BY THE HONORABLE MINISTER LOUIS FARRAKHAN | LAST UPDATED: MAR 3, 2013 – 10:11:28 AM
[Editor’s note: The following article contains a distillation of the hour-long message delivered by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan as Part 7 of his 52-week Lecture Series “The Time and What Must Be Done.” This message originally aired on Saturday, February 23, 2013.]
In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful.
Greetings to you. I am Minister Louis Farrakhan, National Representative of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, that Great Preacher of Freedom, Justice and Equality to the Aboriginal People of the Earth: The Black People of North America, and the Dark People of the world. He is also a Warner to the government and people of the United States of America, and the nations of the Earth.
Elijah Muhammad: The Eternal Leader of the Nation of Islam. I am so thankful to Almighty God Allah for the day that I met the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.
A child born with an enduring love for a downtrodden people
As a young man, I always desired to see Black people free. I cried myself to sleep many nights, especially after coming from church and my Sunday school class, where I would ask my Sunday school teacher: “If God gave Moses to The Children of Israel to deliver them from the hard bondage of Pharaoh, and if God always stood on the side of the ‘enslaved’ and the ‘oppressed,’ why hasn’t God sent someone to us?” My pastors and my Sunday school teachers had no answer for me.
I was upset, because I was a Christian and I loved Jesus Christ; but when I was a young man, White Christians were doing horrible things to Black Christians, and no intercession was taken on our behalf. I always felt the pain of those that I would read about in The Crisis Magazine, or, in The Afro-American or The Pittsburgh Courier, when we would read of the “lynchings” and the “burnings” and the “castrations” and the terrible torture of Black people when White people felt that we had done something “improper.” And so my heart ached to see our people free; so, I started to look for somebody who would address the concerns of our people.
When I was 11 years of age, I was sent by my mother to New York to spend part of the summer with my uncle; and my uncle had on his wall a picture of a Black man! In my house, in Boston, we had pictures on our mantelpiece, one of whom was Queen Elizabeth and King George, and the other was a White representation of “Jesus.” But in my uncle’s home, a Black man was on the wall. That was really “strange” to me, because all the homes that I had visited as a young man, all the Black homes had a picture of “Jesus,” a White person.
I remember once a Filipino man came to our door; he was selling Bibles. And as he was opening the Bibles, showing my mother all of these “White” prophets and angels, when he got to “The Last Supper” my mother asked him: “You mean to tell me there’s no Black people at all in this book?”—and she ran him out of the house. So after I had talked to my uncle who told me my dad was a follower of Marcus Garvey, and my mother was on the fringe of The Garvey Movement, that was, for me, a sign that my mother was very “Black conscious.” And, I thank God for that because she instilled in me love for our people.
When I asked my uncle, “Who is that man on the wall?” he said, “He’s a man that came to unite Black people.” That fascinated me! I was a “little shorty” at that time, so I asked my uncle to get a chair so I could stand on that chair and “drink in” the features of this Black man who had come to unite Black people. And as I was looking in his face, studying his features, I asked my uncle, “Where is he, that I might go and be with him?” and my uncle said, “He’s passed away”—and the tears fell from my eyes, because I had come “that close” to what my heart was yearning for, and he was gone.
My search always was for a man that would stand up for us.
The man ‘accepting his own and being himself’ under guidance from a Wise Teacher
When I was 19 years of age, already a musician, an entertainer, and a young boy going to school because I was in college at the time, I had come home for summer vacation; and, one of my friends told me that “God had chosen a messenger for us.” As I walked the street, tears fell from my eyes, and I asked God: “God, why didn’t you choose me? You know I love my people…” And as fast as I made that question to God, the answer came when the brother had told me that “God appeared in 1930”—and I was not even born. So I decided I must go and meet this man, and offer him my life.
My friends had visited the mosque and heard The Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, but they were not adequate to defend it, because I had questions to ask that they couldn’t answer. So, at 19 years of age, I did not meet Elijah Muhammad.
At the age of 20 I married my wife Khadijah, and was in college; and then in 1955, when I was 22 years of age, I was playing as the featured performer in a nightclub in Chicago called The Blue Angel that was on 801 N. Rush Street owned by a great Greek wrestler by the name of Gene Fadouli. One day while my wife and I were in a cab driving down a street, I happened to look and see my old friend that grew up together with me. So we stopped the cab, paid the cab driver, jumped out of the cab and hailed my friend. And naturally, since he’s in Chicago, I’m in Chicago, and I’m the “headliner” at The Blue Angel nightclub, I said to my friend, “Man, why don’t you come on and catch my show?” He wasn’t “moved” a bit. Then he said, “Your uncle is right around the corner…” (This was when the Honorable Elijah Muhammad had a little grocery store on Wentworth in Chicago), and I went around the corner and saw my uncle, and saw some of my friends from Boston who had become Muslims.
