a Dream Speech – August 28, 1963

“I HAVE A DREAM . . “Speech by the Rev. MARTIN LUTHER KING At the ‘ ‘March on Washington”
(Copyright 1963, MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.) Via Archives.Gov
I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.
Five score years ago a great American in whose symbolic shadow we stand today signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree is a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. Tt came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity. But 100 years later the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later the life of the Negro is still badly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself ill exile in his own land. So we’ve come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.
In a sense we’ve come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our Republic wrote the magnificent. words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that. all men – yes, black men as well as white men – would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit. of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note inso far as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked “ insufficient funds.”
But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds ill the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we’ve come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.
We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Continued below…

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr Day; a Federal holiday celebrated in America as a memorial to the life and legacy of a great visionary and one of the world’s most recognized leaders of the Civil Rights Movement. Dr Martin Luther King, Jr, gave his life to the movement which helped turn the page on segregation in this great nation. Every year, I try to take another look at the life of this man of indomitable spirit. He was a preacher, teacher, father, husband and friend to many. Like many of you, I’ve heard the moving I Have A Dream speech and, even though Dr King gave many sermons and speeches during his lifetime, it stands out above the rest because it resonates on a very deep level and strikes a cord with so many of us. It also stands out for folks around the world who, like me, didn’t grow up in the USA.

What is it about Dr King’s inspired words that make them so moving and so powerful? I have offered you the full text of his famous speech above and below in 3 sets of block-quotes.  What I find remarkable about it is that the part we’ve all come to know, love and remember, the segment on …  I Have a Dream … kicks in towards the end of his speech.  As an inspiring, motivational preacher/teacher/leader, Dr King was a master orator who knew how to shine a light on the issues, build momentum, and get the masses motivated to realize the Dream. Read the I Have A Dream speech in its entirety and share your thoughts in the comments.


“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” Martin Luther King Jr., I Have a Dream, 1963.

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream - #MLKDay

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream – #MLKDay

Documentary: Selma to Montgomery March

Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children. It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent, will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality —1963 is not an end but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual.
There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright, days of justice emerge.
And that is something that I must say to my people who stand on the worn threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.
We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protests to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny.
They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone. And as we walk we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be free?” We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality.
We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities.
We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their adulthood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating “For Whites Only.”
We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and the Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote.
No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.
I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulation. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by ‘the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering.
Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive. Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our Northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. Continued below…

My earliest memory of the Civil Rights Movement and of Dr King came through my parents. I remember one evening listening to them discuss the struggles with friends who were over for dinner. Peeping through the banisters of the staircase leading upstairs to the bedrooms, I could see grainy black and white images on the TV of black people being hosed and chased by dogs. All of it was very frightening and I believe that was why they sent us off to bed when they had friends over who spoke about the horrors of it all. That said, my dad did have books in his library which we had access to and when we asked questions, they told us about the struggles to end segregation and discrimination and build equality in the USA.  It pained me back then, and surviving a war made me even more determined to never accept excuses or justifications for the inhumane treatment of others. Sadly, our global history is rift with periods of discriminatory, inhumane treatment of our fellow man, and we see much of it today in parts of the world where strife and war continue; we must become advocates for peace and remain vigilant/vocal about the violence and oppression around the world.

I learned more about Dr King’s impact, legacy and untimely death at school. When we studied the history of the movement and Dr King’s influence, we were exposed to a wide cast of influential characters, and the painful narrative that remains part of America’s saddest historical records. I know that the first time I listened to the video and heard his speech, I wept. I wept for my fellow men, women and children, and I wept for our collective humanity. Some people try to whitewash the movement to their children by inventing stories or telling half truths about it but, that is a disservice and an unconscionable act of denial of history. Personally, I would rather a parent direct their children to books that tell the story and then answer questions honestly, instead of creating some BS,  fairy-tale version of what Dr King and the Civil Rights Movement stood for. Children are smart, observant, and have clarity about how they’d like to be treated. Present the facts and help them develop their moral compass on the issues.

The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for December 2015 and January 2016 are:

12/07  – GIVING SEASON –
12/14 – AWARENESS –
12/28 – THE JOURNEY –

01/04 – ANEW –
01/18 – I Have A Dream – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Day  –
01/25 – TBA/TBD –

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– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.


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More Below!
“I have a dream that. my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream.”Martin Luther King Jr., I Have a Dream, 1963.

