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The Nation of Islam

Ambitions of a Minister

Originally named the Lost Found Nation of Islam in the West, this movement had its beginnings in the 1930s with the attempt of a strange and obscure personality, Wallace D. Fard Muhammad, who used his own version of Islamic teachings to serve as a rallying cry for a separatist Black grouping. A former Baptist minister of this tiny group by name of Elijah Poole managed to shape it into a more formidable movement later often referred to as Black Moslems. Elijah Muhammad saw Fard as the Mahdi, a Messiah and a prophet as well as an incarnation of Allah, and taught a Black Islam which propagated the myth that the black man was the original creation of God until an evil genius named Yakub created the white race and taught them how to do the work of the devil. Salvation would lie in the black people taking back control of the planet.

Malcolm X (Malik El-Shabbaz) was the first to publicly challenge the deviating teachings of the Nation of Islam and call for a return to Islam proper. For this courageous stand against the then impressive and numerous movement he ultimately paid with his life. It was the experience of Hajj which led him to open his eyes to the error of preaching racial division. In his own words: 

"There were tens of thousands of pilgrims, from all over the world. They were of all colors, from blue-eyed blondes to black skinned Africans. But we were all participating in the same ritual, displaying a spirit of unity and brotherhood that my experiences in America had led me to believe never could exist between the white and non-white. America needs to understand Islam, because this is the one religion that erases from its society the race problem. Throughout my travels in the Muslim world, I have met, talked to, and even eaten with people who in America would have been considered white  but the white attitude was removed from their minds by the religion of Islam. I have never before seen sincere and true brotherhood practised by all colors together, irrespective of their color. You may be shocked by these words coming from me. But on this pilgrimage, what I have seen and experienced has forced me to rearrange much of my thought patterns previously held, and to toss aside some of my previous conclusions. This was not too difficult for me. Despite my firm convictions, I have always been a man who tries to face facts, and to accept the reality of life as new experience and new knowledge unfolds it. I have always kept an open mind, which is necessary to the flexibility that must go hand in hand with every form of intelligent search for the truth." 

When Elijah Muhammad's son Wallace Delaney, since known as Warith Deen Muhammad, took over the leadership of the Nation of Islam and after realising the error in his father's teaching as well having become aware of his father's illegitimate sexual relationships, he tried to return the group back to a mainstream Islam. Wanting to maintain the teachings of Elijah Muhammad and W.D. Fard, Louis Farrakhan (formerly Louis Eugene Wolcott) broke away from the organisation and re-established the old Nation of Islam.

Farrakhan's nation of Islam is being portrayed as a radical Islamic challenge to American society, and thus it has its appeal for many Muslims and would be Muslims who feel let down by organisations which content themselves with holding prayer services. Whilst Farrakhan can be proud of many practical successes, he is progressively leading people further and further away from the straight path to peace and salvation, because he continues to mingle Islam with the weird teachings of W. D. Fard as well as elements of the Christianity he and many of his followers came from, in clear contradiction to the crisp and clear teachings of Islam. For the nation of Islam, the hereafter is a delusion. It teaches the belief in a purely mental resurrection on this earth: 

"No already physically dead person will be in the Hereafter; that is slavery belief, taught to slaves to keep them under control." "When you are dead, you are dead." Farrakhan and members of the Nation of Islam will quote from the Qur'an and the Bible as it suits them, but the Qur'an is not the final revelation and ultimate book of guidance for them. They believe that "we, the original nation of the earth ... are the writers of the Bible and the Qur'an. We make such history once every 25,000 years... It is done by twenty four of our scientists." 

In due time, there will be another Holy Book. Islamic practice is likewise compromised. The obligatory daily five prayers of Islam are not imposed upon the members of the Nation, and the ritual bowings and prostrations have been removed from prayers. Friday service, for example, consists of a sermon by a minister with an invocation, but the congregational prayer of two Rak'ahs is not held. Whilst the Islamic fast in Ramadan has been made optional by the Nation of Islam, it prescribes fasting during the month of December. Hajj, whilst performed by some ministers during fund-raising trips, is not required of the followers.

It has often been alleged that Farrakhan only retained the old beliefs of W.D. Fard and Elijah Muhammad to gradually wean his followers off them and lead them to the right path at a pace at which they can follow. An audio tape of a secret recording at Farrakhans house about a year ago, where he hosted a meeting for representatives of the Nation of Islam from Britain (led by Brothers Michael and Wayne) proves differently. The dinner meeting serves to instruct the British representatives prior to an intended expansion campaign in the UK which is now being carried out. Many of the answers show that the Nation of Islam is as far away from Islam as ever. When asked whether he would object to being called an apostle of Allah, Farrakhan replies: 

"I am that, but I like brother, that is better for me. It keeps a lot of trouble down. You call me minister, representative of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad, that is fine, because that is who I am... I never asked brothers or sisters to call me apostle, they started it; I did not object, because that is who I am." 

And later during the conversation: 

"If you call me apostle, I will answer... The world will know who I am, not because I say so, but because our works bear witness to who we are... Maybe when I am dead and gone they will discover who I am." 

Farrakhan continues to confuse Qur'anic and Biblical teachings, for example, he refers to the original sin, a concept rejected by Islam. More worrying, however, he compromises the Islamic concept of Tauheed (monotheism) with some strange beliefs about man becoming God and God becoming man: 

"You know we are all as you take a stoney road, who is the original man... who was, present tense, the original man is the Asiatic Black Man, Begbeowna, queen of the planet earth, the God of the universe, right, that is us... But how do you grow into God? It is a process that begins with the recognition of God and the recognition of your self, and then you do become discriminating, because you, once you know the God and the Truth, then the Truth enables you to see the thing that you should think, and the thing that you should eat, and the thing that you should not, the thing that you should do and should not, so you become discriminating, but it is all part of the process of growing up into the mind of God." "As I said this Sunday, this Jesus is a bridge that allows us to access God in a way that no prophet has ever enabled man to do. So what do I mean by access God? That you have access to his mind, you have access to his spirit, so that given access to God's spirit, then you have access to what makes him who he is, then you can become who he is. So we are in the process of becoming (God) as we speak."

It should be more than clear from the above that Muslims in Britain have no need for the latest of imported material from the States.

Author: Islamic Party of Britain
Date Published: Spring 1995

 

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