Our Internal And External Life: Part 5
Imam W. Deen Muhammad
(Editor's note: Following are excerpts from a lecture delivered by Imam Warith Dean Muhammad at Masjid Honorable Elijah Muhammad. Sunday, May 24, 1981 — Continued from last week.)
Let's get back to this term, "Armageddon." Some connect it with the place they call the Valley of Skulls, a place where war was waged so violently, so heavily that there was not time to even bury the dead; they were left out on the land to rot.
So it says that skulls were seen in thick masses or thick groupings in that place. Why the emphasis on skulls? The skull is nothing but the shape of the head: it has no living organs in it.
Let us understand that this is not talking about a physical war; it's talking about a war for your mind. Those who want to see the common person denied the dignity God has created for him, they deprive his head of any living organs. They deprive them of the ability to see correctly, to hear correctly, to smell correctly to taste correctly, to speak correctly.
They deprive him of the ability to use the functions of his head, and in depriving him of that ability, the poet or the inspired man, using the language of the poet, has described that spate of individuals as skulls. Skulls: and what is the name of this pious cap? Skull cap. Do you think anything is functioning under that cap?
I hope you can be patient with me. You're going to have to be patient one day. If we really think seriously about our ups and downs in life and our failure to ever really get some stable concepts and stable progress, dear people; if we can analyze that problem and nail it down, we will find flippancy and impatience. We have so much jitterbug, or whatever the fast dances are now; we have so much music in our feet, so much rhythm in our feet that we can't stand still long enough I to listen to one ounce of good sense.
This is a stickler; it's an epidemic. I'm telling you there's an epidemic in the Western society that the common person just doesn't have the mental discipline to give himself fully to the quest for one single truth. He gets tired — can hardly hold his mind for two seconds. His mind just drifts away — tired, got to go. And he'll tell you, "I've got to go, man — I've got to go."
But we know it's wrong; that's why you're sitting here, why you're not leaving. You know it's wrong to go, and there are too many people sitting here looking at you and they'll see you leaving. But don't forget — the strong survive. That is to say that everyone in here is not weak.
Let me go back, now, and while I'm going back, someone open up the Bible for me to Revelations 16:16, and get it ready for when I want it.
Now, we are examining the process of freedom and right — that's what this talk is all about today — so that we can understand the true meaning of freedom and right. Because if we don't know how a thing exists in its natural function, place or role, we don't know that thing. Everything is created for a purpose. Everything has its place, its function, its purpose,, and if you know something and don't know its place, its purpose, you don't know it.
So can I say I know myself while not knowing my place, my function, my purpose? No - and it goes for anything else. I can't say I know the book, the light bulb, or anything unless I know its place, its purpose, its function. A thing with function and purpose out of its place is messed up. And a thing with function and no place is handicapped, and with place and no vision you are oppressed. You must know your purpose, too.
I thought it was good to reflect, because the scientists say man progresses because of the presence of sensation and reflection in his life. Don't forget these things; they are not dreams — this is fact. I didn't dream this up so don't take it lightly. In fact, don't take lightly anything I say, because I'm coming from the most substantial facts. And if I miss, my Lord that I serve will take my miss and make it a hit. I've seen Him do it too many times: I missed, but He didn't miss.
Now let me say that again because you should remember that. The human being is advanced, he comes into knowledge, he thinks, he knows — he's conscious because of the activity of sensation and reflection in his life. He feels something and he reflects on it, and so he thinks on what he felt. He senses something and he thinks on what he senses; that's how the human being lives in his intellect. A society that pumps up to just feel and not think is an oppressive society.
The preacher in the church who says, "Get the feeling — have you got the feeling?" And he never says:
"Have you got the thought? Have you got the answer? Have you got the insight? Did you get the meaning? Do you know what I'm talking about without feeling it? Do you see it?" That preacher's all right — I like to hear him talk. I go to his church myself.
Let's look in the Bible now. You know we were told to do this by the former teacher. He said, look in your poison book, work cheerfully and fear not — you are the righteous, the best and the powerful. All right. Revelations 16:16:
And he gathered them together into a place called, in the Hebrew tongue, Armageddon. And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the Temple of Heaven, from the throne saying, it is done.
Now, I'm going to close this up and not use it anymore today. It is too heavy.
Now, that battle is the final battle. When it's over, when it's finished, that's it. The last word, "It is done."
But look what happened in that battle: something invisible, something beyond our physical vision, out of our physical view; you can call it what you want. But I know the meaning: "angel" means something spooky a spirit. Something that I can't grasp totally or sufficiently from my understanding pours out its vial in the air. "Vial" — it's spelled differently from "vile," meaning low, but the word is there so it would suggest to one of the elect, its meaning.
You've studied synonyms, homonyms -right? Synonyms are like in meaning, homonyms are like in pronunciation or sound. Now, they have used that on one level for you and on another level for themselves. They know "homonym" means not only sounding alike but sounding alike to the spiritual ear. "Let him who has an ear...." Isn't that what the scripture says? So it's not just reading, it's hearing. Let him who has an ear to know that "vial" means "vile."
Now look — when he pours out his vial into the air, the angel — the seventh one; seven means completion in a certain field of knowledge — so he pours out: and that field of knowledge governs your life; that's why it's "six days to work and one to rest." And that doesn't mean going to bed; that means going to the nut field.
Then you have to have another seven to come back and resurrect you. That means that someone with the knowledge of the seven that the devil used has to come back and resurrect you. You have it in the book, that book there that I'm not going to read out of anymore. I might see something there and comment on it and turn the whole house into a nut field. I don't want to do that. You may understand something but if you put it out here, the people won't understand. And a lot of us put stuff out that we don't understand.