Fresh off the road of traveling during his six-week intensive national tour of 23 cities, calling for the mobilizing and organizing of the Millions More Movement, Minister Farrakhan sat with Final Call Managing Editor Dora Muhammad to discuss the Millions More Movement and its relationship to the work and words of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad.
Final Call: What are your feelings today upon completing such an intensive and critical tour?
Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan (HMLF): Relief. I am thankful to Almighty God Allah that I could visit the number of cities in which I was blessed to travel. I never lost my voice in any city, yet I spoke sometimes from morning to night. I cannot judge the tour because I am the instrument that is being used, but the effect of the tour will be seen, by the Grace of God, on October 15. I felt great love from the people who attended the meetings and rallies.
I was also encouraged and inspired by the level of scholarship of those to whom I spoke and their desire to help lift the masses and bridge the disconnection between the learned of our people and those who are not learned. I am filled with hope that we can link the learned to the masses in a programmatic way.
FC: On numerous occasions, you referred to an instruction from the Honorable Elijah Muhammad 32 years ago to you–serving then as the minister of the temple in New York–to bring the learned of that city to Chicago, so that they could help save the Nation. He delivered a lecture and then dismissed them. What do you recall of the lecture that the Honorable Elijah Muhammad gave to the learned at that time?
HMLF: I recall the fact that he told the learned that he had already planted and grew a tree and the fruit of that tree was good, it just needed manure to nurture it. He told them that we did not have to plant another tree, but should nurture the tree, and that there was enough fruit on the tree to feed us all.
He also talked about the learned, that if they helped the unlearned, the unlearned would carry them on their shoulders and lift, admire, love and respect them for lifting them.
FC: Why did not the learned accept the program then?
HMLF: The Honorable Elijah Muhammad did not give them an opening to accept what he asked me to call them there for. It may not be that they did not accept the program, but he did not give them the opening to come in to help the Nation with the program–because he already knew that the Nation was going to fall. What he was actually doing was planting a seed that would come up 32 years later in the consciousness of his minister.
FC: Was there a specific event that triggered your recollection of that lecture?
HMLF: I cannot exactly recall, but I had no intention whatsoever of doing anything for the 10th Anniversary of the Million Man March. When people would ask me, I would answer no. Then eventually, I said, let me think about it. Somewhere in that period, my mind returned to 32 years ago to what he asked me to do then–and I knew that it was not for then, it was for now; for me to call the learned of our people and link them, through his program, to the lifting of the masses of our people.
FC: The Muslim Program–though called “Muslim”–is not only for Muslims. Can you explain the universality of the Muslim Program?
HMLF: If we look at those prophets whose teachings are to be universal, Jesus and Muhammad, we see that they started with a specific focus to a specific people whom God was going to use as an instrument to bring a message universally.
Jesus told his disciples, “Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not, but go rather to the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel.” That was a very limited and specific focus. Later, he told them, “Go ye into all the world and preach this gospel to every nation, kindred and tongue.”
Though the message started with a limited focus, the germ of its universality was present, but the people whom God was going to use to spread that message universally had to be brought up to that point.
So it was with Prophet Muhammad of Arabia (Peace be upon him). He started with a specific focus on the Arabs, and their great ignorance, disunity and immorality. He focused on them with the revelation of the Holy Qur’an. While he was building them into a nation, he also appealed to the leaders of Rome and Persia. During his time among the Arabs, he reached beyond the Arabs, so that after his death, they would begin to move out universally. They went westward toward Africa, northward into Europe and eastward toward China. So they spread the message of Islam to the known world, at that time.
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad started with a limited focus on the Black man and woman of America; then a broader focus to Black people wherever we are found on the earth; then, another broader focus to all of humanity. That is suggested in the Muslim Program, which reads: “We want freedom. We want a full and complete freedom. We want justice. Equal justice under the law. We want justice applied equally to all regardless of creed or class or color.”
So we have the universal approach, but it is a process of growth for us to grow up into the message; first seeing it as good for us, and then growing to see our mission, which is to bring this message on the universal plane to all the people of the earth.
FC: The root of the Muslim Program is the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, but throughout his work among us, his image and work have been sullied and slandered by the enemy. So cleaning up his image was a prerequisite for you doing your work among us. In the meetings with the learned and leadership during your tour, have you witnessed an acceptance of him or is there still a veil over him and they just see the wisdom?
HMLF: There is still a veil over him, but the more they accept his student–the student’s job is to lift the veil off his source of guidance and inspiration. The scriptures say, “If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men unto me.” So, somebody has to do the lifting. The student is made attractive, by the Grace of God, to his people and many in other nations. The more attractive the student is, and he constantly reminds them that he is a student, then he is gradually lifting the veil off his teacher. Then, the people will see that he is backed by a power much, much, much, much bigger and greater than himself.
FC: Since they have been, and are, sullying your image, do we have to, in like manner, clean up your image in order to help you complete your assignment, and has our slowness been an impediment to you in completing your assignment?
HMLF: I do not blame the Believer because I have never tried to teach the Believer about myself scripturally. The Honorable Elijah Muhammad specifically told me not to worry about where I was in the scripture, but to make his great commission known and he would represent me to the people. So I go about doing my work.
