Issues And Concerns Facing Muslims — Our Position And Direction: Part 5
Imam W. Deen Mohammed
(Editor's Note: This is a continuation of Imam W. Deen Muhammad's Detroit lecture, ties and Concern Facing Muslims — Our Position and Direction." which has normally appearing on Page 15 of Muslim Journal.
None of us should he small-minded. Allah has given us the message of a comprehensive religion to make us wiser as we live; to make us have bigger aspirations as we live; to make our vision grow as we live, and to make our appetite grow as we live. No Muslim is supposed to still be wanting today what he wanted ten years ago. His appetite should have grown at least two years, ten years or twenty years bigger. And if we are small like that, it is because the climate has not yet been created. The truth as it should be given has not yet come into your minds and into your hearts.
And when that truth comes you will not be satisfied to tolerate any smallness on your part. You may bear it, and you may suffer it. But you will not tolerate it. So in concluding this talk, I have mentioned three steps. And with that I am also going to mention man’s helplessness to time.
The past we cannot change. The present we don't have. Some will say, "Oh, we have the present!" You don't have the present. Before you can say the present, it is already gone. You are already a fraction of a second into the future from that point. The present we never have. We think we do, but we never really have it. The past we can't change. And the future is always in the hands of the Lord, and it always is. But what are we to do as people walking the path of the Lord?
We are to recognize this. That my past is important. I can't change it, but I can keep it from bringing its danger back. And I can advance its good by knowing it better. Now the present is never really in my hands, because it is gone before I can really say it is here. So I should not live in the present. I should always live in the future and benefit from the past. That is what I mean by emphasis in the context of the religion.
Man lives in tenses, past tense — you thought I said "tents." He lives in the past tense, the present tense and in the future tense. Now if he wants to make good of his life, he had better be a two-handed person and not a three-handed person — the past and the future! Work with the past with a view on the future, and the present will be taken care of completely. And that is the wisdom that God gives us in His Holy Book.
Now if you accept that, won't you be ready to go home and do a better job and perform better there? Won't you go out in the streets, in the world and on the job or wherever you have to go and do a better job of performing? If you accept that, you have the energy and the power and what you need in terms of spiritual strength to handle whatever responsibilities that God is going to place on you in this life. Know that it all is in His hands.
The past I must benefit from by not letting the bad of it come into my present. And I must bring the good forward with me, as I keep a view on the future. When I read these things in the Qur'an for the first time, oh buddy! You become full of heat and you glow as if you are hot. But when something frightens the hell out of you, you get cold. But I was excited to go forward with it: then I became hot and glowing and felt like just falling to the floor. I could not even make a decent prostration, but I was recognizing the great power and great charity of the Lord.
I said to myself, it is a pity that we did not read this and understand this when W. D. Fard came. We could have saved us and them a lot of trouble. What I am saying to you now is that it was not necessary. That mysticism and mythology and artificial idea to excite us and appeal to our needs at the time was not necessary. Allah had given the Qur'an for yesterday, today and forever. And any sincere person can go to the Qur'an. And no matter what state you find society in, you can bring the needed and proper help to them without twisting the truth, without changing the Word of God, without bringing up an artificial religion. We didn't need it, and it should have never happened. But since it did happen, we benefit from it. And we respect the good intent in those that did it. But we don't accept that it was a necessity. It was not.
All we have to do is bring what I am bringing. What I am bringing now, it could have been brought in the 1930's. And it would have done a much greater job for us than what was brought. Don't tell me it couldn't have been done then because the world was evil and because the white man was mean. Don't tell me that! The white man that wants to keep a choke hold on us is just as mean now as he was in 1930. But the circumstances have checked him and he is working on a higher level of psychology. He is doing the same devilish things, but what he is doing now is more cruel in his oppression of us now, than he was in 1930. We just don't understand the higher level of psychology upon which he is operating.
We're suffering oppression now in our souls and in our moral life more now than we have before. The oppressive white man is evil like this, he is just as much determined to keep us down now as he ever was. But I am still doing what I am doing, and he is not stopping me. Why? It is because the truth given in its proper form ties up even the devil's hands. He can't see a way to come in. There is no way to come in. There is no way to attack. He is neutralized. It is because his own weapon is falsehood and a lie. And he can only use it against falsehood and against a lie. When he sees something in which there is no falsehood and no lie, he is neutralized.
