Category Archives: As the saying goes

Words of Wisdom

Martin Luther King

 

MLK

 

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

Dr Martin Luther King Junior (MLK for short) was an American pastor (clergyman), the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner and one of the founding leaders of the US Civil Rights movement (rights for minorities or more specifically blacks in USA).  He was one of the greatest ever orators (speakers) of USA.

Most Influential Black Person in US History

MLK is one of the top few Most Famous Black Americans. In my opinion he is the number 1 Black person who brought most significant change in US society especially for Blacks. His quotes are truly inspiring; especially a lesson for Muslim nation which is under oppression but sleeping happily, waiting for its situation to improve without doing anything:

Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can’t ride you unless your back is bent.”

Slaves Born to Serve

MLK’s family was one of the millions transported from Africa to US to work as slave labour. They were treated sub-humanly. Their houses, churches, schools, and as such lives were segregated from whites. They were there to serve not live. It was people like MLK who fought for justice & equality, and brought a change in the US law, eventually in the mentality of the people.

Colour Based Segregation

“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

Christianity was Central to MLK’s Life

MLK was born on 15th January 1929 to a religious family in Atlanta, USA. He completed PhD in religious studies and became pastor of a Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama following the footsteps of his father and grandfather. An incident was about to happen that would bring him to the main stream politics, and change the history of USA.

 “Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.”

Montgomery Bus Boycott:

Rosa Parks, a middle aged woman was returning home in 1955 after a long shift at work. Tired, she boards a bus belonging to the “Montgomery Bus System”. Blacks were only allowed to sit at the back of the bus. Soon the bus driver tells her to move to the back of the bus so that a white can sit in her seat, Rosa refuses! She was arrested and the news broke in the media. This was the start of an incident that changed the history of USA, especially the black people’s.

Rosa Parks Arrest

“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.”

Black communities were informed and mobilised through local churches to boycott the bus company. The protest against the separation & discrimination of black people on buses grew and grew; buses went emptier and emptier as days passed.

“The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.”

MLK got involved in this movement and soon became known in the whole USA. The 382-day boycott forced the bus company to change its regulations, and the Supreme Court declared such segregation unconstitutional! This was a great success for the Civil Rights Movement.

Just Walk – No Bus Ride

Mahatma Gandhi:

MLK came across Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent means of struggling which were used against British in India. It inspired MLK deeply; he promoted non-violent protests against discrimination of blacks in USA based on the methods of Gandhi. He then visited India in 1959.

MLK an Untouchable (Shoother)

Low caste people in India are referred to as Shoothers. These are considered as untouchable (unclean). MLK was due to speak at a school where Children of Shoohter studied. The principal of school introduced him as ‘I would like to present to you a fellow untouchable from the United States of America’. In MLK’s own words:

“For a moment I was shocked and even peeved that I would be referred to as an untouchable’,” MLK said he then started to think about the fact that 20 million of his brothers and sisters were still smothering in an airtight cage of poverty in an affluent society. “And as I thought about this, I finally said to myself, yes, I am an untouchable and every Negro in the United States is an untouchable”. This incident had a profound effect on MLK; inspiring him to struggle more vibrantly.

Water has no Colour then Why??

“In the end; we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”

 

Whites Worked Alongside:

Many white people who valued a human being irrespective of his skin colour also joined his movement. There were many whites who believed in justice and equality but still they were in minority in this big country.

White & Black – Fighting Together for Equal Human Rights

“I want to be the white man’s brother, not his brother-in-law.”

 

Opposition to Vietnam War & Work against Poverty:

MLK opposed US war against Vietnam. This act didn’t go down well with establishment and the army. He was not alone, Muhammad Ali, another legendary Black American do so too. Towards the last years of his life he started focusing his efforts against poverty in US. In 1963, King led mass protests in Alabama against the discrimination where the white population were violently resisting Black rights. King was arrested and jailed for his part in the protests.

“Time is always right to do what is right”.

The Great March on Washington – The Largest Political Rally in USA:

After his release, King participated in the enormous civil rights march on Washington on 28th August 1963, the largest ever political rally in the history of USA. The rally’s theme was “Jobs and Freedom”. Estimated participants were between 200,000 & 300,000. About 80% were black and rest were whites.

