A Sense Of Self Makes Living Better: Part 4
Imam W. Deen Mohammed
(Editorial Note: "A progressional sense in man is given to him by his Creator" has been the central theme throughout this December 11, 1988 public address by Imam W. Deen Mohammed, given in Atlanta, GA.)
Allah says, "He has made signs in the skies and signs in the earth, and also in you..." But how many of us go along not caring, heedless, not even paying any attention. The help is out there and in us to help the intellect to come into its destiny and its human glory. But Allah also says, "Look how many go along unmindful and paying no attention." Allah says also that there are signs in you. And that is what we are talking about now; the focus is on us, the human being, the person. There are signs in us.
There is a sign in the gestation and long period of maturation. A man of science and the author of a book titled "How the Brain Works," said something that I am sure you can find in many books on the subject of the brain. He says of human growth and of this period of maturation which is about twenty years for the human being, that the thing that is readily observed in that period of growth is the brain. He says when the first form of life can be observed, even then it appears that the brain is taking the lead.
We have seen pictures of the early development of the fetus in the early forming of life in the womb. You will see a little something that looks like a tadpole with a big lump at the head of it. This big lump is the brain. And that is what Allah has made to operate for the good organization and government of that body. The brain has to grow fast and grow big in proportion to the rest of the body. It is a sign of the bigger importance on the human intellect.
It is good that I tell you this, which you may already know, but to hear it now the way this learned scientist professor and student of science has put it is good. He was saying in effect that the function of the brain is to make sense out of what goes into it. Isn't that wonderful? Now how many of these people who follow modern pop culture have brains that are operating properly? If the real and true function of the brain is to make sense out of what goes into it, then most of the people following the trends of pop life and pop culture are not really having true brains. For them to have true brains. Their brains must not be functioning in the way that brains are to function.
Most crazed followers of pop & rock are not trying to make sense out of anything. They are following blindly the trends of fragmenting ill-formed life and behavior. Now I know you don't have to be told that. But too many of you do things in fun, and you have been sensitized to be amazed or surprised that anyone will speak in any way critical. You are thinking, "It is only fun! You are supposed to appreciate fun! He has no humor. He has no love." This is the way you have been sensitized. The thinking is, fun is not like intelligence. Fun is supposed to be foolish.
We can turn on the T.V. and there are some people doing the dog, although they don't call it 'doing the dog' now. But that is what they are doing, and the camera man will have the camera on the 'dog.' The camera is not on the human being, it is on the dog. And he will be taking shots of the 'dog* from different angles — from the top downward to show how the dog looks in his actions from that view. Then he will go and put the camera up under them and will take shots so you can see the dogs from up under. They are just 'doing the dog" and will not tire. They will have a little break for the record to be changed and will then get right back into the dog.
That is the behavior too many accept, and it is presented to little babies before they can even grow up and be firm in the right behavior. The fun world influences them to get their satisfaction in the dog! I have observed a small child with its family. I was in their home when one of these Band Stand or Soul Train kind of shows was on. The older children were really into it, looking and watching with interest. Every now and then one of them would get up in the dog. The little baby that was not quite two years old, who was very expressive and very intelligent, had no interest in what was going on.
We know that there are some of us who would be tickled to death to watch a toddler do the shimmy. "Look at that little thing. Look at her; she can dance." And the toddler is there in the dog. It is because someone worked with her and encouraged her out of herself into the dog. But if they leave the little child alone and not urge it, the child will most likely see that as foolishness and will not be interested. The brain favors the natural state and wants to make sense out of what goes into it.
A sense of self makes living better.
The crowds follow dog-like trends. Do you think the world is going to be in their hands tomorrow? Do you think that they can help secure life and the world and established institutions for the generations to come? No! They are seen by those who are positioned to secure the future of nations and society as the waste of society. They are seen as disposables.
To keep them from getting into the hair of the wise and the people with bigger things on their minds, they let them frolic and play and accommodate their foolishness. But who knows, they may still get better, and we may not have to bring up again these evils of the world.
Allah says of this human person or creature that He has made for excellence, who goes along heedless and forgets his Maker: "Does he reckon that there is no one in charge of him?" What a great revelation, as all pure revelation is! It is saying, does he figure...You may not know "reckon," for that is an old down home term. "Does he figure that no one is in charge of him?" And that is another observation that we have to make when we are examining our departure from the good state that Allah wants for human creation.
Some of us think that we should not be under any authority. We are not anarchists in the popular usage, but we are anarchists even in a worse sense. We are anarchists without even having the knowledge that we are giving ourselves to unruly mostly self-hurting life. We get where we respect no authority and even think that we should not be under any authority. "No one is going to tell me what to do. No one is going to be over me! I walk in no man's shadow." But you do; you are walking in Satan's shadow when you are talking like that.
"Does he figure that no one is in charge of him?" Allah is always in charge. But when you forget Him, He will forget you. It has been recited today in the verses from the Qur'an that when you forget Him, He will forget you. It is not that Allah has human make-up and will forget in the way that a human will forget. It means that if you disregard Him and write Him off, then Allah writes you off. He leaves you on your own. "And whoever He leaves on his own — male or female — the devil is assigned to him as an associate, as a companion, and as a friend."
You would think that those people who are in that ugly disposition and spirit realty do not have anyone in charge of them. But understand that Allah says whoever He writes off gets a "devil" as an associate, as a guardian, as a guide, as an advisor, et cetera.
The devil as a term may be thought of as having a mystery about him — that is Satan, the Devil. You may not be able to . see him through the veils of mystery, but let us look at the consequences. After all we cannot see Allah either, except through veils. That is, we cannot see Allah directly. For He told Moses, "You cannot see Me directly." No one can see Allah directly, but we can see Allah by indirect approach.
I also believe that we cannot see Satan directly, but we can look at the mess and see him in the mess. You can't go to school this morning, and we know that going to school is going to put you in a better situation for the task of living in this world, you can't go to school this morning. For you cannot get your head away from the "ghetto box."
You want to carry your life to a better situation but you cannot cut loose the reefer! You cannot cut loose the liquors! You cannot cut loose the ugly behavior that is keeping you out of better things. You cannot cut loose the habits that are putting you in jail. You cannot cut loose the habits that are getting you beat up every weekend and through the week. So don't tell us that no one is in charge of you! Allah has told us that He leaves you to have the devil as an advisor. And He says, "The devil is a very terrible friend."
Allah says, "Oh you who believe, be regardful of the fire." Why should you be regardful of the fire? It is because the fire represents sin and influences of sin. The passion for sins will destroy your true form like fire destroys the things put into it. Have you seen things put into fire and how fire will just twist up the forms? You can see the thing twisting, bending, and breaking in the fire.
We must work then to keep our true self in tact far from the fires of sin. And again we point to something wonderful in this progressional sense of man. That is the urge for peace and a sense of peace and security. Man needs a sense of peace. It is termed in other ways as a sense of well being.
(To be continued)