This week of July 4th, marking American Independence, we look around and it feels as if our culture, our political processes, our country, our businesses and our personal lives may be on the cusp of what could be catastrophic events that are beyond our control.
For this July 4th, excerpts of “A Christmas Sermon on Peace” by Dr. Martin Luther King, are a timeless reminder of our interconnected humanity…
“Yes, as nations and individuals, we are interdependent…”
“… It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. We are made to live together because of the interrelated structure of reality.
“Did you ever stop to think that you can’t leave for your job in the morning without being dependent on most of the world? You get up in the morning and go to the bathroom and reach over for the sponge and that’s handed to you by a Pacific Islander. You reach for a bar of soap and that’s given to you at the hands of a Frenchman. And then you go into the kitchen to drink your coffee for the morning and that’s poured into your cup by a South American. And maybe you want tea: that’s poured into your cup by a Chinese.
“Or maybe you’re desirous of having cocoa for breakfast and that’s poured into your cup by a West African. And then you reach over for your toast and that’s given to you at the hands of an English-speaking farmer, not to mention the baker. And before you finish eating breakfast in the morning, you’ve depended on more than half of the world. This is the way our universe is structured; this is its interrelated quality. We aren’t going to have peace on earth until we recognize this basic fact of the interrelated structure of all reality…
“… Now let me say, secondly, that if we are to have peace in the world, men and nations must embrace the nonviolent affirmation that ends and means must cohere …
“… I still have a dream that with this faith we will be able to adjourn the councils of despair and bring new light into the dark chambers of pessimism. With this faith, we will be able to speed up the day when there will be peace on earth and good will toward men. It will be a glorious day, the morning stars will sing together, and the sons of God will shout for joy.”
This week of celebration of our nation’s independence, let us join together to shine light on pessimism and have faith for peace and good among humanity.
God Bless America,
Napa, California A Sermon for Peace Commentary by Chris Edwards Napa