Bangaloreans were treated to an enlightening lecture on the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr last week. Organised by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations and held at the National Institute of Advanced Studies, the talk was given by Dr Otis Moss, Pastor Emeritus at the Olivet Institutional Baptist Church, Cleveland, Ohio. The dynamic speaker had everyone mesmerised, and even provided interesting answers to the audience’s questions on world peace and human rights.
“I love the spirit of the people I have met in India, be it the leaders or the students at City colleges,” the man told Metrolife. “To be in a country of more than a billion people and see its dynamics and hope is wonderful,” he adds. “India is a great place. It’s the land of Gandhi, and is a leading force in the world.”
Speaking on his association with Martin Luther King Jr, he praises the man’s humanism and sensitiveness to people. “He is great strength in face of tremendous difficulty.” As someone who has also been close to Barack Obama, he gets emotional at the very mention of the President of the United States. “On the night of the elections, when Barack stepped out on stage to give his message to the nation, I saw a generation before us, that has made investments, sacrifices, prayers and incalculable contribution for the betterment of humanity,” he says. “It was like a daybreak in the middle of the night.”
Ask him about his sightseeing experiences, and he smiles, “It’s been a short trip unfortunately. It’s been a fast-moving experience but a blasting one.” He adds, “To visit different colleges, to speak in front of an audience consisting of leading business persons, is fabulous.” But he considers his most inspiring moment as the one when he met children at a village. “It was extremely inspiring to see children, eager and enthusiastic to learn, and to know that the future of India lies in these small villages.”
“India is a great example to the world on how a nation transform itself from a colony to democracy. It’s a country that has moved ahead, be it in terms of it’s right to vote or the end of segregation.” Summing up his trip to India, he says, “The fact that I have been here will live with me for the rest of my life.”