“A lot of people are waiting for Martin Luther King or Mahatma Gandhi to come back—but they are gone. We are it. It is up to us. It is up to you.”
-Marian Wright Edelman
I remember reading a book on the state of Education about 10 years ago entitled “Waiting for Superman” with the book’s premise (which I believe was a film first) serving as a call to action that our public schools needed saving. The title was created by the central character when they realized that upon entering adulthood came to the realization that Superman is a fictional character and no one is powerful enough to save us all. This relates to the purpose to today’s quote and message as well.
Now we know that Dr. King and Gandhi were not fictional characters and actually were real. Each of their causes were just and how they conducted themselves in everyday life through their thoughts and actions, their demeanor and how they treated others despite how they were treated was admirable if not inspiring. They both, in my opinion embodied everything that I look for within myself as I continue to refine and define my own moral compass.
Today’s quote is our own call to action. Just like there were people before Dr. King and Gandhi that projected their own positivity and light to make the world as better place so did these two gentlemen. They saw injustice and were determined to find a way to make a difference. They did not wait for someone to tell them to do something, they just did it. It was an internal desire to try and make things right or at least try do what ever was necessary in a peaceful manner.
Dr. King and Gandhi’s moral compasses consisted of knowing who they were. They conducted themselves by leading peaceful protests and despite being mistreated maintained their composure. They were socially aware of the struggles and the injustice happening to their people and was really empathetic in their fight for equality. Dr. King and Gandhi built solid relationships with others through their own interpersonal skills resulting in a positive impact for their cause. Through it all each decision they made ultimately resulted in that change for the greater good and this world is in a much better place because of them, for what they not only stood for but also in the way in which they did it.
So we should not be waiting for the second coming of them to help us in solving the problems of the world today. There will never be another Dr. King or Gandhi but there will always be an us. Right now and in this present moment. We have the ability to do exactly the same thing and help make worldwide changes in the same manner. Its time to stop waiting and start doing. We get out of life what we put into it. And I know that like one of my professors once said to my class, “If its to be, its up to me.” And better yet, why not be our own superhero to our very own story because those qualities that define what makes up a superhero are already inside each of us and how cool is that?
What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards defining/refining your own moral compass?