BY MINISTER LOUIS FARRAKHAN | LAST UPDATED: MAY 27, 2003 – 10:25:00 PM
[Editor’s note: The following excerpts are from remarks made by Minister Louis Farrakhan at various events during the May 10-11 celebration of “The Farrakhan Years: Yesterday, Today and Forever—The Legacy.” The first section is excerpted from remarks during the May 10 press conference at Mosque Maryam in Chicago.]
IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE BENEFICENT, THE MERCIFUL.
As men, we’re difficult in terms of allowing ourselves to be tested by this digital (prostate) examination. But, my dear brothers, let me encourage you, in fact, I’m going to spend the rest of my days encouraging men in general, but Black men in America in particular, don’t wait until you’re 45 years old because it’s striking us faster and we have the highest mortality rate of any people on the Earth with respect to prostate cancer. We’re not going to wait until we’re 40. I would advise you to start from 35 years of age.
You may say that it costs too much money. But, I know our brothers. We like nice shoes—Air Jordans and Nikes—that cost more than $100, and it may cost only $2 or $3 to manufacture. It would be wise that once a year you cut back on something and go to your healthcare professional to get this examination.
To our sisters who are dying from incidences of breast cancer at an alarming rate, ovarian cancer, lung cancer, we are being afflicted with cancer at a rate that was unheard of 30 or 40 years ago. As Allah (God) blessed me to call for the Million Man March and nearly two million men showed up, they never would have come if it were not for our women who encouraged their men, get to that March.
My daughter Maria, who lost an uncle, my brother, to prostate cancer because it wasn’t detected early enough, and nearly lost her father, recognized, as the rest of my family recognized, that this is a scourge and we have to fight it. She, along with my doctor, Alfred Goldson, and attorney Lewis Meyers and attorney Berve Muhammad were the architects of the Louis Farrakhan Prostate Cancer Foundation.
My daughter and my family heard me say that I would spend the rest of my life talking to men in general, but you in particular, because we’re losing too many great ones. And since when we go, it’s not just us dying, it’s a family suffering our loss, it becomes a family matter to deal with the health concerns of our community in particular. I’m urging those men that are here today that haven’t been tested, if you’re 35 or older, there’s a wonderful mobile unit out here and they’re ready to perform this test for free. I would take advantage of that.
I thank my daughter and I thank those who worked with her to establish this. We’re now working to get 501(c)(3) tax exempt status and, hopefully, by next year we will open the endowment part of [the Foundation] so I can talk to Black entertainers, Black sports figures, Black business people to come up with the money to establish this clinic at Howard University Hospital for prostate cancer where young Black men can go. And if you don’t have the money, it can be taken from that endowment and we will be able to help you get the treatment.
But for now, the cancer foundation is dedicated, number one, to educating and increasing the awareness of the causes, effects and treatment alternatives of cancer in general, but prostate cancer in particular. Early detection really gives you the victory.
If you go out there today and they take your blood test and give you a digital examination and it comes back and they tell you that you have it or they need further testing, don’t freak out. Once you know you have it, the next thing is to aggressively start your war. And since we are warriors, we don’t give in to these kinds of things, we overcome them.
To our sisters who are present, if your husband is 35 years old or more, encourage him to get the exam. Your brother, your uncle, your father, your cousins, whoever they are, if you love them and don’t want to lose them at an early age, encourage them and make sure you ask them how did it come out. Also, you be encouraged to go and look after yourself with the proper breast examinations and all the kinds of examinations that you should have, so that we can catch these things as early as possible and save as many lives as possible.
[Editor’s note: The following excerpts were taken from Min. Farrakhan’s Mother’s Day message at Mosque Maryam on May 11.]
A mother’s love
I wanted to pay honor and respect to mothers. Whether you all know it or not, brothers and sisters, there is nobody more important in this world after Allah (God) and the Messenger of Allah (God) than your mother. The better the mother, the better the chance for the child to grow into greatness. Every human being is possessed of something from Allah (God) that must be cultivated, that must be developed. Allah (God) works through this woman to cultivate what He has put within. This is why if you wish to destroy the world, you work to destroy women. If you want to destroy the world, you work to corrupt women.
Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be Upon Him (PBUH), said, “Heaven lies at the foot of mother.” What heaven are you talking about? When you come onto this earth, you have the potential to live a heavenly life or to live a hellish life based on the choices that you make. But mother can put you on the right road. So, at her feet, meaning in complete submission to her and following in the path that a good mother lays down, the child then has a chance to live a heavenly life.