So they asked me would I like to come and hear the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, and I said, “Of course!” And so, I was staying at The Wilmington Arms located at 49th & Drexel Avenue, and my friends came and picked me up, and brought me to Muhammad’s Temple No. 2 at 5335 S. Greenwood Avenue in Chicago, Illinois. There was a tall, beautiful man opening up for Elijah Muhammad, who had not yet come, and that man was the great Dean of Ministers, Brother Minister Lucius Bey who, this coming May, God Willing, will be 100 years of age. And after a few minutes, I heard somebody from the back of the auditorium say: “Tench-HUT! The Messenger of Allah!”—and I heard fast footsteps coming down the aisle, and almost with a bound, Elijah Muhammad jumped up on the rostrum. He had me sitting where usually “first-timers” don’t sit; first-timers always get the “best seats in the house”: front row, second row, third row. But he had me sitting in the balcony.
Then Elijah Muhammad began to speak … and you know, being a student of English, and always getting pretty good grades in English, as he spoke I noticed that he was splitting some verbs; that “verb and subject agreement” were not there. And in my mind I said to myself: “Mmm! This man can’t speak!” and he looked up at the balcony where I was, and he said: “Brother, I did not have a chance to get that mighty-fine education that you got. When I got to the school door it was closing”—he meant that he was a “sharecropper,” and when it was time to pick cotton or do the things that were needed, there was no school for Black people.
Then he said: “Brother, don’t you pay any attention to how I’m sayin’ it—you pay attention to what I’m sayin’, and then you take it and put it in that fine language that you know!”
When he laid eyes on me for the first time, he gave me My Assignment.
The Decision the man had to make: Denying himself to do God’s Work
I was living in New York at the time in 1955, so when I got back to New York, I went to the Temple No. 7 and heard Malcolm X. Well, “that was it”: I had never heard a Black man speak like that! And by this time it was the summer, and since I had not heard back about my Letter I wrote in February in Chicago, I took my form out and wrote my Letter again, and it was accepted around the first week of October of that year.
Being a musician and wanting to go back to Boston and deliver that Message: I never knew that I had the “gift of speech.” However, on a Wednesday evening Brother Malcolm asked for the new converts to come and have a word to say, and when he called “Louis X” up, he said: “I’d like you to speak on what Islam has done for you.” Well, “Islam” had done a lot for me, so I just began to speak about this Great Teaching of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, and the Great Word that I heard from Brother Malcolm; and the mosque, or temple, erupted with applause. And the next thing I knew, Brother Malcolm put me in the Ministry Class, and my journey in The Ministry began.
But I was not in the mosque 30 days when a “decree” had come down from the Honorable Elijah Muhammad: I was working in Greenwich Village in New York in a place called The Village Bon, so I wasn’t at the lecture that day; so as soon as I got a break, I came up to the little Muslim restaurant, “The Temple No. 7 Luncheonette,” to have bowl of that wonderful bean soup. And as I was sitting there, indulging in that beautiful bean soup with whole wheat bread, a brother came over to me and said, “Man! You missed it today! Malcolm read a letter from the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, and in that letter he said all that are in ‘show business,’ all that are in ‘music’: They would have to get out of music, or get out of the temple.”
I don’t remember whether I finished my bowl of soup. I got up and walked out of the restaurant to think … I think I may have walked 30 paces, and I said: “I can live without music, but I cannot live without The Truth.” And Brother Captain Yusef Shah ran up to me, wondering whether I had been “ill-affected” by that command from Elijah Muhammad, and I told him I had made up my mind.
“Now, why are you saying this Farrakhan?” Well, I wanted to give you some “background” on “The Time and What Must Be Done.”
You know, in that letter that the Honorable Elijah Muhammad wrote, he gave “30 days to get out of show business.” And on the last day of the 30 days, I had an engagement at the Nevele Country Club in upstate New York; and I said, “Well, I’m going get it all out of my system.” I went up in that country club and I sang ballads, I sang calypsos; I danced, I told jokes; I played jazz violin and I played classical violin. And, I was finished. After I got it all out, I went down in my dressing room, and a man by the name of “Purcell” came in my dressing room, who said: “You are extremely talented. Do you have a manager?” I said, “No sir.” He told me: “I manage Pearl Bailey and Billy Daniels”—two of the greatest performers of their day; and he said: “If you will let me manage your career, I will start you off $500 a week, and you will be playing in all of the supper clubs that take Billy Daniels and Pearl Bailey.”
