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Top 10 Howard Thurman Quotes to Inspire and Empower You

Discover the wisdom and teachings of Howard Thurman through his famous and inspirational quotes. Immerse yourself in the profound wisdom of Howard Thurman and be inspired by his teachings.
by The Blinkist Team | Dec 12 2023

Howard Thurman, a prominent African-American theologian, author, and civil rights leader, is known for his influential work in the mid-20th century. His book, “Jesus and the Disinherited,” published in 1949, remains highly relevant today. In this groundbreaking work, Thurman explores the teachings of Jesus and their significance for marginalized communities, offering a powerful message of hope, resilience, and social justice. With its profound insights and timeless wisdom, “Jesus and the Disinherited” continues to inspire readers to confront injustice and work towards a more inclusive and compassionate society.

Howard Thurman was a renowned theologian, philosopher, and civil rights leader who left a lasting impact on the world with his profound words of wisdom. His quotes continue to inspire and empower individuals to this day. In this article, we have curated the top 10 Howard Thurman quotes that will uplift your spirit, ignite your passions, and encourage you to live a life of purpose and meaning. Whether you are seeking motivation in your personal or professional life, these quotes are sure to resonate with you and provide the guidance you need to overcome obstacles and embrace your true potential. Get ready to be inspired as we delve into the wisdom of Howard Thurman.

10 Inspiring Howard Thurman Quotes to Ignite Your Soul

Jesus rejected hatred because he saw that hatred meant death to the mind, death to the spirit, and death to communion with his Father. He affirmed life; and hatred was the great denial.

Howard Thurman

This line emphasizes the importance of rejecting hatred and embracing love and compassion. Jesus recognized that hatred not only harms others but also has detrimental effects on our own well-being. He understood that hatred leads to the death of the mind, spirit, and our connection with a higher power. By choosing love over hatred, Jesus affirmed the value of life and rejected the destructive nature of hatred, recognizing it as a denial of the goodness and unity that can be achieved through love.

Follow the grain in your own wood.

Howard Thurman

This quote highlights the importance of embracing our individuality and staying true to ourselves. It suggests that we should not conform to societal expectations or try to fit into molds that do not align with our true nature. Instead, we should embrace our unique qualities, strengths, and values, and follow our own path in life. This quote encourages us to trust our instincts, listen to our inner voice, and have the courage to be authentic and genuine in everything we do.

It cannot be denied that too often the weight of the Christian movement has been on the side of the strong and the powerful and against the weak and oppressed-this, despite the gospel.

Howard Thurman

Howard Thurman offers a critical reflection on the Christian movement’s historical alignment with the strong and powerful, rather than the weak and oppressed. This quote highlights the contradiction between the teachings of the gospel, which emphasize love, compassion, and justice for all, and the actions of those who claim to follow it. Thurman’s words serve as a reminder to challenge and rectify the imbalances of power and privilege within religious institutions and society at large.

In whatever sense this year is a new year for you, may the moment find you eager and unafraid, ready to take it by the hand with joy and gratitude.

Howard Thurman

This quote highlights the optimism and excitement that comes with the start of a new year. It suggests that regardless of the circumstances or challenges we may face, we should approach each new year with eagerness, fearlessness, and a sense of gratitude. This quote encourages us to embrace the opportunities that come our way, to face them with joy and gratitude, and to make the most of the moments that lie ahead. It serves as a reminder to approach the new year with a positive mindset and a readiness to seize the opportunities that come our way.

Community cannot for long feed on itself; it can only flourish with the coming of others from beyond, their unknown and undiscovered brothers.

Howard Thurman

Once again, Howard Thurman shares a thought-provoking perspective on the importance of community and the need for diversity. This quote emphasizes that a community cannot sustain itself solely by relying on its existing members. Instead, it thrives when new individuals from different backgrounds and experiences join, bringing fresh perspectives and ideas. Thurman highlights the significance of embracing and welcoming others, recognizing that the richness of a community lies in its ability to connect with and learn from those who are different from us.

There is a quiet courage that comes from an inward spring of confidence in the meaning and significance of life. Such courage is an underground river, flowing far beneath the shifting events of one’s experience, keeping alive a thousand little springs of action.

Howard Thurman

This quote, from Howard Thurman’s book “Deep Is the Hunger,” speaks to the power of inner strength and resilience. It suggests that true courage comes from a deep-rooted belief in the purpose and value of life. This inner courage is not easily shaken by the ups and downs of external circumstances. It serves as a constant source of motivation and inspiration, fueling countless small acts of bravery and determination. This quote reminds us to tap into our own inner wellspring of confidence and to trust in the meaningfulness of our actions, even in the face of adversity.

Whatever may be the tensions and the stresses of a particular day, there is always lurking close at hand the trailing beauty of forgotten joy or unremembered peace.

Howard Thurman

This quote emphasizes the idea that no matter how challenging or stressful a day may be, there is always the potential for finding moments of beauty and peace. It suggests that amidst the chaos and pressures of life, there are often hidden treasures of joy and tranquility that we may have overlooked or forgotten. This quote encourages us to be mindful and open to the possibility of rediscovering the simple pleasures and serenity that surround us, even in the midst of difficult times.

There are two questions that we have to ask ourselves. The first is ‘Where am I going?’ and the second is ‘Who will go with me?’

Howard Thurman

Thurman offers a thought-provoking reflection on the journey of life and the importance of companionship. By posing two fundamental questions, he prompts us to reflect on our direction and purpose. The first question, “Where am I going?” encourages us to consider our goals, aspirations, and the path we are on. The second question, “Who will go with me?” reminds us of the significance of relationships and the impact that others have on our journey. This quote serves as a reminder to choose our companions wisely and to seek support and connection as we navigate through life’s challenges and triumphs.

Do not be silent; there is no limit to the power that may be released through you.

Howard Thurman

This quote highlights the importance of speaking up and using our voices to make a difference. It suggests that remaining silent can limit our potential and the positive impact we can have on the world. By expressing ourselves and sharing our thoughts, ideas, and beliefs, we have the ability to unleash a powerful force within us that can bring about change and inspire others. This quote encourages us to embrace our voices and recognize the limitless power we possess to create a better world through our words and actions.

Listen to the long stillness:
New life is stirring
New dreams are on the wing
New hopes are being readied:
Humankind is fashioning a new heart
Humankind is forging a new mind
God is at work.
This is the season of Promise

Howard Thurman

Howard Thurman offers a poetic reflection on the transformative power of stillness and the potential for new beginnings. The quote evokes a sense of anticipation and hope, suggesting that in moments of quiet and reflection, new life, dreams, and hopes are being nurtured and prepared. Thurman’s words convey a belief in the capacity of humanity to evolve and grow, both individually and collectively. The mention of God’s presence implies a divine hand guiding this process of renewal. Overall, this quote invites us to embrace the season of promise and embrace the possibilities that lie ahead.

In conclusion, Howard Thurman’s words have the power to awaken and ignite the fire within us. His quotes remind us that our dreams and aspirations are within reach, and that we have the strength and resilience to overcome any challenge that comes our way. Through his teachings, Thurman encourages us to embrace our uniqueness, to stand up for what we believe in, and to live a life of purpose and meaning. As we reflect on these top 10 Howard Thurman quotes, let us be inspired to take action, to make a difference in the world, and to live our lives to the fullest. Let his words be a constant reminder that we are capable of greatness and that we have the power to create a positive impact in our own lives and in the lives of others.


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