And what is a heavenly life? It doesn’t mean that you won’t go through life without misfortune and adversity. Allah (God) has created the human being to struggle. But it’s not the struggle, it’s the attitude when adversity strikes you. And adversity will strike into every home. All you have to do is live long enough and you will taste adversity. But that’s when you are tested—your value system is tested, your faith in Allah (God) is tested. If you can recognize that even in the most negative of circumstances that Allah (God) is present, in the hardest days of your life, He’s there. But if you get overwhelmed by the hardness of the circumstance, you might be blinded to His presence in that darkness. In that storm, He’s there. If you repair to the center of the storm, which is Allah (God), then He grants you peace and contentment of mind through your adversity and your struggle and you come through with a victory.
A good mother is a special creature. No child is born into this world to judge your mother. Our mothers are victims, our fathers are victims of a cruel oppression and slavery that rendered them destroyed as men, and corrupted women to be a play thing of a slave master, but they just couldn’t take Allah (God) out of our women.
Church is not filled with men, churches are filled with women. When there is good preaching, it is the women who become emotional, who get filled with “the Holy Spirit,” because it is women who are the suffering servants of Allah (God). They suffer because of us. They suffer because we are a long way from what Allah (God) intended for a man to be, so she can never attain who she really is.
Allah (God) has made these two natures, female and male, to complement each other, not to be destructive of each other. But in spite of it all, our women have done a marvelous job in trying to nurture us.
[Editor’s note: The following excerpts were taken from Min. Farrakhan’s remarks at the black tie gala at the Chicago Hilton Hotel that officially launched the Louis Farrakhan Prostate Cancer Foundation.]
The power of love
I want you to know that all the good words that have been said about me, some people get high off of that. But it is somewhat embarrassing to me because I have really come to know how great Allah (God) is and how little I am, and that whatever I do that is of value, the credit, the honor belongs to Allah (God). I’m not going to allow myself to be drunk with the wine of self-gratification or allow others to almost get to the point that they want to worship me. I refuse such ignorance because I will always be struggling like you to overcome things that Allah (God) would disapprove of in my life.
I don’t see myself as any object of worship, nor do I seek anything like that. I feel like I’m just another atom in a universe of billions of atoms, and whatever I am of value is because of my connection with Allah (God). I would hope and pray that all of us whom God has gifted, and there is not one in this room that is not gifted, but that gift was given by a Gift Giver. We get caught up in the vanity of the gift and what the use of that gift can bring to us of fame, of fortune and of knowledge of ourselves that people know us all over the world.
When you are great in what Allah (God) has allowed you to do, you get known for what you do. But, never should we become arrogant to think that it is us. We’re just a link in an infinity of chain that has no beginning and has no ending. We are here in this space and in this time to contribute what we can, and then we pass off the scene and a new generation comes. But Allah (God) was, and Allah (God) is, and Allah (God) shall always be.
I pray that Allah (God) will make me worthy of your love. It is wonderful to be loved because the root out of which all virtue springs is love. When we learn how to love, it is love that makes you to appear courageous. It is love that makes you appear fearless. Love is the root of all of these great characteristics, and that is why Paul, in his writings in the 13th chapter of Corinthians, said, “Though I speak with the tongue of angels and have the gift of prophecy, my voice is as a tinkling cymbal and sounding brass if I have not love.” The scripture uses the word “charity,”, but charity, as we know it, is the giving of oneself, one’s talent, one’s money. If you give to be seen, that’s vanity. But if you give out of love, that is what brings the greatest reward.
And Paul says, “though I give my body to be burned,” and what greater sacrifice can you give, but if you don’t have love, he says, “I am nothing.” Love is not haughty. Love is not arrogant. Love is not proud. Love does not seek its own. It’s easy to say I love somebody that says I love you. But when somebody says I hate you and you say I love you, that’s another thing. That is the kind of love that motivated Christ, that motivated Jesus, that motivated Muhammad, that motivated the prophets. They moved out of love. Until we can gain that great characteristic, we have not yet met Jesus. You have not yet met Muhammad. You have not met with Allah (God).
What you do is limited by why you do it. Your motive for doing what you do is what either lessens the spirit of God or brings God into the equation with you. It is motive. There is too much vanity and too little humility to recognize Allah (God) as the Only Power—nothing else. When we surrender and submit ourselves to God, knowing that we are nothing and He is everything, then whatever we do, He will bless that effort because we’re not doing it to be seen of men, to be honored of men, to be praised by men. We are doing it for the Glory of Allah (God) because it’s the righteous thing to do.
I’ve been blessed to live 70 years on this Earth and I’ve come through stages to get where Allah (God) has blessed me to be. I thank Him for allowing me to live 70 years, but I thank Him for the experiences that help to make one wise if one doesn’t get carried away with one’s self.