New Africa Radio Logo
W. Deen Mohammed Weekly Articles
Reprinted from the Muslim Journal

July 10, 1992

Muslim Journal

"Dealing with Money Problems for the Common Person" :Part 1

Imam W. Deen Mohammed

(This article has been prepared for Muslim Journal's readers by Imam W. Deen Mohammed. It is prepared from his public address given in Dallas. Texas on Saturday, May 23, 1992 at Dallas Convention Center.)

Praise be to Allah, the One Lord of all the worlds. And we pray upon Muhammed the Prophet be the prayers and the peace, the Last Prophet, and what follows of that excellent traditional salute to Muhammed the Prophet.

First let me say that on every visit to this city of Dallas hosted by you, I always get more than I expect of good and also of inspiration and encouragement. That means a lot to me. Last night was so impressive. I feel that we are really accomplishing big things.

We have to acknowledge not only the strong exuberant spirit of Imam Yahya Abdullah, but we also have to acknowledge his winning personality and his obvious wisdom. We thank Allah for that. I know as soon as I start paying him a compliment, he starts telling me about you all. I know he could not do it by himself, so the compliment is to all of you.

We are very happy and proud when we find productive leaders. That gives us rest in our souls and in our spirit. But when we don't find productive leaders, we are miserable inside and are downhearted. I hope you understand how important your leadership is to us (nationally) in Dallas and your support for that (Dallas) leadership.

I looked at this topic and said to myself, I wonder what I had in mind when I suggested this topic. I think I understand or know. The topic burdens me because people expect quick answers. "You are going to tell us how to get out of this situation we are in? Are you going to do something for poor people ? Okay, let's have it right now."

If I had a quick answer, I would not do any talking. I would just tell you where to go and get hired tomorrow or the next coming work day. I would just give you the information you need to go get hired. Most poor people are suffering because they don't have jobs or they don't have adequate jobs. The jobs they have are not enough to take care of them.

Most of the people who are unemployed are not even bothered, and that is why they are not employed. Those who are bothered by not being employed, in time they are going to be employed. We have to try to reach not only those who are bothered by their situation, but also those who are not bothered by their situation. I believe that many of us who are now very much alive and active and productive were at some time just like many out there who are not even bothered by their situation.

We changed when something came to our awareness in the form of a message. Our whole mental disposition was changed. It gave us a new way of looking at things. That kind of help does not come instantly. It comes over a period of time being exposed to a particular sensitizer. The sensitizer can be the word of God or it may be something else. However, we have to be sensitized by something. The quickest answer I can give for making change, the change that we should be wanting in our lives, is a change in the way we look at things. It requires a change in perception.

The learned say that perception is all senses operating together. We think of perception perhaps as perceiving or seeing something with our eyes. That is perception, but the more complete meaning of perception and the richest meaning is that one which combines all senses working together. What we need is mental perception, perception to dawn in the mind or to become clear for us in the mind. Many things affect perception, and perception affects all things for the individual.

Support from faith, that is the answer. We have heard that "faith can move mountains." It means that if you just had faith, you could accomplish and do so much that you want to do. We need a conditioning to favor us having faith. Father too is not something we can just easily come by. In fact, we say as Muslims and as people in religion say, "No one can give another one faith." Faith is always the Mercy of God. If we have faith, it is because of God's Mercy.

There is plenty support for us having faith. The life style and its burden on the individual person today and the demand on the individual's attention today make it very very difficult for any individual to be in a situation to get help. This is a time that is described in scripture in these words: "No soul will be able to help another in any degree." No matter how much we try to help our friends or our own relatives, it looks like we are just wasting time — theirs and ours — when they are in that bad situation.

We shouldn't feel so let down when we call the community or the public to an address and they don't respond. Most don't respond at home with each other. So why should we be disappointed if they don't respond when we call them? It is the times, and I am predicting right now that before ten years from this day, we are not going to be able to find facilities big enough for the crowd that will respond. Gradually a change is coming about in the people's perception of Muslims. When that change grows and becomes clear they are going to have the situation they need to act favorably. We are going to see a changed society, a changed public in this country. It is coming.

When we use the term faith, we are talking about trust too. Faith and trust are almost the same. In the language of the Qur'an faith and trust carry often the same meaning.

When we look at the world we may see it only in its physical picture. The world all outside of us and in us is a world of death and life. There is death and there is life, and the two (death and life) are working together. As scripture (the Qur'an) tells us the "dead is brought forth out of the living, and the living is brought out of the dead. "To me that is enough support to generate faith. I am a kind of philosopher, and that is enough in itself to make me have faith.

The world exists by a system that is operating upon the principle of death and life. Life which is a mystery to me comes out of death. Death which is a mystery to me comes out of life. Death supports life. To me that is enough to generate faith.

Closer to us we have our own world of human beings and our families. In our families we see birth and in time death. We can observe the baby newly arrived today. It just arrived and see how its relationship is soon formed with the mother and how that relationship is so important for that baby to exist, live, and grow to manhood or womanhood.

Nobody can pay a mother to be the mother God made her to be. She mothers her child out of her (mother) nature. She will wake up in the middle of the night with fever herself and will be sick and weak. She hears crying and goes to attend to the baby. To me that alone is enough to generate in us faith in something outside of ourselves.

Let us think of God, and why bring up God? In our (world) situation we should try anything that's rated high. Here is a creature who has lost faith in God. He has no time to talk about any "God." And some of us will see that person and will be so into religion we may not even bother with him.

In this connection brothers and sisters look at the condition in Arabia before the advent of Prophet Muhammed (peace be on him). That period is called Jahiliyyah, the time of ignorance or "darkness." They did not care for anything but their own immediate interest. They were divided into feuding tribes. The society was all sectioned up along tribal lines and was abusing itself. Gangs roamed city streets and the countryside. But from that place and from that time God created Muhammed.

Some will say, "He should not have been raised up in that place. Why should such an excellent model of the human person and such beautiful human being be raised up in that ugly place?" Now that may not be enough to generate faith for you, but I am offering it
to you.

Many think that I should come out and give you a lecture on one of the ayats in Qur'an and some commentary and some fiqr and close out with a half hour du'a. I disagree. You should go to one of the Islamic classes for that: This is a public address. [Note the form of Muhammed's (A.S.) Farewell Address.]

I as a young man wondered why some people were so nice and seemed to be so blessed by God and were not Muslims. I wondered about that because I was raised to say if you were not this (Muslim) then you were not anything. The language of that teaching back then said that to me. It was not the attitude of the people (N.O.I, members). The attitude of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and my mother did not say that. The attitude of the brothers, Ministers, and Minister Isaiah Karriem (who is in this gathering now) did not say that. We were taught we were the only and the best and the supreme. What we were taught would cause us to believe. It said that we were the only ones right and everyone else was wrong. However, as a child I wondered. I saw excellent and wonderful human beings who were not Muslims.

It is not that I thought their smoking or drinking liquor or foul language were beautiful or acceptable. But I saw that some of the best people smoke. Some of the best people will drink. Some of the best people will use foul language at times. You can be a victim of certain habits and yet be a jewel in a bad situation.

Also, I found that some did not smoke and did not drink and were Christians. They (some Christians) didn't use foul language. Later on in my life I found others who told me they did not believe in God but their character was admirable.

You will say, "Well how is that?" If you have never come by one, I can understand you asking. I see their good fortune as God's mercy.

(To be continued)