(The following article contains edited remarks delivered June 20, 2017 at Muhammad University of Islam following prayers and an “Iftar,” breaking of the fast of Ramadan. Muslims from diverse communities and schools of thought in the Chicagoland area gathered on the grounds of the National Center, international headquarters of the Nation of Islam at the invitation of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan for an evening of worship, fellowship and cultural exchange. The grounds of the National Center includes Mosque Maryam and Muhammad University of Islam where the full evening of festivities took place, including a tent erected on the property for the overfl ow of attendees. Over 800 men, women and children participated in the United Community Iftar commemorating the revelation of the Islamic book of scripture—the Holy Qur’an to Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). The evening was observed as the Night of Power, one of the special last 10 nights during the month of fasting and prayer.)


As-Salaam Alaikum. In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful, we give him praise and thanks for his Prophets and Messengers and the scriptures which they brought. As Muslims, we make no distinction among Allah’s servants. We thank Allah for each of them, and we thank Allah for what they have done for the human family. We are the last to receive though Prophet Muhammad, Peace be upon him, gave Islam to the world through this book, Qur’an. 

Yet, the Western Hemisphere was not discovered and it grew up in a rebellious kind of way that’s contrary to the law of God and the law of Islam.

So we were brought out of Africa, many of us were Muslims; but we were denied the right to know our history, our language, our culture, our religion and our God. And I thank Allah for the early Muslims who came here and tried to teach us Islam; but they did not understand the condition that 310 years of chattel slavery had produced in us and 150 years of living under Jim Crow segregation and injustice. So we have been made into a people that have a problem that only Allah could solve for us. And just as Allah has been merciful to every nation, as the Qur’an says, “every nation has received a messenger.” But here we were in America, in the bowels of a beast deprived and that is why we thank Allah, we know Allah, the Originator of the Heavens and the Earth who has no partners.  He is one, indivisible but Allah cares for this human family, and we have been the lost members of our people so we wouldn’t be here today if Allah had not intervened in our affairs. 

Somebody came after us. He was an Arab but he brought us a book. He found Elijah Muhammad. He gave him an Arabic Qur’an and he said, “Read.” But Elijah Muhammad said, as Prophet Muhammad said 1,400 years ago, “I can’t read.” 



He didn’t know how to. He said “read.” He said it three times. Finally, he gave Elijah Muhammad the Maulana Muhammad Ali translation of the Holy Qur’an, and he liked that translation more than the Yusef Ali translation because this Muhammad Ali translation always uses the name Allah rather than God.


What Elijah Muhammad was attempting to do was to put Allah in our consciousness and he has done that. And I wanted to say to this wonderful gathering of wonderful Muslims from all over Chicago and different parts of the world, I want to personally thank you for the honor that you gave to us tonight to be here at our invitation. Because of my illness, unfortunately, I grieve because I can’t do Ramadan like I want to do Ramadan.  So this is my effort at redemption. 

I want to thank all of you who cooked. I want to thank the Nile Restaurant. I want to thank everybody who served. I want to thank Imam Sultan Rahman Muhammad and Brother Minister Ishmael Muhammad and all of the staff for arranging to bring all of our family together to celebrate the Life of Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be Upon Him, and thank Allah for him, through whom this mighty book was revealed. 

If there were no Prophet Muhammad, then we might not have had this Qur’an. So now that we have this Qur’an, we needed a teacher. We needed a teacher that understood our condition. We have never been racist but we have suffered under White people and we cannot deny that they have not been our friends. They have been our worst enemy. That doesn’t mean all of them but their work on us has been the work of Shaitan (the Devil).

So I had a few things I wanted to say: Our world is in difficulty, but right on this stage there are Muslims that have had disagreements with the Nation of Islam. But we have never shed the blood of one another even though our differences were real. Our disagreements were real but the love that Allah put in our hearts would not permit us to shed the blood of a fellow Believer, even though we thought we were on a different path; but the root of us would not allow us to shed each other’s blood. That is why the Holy Prophet, Peace Be Upon Him, said “that the light of Islam would rise in the West and shine back toward the East.” We are your example today.

What kind of an example is this: Black, Brown, Red, Yellow and White all together as a family? Islam will prove that it is the only religion that can bring every member of the human family into oneness. So the light that shined from the East to the West is going out; but the light in the West is growing brighter and brighter and fuller. We will cause a resurrection of true Islam, not people who pray but are unmindful of what they say. Not people who have an outward show of Islam but what Islam really is is not demonstrated in their hearts and the way we deal with one another.  



