Sentiments and Emotions
Imam W. Deen Muhammad
(Editor's note: Following are excerpts from Imam Warith Deen Muhammad's publication. "As The Light Shineth From The East. " Bilalian News takes this opportunity to provide its reading public with brief glimpses of this historical work. We not only recommend that everyone purchase a personal copy, but also additional copies for friends and relatives.)
There is no way to go up but the right way. Dear beloved people, you're going to have to go up as all civilized people have gone up. You're going to have to use your intelligence and stop moving just on sentiments and emotions. The human being is held together into a family. Sentiments and emotions are needed to make people in the household appreciate each other—to hold them together.
The warmth of sentiments, the emotional nature, helps to keep people together in the home when intelligence is not strong enough as a cement to hold them together. But if you want to build neighborhoods and cities, if you want to build communities and cities, you have to get a cement that's a little stronger than sentiments and emotions, because when these people get out here in open society, they're pushed so far away from each other that they can't feel the warmth of the skin.
The warm blood of sentiments and emotions just don't reach us sometimes. There is a cold atmosphere of distance between us and we're going to have to have the solid strong cement of intelligence to build up a society.
Dear beloved people, study the history of downtrodden people who worked their way up and you'll find the kinds of things they had to leave down. They had to leave down immorality, they had to leave down vulgar kinds of display. The had to leave down wine drinking, prostitution, dope addiction, silly fist fights—beating each other up, maiming each other over little or nothing.
I read in the paper in Chicago where a Bilalian killed another Bilalian because he bit his hamburger. Many of you know of cases like this, where a Bilalian lost his or her life over something so silly, so cheap. A people that are going to the top have to leave that foolishness, that destructive kind of mind at the bottom. And then bury it.
We can't rise up in the eyes of the world as a civilized Community, and a productive people while carrying chinchilla coats, Super-Fly pimps, sissies, dope peddlers, wine drinkers and vulgar talkers who are just satisfied to stand on the corner and talk nasty for 16 hours, go home and sleep eight hours, get up and get right back on the job again and talk nasty for another 16 hours.
Dear beloved people, we can't get up like that. And I'm telling you, we can't accept the responsibility to change until we know how we got in this shape. It's not our fault. We didn't naturally become people with the "dozen's mentality." We didn't come up like that.
We talk about the immorality or the bad morals of the Caucasian people, but don't you know that some of us have morals worse than the people we're talking about? We talk about the cruelty of the slave-master, years ago, and we don't want our people to forget that cruelty but some of us are meting out cruelty to each other that equals the cruelty that the slave-master was meting out to us in those days of physical bondage.
How are we going to rise? We can't rise until we strip off this kind of self-inflicting ignorance and filth that we have on us that's maiming us physically, morally and spiritually. We first have to dump this stuff to move up. We have to go back. We can't solve 1975. We have to go back farther than 1975. Go back to the teaching of Dr. Fard Muhammad that tells us that civilization means culture, refinement, happiness, peace, and love, and that the duty of the civilized person is to teach that to the uncivilized. We have to go back to that. We have to reform ourselves in the intelligent dignified image.
You've got people around here who just can't wait for an FOI to form again. They are so weak and helpless—so incompetent—can't accept responsibility to wash their face in the morning, brush their teeth, comb their hair.
"Where is that captain who used to tell me to brush my teeth, to wash my face? Nobody's telling me to comb my hair anymore. The world is coming to an end. We're losing everything."
I respect you more than that. I'm not going to keep lieutenants and captains over you to tell you to shine your shoes, to crease your pants, to comb your hair, to brush your teeth, to take a bath. I'm going to raise your level of intelligence consciousness and you'll be able to discipline yourself, and that is dignity for real.
The strength of a society is its human wealth. You have to have healthy moral substance. You have to have human sentiments. You have to have compassion for all people. You have to be strong enough to act on truth though it be against yourself, against your concepts, and against your ideas of what you are and what the world should be. You have to be willing to give up those concepts that won't conform or won't jell or won't agree with truth, and keep marching ahead. Not for your skin, but for the great kingdom within the skin, for the human mind, for the human heart, for human intelligence, for human sentiments, for human development.
That's what I've been trying to drive home. That's the strength of civilization, that's the strength of a nation. America had become the Mt. Everest of material achievement. But look how the conduct of President Nixon, and how the silly mind of a permissive socity suddenly came into focus—suddenly came upon this land we call America and just destroyed the hopes of the generation in their leader, their leadership, and in their institutions.
We must have culture, dear people. The people who dressed the world and made it look good were people of culture. In fact, the Genesis of man in scripture is the Genesis of a culture minded people. The Bible says, "He charged the man to attend the garden and to dress it." Dress means to give it culture. A tree dresses up when the right climate comes. Why can't we dress up? The right climate is here. Al-Islam is here. Bible understanding is here. The opportunity for progress as an ethnic group is here. Why can't we take on our beautiful dress as a tree in this find spring season? Certainly, we can. But, we have to stop following sensation and start going toward sense.
Dear beloved people, Almighty God is on our side. Almighty God's Mercy, His Compassion goes out to a people uprooted, dispossessed, cut off from their past history and placed into an environment designed to reduce them to brute savages. Almighty God's Compassion goes out to them and He begins to work and influence the circumstances, the condition, the minds of the people and in time, He brings about a good climate, a good fertile climate for receiving His truth. In time He sends people to you with the right guidance to bring you back to the life that He wanted you in from the very start.
We've lived to see that. God has aided us in our struggle. We came into a kind of plantation environment that had nothing to feed us really, but spirit. We became a people moved by religious spirit—I say, spirit because we had little religious sense. And this spirit-recognition of a God existing over all things — and the belief that that God had power to change conditions and in time, when He so pleased, He would change those conditions under Christianity.
That kind of spiritual environment gave us hope, gave us the strength we needed to endure, to come through the factory of slavery, of Jim Crowism that was designed to make us accept that we were subhuman. But, we came out of the factory and remained in human form. The factory was not able to take the humaneness out of us. It was designed to produce a brute, not a human being.