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President Jimmy Carter: His Prayers from Inside the White House

2017-09-04 | 🔗

The former U.S. President and Nobel Peace Prize winner discusses how his faith guided him and how his global influence grew after he left the White House.  He also opens up about the secret to his over 70-year marriage to former First Lady Rosalynn. Following this interview, Mr. Carter announced he had been diagnosed with cancer.

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
I'm over Winfrey welcome to supersede conversations the podcast I've leave that one of the most valuable gives you can give yourself is taking time to be more fully present journey to become more inspired and connected to the deeper world around us start right now it's been nearly forty years since Jimmy Carter, a peanut farmer and former from planes. Georgia was elected president of the United States, decades since he was the leader of the free world, Jimmy Carter, this travel, the globe with rose And by his side in service to people struggling with disease poverty and wore his lifelong work, earned him a Nobel Peace Prize in two thousand to now, in his twenty ninth book, a New York Times best seller called a full life. President Carter uses his faith as the law
and through which he views all things. So welcome here, first president. Well, I'm delighted a video of a place and thank you for letting me. Thank you. Thank you superficial Sunday, we try to talk about how our spirituality enact. In our lives, how our faith shows up in real works. So I want to talk to you a lot about that. We know today I always wanted to ask you this. Even you going when you and me, Carter were on the upper shell. I thought ass. He could Indeed didn't I always wondered what happens in the helicopter ride out When you are leaving the White House for the final time and you're that helicopter We're getting ready to inaugurate the next president, and you are in that chair. You board those steps getting that chopper, that door close is, and what is that feeling is. The feeling of man was exhilaration, really giving that
Disease will finally released because I haven't been to bed for three days and three nights. In November nineteen, seventy nine Six Americans were taken hostage when a group of the rain. Students stormed the? U S embassy in Tehran. The world watched President Carter worked tirelessly to negotiate their release, the crisis dominated the final year of his presidency after four hundred forty four days in captivity, the hostages were released just moments after President Carter left office. I had just been negotiating with Iranians and by twelve other countries to get his release of the hostages, who have been in prison for more than a year, And at nine o clock this morning they were already in the quite ready to take off from Teheran, but I don't know- maybe captain there until after hours no longer president. But when got a word from the secret service that hushes had actually taken.
Often well on the way to Germany, I was one of the best day spent most of my life erosion, our celebrated all away to the helicopter gun on it, and it flew to Andrews AIR Force Base on air force, one which was now nor air force once it's ours that oppress anymore include an appliance. Would you talk about? I think taught mostly about the hostages schedule, and I knew they were gonna come to our Wiesbaden, Germany, from IRAN. And brought a ragged, was nice enough to invite me to go and meet them, and I did know how they were gone. React to me and when I walked in the room were all of my assembled. They stood up and broke into applause and one by one they embraced man. Thank me for getting them out. Was there a hint of disappointment, though? There
there, that the release happened not on your watch but immediately after your watch it I read and think about that. Until later, when the news media began to comment on what is a total hold them until after I was alone oppression, but I didn't work, I thought I was so thankful to get them out I knew all of their families. I had met with them three or four times a year to explain the status of the hostages. And when they were first taken, we sent word to the Ayatollah through the Germans and others that, if he injured a hostage, we would close off all access between IRAN and the outside world, and if he hurt, kill the hostage, we would attack IRAN militarily, and so he was very careful not to let any hostage be injured or feel. I think what's interesting about you, you're the first president, who was born again christian tat, was something that to a lot of the country. At the time
Where is unheard of unfamiliar, but you proclaim that from the beginning, but that's where I was born and raised in all born again about a standard item of conversation. We can send a phrase used by our people, our church and I was in a fundraiser and about yard and North Carolina, and one of the report it asks me are. You were born again Christian. I said yes and the next day all of the news media thought well, he thinks he saw endowed by God to be present and eating his instructions from Heaven and that sort of thing. So, although it was a common expression for me, the Kosovo church. It was new to the national media. You said that you, obviously you your praying man
I read in a full life where you say you never pray more than you did when you were in the White House. What was your prayer that last year, when I prayed most, when the hottest were being afraid that I could get the hush is released and restore to freedom without going to war, and now I'm not ready for you on your knees on occasion. I do you turn up gonna my needs to every one time in Camp David when I thought so that was leaving without an agreement I put on a cotton type were changed, and I know that impression to God, help me with so that, and I went over another horrible confrontation with him and he decided to stay in nineteen. Seventy eight prison income.
