“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 protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.” (The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., August 1963, Washington, D.C.)
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. also said, “In the long-run of history destructive means cannot bring about constructive ends. So, since we are working toward a just society in this movement, we should use just methods to get there.” (1966 Ware Lecture)
One of these “just means” was Soul Force, “The power of a person’s love and humanity to awaken other people’s consciences” (1), based on the value of Satyagraha (Love Force) that was at the center of Mahatma Gandhi’s movement.
This sounds so simple, doesn’t it? We know it’s not — it’s easy to return anger with anger, hatred with hatred, sarcasm with sarcasm, cynicism with cynicism, fear with fear, or withdraw as a survival tactic from the horrible and sometimes overwhelming specter of them.
And yet … Soul Force is a powerful wellspring to drawn from and let flow through us, too. It is a force for change.
That’s just one of the things that makes the work and legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, his mentors like Dr. Howard Thurman, and Mahatma Gandhi, who inspired them both, so courageous, inspired, and provocative to the ‘powers that be’ then and now.
It does require a depth of courage — whole-heartedness — and deep-rooted passion in certain values, and a devotion to a level of integrity that’s both unusual (it seems) and natural to us.
The Power of Soul Force is the Power of Presence, when that presence is rooted in and filled with the Big Love and the qualities and traits it inspires, and what the Rev. Dr. King called “the dignity and discipline” and the “passionate concern of dedicated individuals.”
Very, very Capricorn — the Sign of Sophia-Wisdom — his emphasis on dignity, discipline, passionate concern, dedication, and “rising to the majestic heights!” (Rev. Dr. King was born under the Sign of the Initiate, Capricorn).
With an abundance of the Energies of Now concentrated in Capricorn — the sign of the Initiate, Jupiter and Mars in the sign of the depth-diving, transformative Scorpio Mysteries, Uranus in ‘Warrior of the Worthy Cause’ Aries, and Neptune and Chiron in the ocean of Big Love — there is a potent tide and gravitational pull towards that passionate concern and dedication to choose and presence that Soul Force, the Big Love in us.
We find our inspiration — the words and reminders that stir that natural presence within us — from a variety of places and people.
What the inspiration sources have in common is just that: They stir, beckon, remind, and invite out our own Soul Force — the more fiercely humane, heartful, compassionate, kind, and loving aspects of our nature, our Divine Gifts, rich in us, even though they may be buried deep.
Today we remember the work and inspired legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., though the deep pool of wisdom and inspiration that moved him are both timeless and timely.
The Power of Soul Force is an example of subtle activism, though history shows that it’s anything but passive.
What stirs your Soul Force alive and into its natural potency?
The Energies of Now powerfully support exploring into that very worthy question.
Related Sophia’s Children Inspiration:
Also check out this Sister Blog Post from Emily at BriarCroft – An Amalgum of Black and White.
Featured Image Credit: The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “I Have a Dream” speech, August 28, 1963 at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C.
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Lots of love,