The Life of The Human Family: Part 2
Imam W. Deen Mohammed
(The following address was given by Imam W. Deen Mohammed on Sun., May 28, 2000, at the CPC Memorial Day Weekend Event at Kennedy King College in Chicago, 111. For this upcoming Memorial Day Weekend, Imam Mohammed has advised that we Muslims consider feeding the poor through fulfilling any obligations still on us who may not have been able to successfully complete their Ramadan fast, for whatever reason -be it due to ill health or other reasons.
The Qur'an allows the Muslim who cannot keep the fast to feed 60 people as compensation for the uncompleted month of fasting. As we now read the address given by Imam Mohammed during the last Memorial Day Weekend event, may we as Muslims begin now to plan to feed 60 people and make that compensation to do so via ComTrust, c/o Imam W. Deen Mohammed.
If we were in a Muslim land or if we could be successful like the Lithuanians who came to Chicago a long time ago and now have a strong Lithuanian community, although a lot of things have happened over the years to make them worry if they were going to be able to keep that land for Lithuanians. But they are still there.
If you went there and rung the bell of each house in the neighborhood and asked: "What church do you go to?" I will guarantee you that 90 percent or more of them go to the same church. That is the Lithuanians. My topic is "The Life of The Human Family." They all come here to have their life that they choose. The Lithuanians come here to have the life that they choose to live.
Strategize To Respect Others
Now, segregation is wrong and it is evil. But people should have a right to have their own life in their own area and we should regard it with a sacred respect and not want to bust up their families or bust up their neighborhoods or destroy their religious family. We should not want to do that.
If I could go back in time and if I had the plan, the strategy, for breaking down the walls of segregation, I would have done it with the respect for people who came to this country to choose the life they wanted to live because they couldn't have it where they came from - they were persecuted and denied that freedom, I would work or have a strategy to respect their life, their dreams as much as possible. I would only cause trouble for them when there was no other way to achieve justice, except to have a confrontation or to have trouble with them.
I wouldn't just have that as a strategy, I would make that public. I would proclaim that in the beginning of my effort to make things right for my cause. I would proclaim that. I would tell them that in my "statement of purpose," that we have a sacred respect for the life of people who choose to live their own ethnicity, their own culture and to support their own religion, the religion of their choice. I would make that statement.
I would be a man like Muhammed the Prophet, the prayers and peace be on him. He was this kind of foresighted person, and in fact I am the man I am because of knowing about him. He was given the Holy Book for all of us and his life was the model life for all of us. I am the man I am because I strive to conform and be in agreement with what Allah wants for human beings. I know that what Allah wants for us as human beings is given to us in the last prophet, Muhammed of Arabia, prayers and peace be on him.
I would have that kind of strategy and would make friends and reduce the number of my enemies. If that had been done, we would have much more opportunity in Chicago and in these other cities of the United States, to work and strive and to accomplish things. There would be less fear of us and less hatred in people because of us. The climate for our presence and growth would be much better, if it had been planned differently.
Our Movement Exploited
Our movement was left to be exploited by politicians and people of greed. So they would come and join the leader and tell him: "We are going to assist you. You have our dollars behind you. You have our voice behind you." But they also have a plan for themselves, to put you in a position where you can open up an area for yourself. And when you get that area opened for yourself, they have plans to come in there, too. Maybe, they also were not wanted in that particular area.
So their plan is that your coming into that area will open it up for them to come into that area also. They also know that you have been deprived of a history or of a tradition of success at community life. They know they are the better prepared and better equipped to succeed at community life. So they get in there because of you getting in.
They come in and get the great benefit and establish themselves and become rich. They open up businesses and financial institutions and just blossom and bloom with high level production, while you are still struggling on the top of the earth like a little bug. A brother just told me, "Brother Imam, I bug you a lot, but I am an intelligent bug." He is also a friendly bug. And I wouldn't kill him; I would just open the door or window and try to get him out of the house without hurting him.