And let me say this about Elijah Muhammad today. He told me, and some of you heard him, that Master Fard Muhammad gave him 104 books to study; and the best of those books he said was this one, The Holy Qur’an. He argued with many scholars. They brought many books. He only brought one, The Holy Qur’an. This is the book with all the best arguments. This is the book that will settle the problems that human beings are suffering from today. But Satan has come into the straight path of God as he said he would do—and he’s caused practically the whole Muslim world to deviate from the prophet, deviate from his Sunnah, deviate from this book. Scholars take the Qur’an and put it behind their backs. How can you lead the people when this book is the light and you put it behind your back? Satan—well I don’t want to put it just like that but—Mr. Donald Trump visited our Holy Land. He never saw such splendor. I know he’s a man that loves wealth but he could forget it. When he landed in Riyadh, and some of us have had the pleasure of landing in Riyadh, the airport is beyond your wildest imagination. And to be in the palace, which we were blessed to be in that palace in Riyadh, with the King Abdullah, not King Fahd.


Mecca is now spending, Arabia is spending over $100 billion on war material and building a center in Mecca against extremism. We went there to Mecca and we said to the scholars, “We need to build here a Center for Conflict Resolution.”  Why would we allow Mr. Trump to come into our Holy Land and get all of the Sunni Believers together against the Shi’ite? War was dripping from his lips, deception and deceit, and we treated him like God had come to Arabia. 

Now, the clouds of war are gathering over our Holy Land. War materials that America supplies are being used against the Houthi in Yemen.  Qatar, which we had visited, rich and powerful, feeding ISIS and feeding Al-Qaida with money. That world today is no example for us. Mecca needs to be warned but who will do it? 

I stood in Medina at the grave of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and with tears running down my eyes, I begged Allah, “Give me a double portion of the spirit that you gave to your servant, Prophet Muhammad, that we may complete his work in the Western Hemisphere.” We’re not out here taking money. Our work is the resurrection of our people and the dissemination of the faith. What kind of Muslims are we if we pray in the masjid, and fast, and walk by the ignorant and leave them in their ignorance? We are the ones that have to wake the people up with Islam. 

In this Qur’an, after we read in Surah 2 about “fasting,” the next thing we read is “fighting in the defense of Islam.” I have to say this: The Holy Prophet, Peace Be Upon Him, and the early followers went through what we are going through right now. When he said, “La-ila-ha il-lal-lah,” the Quraish did not like that. So the early Muslims were persecuted. Some were killed for saying Allah-u-Akbar. So we stand on them. Many Muslims died so we could have the right to say: As-Salaam Alaikum. So we can’t take that greeting for just a word that we say to each other that has no meaning.

The companions of the Prophet, the early Sahaba, their life, their death, their blood, their tears are wrapped up in the greeting words. That’s why we have a Qur’an to look at today because men died and women dressed like men to fight.  They were not cowardly women and they would kill any of the soldiers who turned their back and fled. That’s our history. Our masjids are under attack. Our sisters wearing their hijab and some evil people snatch it from their heads and attack them and kill them. What is our response? Who will we appeal to for the dignity of our Muslim sisters? If the appeal can’t touch us as men, then we lay down our lives for our women and girls who are bold enough and brave enough to put a hijab on or a headpiece on and walk the streets of America.

Now, I’m going to say some things that may appear radical but we have to wake up. We must defend the houses of worship. If it’s a synagogue and somebody wants to write or put a swastika on it, what is our duty as Muslims? No, not to kill them. No, we don’t kill them. That’s a teachable moment. It just depends on what book you’re going to teach them out of.

There were some of the helpers of the Prophet in Medina and one of the new converts urinated in the mosque. And they ran and told the Prophet that savage over here urinated in the mosque. The Companions were so angry they wanted to move on him and give him a good whipping. The Prophet said, oh, brother, just take some water and wash it down and teach him the respect of the masjid and he’ll do better. We are the teachers today. All of you. All of us. We have to teach civilization to a savage world. We have to represent higher civilization to a world that is going mad. 

Allah says in the Qur’an, “And fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you but be not aggressive. Surely Allah loves not the aggressors.” Oh, but this next Ayat (Verse) is tough. Allah says, “And kill them wherever you find them.” Now, you know there are some that want to retranslate the Qur’an now.  “And drive them out from where they drove you out and persecution is worse than slaughter. And fight not with them at the sacred mosque until they fight you in it.  So if they fight you in it, slay them.” That’s the Qur’an. 

Now, you that want a milquetoast Qur’an. You want a Qur’an that you can pacify your enemies with? Then change that and say, “And love them wherever you find them. And invite them in after they drove you out.” See, we’ve become revisionists because we want friendship with an enemy of God. And so I said, “boy, this is a tough scripture right after Ramadan.” 

Ramadan is a fast that we may guard against evil but these are peaceful people.  The Muslims in America are some of the finest citizens that America has. You bother nobody. You go to your masjid; you say your prayers; you look after your families. You go to your profession and you add to America. But today the climate is such that all you have to do is wear a kufi or wear a hijab, put on your robe, “ah that’s one of them.” One of the sisters said but I’m going to take my hijab off because it seems like when I put it on, they attack me so I’m going to take mine off so they don’t recognize that I’m a Muslim. My dear sisters, you keep your hijab on. 