Invited is really prime Minister Menachem begging and egyptian president on, why said, dot to meet at Camp David after a tent and emotional thirteen gaze, historic peace agreement was finally reached. Camp David Accords is considered one of the greatest achievements of Jimmy Carter Presidency What was your and what is your fervent prayer. What is the prayer that resides in your heart that I can use the best of my talent and ability and influence to enhance the kingdom of God on earth, which I believe, comprises peace and now and prayed a man the alleviation of suffering human rights. What was interesting is you know, a lot of people watching us right now feel like that they have,
the weight of the world on their shoulders they fill burden. But when you are pressing. The United States, you usually have the weight of the world shoulders. Did you feel that way? gently aware of that? Yes, I did. I knew that I had the biggest military force in the world and economics and politics and culture, then perhaps any other human being on earth, and I want to use it wisely, And I want to use it wisely and and with a maximum possible element of humility and
And be aware of how much assistance for affect other people for the better or worse? So what role did you faith play in all of your works? Well, I tried to put my faith into practical application when hours and White House, and also when I was already a governor shovel and when was tested the most your face when the horses were being held and when I was urged by almost all my advisers, including my wife, that I should take military action against Iraq. And I and I had. I felt that my christian faith ah call on me to avoid using. Military action when I didn't have to- and I was lucky that when I was probably never dropped a bomb whenever. Artificial. We never shot a bullet, so I was lucky in that respect. Every privileges
that's because of your commitment to say. I think that was a major element of it. And I would say that that even at Camp David, when I had a very serious test with begging him said dot, then, fortunately for us and I think the reason we ve found a recent agreement. Was it all three. I was worried about believers. Menachem Beggin was a first prime minister visually. Whatever the the religious. The rest, I am a passionate secular Sadat, had around spot on travellers on his part where he knelt down and prayed with his forward on the ground, since he was a child, and I was it about Christians or I think that those three disparate all religions. Yet the three greatest religion, Representative we did, and and and I think all of us were sincere and prevent about it. I was so curious what I was reading a full life.
How you grew up you, corrupt, mostly around like people is, I was, I was the only one child in the whole neighborhood we had about two hundred after America to living Archery, Georgia. I was struck by that That's where I lived in my mother was registered nurse. She worked sometimes all night long and I was we raised by after american women, and so I grew up in a much more black culture. All my friends were after american and people with whom I worked in the field in the people with whom I solar power and the people with whom I went- fishing and honey, well, african Americans, and so that was my life and I feel kind of in an alien and culture have got over nothing to go to white school and that sort of thing tell remarkable story of I think you about, Fourteen years all- and you are with
two african american friends and you are going to enter a gate member that story. Yes, we will come and Oliver Field toward the all born and we went through what we call the passion gate they got to. The purser gave, to my surprise, but to african american friends my age step back and let me go first and I thought it was a trick that they had a trip where there might be fall or something like that, and it was only later and I realized that was probably a turning point in their life as well as man, they're planchet potter told them that we had reached the age when they needed to defer to me, because I was white, they were not, and it was only in retrospect, I understood the meaning of that action. Yes, you say I reckon they had to obey their parents prompting or command. We only
I'd vaguely then, but we were transformed at that place a silent line was drawn between friend and friend, race and race. What did your parents, who told you about African Americans or black people? Did you hear than inward growing did your family use? The word I think by Morocco. My mother would not have used it. I don't know about my father, but all Balkan believe that they were should be the distinction between African Americans. White people when daddy, I Lama fluent my mother nursed almost exclusively in african american homes, and when my daddy was also gone, he was quite busy with community affairs. Then I will stay in the home of racial and Jack Clark and our sleep on the floor on a pilot and stop with corn shocks and Rachel. Would that be pulled a panic you're the front?
when the time, but I'm not as old as you, but I do remember, palates- learns ducks looking round my lad, I was kind of an ex alteration for me to stay with Richard, with rising, has wretched affected my life as much as any other human being fact. I rather think other five people other than I. The parents who shape my life in only two of them of white. All three were after Americans who shaped my life. When I was growing up, It must be having grown up, surrounded by African Americans in and seeing African Americans as real people is real human beings. In fact, in your life, why these? think we're at such a divide in this country. Right now feel Racism is rearing ugly head in ways unimaginable black men being shot hours and laid suddenly for someone option. I came home and nineteen fifty
Kind of the initiation of the civil rights movement and other. We went through that IRAN eventually wound up and an early nineteenth sixties, Alan Johnson, at the supermarket path. And then we can breathe a sigh of relief and has taught me you know the time Rachel Termination is over and we gonna took it for granted. Then I think more recently we have seen with the police activity against innocent, like people that we still have a long way to go, and we haven't yet overcome this handicap for both people, what do you think is are world's greatest wound. I thought they had equity among people of mobility.
