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W. Deen Mohammed Weekly Articles
Reprinted from the Muslim Journal


Bilalian News

Man's Proper Role: Part 1

Imam Warith Deen Muhammad


With the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Compassionate

(Editor's note: Following are excerpts from Imam Warith Deen Muhammad's address to the Regional C.R.A.I.D. conference held March 15, 1980 in Chicago, Illinois.)

Whenever Muslims meet for any reason — in fact, whenever we are conscious that we are about to do anything, we should call to mind, the Name of Allah with "Bismillah." Bismillah — with the Name Allah. And any formal gathering or planned affair should begin with Al-Fatiha. I asked about 30 minutes ago, and your Imam told me that your meeting- was opened about 2:00 with Al-Fatiha, and that's the way it should be done.
You know, traditionally under the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, we always would open with prayer. Now if we could do that for black pride, then how much more should we do for the Creator who made everything? We shouldn't stop doing that. In fact we should be more dutiful now than ever in observing prayer and giving thanks and proper recognition to our Creator.

The first thought I would like for us to bring to mind is worship in our religion. I will go on to make these points that I feel are necessary to set the right frame of mind for all of us who have come here today to participate. Allah, in Quran, guides man to his proper and natural place and role in life. There are several important aspects of man's role in life. The most important one is worship.
Allah says in the Quran that He has created us to grow. He says that He has created us that we should be thankful. We know that this is natural for human beings. In fact, if you have studied animals you can see it's natural for the creature to be grateful.

Allah says He has created us as a plant. You know a plant is developed from a seed, something that was dead. You don't plant the seed in the ground when it's alive; the seed has to die first. Then you plant it. A new life develops out of it. Allah says that He has created us as a plant.
Most importantly — and I haven't nearly covered the many points of the Quran concerning man's nature; what should be his life and objective — but the main point is that He has created us to worship Him. He says I have not created men nor Jinn for anything except My worship. That's the most important thing — the worship of Allah.

The C.R.A.I.D. Committee represents an effort to clear the worship of Allah. I hope that all of us appreciate the great, great role of this committee. Worship decides the form of our thoughts, it decides the nature of our deeds. Show me a person, let me observe him for a few minutes and I can tell you whether that person's worship is correct or not. They don't have to tell me anything. Their personality, their mannerism, their expression, their moods, their attitudes, their disposition, the things radiating from within them will tell me whether they have the right worship or not.
Some people can meet from different religions, strike up a friendship and a strong love. Their religions are different, but then-worship is the same. Yes! It is important for the people in religion — religion is the most serious business on Earth. Although it has its hypocrites just like everything else. In business money is serious business — isn't it? But look how cheap some of us play money. Some treat money as though it has no value. There are some who will kill over their money.

There is a need to see clearly. We should never give up the struggle to see clearly. Never think that you have seen it all until you are gone from this world and Allah says, "It is so, you saw clearly." That is, never come to the conclusion that "I know it all." Struggle always to make your vision of what we want as Muslims clearer.
"Unity" unites us with Allah and with our brothers, our fellowman. Unity in Al-Islam is the proper respect for the unity of God and also the proper respect for your relationship with your fellowman. Actually unify in Al-Islam is the most important thing for Muslims after recognition of God. In fact recognition of God in Al-Islam is unity. It is understood by Muslim scholars that unity is the idea in the worship of God.

We need, worship because everything else fails to unite us. Man has idolized objects of creation. He's created things out of his own imagination to idolize. Nothing has united humanity like the worship of God. We have some powerful ideologies — democracy is a powerful philosophy. Look how it has failed to unite the free world. Even the free world is not united. Carl Marx's Manifesto, the great philosophy of the Communist Party — look how it has failed to unite even the communist people. Those who come to the proper worship of Allah, they are united.

(To be continued)