WEB POSTED 03-12-2002

An interview with Min. Farrakhan

Here are a few pointers about “Is It Possible That The Honorable Elijah Muhammad Is Still Physically Alive?”

Forty-seven of the ninety-eight pages, of this book was not in its 1983 or its 1989 editions. Chapters 1, 4 and 6 contain some of the views (and positions) of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, of this book’s subject. After looking at his words, consider reading chapters 7 and 8, both of which are excerpts from larger unpublished works.

This is a new book.

A 144,000 were foreseen with a man symbolically styled as the “Lamb.” Now, will one work to prepare one’s self to meet a man one thinks is dead? This is doubtful. Then maybe such one will be as those virgins, of the 25th chapter of Matthew who were unprepared when the call came to go and meet with the “Bridegroom.” However, the 144,000 were prepared. Think deeply.

Minister Farrakhan is not insane nor is he a liar!

Now, back to the interview.

Brother Jabril: You become a registered Muslim in 1955. Did you study?

Minister Farrakhan: Oh yes. This was a new field for me. I was so fascinated by the teachings of the most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, as taught by Malcolm X first; Minister Malcolm; Minister Lucius in Washington, D.C., Minister Karriem in Baltimore; the Minister in Detroit and other Ministers of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and young Minister George, out of Philadelphia—these were men who were profoundly influential in my development.

Even though there were people over me in authority who may not have had a high school education, they were so well-studied in the teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, it meant nothing to me that they did not have the amount of school time that I had, or the quality of preparation that I had. They had what I was trying to get. That was an understanding of the message of Islam, as taught by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.

So, the discipline that I applied in the study of my music, once I gained the love of my violin, my mother no longer had to require me to practice. Every free moment I had, I would practice my craft. Sometimes I would practice four hours, five hours, six hours. Sometimes I would tell my wife “I’m going in this room. I won’t be out for eight or nine hours.” I would go in and practice my craft.

So when I gave up music and became a follower of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, my love for music, my love for my craft just was transferred to my love for Allah, my love for the Messenger, my love for Islam. I always had love for God and love for our people but now, I had a message, a vehicle to transfer—not a noun but a verb—in that I could actively demonstrate my love, by bringing Black people up out of the grave of ignorance, by sharing with them the profound message that Master Fard Muhammad had left with the Honorable Elijah Muhammad for our resurrection, restoration, reconciliation and civilizing us to be top human beings.

Brother Jabril: A few of us or some of us in those days are aware of the fact, that there were times when you would go to a hotel room and spend hours studying. Please elaborate.

Minister Farrakhan: I always desired to feed the Muslim community. They were feeding me. They were giving my family and I enough money to at least afford bean soup. It was not the amount of money, because it was very meager, and we were very, very poor. But I felt obligated to study to serve this community. They came to follow the Honorable Elijah Muhammad. In order to follow him, they had to know him, they had to know what he taught and his aim and purpose. So if I loved him and loved them, then it was my duty to study to prepare these who love him, also to be strong helpers of him, in the cause of the rise of our people.

So in those days, I studied every thing I could get my hands on related to the message of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad. By immersing myself in his message, then everything that I learned in high school, prep school and college took on greater significance. Biology took on greater meaning. Chemistry, Solid Geometry, Algebra, Calculus, everything that I studied I could now use because Islam, as taught by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, was a key to use knowledge for the advancement of self, your family, your community and your people.

Brother Jabril: Now Brother Minister, talk to me for a moment about the time you received the order to put up your music.

Minister Farrakhan: Well, I was playing in a nightclub in Greenwich Village, in New York, called The Village Barn. I could not come to the Mosque on that particular Sunday because I had to do a Matinee show at the time of the Mosque meeting. But after I completed my show and my responsibility to the nightclub, I came uptown to Temple #7 luncheonette on 120th Street and Lenox Avenue to chat with the Muslims and get a bowl of bean soup.

When I got in the restaurant and sat down to order my soup, one of the Believers, I don’t remember who he was, sat down and said to me “Man you know, the order came down today that all the musicians would have to get out of music or get out the Mosque or out of the Temple.” This came as a shock to me. So I didn’t drink the soup right then. I got up and I walked out of the restaurant and I walked East on 120th Street, maybe 20, 30 paces thinking, as to what I was going to do. And in that 20 to 30 paces, the thought came to me, ‘I can live without music. But I cannot live without the truth.’

So I turned right around and went back in the restaurant and sat down and had my bowl of soup.

Our dear departed Brother Captain Yusuf Shah learned that somebody had said that to me. He was very angry because he wanted to be the one to break it to me in a gentle way and measure my reactions. When he came I told him, ‘I already made my decision, Brother. I’m giving up show business.’

I had until the end of December—this was around the first of December during Ramadan or something like that, I think it was—and I had to the end of December. I had thirty days to make that decision.

Brother Jabril: 1955?

Minister Farrakhan: Yes, it was the end of 1955. That’s correct.

Brother Jabril: And you just stopped?

Minister Farrakhan: Yes. In fact it was in November. It was not in December, but I had to the end of December to make the decision, but this order came down in November, one month after I had been a registered Muslim.

Brother Jabril: What then led to, and what were the circumstances, which were preparatory, under which the Honorable Elijah Muhammad said to you, “You don’t have to study.”

More next issue, Allah willing.