(The following are edited remarks delivered by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam during the April 25, 2021 homegoing service for the great hip hop artist Earl “DMX” Simmons, who impacted the world through music and film. The message was delivered live via Zoom and televised during the BET Network’s coverage of the touching goodbye to a rap icon. May Allah (God) be pleased with our brother and strengthen and console his family and all who were touched by his gifts.)
In the Name of Allah.
As Salaam-Alaikum (Peace be unto you),
My dear beloved brothers and sisters, to Uncle Ray Copeland, to the family of our brother, Earl “DMX” Simmons, and to all of you that are present to pay your condolences to the family. But most of all, to honor a man that God sent this way to give us lessons to grow from.
I’m so thankful to God to have this opportunity to hear from Reverend A.R. Bernard. I enjoyed every word you spoke.
To all of you that spoke of our brother in such a beautiful way, to all of the family who demonstrated their magnificent love for him, but most importantly, your love for each other. That makes me so convinced that the future of Earl “DMX” Simmons is great because each child, each female that was in his life will carry his legacy on and greater things will they do if they hold on to the beautiful man that is their father.
To his ex-wife to Tashera, to his fiancé Desirée, to all the children and to all of you out there, that like myself, I met him through his music. I really got to know him like Reverend Bernard by listening to his music.
Sometimes we don’t know why circumstances in our lives were like they were. Sometimes we are upset with mom because of this or that, upset with dad because of this or that, upset with siblings because of this or that, but what we may not know or realize it’s these circumstances when you were in the womb, it’s these circumstances that were in your environment when you came from the womb that have shaped you and marked you for the future and for that which you are going to do like dad to affect the whole world.
Did you know that your dad’s life, love, pain and suffering shaped him to be a voice for our young people and young people all over the world? He suffered in his life. He had pain in his life. He had joy in his life, but he lived his life transparent. Many of us in public life, we are one thing in the public, and another thing in private. Not Earl Simmons. DMX was who he was and who he is. The reason he has affected the people in the hip hop genre and human beings across the globe is because he was genuine. One sister that was talking, she said, “man, he was a prophet.”
Those of us who study the Bible and the Holy Qur’an and other religious texts, we may not see him as a prophet, but he actually was. God used his life to educate, to teach and show the world that you can come up the way he did, but struggle, and then overcome the struggle and reach beyond your pain and your suffering and yourself to affect the whole world that is just like you. We came up on the rough side of the mountain brothers and sisters. We didn’t have an easy life. God ordered it that way so that we could serve his purpose through our pain to affect the whole of humanity.
And that’s why the Bible says, the last will be first. The bottom rail is going to come to the top and you will no longer be the tail, but God is marking you to be the head. I want to tell you something about Jesus and why your sadness won’t endure for long because you will learn how to contact your father.
When Jesus was among us, brothers and sisters, he had a shorter life than Brother Earl. But the time that he spent among us, his suffering, his pain, his deep love and commitment to the Father, Jesus told us how to contact him after he was crucified, resurrected, and left us. Your father is not gone. He’s absent, but you can bring him back. Listen to the words of the Master at the Last Supper. Didn’t he call his disciples, sit them down, and took some bread, broke that bread? He said this is my body that I have given for the New Testament. You can’t bring something new and better in the world if you only know a good life. Jesus did not have that kind of life. He was hated without a cause. He was persecuted and then crucified yet he remains in the memory of billions. And I as a Muslim, he will always be in my life because I know that in order to be a real Christian, you must walk after him. Look at his words: If any man would be my disciple, you have to deny yourself. But you must pick up your cross and then walk after Jesus.
Look at Earl, look at DMX.
He didn’t have an easy life. No. He had a successful life because he found out his purpose and before life was over, he found the door. He was like a lion in a cage, like many of our Black brothers and sisters, with pent up thoughts of greatness, the thoughts of God. I know my young beautiful brother said, “that’s my dog.” I know, I know in the world you would say dog because the dog they say is a man’s best friend, but not with a Christian. God always will be your best friend.
