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W. Deen Mohammed Weekly Articles
Reprinted from the Muslim Journal


Muslim Journal

Bases For Muslim Unity: Part 2

Imam W. Deen Mohammed


(The following public address by Imam W. Deen Mohammed was given in Columbia, SC on October 22, 1989 and is prepared by Imam W. Deen Mohammed for Muslim Journal.)

Now, we know we have different schools of thought in Al-Islam. And Westerners who look at the divisions and thinking and religious life of the various groups of Muslims throughout the International world, they study what we are saying in our special groups as Shiites or as Sunni and the many other differing groups. The Westerners have come to see these divisions as "sects" and then refer to "the different sects" of Islam.

But we know that for us those divisions do not represent any sects. In the established sense, they are not sects. In the West the term sects indicates divisions stronger than what those divisions are for us. We all accept that Allah is the One Lord and Creator. We all accept that Muhammed is His Messenger. We all accept that the Qur'an is the revealed Book to that Prophet and is the last revelation. We all accept that the Qur'an (the Holy Book) is never to be altered. We all accept this whether we are Sunni or Shiite or other.

If you question any member of those divisions, they will tell you that they accept all the above. They will say, "We accept that Allah is God. We accept that Muhammed is His Messenger. We accept that the Qur'an is the final Book. We accept that the text of the Qur'an is the same today as it was when revealed to the Last Prophet Muhammed. Any attempt by any person or nation to change or alter the Quranic texts (contents) would invite the wrath of all Muslims."

The Muslims, all of us, rather see our divisions as differences in our "schools of thought". Intellectual opinion has influenced differences for us too. We believe in essentially the same things. Bat because I have a different discipline of thought, I am influenced more so by this attribute of the Prophet, or more so by these attributes of Allah, or more so by the humanistic appeal in Al-Islam or more so by the militaristic appeal in Al-Islam. And further, because of these different swayings and different leanings on our part, we have different groups.

That will be. The only thing that we are against is the extremism that may be encountered that hurts the image and suggests something other than what Allah has established in the Qur'an and in the life of the Prophet, the prayers and the peace be on him.

I am still addressing the circumstances that account for us having these differences. I was a member in the organization of the late leader (Elijah Mohammed), "the Nation of Islam." I received the same teachings the ministers received in Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, Cleveland, Washington. DC, New York, Los Angeles, or wherever. They could meet with the Honorable Elijah Mohammed on a monthly basis and a few would come even more often. We family members could sit with them.

I would hear the Honorable Elijah Mohammed teaching them and hosting them. And what the leader gave them was the same teaching our mother and our father gave us. In fact he gave them more. He would relate to his children more as a father and would leave it to our mother. Sister Clara Mohammed would enforce and reinforce my father's words and my father's strong "mysterious'1 image. As would be expected, he would occasionally remind us that more would be expected from his family, that we (the daughters and sons! should behave best. Rarely did our father relate to us simply as a teacher.

At the dinner table sometimes when no one else was there, he would talk to us as he talked to his ministers about his mission and burden. But never did 1 see him preaching one thing to us and another thing (something different) to his ministers. He cautioned us (the children) at times to remind us that it would be in our own interest to be present with the guests of staff members and maybe non-followers. Most of the deep teachings that I heard from my father, I heard when he was talking to his ministers and whomever were at the table.

Still there were differences among us, although we all were given the same thing. I have a different make up in myself as do others. Some will be attracted to certain things. You would find some ministers took certain things from the Honorable Elijah Mohammed that others gave little notice to. They selected certain things from him they liked. Some were more progressive and more successful. Others would select differently and were less successful and not as progressive.

Much the same is true for the International Muslim Community. We are having the same Qur'an and the same life history of the Prophet, but because of our individual human make up differences, our own individual tastes, we select what appeals to us individually.

The right to informed opinion is established for Muslims. Therefore, the best should come forward. We should not worry too much about those who have weaker presentations and weaker knowledge or who have even wrong presentations. We should he alert for the protection of true projection of the religion and the character and image of Muslims. We are to give the truth against whatever is contrary to what Allah has established. We should address such problems and do our best to clear up the issue and present the matter as it should be presented. We should get rid of the false presentation and the false image of Muslims.