People who are deprived because of their birth of this sort of approach status, to strive for an accomplishment of success and the oppression that is exerted by the powerful and rich people to stay in the ascendant position in society economically and culturally, and also how to each of us participate in healing the world's greatest wound. I would say that the human society reach see apex or put me moral and ethical commitment shortly out the second World war. When we decided have any more wars, will form the United Nations and every passing universal declaration of Human rights, and I think that exemplifies personifies or clarifies the essence.
Long enough for values that we derive from all the great religions, peace, human rights, equity in social and on, and we have now abandon that deep and penetrating and exalted commitment to have peace and equality of opportunity among our people as the essence of human rights and obviously You ve been committed to. It won a Nobel Peace Prize for it. Do you feel that your influence after the presidency has been even more impact full than during the presidency?.
I think one hour's pressure, our most powerful and influential nation on earth. I had more total influence over your peace and progress and excited, but the last thirty, five years since I left the White House has been the most challenging and interesting and adventurous and unpredictable and gratifying terms of my life, because we dealt with literally millions of individual people, in the tiny villages all over the world and we treat people for diseases basically eradicated. Giddy warm diseases through long smallpox, allow a small, but so does that make woody I mean it's interesting that you nor MRS Carter ever sort of sat back on your laurels, because you really could have just gone the plains and you know, worked on the pin up lower, still do that again,
instead of instead of traveling the world. When you came out of the White House, was there a time where, because I mean people were battering, you pretty harshly the presidency and then in came there Reagan here? How did you wait yourself? You look back on that time in use with gratitude and and I'd say a modicum of satisfaction in this book. I describe the things that we actually accomplish or good be reversed and the things that I tried and ended quite accomplished because of change in circumstances. Of course, but I did the best I could eyes my advice. Person said we told the truth. We obey the law, we kept the peace and we human rights arise when he stood there, accepting the Nobel Peace Prize. Could you feel many times here in the midst of x,
ordinary things happening, and you can't feel the essence of what that means to be received that well. Could you feel that sense of accomplishment? Did you feel that you are felt accurately that it was not or award for me what reward for what he caught her son. I was doing and it s true. It was an hour So the Carter Centre has has an overall commitment of promoting human rights. And we look on human rights as an ability to live in peace and to believe in Europe She will be better than your pass. And you still believe in human rights, which obviously is inclusive of women's rights that you left the southern Baptist convention? As I did, I was very active in the southern Babbage dimension and in two thousand they had a convent.
And all and affordable, and they decided ordained several things that were contrary to my basic believes in Christ. One of them was that women are inferior to men and don't have a role to play, in a leadership position in the southern Babbage convention. So now women are forbidden to be a pastor, all children in the military, ah, a deepening church so Rosen? I decided to withdraw from the southern back from patients who our non church in place. Now is one of the moderate churches. We ve got a woman passed her natural to say so away. I work at a different kind of church from the sun, but Commissioner criticized whom they have their own beliefs, but we just decided not to people because there's no human rights, unless it women's rights, I think, I cordially and believe that the most serious violence
of human rights on earth is the abuse of women. Girls Tommy. We we were a little boy? You were asked whether or not you wouldn't be baptized. You said, yes, you accepted crises, your savior, you had your view of what it meant then to be christian. Has that view expanded over the use? Your view of others have grown in and knowledge Intelligence on a body and experience the number one church in my neighborhood was an african residents- are pushed watch her amateur amnesia and is still there. It was only church and archery where I live, but my parents will Baptist and I went when I got old enough. I went to the Baptist Church in plains. In I understand, and they did They also know I'm says of the christian faith. It was only later when I started. I began to teach Babo lessons when I was in
and then, when I came home and AV hospital volunteer to teach Sunday School, my wife also toxins pillars I'm church and then and I still to furnish forever son. I know you're gonna leave here and go to Sunday school. You said right, so I could go to planes and I could sit in Sunday. School absolutely please what what's your Sunday school lesson? Gonna be. Do you know We already. I thought for lessons on Joe the book of Joe, which is very difficult by the you. Don't wanna, let good things bad things happen, a good people, an end, but I'm gonna change this Sunday, because this would allow some time says to the definition of love, like. We only have one word for love and the Greek which was used to write the new testament. Therefore different definitions of love, em teach the four definitions of love for all, and on this point I have pre eminent. This is, and the four are well, one is arose which has just physical love
on his friendship. Another one is the love of a parent for children, which is the same love and animal has for its offspring and in the is agape love, which is unselfish, love, love for people that don't deserve to be love and don't love you back you started out being a politician, and now you known as philanthropic humanitarian, which you like better Never was a good politician by waivers are much better politician I but about, Jody opportunity and policies to to utilise my town. Would you like to using the platform idea and influence? Would you be able to be unprecedented, naturally enough, there's no way now for you to get a democratic Europe.