The Great Washington March 1963

I Have a Dream:

MLK delivered his famous speech ‘I have a dream’ here, predicting a day when the promise of freedom and equality would become a reality in America.  He declared:

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character.”

In 1964, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

“Philanthropy (giving Charity) is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.”

Blacks Get Right to Vote:

In 1965, MLK led a campaign to allow blacks to vote. The same year the US Congress passed the “Voting Rights Act” allowing blacks the right of voting. It was only 45 years after women in US got the right to vote in US.

MLK is Killed

He was assassinated on 4th April 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee. The killer was sentenced to 99 years in jail. It is unclear who was behind the murder, though the killer claimed it was CIA. His birthday is celebrated as MLK Day and is a national holiday in USA.

MLK’s Philosophy in Short

  •  Oppressed must demand his rights from oppressor – you get nothing without asking
  • Struggle should be non-violent
  • Don’t let others manipulate you – no one can ride your back until YOU bend it.
  • And Think, Think, Think – Why are we in this Deep Trouble and What is the Right Solution?

 “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.”

Funny Quoutes

  1. Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
  2. Better to remain silent and be considered a fool, than to speak and confirm it.
  3. If you can’t impress people with your intelligence, confuse them with your bullsh1t
  4. The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it’s still on the list.
  5. If I agree with you we’d both be wrong.
  6. The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
  7. A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.
  8. Never get into fights with ugly people, they have nothing to lose.
  9. Worrying does work! 90% of the things I worry about never happen.
  10. 10.  My psychiatrist told me I was crazy and I said I want a second opinion. He said okay, you’re ugly too.
  11. Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.
  12.  I like work. It fascinates me. I sit and look at it for hours.
  13.  I used to be indecisive. Now I’m not sure.
  14.  Knowledge is power, and power corrupts. So study hard and be evil
  15.  A TV can insult your intelligence, but nothing rubs it in like a computer.
  16.  Going to Mosque doesn’t make one a Muslim any more than standing in a garage makes you a Mechanic.
  17.  Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

Good Sayings: Look at Future

 What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others remains and  is immortal.

 There are No Failures – just experiences and your Reactions to them. And it is ‘Your’ Reactions that define your Destiny.

 When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the Goals, adjust the Action Steps.

People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents.

Why a Car’s Windscreen is so large & the Rear view Mirror is so small? Because our Past is not as important as our Future. So, Look Ahead and Move on.

Worrying does not take away tomorrow’s Troubles, But surely it takes away today’s Peace.

All things in life are temporary.  If going well, enjoy it as they will not last forever. If going wrong, don’t worry, they can’t last long either.

A blind person asked St. Anthony: “Can there be anything worse than losing eye sight?” He replied: “Yes, Losing your Vision!”

Path & Walk

Wrongly convicted for a murder, he Spent nearly 17 years in jail for a crime he never committed. Eventually quitted once his case was re-examined. One year after his release, he met the lady who accused her for that murder.  He was in 40s by then and has lost most of his youth behind bars. She was expecting a lot of grief from him. But to her surprise, he forgave her and met her with compassion. She was quite moved by his good spirit. 

“What kept you going for so long?” She enquired? His answer was:

 “Sometimes in life you may not be able to choose the path you walk. But you can choose how you walk that path.”

His statement is really inspiring. Life may throw us on an unavoidable difficult path. How we react to it is what matters! God may test us through hardships. It is up to us to keep moaning on it, or, enjoy whatever we have. I’m not saying at all that we shouldn’t try to change the situation.  We should happily embrace the hardship and then take steps to transform it. But we must not keep standstill doing nothing & just keep complaining.

Take for example, this man was accused wrongly and thrown in jail. He did not give-up hope and accepted the situation. He kept trying to change the situation instead of giving up. Eventually he dug himself out of this hardship!

This lesson applies on us both individually as well as a nation. Yes, we are on a difficult path right now. But what have we done (or do) to alleviate ourselves out of this mess?

Are we walking the path gracefully and trying to bring a change, or????          How are we contributing?