And your father, here is how you get in touch with him and keep him with you. Now what did Jesus do? They call it communion. He broke the bread. He didn’t give it all to one person. He didn’t hold it all to himself. Your father has 15 children. Each of you has a piece of him. That’s your part. Your gift God has given you belongs wholly to you. But if you have communion with your father, like you have communion with Jesus, as Jesus said to his disciples, “And lo I will be with you to the end of the world.”
So my dear beloved family, don’t grieve to the point where you can’t see your way. Sorrow, yes. But the scripture says joy is coming in the morning—and you can believe it.
If you look at a cross, a cross has a horizontal bar; a cross has a vertical bar. This cross is the duality in the nature of the human being.
We come into the world on a horizontal level, but we’re not to stay that way. Abraham, the Qur’an says was God’s friend. Not because they say he was Jewish or Muslim. No. He was God’s friend because he lived an upright life. And that’s the struggle of every Christian, every Muslim, the struggle to be upright, to live a righteous life. Though your nature is righteousness, you must rise above the level of the beasts of the field.
Your father spoke so beautifully about the low life. Our people are locked in that duality with very little in uprightness, but we’re living our life on a horizontal level. And that’s why Jesus told us that the dead will rise. It doesn’t mean that the dead necessarily in the cemetery will rise because all of us are operating on a dead level, dead mentally, dead morally, dead spiritually, dead politically, dead educationally. But the power to rise is all in us. So never ever think of father as a dog, turn it around. Think of your dad as God. When he rapped God was rapping. When he spoke, God was speaking. When he talked about his hard times in life, he was struggling within himself.
Jesus had that struggle.
But at Easter, we used to sing a song in the church, “the strife is o’er the battle done. The victory of life is won. All glory, to that risen son. Hallelujah.” So to all of you, the struggle continues, but you will win as he won, he’s free. He found the door to the cage. Jesus said, “I am the door.” And when he found the door, he came out of hell and began to move toward a heavenly life.
Thank you, brothers and sisters, for allowing me this great privilege to speak about my brother. I love him much. I thank God for his life. His life has touched my life. His life has touched your life, but now you must break free like a lion. The scripture said, there’s a lion asleep in Judah who will wake him? You are that lion. You’re asleep, but it’s time for you to awaken. Where’s the kingdom of God? Where is it? Jesus said the kingdom is within you. So come on up, come on out and let Earl Simmons, DMX, know he will never die. Because he will always be here affecting those in the rap community and musicians and entertainers and those who want to live a good life. So I close with these words. Thank you, my dear sister Tashera for the comfort that you gave him and the children that you gave him. Thank you. Thank you to the women in his life. Your role was important because you consoled him. A man that was always in pain, but you gave him comfort. You gave him solace. Thank you so much.
Thank you to the beautiful children that he leaves behind. May God bless you. May He grant you His protection. May He guide you. May He help you to discover the gift that He gave, in particular, to each one of you. And like daddy found his gift and it exploded on the world, find yours and make your mark in life and give God the praise. Thank him that He allowed Earl “DMX” Simmons to be your dad. I’m glad that I got a chance to know him and meet him from the divine side. He was a prophet. God doesn’t only use prophets who have had good, wholesome lives. No. DMX had a life and he educated and taught the people that are still in the worst part of that life. Lift them up. Come on, brothers and sisters who rap, take his example as your guiding light and rap with conscious lyrics that cause people to rise from the grave of ignorance. I love you all and may God shower His blessings on each and every one of you. Thank you, Rev. Bernard. Thank you for all that you have done to lift this wonderful brother. May God bless you, bless your church, bless those who see the value of the man that God loaned to us and now has taken him back to Himself. The Lord giveth, the Lord taketh away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. Peace unto all of you. As-Salaam Alaikum.