Today in New Zealand, the 22nd of January, it is Sir Edmund Hillary’s funeral, the final laying to rest of a national icon, and the only New Zealander to be immortalised on the face of a bank note while still alive. He was also the first person in 1953 to scale the face of Mt Everest.
Disparities of timezones and the passage of sidereal time mean that for the rest of the world it is yesterday right now, the 21st January, when “Sir Ed” has yet to be buried, and it is still Martin Luther King Day, the celebration of another man who scaled a lofty peak—the highest ideals of human equality and brotherhood.
What better time to revisit his famous, nay immortal August 28, 1963 speech at the March on Washington, better known for the very phrase he is remembered for—“I have a dream…”
May every dream for peace and equality come true…
Martin Luther King’s speech “I have a dream”
A Tribute by Sri Chinmoy to Martin Luther King
“Martin Luther King, beloved king of the heart-world, unhorizoned vision of the mind-world, hero-warrior of the vital-world, life-sacrificer of the body-world, to you my aspiration-dedication-life bows.
“The Saviour-Son gave humanity the lesson of compassion and forgiveness. India’s Mahatma Gandhi, with his message of non-violence, proved to be an excellent student. In America the Absolute Supreme chose you to be His unparalleled student, to love divinely the soul of His creation and to serve unreservedly the body of His creation.
“We, the members of the United Nations Meditation Group, bow to you lovingly, devotedly and soulfully.”
29 November 1977
(Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King at the United Nations. The programme was attended by Mrs. Coretta Scott King.)
Reprinted from Mahatma Gandhi: The Heart of Life by Sri Chinmoy (1994).