Sydney Sheldon

Life is like a Novel

Sydney Sheldon is the most famous dramatic/suspense novel writer of 20th century. He is also film, TV & stage show/drama writer and winner of an Oscar. Sydney’s own life was a pure drama, pooerst at one stage & Billionaire at another. Sydney wrote his first novel at the age of 53 when people start planning for retirement. It was a big flop, he didn’t give up, wrote another which turned out to be a great success. He considered life as a Novel, you never know what happens next until you turn the next page. Never Stop, never quit, was his message. Read a snapshot from his interesting autobiography:

The crowded hotel hall was full book lovers. A famous New York publisher had invited three writers to sign their new books for buyers. There were long queues in front of two authors but the third one was sitting alone. Not even a single buyer for him. It was quite embarrassing and humiliating for him. Hours passed but no one turned up to him. “May I take your autograph please!” an old leady approached him softly. Jumping out of his chair eagerly, he took the book, wrote a nice sentence & signed it. “So what did you like in my novel?” he enquired excitedly.  The lady smiled tenderly & responded, “Son you were sitting alone, I felt sympathetic and hence bought your book.”

With broken heart, he returned to his hotel and kept awake all night. After hours of deliberation he decided to give up on novel writing. It is not me; I should stick to my previous activities of TV & stage drama writing, he concluded. Feeling calm now, he turned to his bed. Looking out of the window he noticed sunlight slowly taking away darkness. Suddenly it reminded him of his own writing “every dark night has to finish & bright day has to arrive, instead of frightening from the dark, just think it is only few moments before the Morning!”  He left the bed instantly and started writing his next novel.

Disappointed from his first novel, it was Sydney Sheldon, the most famous fiction/suspense navel writer of 20th century. He wrote 17 novels, which are sold in access of 370 million and translated into 51 languages. He was born in 1917 in USA and passed away in 2007. Sydney’s life was full of drama. At the age of 17 he decided to end his life due to bad financial situation. He was about to swallow sleeping pills when his father arrived.  He counselled Sydney wisely that I do not intend to stop you from suicide. I will only say that:

“You don’t know what can happen tomorrow. Life is like a novel. It’s filled with suspense. You never know what’s going to happen until you turn the page. I am sorry to hear that you want to suicide. By this you will only miss on the opportunities & excitements that are due to follow in the next chapter. Remember, you can decide to close this book [of life] anytime but once closed this book can never be opened again.”

This sentence changed Sydney’s life forever. He decided to labour hard from that day onward and never give up. Sydney worked as factory worker, shoe salesman, radio announcer & hawker. Though he could not succeed much, Sydney didn’t stop. He came to New York to work on radio & TV. Slowly moving into film-writing, he wrote many mediocre films. Then his film “The Bachelor & the Bobby-Soxer” released in 1947 turned out to be box office hit, earning him the top-most award of Oscar in script writing! He became famous. Sydney was offered to write & direct a movie “Dream Wife” for the renowned MGM Studios. The producer was the head of MGM himself. Unfortunately, the film got negative publicity from some of the press. As a result MGM’s head released the movie as a low profile to save his name. Sydney resigned in protest. He remained out of work for many months. He ran low on money, so much so that he once had to borrow $50 from his own servant. Again, his next movie blasted the box office again, rocketing to the top!

Same ups & downs followed Sydney in stage dramas also. He made a low budget drama at New York Broadway Theatre which ran for many months. Yet, his next musical drama, the most expensive opera in New York’s history, flopped that it didn’t last for a week.

By 1970, Sydney was 53 years old. He had written successful stage dramas, won Oscar and was watched on TV by millions across USA. There was yet another dramatic chapter due to begin in his life.  He decided to write a novel. Five publishers rejected his novel. At last one accepted it for only $1000. On opening ceremony he sat in the hall along other two writers to sell their books. Not even a single person bought Sydney’s book except that old lady who did so out of mercy. Did Sydney give up? No, he wrote yet another novel “The Other Side of Midnight”. It was a big hit and sold in millions.   He became millionaire? No, Billionaire actually! Sydney kept on writing novels for the next 27 years, only to become the most famous suspense writer. In his own words:

“Life is like a lift, it goes up & down. If you are in crisis, assume you are at the bottom, but be sure it will go up. The secret of success is that Never Quit the lift!”.

On another occasion Sydney wrote:

Don’t give up. There are too many nay-sayers out there who will try to discourage you. Don’t listen to them. The only one who can make you give up is yourself.”

So friends, choice is yours, quit, or Stand-up for yourself.

“You have two choices. You can keep running & hiding and blaming the world for your problems, or you can Stand Up for Yourself and decide to be Somebody important.”

The End..