I grew up in an African American neighborhood during the 1960s and 1970s. I was one of a handful of white kids in each class, long before mandatory busing began when I was in Middle School. It was a turbulent, exciting time of extremes and tremendous change — a time of powerful awakening when so much that had been taken for granted was challenged and transformed.
Martin Luther King was a prominent part of my childhood. When he was alive, his leadership inspired my parents, my larger community, my teachers and my schooling. After his assassination, King became even more significant as an icon of Civil Rights and as a voice for speaking up for “what is right.” On the walls of restaurants and my school his face reminded us to be of service. Streets were named after him, his speeches were often quoted, and the sound of his voice rang in mine and other’s ears for years after he was gone. The power and passion of his voice still moves me very deeply whenever I think of it (I’m sensitive, remember?).
Whenever I see an inter-racial couple portrayed in a magazine, or a Lesbian family in the media, or a group of children of different colors and races playing together, I think of his dream. His Dream inspired new visions in an entire generation—and generations to follow—that have come to pass in myriad ways. And his message of Love has become the mantra of today.
Each year when the country celebrates this great man’s contributions, I remember those early days and I ask myself: What is Your Dream?
My Dream now focuses on bringing (r)evolutionary transformational work into the mainstream of our culture so that we can seed the New World Age with More Life perspectives and priorities.
My Dream has “moved about,” as Abraham would say, over the years. Yet there is a thread of this from my earliest years in the midst of Civil Rights, and then Feminism, to today. These were all (r)evolutionary transformational movements of their time, just as metaphysics and fierce attention to spiritual integrity is of mine and ours.
I ask you: What is Your Dream?
Life without a dream is very dull indeed. And life with a dream that you do not believe in, or foster, or engagement with, is frustrating and painful.
Martin Luther King put it another way:
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Some things to consider:
- What are you being silent about where you could be speaking up “about things that matter”?
- What is it you long to engage with, but your inner saboteur—who often masquerades as logic and reason—thinks is not such a good idea?
- Where could you express your point of view more powerfully or fully? (See last week’s article on the significance of point of view.)
- What could you be doing in your business that would both express Your Dream and make a bigger, positive impact on the world?
- Do you believe that Your Dream is insignificant, or that it cannot possibly come true?
- Do you believe that you are too small to do what you came here to do?
I give you one more quotation that is strikingly as true now and when he spoke it almost 50 years ago. And I ask you, will you sleep through the (r)evolution or will you stay awake, adjust to a new and changing environment, and help lead the way?
“One of the great liabilities of history is that all too many people fail to remain awake through great periods of social change. Every society has its protectors of status quo and its fraternities of the indifferent who are notorious for sleeping through revolutions. Today, our very survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to adjust to new ideas, to remain vigilant and to face the challenge of change.” ~ Martin Luther King