You say, “Farrakhan, come on, now! I thought you were teaching ‘Islam’?” I am. Here is how: That man offered me more money, three or four times what I was making. At that time, in 1954 and 1955, $150 a week was “big money,” but to offer me $500 playing in supper clubs across the country? That was a great offer! But I didn’t tell him I wasn’t going take it; I just said, “Yes…” And he said, “Well, when you come in the city, if you meet me tomorrow I’ll have our lawyer there, and we’ll sign a contract.”
I smiled and took the address of where we would meet, and I went back to my little apartment in Jamaica, Queens (New York). And that night I laid down in my bed, and Allah (God) gave me a Vision of “Two Doors”: One of doors had a sign over it saying “SUCCESS”—and I could look in that Door, and I saw a mound of diamonds and gold.
And right next to it was another door that had a “Black Veil” coming from the top of the door to the bottom; and over that Door was “ISLAM.”
And I was told to “Choose,” and I chose The Door of “ISLAM” not knowing where that Door would lead me; but if I stayed in show business, I was guaranteed to have a mound of gold and diamonds. I chose “The Unknown”—but what I did know was what I heard from Elijah Muhammad and Malcolm X of The Truth was what I was “looking for” all my life! Mr. Purcell never saw me… I chose to “give up the world” to learn a Truth that would free The Minds of Black People.
It is written in the scriptures of the Bible that Jesus said, “If any man would be my disciple, he must first deny himself, pick up his cross, and follow me.” I did the first thing: I denied myself. But I did not know “the cross” that I, as a Muslim, would bear at that time when Elijah Muhammad and The Nation of Islam had not yet come to national and international public attention.
The man recognized as David, anointed by God to be King over the house of Israel
I soon went to Boston and became a captain of the F.O.I., and my minister at that time allowed me to teach when he wasn’t there. And every time I taught, everyone that the Believers brought would accept The Teachings; the little mosque filled so fast till we had to put the F.O.I. on the outside. And when Saviour’s Day came around again, I went to Chicago as a “captain.” The Honorable Elijah Muhammad had his Saviour’s Day at a Baptist Church on Indiana Avenue, and he came out this day that “the captains” were speaking. When I got up to speak, Elijah Muhammad was sitting behind me; and later, they showed me a picture of him sitting behind me with a big smile on his face.
He invited me to come to the house for dinner, and I was excited! His home was at 4847 S. Woodlawn Avenue, and when I got there, his son Emmanuel Muhammad welcomed me and said, “Your ‘minister-captain’ has arrived!” And when I went in and had dinner with this man that was now “the father” of my life, spiritually: I couldn’t take my eyes off of him.
If you think that “love at first sight” is not real, it is, because with the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, I met “the man” that my soul had longed for all the days of my life.
At the end of that dinner, he did something I never saw him do again: He got up from his table, and started, at his left, shaking hands with everyone at that table. I was at near the end on his right side, and when he came and shook my hand, he pulled me close to him and whispered in my ear: “You remind me of David.” I didn’t know what he meant, but he knew! He knew that that young man, that musician that gave up all that he had, was going to be “the one” who, when he had left us, would sit in his seat, under his guidance, and continue his work. “David,” as the scripture teaches in the Book of Acts, Chapter 13, verse 22, was a man “after The Heart of God”: He had a heart like unto God’s! He loved the things that God loved! He disliked the things that God disliked! He was courageous! He was a warrior! He was a “ruddy-complexioned” young man…
In the Book of 1 Samuel, Chapter 16, when the Prophet Samuel was told to “Go to the house of Jesse,” the scripture teaches that when Jesse brings one of his sons to Samuel, The Spirit of God will alight on that son—and Samuel will know that that is the one, and will “anoint” him, for he will be a King over Israel. Well, the man had seven sons, and he walked them all in front of the Prophet Samuel, and The Spirit did not descend on the Prophet. So he asked Jesse: “Do you have another son?” and Jesse said, “Oh! Yes, yes, yes! I have a son; he’s out in the field tending the sheep.” Samuel said, “Bring him,” and when David walked in that room, The Spirit of God descended on Samuel, as God says in verse 12,: “…Arise, anoint him: for this is he”—and Samuel knew that this one, David, would be The Anointed One to stand for The Children of Israel.