A nomination without being able to raise two or three hundred million dollars or more, and I wouldn't Be inclined to do that and I will not be capable of doing so that women from now on all oligarchy instead of a democracy- and I think has been the worst on damage to the basic moral and ethical standards of Americans political system that I've ever seen in my life and when you to the Washington. You worry alienated Democrats from Republicans in Congress from the president, and we are red stage and blue states. We know heading iv that twenty five or thirty years ago, but still hard to get things pass, but it wasn't the kind of alienation that was younger. I had just as much support for Republicans demonstrated when I ran for present, but I should have organised a democratic party. Get me reelected, which I had not sure would have brought me a better life.
If I had had a second term, I think what I've done it. The Carter Centre, has been better do what I might have achieved if I'd been pressing. My lifetime, did she want second to absolute and she still. If I said this in her friends, you should know now. You would have been much more effective if you'd been at a second time, but I don't think so. What is the essence of a full life? you know. I read your autobiography and I realise that g. Although we see you in its President Carter, we still see, you know, still travel with some. The secret service? And you still have the adornment of that? But the life that you have created for yourself. Is a big full rich life. They go. Beyond the definition of what that White House and and the presidency was because I have been fortunate and have taken advantage of
you're, not much. I worked at it. It seems you my word at it. You have allowed my high school teacher. Mr your common sense. We must accommodate changing times but clean two principles that never change and so up try to accommodate changing times in and to take whatever challenge yeah. I had to expand my heart and expand my mom. And I learned quite early in life ah there, when I do- have a failure in life to get over that and to proper something even greater. What are the principles. And values that you hold true and embracing your daily life that continue to guide you. I think the best way to express that from us
The joint, secular and religious way is what ah, a cuban pastor told me. His name was eloi crews. I said you just have to love God, another person in front of you at any particular time and that song, I think, a good theology and a good lesson in life which require constant reminder. When you look at other people. Do you see God in other people? I try to an age when I'm in that attitude, I can say that everything I've had my defects I'm not always that whenever I try to- and this is what one region with Russian I build habitat houses with, we spend a poor weak every year in some remote place, building habitat houses.
You know, one of the things you have learned is that when we work side by side with a family, they ve never had a decent home and alive and with began to comprehend quite clearly in vividly. Their moral values are just as good as mine, and they emissions are generally greatest mine. And are we realise that in the past? Just because somebody, poverty, stricken and deprived of probably look upon us successes in life that they are inferior, as a major lesson. I think I've learned in my life and focuses on the water is that people are not inferior. Do you and MRS Carter read the Bible to each other every night for forty five years, we voters, we read the Bible together and we Sweden is urgent coming up on your seventieth wedding anniversary. Yes, I just past my second life. Doing ok,
So we read the Bible ever night. One night she reads or chapter about next and I really chapter an order. We really done after forty five years. We started reading every night when I began to campaign for president about forty years ago. And so one when I'm not like this. We re the same passage into the so she's waiting in place, Georgia and Armenia and that's not incentive to San Francisco. They can't binds us together. I mean it's very clear. When people talk about you or see, you is very clear. Yours is a love like, like everybody would wish that they would London like India, you fell in love. On the night you were supposed to go out with the pageant Queen S right. She was Miss Georgia, south Western.
