[Editor’s note: This article is a reprint and was published online August 24, 2006]

There are many Black men and women who have thoughts of, or who have gone well beyond thinking, and are doing work to develop themselves into becoming a “leader” in one field or another, with the thought of “helping my people.”

Then, the study of A Torchlight for America, written by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, is a must to succeed in really helping Black people.


There is a section in this book, on page 82 entitled “RETHINK THE OLD SLAVEMASTER-SLAVE RELATIONSHIP.”

Please read these sections through to the conclusion.

“The question to Black leadership is, can you depend on a benevolent White leader to look after our poor when the country is under such severe constraints? We know that former generations of Whites are responsible for putting Black people in our current condition. However, conditions force us to think creatively to help ourselves or go down with this ailing economy. By helping ourselves, we will relieve the country of some of its burdens and we will be performing a duty imposed on us by our Creator, which is the duty of doing something to help self.

“We must understand that our suffering uniquely prepares us, not as slaves or former slaves or followers or second-class citizens, but to be the examples and leaders for humanity. We can help both the former slave and the former slave-master with what we have been taught by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and through our peculiar suffering within this racist society.

“Those of us who have studied and follow the Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Marcus Garvey, W.E.B. DuBois and others can be a torchlight for expanding the mentality of the Civil Rights Movement. We stand on our gains today because of the sacrifices of Dr. King, Rosa Parks, Whitney Young, Roy Wilkins and all of those who followed them in the ’60s. We respect their gains in the area of civil rights, but we are still not free, which is why we must unite now with a sense of appreciation for those gains and take the Civil Rights Movement to a new level of struggle.

“Black leadership must re-orient its thinking to self-help and then come up with creative solutions to our economic plight. We can, we will, we must help ourselves.”


“The root of the problem in America is spiritual, necessitating a spiritual solution. President Clinton should call for a convening of the spiritual leadership to spearhead a moral rejuvenation among the American people. Representatives of all races and all faiths should be brought to Washington, D.C. to hold conferences with President Clinton and government leaders toward the aim of developing programs for building the values and moral backbone of America, and for building better race relations.

“Without a moral backbone, the nation cannot stand upright. Those creatures that have a backbone but cannot stand upright are known as four-legged beasts. Those creatures that have no backbone at all generally belong to the species called serpents. It is written in Genesis that beasts and serpents caused the fall of man. The destruction of beasts and serpents is foretold in the Book of Revelation. As human beings, if we hope to enter the kingdom of heaven, we are meant to aspire toward righteousness, rather than act in a manner that makes us worse than the lowest of animals, the beasts and the serpents.

“A convening of the spiritual leadership with the leadership in government is a first step toward building the country’s moral backbone. The central problems we should focus on are the basic value of human life, greed, criminal behavior and the treatment of women. It’s the mistreatment of women that is the first act of criminal behavior in the society.

“Mr. Perot’s success, via the airwaves, suggests that the American people are ready to be taught via good and beneficial TV programming. Why not dispatch the spiritual leaders to develop educational and spiritual programming that will expand knowledge, develop character and thereby lead to a more enlightened and harmonious society across race, class and sex lines?

“Broadcasters and other influential members of the media must also be summoned and shown their responsibility in the development of America’s moral character. They are one of the main culprits in numbing the people’s moral consciousness in a way that allows the people to engage in evil with impunity. If they would participate in a concerted effort to strengthen America’s moral backbone through enlightened TV programming, America’s chances for success would be greatly improved.”

On page 144 under the heading, “ENDING THE HEALTH CARE CRISIS,” Minister Farrakhan wrote:

“The first devil you have to cast out is ignorance. The Bible teaches, ‘My people are destroyed for the lack of knowledge…’ (Hosea 4:6) Ignorance is the No. 1 destroyer of the human family.

“Another devil right along with ignorance is pride. You are proud of your ignorance, therefore truth cannot come to free you of your ignorance, because pride stands in the way of your receiving the truth. Pride keeps your ears from opening, that your heart may receive the truth. And even though Jesus said you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free, he also said that it is the organ of hearing that allows you to receive the truth. He that hath ears let him hear. It is precisely this organ of hearing you must use now to hear the truth and obey the directions that are good for your life, your body and spirit.

“Once we get rid of ignorance and pride, we must work on getting rid of arrogance, greed, avarice, lust and selfishness. Then, on the physical level, we must stop eating pork. We must stop drinking alcohol, using tobacco, drugs, and we must stop eating a host of other bad food. These are all little devils that we must drive out of ourselves.”


These sections of his writing must be read in their full context to be fully understood and appreciated. The primary point I wish to make is what it is that characterizes his thinking. It’s critical thinking. It’s mathematical thinking. It’s divine thinking.

This is what characterizes his thinking in the soon-to-be-released book, be it the Will of Allah, entitled, Closing The Gap.

In it, I asked such questions as:

“What advice would you give us with regard to buying toys for our children?”

“What is fun?”

“What is friendship?”

“What is it about Black people here in America that, despite our extraordinarily wretched condition, attitude and disposition, makes us so precious or so valuable in the sight of God, according to what the Honorable Elijah Muhammad preached for 44 years and that you have preached now going on 29 years, absence his presence?”

“What does the concept ‘seeking refuge’ mean?”

“Why does Allah show mercy on Yakub’s made man, even at the end of his time and past his time?”

The way he answered these questions demonstrates that, indeed, he is the voice of God!


Muhammad’s Mosque No. 7 recently ordered 100 copies of A Torchlight for America!

More on Minister Farrakhan’s way of thinking, next issue, Allah willing.