If there are any of you here who think you can take my place - and I hope you think you can do that, because you have to think you can do it to do it. Remember, it is not all roses; there are a lot of thorns. Allahu Akbar.
Do Not Go After Tribal Life
The real life, the true life of the human family: Allah did not create us to have the life of Arabs, nor to have the life of Africans, nor to have the life of European people. Allah didn't create us to have the life of African American people. Allah created us to have the life of the human family. That's the life.
If we strive for the life of Black people or Africans or African Americans, we are limited by our own purpose. What is the life of Black people? What is the life of Africa? Maybe it was glorious at one time, but they don't have it now. The reason why a certain people have been successful in rising above other people in the world and getting the respect of other people in the world for their great achievements is because they did not go after tribal life.
They didn't go after Irish life. They didn't go after English life. They went after ideal human life. Human life is what pulls all other life up. All other life rises up as human life rises up. Human life will lift all other life up.
The Greater Cause, Aim
We look at our educators and our leaders and think, "How do you measure them?" What criterion do you use to understand their achievements? Do you say, "Oh, he was well educated. That is why he was so successful." Then what about the Hon. Elijah Muhammad who was not educated at all? He had to teach himself how to write. He had to teach himself how to read. He told me that he had to struggle to write his own name in a good hand, until he got a nice penmanship. My father told me that. He only had three years of elementary education from the South in Sandersville, Ga. In that area, what is three years of education? Nothing. What can you do with that?
Three years of education now is like six or seven years back then. Three years of education today, a child will have maybe six or seven years of education over what my father had in three years of education back then. And that is a fact. So look back and think where my father was in terms of formal education. He was nowhere; it was nothing, but look how successful he was in drawing attention to his cause and having supporters for his cause. Many of us African Americans were supporting his cause.
Look at Frederick Douglass. What made it possible for that man who was a slave to come up North, run to freedom and escape slavery, and become a world renown statesman? Europe knew of him and respected him highly, as well as America. What was it? Was it his education? He was mostly a self-taught man, himself. Frederick Douglass. Later he went to school and achieved and became an educated man, but this man was rising all the time - before he acquired-those degrees, that education. So that tells you that there was more motivating him and supporting his rise than just formal education.
Formal education is a must, I know. We have to have it. But if you are intelligent and you have a great cause, a great aim - as Booker T. Washington said or as the honorable Marcus Garvey said - you can succeed in spite of your lack of formal education.
The greatest reformers of this earth in the history of mankind were not educated formally. Moses was not educated formally. Jesus Christ was not educated formally. Muhammed the Last Prophet was not educated formally. When you look to see who has the greatest influence in this present world, it is the followers of Moses, Jesus and Muhammed, peace be upon them. This is the reality.
No Plaything, No Guesswork
I am not just talking. I am choosing my words like I would choose my step, as if I were walking a tight rope. Have you gone to the Circus and saw someone walking a tight rope? See how careful they step. They don't want to fall down. They want to get to the end of where they have to go.
I am choosing my words like a tight rope walker chooses his or her steps.
This is no plaything. This is no guesswork. I am trying to share with you what has started the world of civilization and what redeems the world of civilization when it becomes uncivilized, and what the whole world of people has to come under, one day. It doesn't mean that everybody will understand it, but they will come under it one day. And that day is very close by.
That day is very close by when the whole world is going to be under world leadership that works not for a race but works for the human family with a perception, with a picture, with a view that has come into the possession of wise people, of saintly people, from the Mouth of G-d, Himself.
I have studied the sacred words and I have seen it with my own eyes and it has equipped me to communicate it to the wise and saintly people of this world. And they hear it and understand it, while most of you do not. They welcome me; the light is on for me in the whole world. There are no dark areas anymore for me. I am telling you that if you would just have faith, like I had, faith has brought me to where I am now.
To be continued