Georgia, South envisage Uruguay and view the queen and the beauty queen had a family reunion and you could and she's. So you can you weren't invited to the family you now as our thank goodness and I've wanted to have a date, because I was getting ready, go back to a nobblers for another time of isolation, the universe and so I was cruising around plays and and saw Rosen on a front steps of the Methodist church. It was Sunday night and I asked her if she would go to a movie with me. You just cruising around looking for somebody ride in the next morning. My mother asked me what I do when I had a family unionist there, but I had a date is a who'd. You go with US erosion Smith. She said what do you think a Russian as she's gonna marry? I had approach that something was wrong. I hadn't thought about it myself. What was it you knew? What was it you knew about it? I can't really quantified are.
Rabbit in words, but I knew that she was sure she was quite. She was extremely intelligence. She was very timid by the way beautiful and There was something about her. That was realising irresistible. I can't help your blessing about seven months letter sixty years later- came up to Annapolis to visit me on Lincoln's birthday, and I ask you to marry me and you said no and in from then until late May she maintained no. And I kept trying and punish you said, and why did you say no tell us she had? my father on his death bed that she would finish college and what is it that makes it worse, I have had many discussions with people here. Gary's you carve wrote a book on spirits.
Partnerships for when she says a spiritual partnership is a partnership between equals for the purpose of spiritual. Each is allowing the other two to grow in grace essentially- Thirty one argument, any than it up a sacred along marriage choose the right person at first sight and then we Decided earlier and I like to give each other funding of space. Cousin has own ideas and ambitions on golden light, which in some ways are different from mine What do I say she left me to them? I say and wait. Fodder, resolve our inevitable and very frequent differences if it before we go to bed and having read the Bible Hills and in all is kind of hard to be mad. If you notice it read the Bible, diverse derivative
and then we try to find all the things that we'd like to do together. Sometimes they ve never done before. Still still your way back, I wrote a book once called you're, a good times about how erosion I have struggled as we grew old in order to find things, we had never done before that we would enjoy doing together of ancient idea, and she didn't does. She would join me in doing press may become very avid downhill scares. I was sick to two years, all but well put on per skis, and she was three years younger and will have it I fishers. We go. That's our main source of record. It's really like you needs
ill like an art. Well, so ok and others is personal, but I want to know what the pillar talk is between you all. Do you talk about politics? You talk about your grandchildren. We talk was, if I say about our family and sometimes about the differences. Rose and has then I and the, but I would say a lot of it is that we have not only airports we have twelve grandchildren and ten great grandchildren. Now Do you have a morning ritual? If you do describe it? I get up quite early when I'm writing a book. I get up about five o clock, And at a writers, in order to the serious and in about seven o clock, I'm a bedrosian and have breakfast together. Quite often we cook- and the first thing I do when Rosa wakes up- is that I always take her a cup of coffee and a glass of orange juice, and I got a kiss
one was a long time ago. I wouldn't study inside turn on my computer, and I saw them they are obviously teeth and as it has my wife's birthday and forgot it, so I did some fascinating and I wrote on a little piece of paper promise as a birthday present to do anything. You asked me to. Well unrestricted and she- and I took the paper she thought awhile and she'd vanish like you to bring your cup of coffee reported forever forever. So I have has been about twenty five years so that a person so there is talk about that, but anyway, so I start my voice and then I got the word, and I have a What would shop, what steps away when I get out of work and on the computer,
writing a book. I shall not go out of my workshop and design and build virtue. I paint pictures on your artwork, yes, and what makes you laugh out loud I'd like your primary, my grandchildren in Venice, thanks, I say: Amy has a little boys now, four years old, yet has another son sixteen and on when I got a little Amy, the grew up in the White House as a sun, sixteen forlornly, but I should still I'm using laughing. I love that red. I yes, but she's a school teacher now and so had. I think the main thing said. They make me laugh out loud of our grandchildren. Funny or not. I know that this away they, what do they call you papa? They call you papaya they'll papa
It has been my honour, my honour and a pleasure for me. I've enjoyed it emerge, you for all your public life, and I am proud of what you do. Mr President, think it's been a pleasure. I'm over Winfrey, and you ve been listening to supersede conversations the pod cast. You can follow superficial on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook if you haven't yet go to Apple POD, Kenneth and subscribe rate and review of this plant gas join me next week for another supersede conversation
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Transcript generated on 2020-02-05.