Even though they have attempted and have sullied my image, the more Allah (God) blesses me with time and guidance to do the work that I am doing, the image is gradually cleaned–not because of them, but because of God guiding the Minister in a such a way that people see him clearer, and know him better. Then, the glass that the enemy dirtied, God cleans it and the people see the Minister as he is, and then see the Messenger and the God as they are.
FC: What is our duty to you then, as your students?
HMLF: Your duty is to follow. If you take the example of the Minister, one of the main examples of the Minister is his humility. He does not think more of himself than he should, so he is not easily offended. He knows how to take much from the ignorance of the people, and he loves them more than they hate themselves. So he is gradually winning, not by fighting them, but giving them blessings for their cursings, and expressing his love for them in ways that ultimately overpower their dislike, hatred and envy of him.
The duty of the Believer is to follow that example for the benefit of the redemption of our people. The people will gradually see the followers; through the humility of the followers, the people will see the Minister; and through his humility, they will see the Messenger; and through the Messenger’s humility, they will see God.
FC: What do you think the Honorable Elijah Muhammad thinks of the Millions More Movement?
HMLF: A Sister called me and told me of a dream where she saw the Honorable Elijah Muhammad. He was holding small meetings with select people. He said to her, “Tell the Minister that there is much that he sees and there is much that he does not see, but I see what he sees and I see all that he does not see. Tell him about this Millions More Movement, on that day, I will be completely in charge. Then, he said, I want to see him and my son Wallace, because I want my family to know that I am alive.”
When she told me that, tears came from my eyes because I felt that I needed confirmation. Through that experience that she had, I received my confirmation. Right after that, Hurricane Katrina came, and after that you can tell that God, Himself, is involved in the creation of the Movement–which is the beginning of the making of a nation.
FC: The Honorable Elijah Muhammad said that, “Through you, he will get all of his people.” How does that statement correlate to the Millions More Movement?
HMLF: It demonstrates that there is something that Allah (God) has put in the Minister that allows him to touch the hearts of people who are adversaries, friends or neutral because they do not know or understand. When you see people coming to the Minister, you know that whether he is living or dead, the things that God is inspiring him to say and do will reach people and bring them to the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.
FC: The Honorable Elijah Muhammad said words about the Christian preachers similar to what he said about the learned.
HMLF: The question was asked, “Will the Christian pastors accept Islam?” He answered in one word, “Yes.” He said, when they come it will be a sign of the end, because these persons have traditionally been instruments of the slave-master. So when he loses them as his instruments, they become the true instruments of God. With their understanding of scripture, spirit and anointing, they will take our people overnight spiritually and bring them up in the way of God.
FC: The enemy is working on the pastors, to some success, to separate the unity and love we have shared. How will we again bridge the gap of division?
HMLF: It is written in the Holy Qur’an that Pharaoh was afraid that the slaves would change their religion. Moses and Aaron were having an impact on the Children of Israel. So Pharaoh summoned the elders of Israel and promised them wealth and nearness to him, if they would oppose Moses and Aaron. That was for a limited season. Then, the scriptures say that they finally submitted to the God of Aaron and Moses, and Pharaoh said, “How could you submit before I give you permission.” So, they are going to submit.
Right now, the government is afraid that the people are going to accept Islam, so they are summoning the pastors to oppose the Minister and create an impediment for the development of the Movement. But all of that is short-lived.
FC: While on tour, you stated that the disaster of Hurricane Katrina marked that the Judgement of Allah (God) had entered America, which will be your subject for the Commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of the Million Man March. You also mentioned that this means, according to the scriptures, that God has sealed His elect in their foreheads. Who are the elect and what are they elected to do?
HMLF: Elect means that they are chosen. Scriptures say, “If it were not for His elect’s sake, and those days be shortened, no life would be saved.” So it is the chosen of God that He wants to bring through the Judgement that causes the shortening of the days of His Wrath.
Revelations, says, “Hold back the four winds, until I go down and seal my elect in their forehead, with the seal of the Living God.” That seal is knowledge. When a king writes a communication, he seals it, which says it is from him. So God sealing His elect in their foreheads with the seal of the Living God, means He is putting in their heads and hearts the stamp of His acceptance, approval, love and ownership of them.
That is dangerous when you interfere with what God has put His seal on.
FC: When previous disasters have occurred, you have said that it is our righteousness that will allow us to survive the worst that is yet to come. What does this mean?
HMLF: When the death angel came through Egypt, the only thing that caused the death angel to pass over the houses was that the Children of Israel took the blood of the lamb and made a mark like an “X” on the doorpost of their homes. This represents the life of the Messenger, the life of Islam, the life of righteousness that will cause the death angel to pass over us.
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad actually said, “It is your righteousness that shall sustain you.” That is a big difference from “survive.” “Sustain you” means that you may go through something horrific but, through your righteousness, you shall be sustained in faith; you will not weaken. Your righteousness will give you the power to sustain and maintain your faith.
The Holy Qur’an warns, “Be careful of a chastisement that will not afflict those of you exclusively who are unjust.” So it does not mean, when the chastisement comes, simply because we claim God and are trying to do right that it will not afflict us. The Holy Qur’an says, “When a misfortune befalls the Believer, the Believer says, “Allah is my Patron and to Him is my eventual return.”
FC: Thank you for your time.
See Muslim Program (NOI.org)