‘Verb & Subject Agreement’: The Past Mentality conflicting with The Present Need of Action
Why am I saying all of these things to you? I say this to you because “The Time and What Must Be Done” is a powerful message! You can’t deliver this Message, “afraid” of the consequences of such a Message! Elijah Muhammad, my Teacher and my Spiritual Father: He never shrunk from delivering that Message that Master Fard Muhammad gave him, no matter who disagreed with that Message! In the end of his time among us, during The Theology of Time Lecture Series, he said of himself: “I am the ‘Jesus’ of the Bible, and the ‘Muhammad’ of the Holy Qur’an.”
Well, I don’t preach a “dead” Elijah. I preach a living Elijah! I did not know that all the years that I was privileged to be at his table, he was “planting seeds” in my head, in my heart… Even though I didn’t know what those words meant, at the proper time those words would come to fruition. If you want to know how Elijah Muhammad “tried” his student, go get the book Closing The Gap, with Jabril Muhammad questioning Louis Farrakhan! And I only gave the trials that he put me through for “20 years”—not the trials that I have been under since I have been on this post, my father absent from me.
That Message that Elijah Muhammad gave me: For 10 years I was his “National Representative.” Not “spokesman,” but representative, because a “representative” is different from a “spokesman.” A spokesman could speak the word, but not necessarily represent in ways of character, in morals, in courage, in fearlessness the man that he is “the representative of.” He put me on the radio for six years, broadcasting in his name; and he told me: “Brother, God has gone in front of you, and made friends for you all the way around the Earth.” I didn’t know what he meant! But in my trip through The Caribbean last year, everywhere I went I met prime ministers, finance ministers, I met ministers that were over defense, and all of them knew “Farrakhan.” Most of them were educated in America, and they grew up on “Farrakhan representing the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.”
Why did I spend such time sharing some of the stories of my life as a young child, growing into a man who accepted The Teachings of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad? It is because I was put in “The Valley of Decision” with that letter that Elijah Muhammad sent to me, and it is in that “Valley of Decision” where we, Black people, are now if we know “The Time” and “What Must Be Done.”
Remember what I said about “verb and subject agreement”? Elijah Muhammad taught me The Best “English Lesson” that I could learn about “verb and subject agreement” when he told me: “Brother, we are in ‘The Present’—our actions must not belong to ‘The Past’. We are free, so we should act like ‘free men.’ Get out of a ‘slave mentality,’ looking for others to do for us what we could unite and do for ourselves.”
Brothers and Sisters, “The Time” is the end of our servitude to White America. Please understand that you are no longer to be their servitude slave! We must come out of their names: “Johnson,” “Jones,” “Smith,” “O’Reilly,” “Culpepper,” “Woodpecker”; “Mr. Green,” “Mr. Black,” “Mr. White,” “Mr. Brown”—these are their names! They are “creatures of” a creature while you are creatures of The Creator; so, you should wear a Name of God Himself for you are a Direct Descendant of God, The Aboriginal People of the Earth! You don’t look like a “free man”… All the great works that you do, you do it in their names; you’ve been baptized in their way of “civilization.” No wonder Master Fard Muhammad said that we were “savages.” A savage is a person that has lost the Knowledge of Self, and is living a beast life.
Brothers and Sisters, when you get to know “The Time” then you must make a Decision: “I want to make a free step!” If you don’t, “Surely,” The Qur’an says, “man is in loss”—by the time! Since the beginning of this lecture series I talked about the “loss” that will be suffered by both “White America” and “Black America.” But I want to specifically talk to Black people about how you are “losing”: You know you are a “loser” because even though you have a “Black president,” you are not “satisfied” because he was not there to fulfill a “Black Agenda” in the first term; and now that he has been re-elected, in a second term. That is not what the “CEO” of a corporate giant, “The United States of America,” has to do! That “CEO” has to work for the stockholders, “citizens”.
The question is: Are you a real “citizen” of America? Or, are we “lawful captives” wearing their names? They made us “citizens” by the 14th Amendment—and took it away in the 13th Amendment! “What do you mean by that, Farrakhan?” In the 14th Amendment we were allowed to be a “citizen,” but it is stated in the 13th Amendment that if the slave returned to any “illegal behavior,” he could lose that status as a “free man” and as a “citizen.” Wow… So look at how many Black people are in prison right now as “felons”!
And even though our Black population is growing, and our Brown brother’s population is growing; and the demographers are saying that by the year 2046, America will be a “Brown Nation”—every man with a “vote”—well, do you think that the racist element in White America wants to see that reality when “every vote will count,” and their population is diminishing while ours is increasing? That means with “one vote” you could be governor, with “one vote” in the hands of Black and Brown, you could be senators! In “one vote” you could be ruling America! Well how does that “sit” with a racist mind? It doesn’t sit well… So “birth control” must be practiced among the Native people, the “Indians”; among the Blacks, among the Mexicans. This “birth control” is a Death Plan for us.