That is the Qur'an. The Qur'an is without any defect. Why have the evil forces been able to discredit religion, Christianity and even Al-Islam as well as Judaism. Why have they been able to discredit preachers and even Muhammad and Christ Jesus? Why have they been able to make mockery of these sacred ideas and sacred concerns and get away with it? They are able to do it because people in all of these great religions have propagated misconception and error in religion more than they have propagated proper conceptions and truth in the religion.
You don't hear anybody attacking me for what I believe in and for what I preach. It is because Allah has blessed one of you to have a spirit to devote himself totally to what is really approved by Allah or by God as the English people will say. I have no mystic interest to take me off course. I have no material interest to take me off course. Is it because I'm a special or great person? No! It is because I am blessed by good circumstances in my life from the time of my mother and father and until today. I have been blessed with good circumstances in my life that make possible the strength of spirit, to keep going in the right direction without compromising anything of what God has ordered.
If I didn't have this, mysticism would be a great temptation for those who seek the face of God. It is a great temptation. When things get hard, they tend to go into mysticism. Mysticism will eventually take them out of the working field of human life. But again, I say I am fortunate. One sister in anger at me said, "Imam Karim Hasan has greater ability than you. You were just blessed by opportunity and good circumstances." The first reaction in me was dislike for what she was saying, and I felt a quick rush of heat in my body. But it was gone in less than a tenth of a second. Then I started to feeling very good. I told her, "You are right." And she was right; she spoke it from the wrong position, but she was right.
It is because of good opportunities and good circumstances in my life that I am here where I am. And I pray that Allah always keep conditions around me that I can deal with. It is because there conies a time in a man's life where misery is heaped upon him, and it becomes too much. Then he has to return to his Lord or either go to hell. And I would rather return to Allah while I am preaching and walking and talking to my family and driving my car. I would rather return to Allah doing this life. I want him to hold off that final return for me as long as possible. It is because I am doing my best to return all the time, and I think it is on this side where it really counts. If you return on this side, then you do not have to worry about the other side.
So in concluding this I want us to look at certain influences that are really based in nature and are part of the natural universal order, of the dynamics or dynamism. There is something operating that has its own laws. Our editor, Harry Muhammad, mentioned for the benefit of the readers that Imam Muhammad is n6t just preaching, but he is going about trying to find and identify laws that operate to determine the outcome of life. He put it in his language, and I have put it in these words I can't recall his exact words right now, but I do recall his message. And that was his message. That Imam Muhammad is not just talking about concerns, but we have to understand that in the concerns the Imam is ' identifying certain laws that are operating. He is correct.
Sometimes, as I have said, it is more important for us to first create the climate by just giving the Truth of God, the Truth that Allah has given to us. Give it to the people. Create the climate first, and then in that climate will come perception, in time. Perception is understanding or the ability to identify with our mind or our intellect or our rational faculties or rational tools. It is to identify what is operating in this great miracle. And I am not spooking you up. Believe me, Allah's Truth in us as a climate is a miraculous doing.
There is a great mystery about it also, but I will never put on the dress of a mystic. I make it a point to emphasize my humanness, even if I have to crack a joke or curse you out sometimes. I take that risk.' I say, "Oh Allah forgive me. I know my tongue was not clean today. But I just wanted to keep them seeing a human being. Although we can't carry that too far either, for extremism is an evil in itself. So if we approve that kind of behavior, it will open the door for extremes.
Therefore I always tell you that I am not happy with that kind of behavior, and I don't like saying indecent words and language before you. I let you know that and would never accept that as right and proper. But as I say, I take the risk and hope that when I get to the Judgment the Lord will say, "Well, we have to penalize you five cents. But don't feel bad, Wallace, because we have rewarded you with five thousand dollars." That is my hope, and I am trusting and believing that that is what is going to happen.
In this conclusion I wanted us to see that there is a definite order to the spiritual life of the individual and the society that we should come into.
There is a definite order for our moral sensitivity. We shouldn't be just completely loose with our moral sensitivities. We will come to the wrong moral conclusions. We have to find the proper context for our morals, for our spirit, for our emotions, for everything. And we must recognize these in that proper context, which is "sensibly" and not foolishly or not in a spontaneous way.
(To be continued)