Save Our Vital Human Relationships: Part 1
By Imam W. Deen Mohammed
The following article is from excerpts of an address that was delivered by Emam W. D. Muhammad to the San Quentin brotherhood on February 29, 1977.
With the Name Allah (In the Name of God), The Gracious, The Compassionate.
As -Salaam -Alaikum
Nothing that God has created is sinful. He created human intelligence and it is sacred. He created flesh and flesh is sacred, not sinful. It is beautiful for a man to come together with a woman. The man and wife relationship is beautiful and sacred. From that relationship, a new relationship is formed or created which is called the relationship of parent to child. In this process, you see things that are incomplete coming together. Things that are helpless by themselves to extend their survival on earth must come together as incomplete things, as helpless things, and make themselves complete. Then in their complete form, they can reproduce themselves. Lustful relationships are sinful according to the Quran. But flesh is not sinful.
Destruction Of Relationships
If we lose the value of our relationships, we have lost our life as human beings in a society. The problems that we are having in our cities is not just an American problem. It is a European problem, an African problem, an Asian problem, a problem all around the world ---vital human relationships are breaking down and being destroyed. These relationships are relationships that must be preserved and protected in order for human society to survive. In order for us to stay here on this earth as human beings, we must have these relationships healthy and not diseased. They must be strong, not warring against each other. Parents cannot war against children, and children cannot war against parents if we expect to have a future. Such deterioration will bring down the whole human society. The preservation of civilization of human society depends on us keeping our vital relationships intact, healthy and strong.
Mother Nature to Sacrifice
The mother must not forget her children and she must not forget her mother - role that God has established in the nature of mothers. This nature is in the animal world as well as in the human world. It is the nature of sacrifice and also of strong authority. The mother gives to her baby before birth and in pain she gives her baby in birth. She gives blood and oxygen to her baby so that it will grow into a complete fetus. Then the baby is delivered by the mother in pain. This pain forces a strong attachment to the child in the mother. A man that spends ten dollars on something will not protect it as much as he would if he spent ten million dollars on it. Because the woman spends much pain on her child, God strengthens the mother - baby relationship with pain.
Gradually Satan has been moving in on us to take over the order of our society, and now he just about has it. Today we have to battle up out of death. There was a time when you could hear mothers (especially Southern mothers) say, “Youngun, before I let you come up like that I'll see you dead." That was not a statement of hate, that was real mother love. Love is not saying, "Partner, friend, grownup, little adult, if that is what you want to do, do it honey. Although your mother doesn't agree with it, if that is what you want to do then you go on honey. After all, you are an individual." Mothers have forgotten what they are.
God has taught them to keep a firm and strong grip on their baby's future and not to satisfy what it needs for "right now" without a focus on or without an interest in what it will need tomorrow. I don't give a rap for anybody giving me some kind of temporary relief that is not going to help me further down the line. Do not give me an aspirin for a cavity if you do not intend to give me directions to the dentist who fills cavities and who takes out decayed teeth. We are a society that has become so foolish in our role as parents that we give our children temporary sedatives to just bring temporary relief, but we are not correcting the decay in them or taking the poison out of them. Mothers have to be strong like our mothers used to be if we expect to survive.
Mothers Can Save Society
The president of the United States cannot save this society, only mothers can save this society. The President of the United States cannot save grownups in the society, only mothers can save grownups in this society. Wives should remember that they are also mothers to their husbands and that they are also mothers to the society. If they will remember that and keep their mother attributes, they will help us shape this society and keep the society on the path of survival. We need a mother's voice to be heard in the society today. "Women's lib" is not an accident it is a divine thing, but women have to rise above the "lib" to understand that we want more than just lip. We want mothers who have mothers' hearts. We want to hear some hearts, some mother sentiments, some mother concern. Then we want to see the strength of that strong sentiment that God formed in mothers by paying labor pains, etc., manifest in the society.
We want to see women return to the strong characteristics that they used to have in the olden days. Strong women would come out when the men were fighting the harshness of the environment and the enemies that came to attack their land and say, "Don't fall down, keep up the good work." The mothers' strength is strong. A woman does not have to have fertility as a biological being to be a mother. Before any sign of sexual fertility or reproduction manifests in the little girl, she is a mother. The apple has not come on the tree yet, but the little girl is like an apple tree. She is a mother and if she never gets an apple she is still "an apple tree." In time this divine movement that is called "women's lib" is going to develop into a higher form and become "motherhood lib." When motherhood starts expressing itself from mother's lips, it will be a day of salvation and jubilation for all of us.
In our homes we first have to restore the life of our human relationships, then we will see the effects of that in the society. That healthy, natural, divine growth will go out from the home and connect the home unit with the neighborhood, with the community, and with the general society. Do you think we can survive as modern cities if the home is at war with the neighborhood or if a part of the neighborhood is at war with city government? Every healthy relationship into which society has grown by divine will and blessing has been threatened and almost destroyed today.
The first relationship is man and wife, the next relationship is parent and children, and the next relationship is individual and society. The individual has lost his relationship with the society. We look at the society as our enemy and the society looks at us as its enemy. We say, "To make it I have to be hard, I have to be cruel, I have to be wicked." That's death (decayed rot) in the vital relationship of the individual and his society. Some of the human beings that you look at over there and identify as your enemies in society might be your blood relatives. Actually we are all one family, we are one flesh.
How can we survive in the same society or under the same authority or within the same government unless we all pull together? Just as a home (a single household) cannot survive with its members warring against each other, the ghettos of America cannot survive if they are warring against themselves or if they are warring against government. Ghettos live to themselves as an immediate family, but they also live with the whole United States of America as a complete family. How in the world can we exist as a nation and survive if we are warring individual against individual? Relationships are destroyed. Members are fighting against members, social units are fighting against social units, small family life is fighting against big family life, the home is fighting against the neighborhood, individuals are fighting against the other members of the society, neighborhoods are fighting against the city. We cannot live like that. For the sake of our survival we must come together!
Thank you for honoring us with your time to read these few words. Your brother in service to Allah,