Because of colonial domination in the Islamic world, in the Middle East (North Africa and the Gulf, and Arabia by virtue of influence) and also in the Far East, in a big measure Muslims are lost from themselves. All, or very near all, of the International world of Muslims have suffered domination by colonial powers of the West that dominated over not only their (the Muslims') land but also over their will. This domination and its mold on Muslim behavior is not far away in the past.

Many of the "Muslim" leaders of these dominated Muslim countries were schooled by their former oppressors. They were schooled in the military and were schooled in academics and received their education and image from their oppressors. Later, they came into leadership. They did not come into leadership just with the knowledge of their oppressors and with the schooling from their former oppressors, but they also came in with behavior and high mindedness of their former oppressors.

By force of influence, most of our leaders today are seen flaunting the exaggerated sense of power and might once worn by their colonial fathers (masters or dominators). More than any of us would like to admit, the style (behavior) of International ' 'Muslim'' rule and official mannerisms (conceited authority) is more akin to colonial airs than to the true Muslim position. Muslims in the world, the rulers and most in the general public are formed more by the adverse circumstances of past colonial domination than by the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of Allah's Messenger (P.B.U.H)

If the above were not the case, then we would not have the bad situation that we do have in the International Muslim World. If the above were untrue, then Muslims would not be afraid to respect their own individual (truly) Muslim seated (based) intelligence as free citizens in their own Muslim lands. Most Muslims in the International World are afraid to be open and strong Muslims, It is simply because the new powers are really a kind of gestation product from the influences of the old dominators. Many do not like their past domination and past rulers, but envy the superiority achieved by the West.

Don't you know we have examples among us African Americans. There are those of us who hate that we were once slaves to the "White man." We hate that and hate it so much it hurts our intelligent function in the Fret- America of today, in the Democratic America today. It hurts our intelligent power to function profitably, because before we could think "self that hurt had overwhelmed our group sense. We still react to what happened yesterday and carry the scars. Until we heal ourselves, as a group, we will not be in a situation to enjoy the opportunities of Democracy, the opportunities of freedom that are opened to us right here today in America.

Likewise is the situation for the International Muslim World. You have been scarred also by your past rulers, by those who dominated you. Much of your reactions (or actions) that we see are influenced by circumstances and their influences which you would in your awareness reject.

If Muslims are not careful, they will be behaving like war-machine Israel. Israel's behavior has to be traced back to the treatment Israel received in Germany under Hitler. It is not Israel, but it is the people who call themselves Israelis in the Middle East and have established for themselves with the help of the West a conceited nation and government there. Those people have behavior today that if we are to understand it, we would have to go back to their time of suffering under the Nazis.

The Nazis had a powerful war-machine government and believed that military was their way to gain power and dominance over the world- Israel has shown by its behavior that it believes as their abusers believed, that military might is the answer to gain power and dominance in the Middle East. And their way of dealing with their Arab subjects must be traced back to the way that their former cruel masters dealt with them. It is not only "an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth," but it is a holocaust of terror, a menacing ungoverned spirit for forced compliance and retaliation that modern Israel relies on to preserve it in its new found glory.

We know their past, but I am not wanting to bring up their past. When we see the cruelty that was meted out to them by the Nazis, then we can understand some of that rubbed off on them. As studies have proven, "abusive parents" produce often abusive children, and those who abused their children will often have children that will abuse their children. The Nazis abused the Jews, their children.

We have a tendency to think human answers have to be so complicated and that the psychology has to be so heavy. But the best psychology is the common sense psychology, and, the more down to earth the more effective. The psychologist will tie together the simple things that go together and put the simple pieces of the puzzle together. Don't be afraid to accept ready facts.

Those who are now being dominated by the Israelis, if not inclined to want to be aware and on top of their own behavior, they will grow more into abused children of Israel. By children is meant under the authority of another. Arabs under the threat of Israel now, if they are not careful will let the abuse they are receiving from Israel go into their spirit and behavior and form them over unknowingly. They might find themselves wanting to do in war what the cruel Israelis have done to them.

We are never to come out of Muslim character and disciplines. In all situations, we are to obey Islamic guidance. Leaving ourselves to be pulled blindly behind un-lslamic models of behavior is one of the serious problems for the unity of Muslims.
(To be continued....)