25 Inspirational Quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

It is difficult to put into words the meaning and impact of someone who transformed not only this nation, but the world. A person who has a legacy of justice, freedom, peace, and love that has cemented him into the fabric of American history. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. continues to inspire us with his wisdom and concern for humanity. I hope these quotes inspire you as much as they have inspired me.

Here are 25 inspirational quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  1. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.
  2. Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.
  3. Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’
  4. Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.
  5. We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.
  6. 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.
  7. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
  8. 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.
  9. We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.
  10. The time is always right to do what is right.
  11. In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.
  12. I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.
  13. Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
  14. The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.
  15. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
  16. We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.
  17. Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
  18. I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.
  19. A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.
  20. The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.
  21. 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.
  22. Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.
  23. Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.
  24. We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.
  25. Law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.

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