My dear sisters, be the strong Muslim women that you are. 

But to the men, to the men: Somebody snatches a Muslim sister’s hijab off, what should we do, pray? Come on now. You said your prayers. It’s time then to let the world know how we respect our women and their righteousness. When the persecution was heaviest in Arabia, it forced the Muslims to take up arms.  Otherwise, Islam would have been crushed and we wouldn’t be here today unless Allah pleased and came another way. But Prophet Muhammad and those with him were Believers. They put their complete trust in Allah. Elijah Muhammad said to me before he left us, he said, “I cannot promise you that you won’t get a hickey on your head. I cannot promise you won’t end up in jail. I cannot promise you that some of us will not lose our lives. But the one thing that I can promise you is:  Victory.”

Allah did not make us Muslims for us to be unsuccessful. Allah did not make us Muslims for us to cow down in front of tyranny. Every masjid now should be awake and alert. When it’s time for prayer, some watch while others pray. Isn’t that what the Holy Prophet said? Now come on. Some put their weapons down for prayer but others kept their weapons. I’m not saying you should go get weapons.  Your greatest weapon is your faith. We have never as students and followers of the Elijah Muhammad put our trust in carnal weapons. And the police attacked our mosques, not once, not twice, several times. But what did we do? We fought them in the Name of Allah. Some of us died. Some of them died. But in the end, Islam must be established in America.

I think every masjid should have women and girls, and men and boys, learning the art of self-defense. You’re not attacking anybody, you’re not bothering anybody, you’re not bullying anybody but when they come, we must give them what they are looking for. That’s on my heart to tell you. I grieve seeing what’s happening to our Muslims. See, most of you that are from the other side, when you come to America, you set up your masjids in the White communities. You don’t want to come near us and you know they tell you: “Leave those Black people alone. Those Black people are savages. Stay away from them.” And you are so anxious to obey them.

So you go find your lily White community, put up your pretty mosque and you think that they’re going to like that. But those that have sense, they came in the Black community. Let me tell you something, brothers and sisters, in Surah Al-Abasa, a blind man was tapping his way up to the Prophet and he was having a conversation with a highly learned and highly placed man. And he (the Prophet) was going to town with him.

And the blind man kept tapping his way up and disturbed the Prophet, and he frowned. That’s the name of the chapter, “He frowned.” Prophet Muhammad frowned on the blind man but God frowned on him. You waste your time with people who don’t want to believe and here’s a people in the mud who want to rise and you’ve got knowledge and you won’t bring it to us. How do you think Allah will judge you on the day of judgement? 

I thank Allah for you and what you’ve done for Islam. And what Allah through you has done for so many.  I thank all of you for the good work that you do.  Some of it not praised but it’s worthy of praise. But if you would continue to do the good that you do but reach out to the White people where you live and try to convert them, yeah right. The Prophet tried a long time to convert them. I think he was a little broken hearted. They didn’t want Islam. But we love Islam and many of us have died fighting for Islam.

I don’t want you to take this as a spanking or something like that. I just feel that if we don’t do better, the chastisement of Allah will overtake us all. And you can’t say because you make your five prayers that you’re not going to be chastised by Allah when you can walk by a drug addict and leave them. Walk by a prostitute and say nothing. Walk by our people that are killing each other in the streets and don’t try to stop this madness; and then you think that Allah is going to be pleased with us? That’s not the way of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). So stop using his name if we’re going to shield that good name with unclean religion, religion that does nothing.

Ramadan Mubarak! I thank you from the depth of my heart and I want all my family here to know I love you, and we’re not through because during the Eid celebration we’re going to clean out all the homeless shelters and feed all of them.  Maybe Allah will say, “Farrakhan, you really grieve over not being able to fast.” I do because it’s nothing more beautiful than Muslims observing the fast of Ramadan. 

I close with this: We were in Mecca during the last ten days of Ramadan. You ready for this? Two million Muslims were in Al-Haram at the Ka’abah and surrounding area and when the prayers we said, “Allah-u-Akbar,” and we’re going down for sajdah, you just hear two million knees, umpf. You talk about a religion that’s so majestic. I saw two old men when I made hajj holding each other’s hands.  We were on our way to Muzdalifah to stone Shaitan. What an experience that was. I got so carried away, this is the truth, my voice was so loud it scared the people around me when I said: ALLAH-U-AKBAR! When I would throw my stones but the real stone throwers are those of us who cast truth at falsehood until we knock out its brains. That’s who you are.

Don’t feel bad about the militant side of Islam. Islam is peace. It is. But after you have fought and overcome the opposition, Islam is peace. Thank you all for coming out tonight. Let us give our guests, our family, a standing ovation and let them know that we love them. Let them know that if we see somebody tearing off our sister’s hijab, that’s the day we die. 

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