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream - #MLKDay

Motivation Mondays: I Have A Dream – #MLKDay

Full MLK: I’ve Been to the Mountaintop Part 3/3

I say to you today, my friends, though, even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up, live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that. my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream. I have a dream that one day in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low. The rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony (if brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning. “My country, ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountain side, let. freedom ring.” And if America is to be a great. nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania. Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado. Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.
But not only that. Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia. Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee. Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi, from every mountain side. Let freedom ring
When we allow freedom to ring—when we let it ring from every city and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, ” Free at last, Free at last, Great God almighty, We are free at last.”
(Copyright 1963, MARTIN LUTIIER KING, JR.)

How far have we come? On a memorable day, on August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King gave his “I Have A Dream” Speech as part of his Address at the March on Washington in Washington D.C.  He spoke so powerfully and passionately about the struggles for equity and freedom that, even today, his message remains true. Little did he know that his inspired, poetic and prophetic message will continue to resonate in the hearts and minds of people for years to come. His speech is heard and translated in many languages around the world and,  while we live under seemingly different conditions today, some of those issues remain a thorn in the side of this great country.  If we look around us and stand in the glaring light of truth, we will agree that we still have far to go.

What can we do about that?  Just as our daily actions are motivated by our desire to achieve our heartfelt dreams, we must not stand in the path of others cherished dreams. Dr King was a visionary, a man with great kismet, and  above all, a parent.  His speech was a gift and a blessing to remind us all that we are one in spirit. Even though  Dr Martin Luther King‘s life was cut short (January 15, 1929—April 4, 1968), his legacy in the Civil Rights Movement and his impassioned speeches live on.   Today, I pray for an end to discriminatory practices around the world and  that that his memory and legacy will live on. Make a choice to be an advocate for peace and equity and let it begin in your heart and home.

Positive Motivation Tip:  We make choices daily; peace and standing up against injustice ought to be part of that equation. The voices of truth, reason, justice, and goodwill will never diminished by the cacophony of the rest.

Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for the months above/below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
Category tag: – Share your post using Motivation Mondays
Twitter hashtag: – Use this on Twitter #MotvnM
Dedicated Page: There is a dedicated page for Motivation Mondays. It has the same instructions and will include other helpful tools and a link to the round-up
Facebook Page: MotivationOnMondays Join our page and add your post and/or any motivational piece you think will be helpful to others.
Facebook Community: We have a Facebook community forum to compliment the page. It serves as another way to share uplifting posts and thoughts. Please join in and add your voice.

Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM

Related Posts

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS:  All Photos  Dr. MLK, jrDr. MLK. jrMLK Dream SpeechDr King Sculpture via Wikipedia.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

74 Comments leave one →
  1. Melisa Sanchez permalink
    23/01/2016 9:28 pm

    aw such an inspiring thoughts and its very positive and encouragement to us. We should live our dreams and put it into actions 🙂

  2. Melissa Ungco permalink
    23/01/2016 10:06 pm

    Martin Luther King Jr’s I have A Dream is truly iconic. We need more speakers, as well as dreamers, like him.

  3. Cai Dominguez permalink
    26/01/2016 10:16 am

    His speech was very moving. I watched the video and I was shocked. I dont have deep knowledge about American History but all I can say he is a hero because he fights for freedom and equality.

  4. Melgie permalink
    26/01/2016 10:42 am

    An inspiring, courageous speech that inspires the whole world. I adore his speech. He is truly a dreamer. Great post as always, Sis:)

  5. Grace permalink
    28/01/2016 5:46 am

    most people should hear that speech. so goal-inspiring and very motivating.

  6. Shelly permalink
    28/01/2016 3:00 pm

    I have always adored Martin Luther King. He will forever be revered as one of the greatest men in history.

  7. Shelly permalink
    28/01/2016 3:03 pm

    I have always admired Martin Luther King. He will always be revered as one of the greatest men in history.

  8. janzcrystalz permalink
    30/01/2016 7:58 pm

    Such an inspiration. I hope there are still people out there that share the same principle with Dr. King.

  9. Marissa Bulatao (@MommyUnwired) permalink
    31/01/2016 12:28 am

    Growing up, his I Have a Dream speech inspired and moved me to tears

  10. verabear permalink
    31/01/2016 11:21 pm

    he was indeed very inspiring, and those were times when one probably smelled the smell of possibility in the air. it is just so sad that decades later, there is still much hatred and inequality in the world. We must all do our own small bit to change this, and carry on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  11. Mark Villar permalink
    01/02/2016 4:40 am

    Such an inspiring story to read. Hopefully more people will know this so they can appreciate how great life is.


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