God is contending with America over the Black man and woman’s complete liberation
“What Must Be Done?” We must separate from our Open Enemy, and begin the thought in our mind that “We are free people! Let’s take a ‘free step,’ and build a Nation of our own.” This is what God Promised! God doesn’t “Promise” The Children of Israel “a land of their own”—and fails to get it for them! He Promises, and He Fulfills His Promise!
Some of us are asking the government of the United States of America for “reparations.” They don’t even want to consider it! Well, America, you will have to consider it, because the scriptures that I quoted to you in Part 4 of this Lecture Series from Book of Isaiah, Chapter 49, verses 24-26: “Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered?…”—Absolutely! God is contending with you now for The Complete Liberation of His People!
Now, of course, when Abraham Lincoln was in the “Lincoln-Douglass Debate,” he sent for some “Negroes” who were “educated,” to come to the White House; and they didn’t want to leave “massa,” they wanted to stay in America. And believe me, some of you are like that too! But I will say this: I want to have the chance, unhindered, to teach “The Time and What Must Be Done” to every Black man, woman and child in America. And after we teach that Subject, then we should take a “vote” as to 1) “How many of us want to stay with our Open Enemy?” or, 2) “How many of us want to be separated from them in a land of our own?”
“The Promise of God” is a land flowing with “milk and honey”. Well, “milk” means you have animal husbandry; and “honey” means you have bees that are “pollinating flowers,” you have “vegetation”—you have land that is fertile, land that is productive.
“What Must Be Done”: America, you don’t have anything for us to do. And your plan for us is genocidal. You are hoping for a “Race War,” you are hoping that the guns that you have amassed can be used to slaughter Black people!
Well, let me say in a “heartbeat”: We, in the Nation of Islam, do not carry “weapons,” because we want to show you, and the world, that we are a People of Peace. So as Muslim followers of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, you can’t find guns in our homes; we are “civilized people” in that we settle our disagreements with Truth! In fact, we are forbidden even to argue with one another, for The Truth settles all arguments. So “the winner” in our homes when there is a “dispute” is determined by seeking: “Where is The Truth? Where does it lie within the dispute?”—and it takes a rational mind, not people guided by “emotion,” to find The Truth and act on the principles of The Truth!
And since I have been on this Post, by The Grace of God, we have never picked up arms to harm one another, or to harm anyone else. And even though they say, “Farrakhan is an anti-Semite,” yet, you cannot find one Jewish person that anyone who follows me has ever harmed! Nor can you find us in a vengeful spirit against White people. Naturally, we will fight with those who fight with us, but we are commanded never to be “the aggressor.”
“What Must Be Done”: What is essential to Life is that we must be properly educated now. Our colleges and university must educate the Black man and woman for self-independence! We need all branches of Engineering! We need Medicine! We need Law! We need “Science”; we need Biology, we need Chemistry! We need all of The Sciences that will help us to build an independent existence!
Did you know that in Cuba, Comandante Fidél Castro had offered us a thousand scholarships for Black and Brown and poor White to come to Cuba in their medical program; and in six years we would come out “doctors,” ready to pass any exam in America to be qualified to practice medicine? And the only thing he required was that we practice that medicine in the communities out of which we came. That’s a great offer, when you consider that Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois last year had 30,000 applications to the Medical School, but only 3,000 students could be chosen—27,000 students had to go somewhere else. Where did they go? Why is that we don’t have enough “doctors”? Don’t be “afraid” to go to Cuba, by thinking: “Well, they’re Communists!” In upcoming broadcasts I’m going to talk to you about this “blockade on Cuba” and what America must do to win back her favor with the nations of the Earth.”
So I want you all to think about “What Must Be Done.”
To Black people: We must pool our resources. On February 24, 2013, at our annual Saviours’ Day Convention, the subject is: “The Economic Blueprint of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad to Fight Against Poverty and Want.” You need to know what we must do to prepare a “future” for ourselves! Whether it’s here or elsewhere, we have to “get busy” and get up from a “begging” position! And if you doubt and fear this, thinking, “We can’t leave White America! I mean, that’s not ‘intelligent.’ Where would we go?” Well, we will talk about that in one of our next broadcasts.
To the government and people of the United States of America: If you say “separation is not the answer,” then I say to you: Separation of us from you is The Only Answer. And you will soon come to know it.