As I sat and reflected on MLK, I began thinking about all the religious and racially triggered events that had taken place in just the past few months. I thought about the heartbreak and the anger surrounding the unjust murders of mike brown and eric garner. I thought about the deadly shooting at the Charlie Hebdo publication, and the rallying international support it assembled. I thought about the massacre in Nigeria led by Boko Haram and the cold international silence that followed. I felt the blow of every event break me in two. My heart sank heavy with disappointment recognizing once again the lack of humanity within the human race. And, if still alive, I wondered whether Martin would be celebrating today or feel just as weighed down as I did.
I think the dream of Dr. King was not to just get equal rights for black people, but for humans to begin to see themselves in each other. To realize the blatant, undeniable truth that we are more alike than we are different. To understand that God, Allah, Yahweh, Brahma…whatever you choose to call this higher power created EVERYONE! Therefore, EVERYONE has the right to live. Yes, culturally and religiously we each carry a unique print that outwardly distinguishes one from the other, but at the core…at the very fucking core…we are the same…we want the same fucking things. We all want love, peace, health, security, stability, family, friends, and the freedom to determine and create a life tailored to who we are – where what I look like doesn’t dictate the trajectory of my life. I don’t want to live in a world that is “color blind”, that is so politically correct that it chooses to ignore or subtlety ebb out my uniqueness.
Instead, I’d rather live in a world where the fear and the ignorance surrounding those differences is eradicated. Where the fear and ignorance that was once given life by so many is replaced with knowledge, and having that knowledge finally clears the way for acceptance. We have much further to go before the real “Dream” is actualized, and MLK is not just a nice story in the paragraph of our history books, soon to be forgotten until the following year, but to where MLK represents a concept that is entrenched within the consciousness of all mankind.
Dr. King was way ahead of his time in the sense that he was preaching and speaking about spiritual ideals to people who had yet to be elevated in their spiritual thinking. Dr. King preached about a God that loved and created everyone equally, but the problem was that people made God out to be a deity that was strictly for them. In their eyes, God was not a God for all, but a God for a select few…a chosen few. It maintained division and misunderstanding and tension and hatred. It created an “us” vs. “them” mentality that justified cruelty. I think in order for the human race to stop killing itself, and to prevent further crimes against humanity, their understanding of God and their relationship with God has to change. God has never been exclusive to one type, but lives within everyone. Seeing yourself in someone else means seeing God reflected back. And After seeing God could you still kill him? Could you unjustly jail him? Could you deny him his rights? Could you leave him to suffer and die alone? Apparently so.
MLK’s dream serves as a wake-up call to all those who are still slumbering. Those sleepwalkers who blindly operate through life only concerned with their own survival. I think Martin’s dream was not a dream at all, it was, in fact, a divine summons to the dormant God within all of us.