[Editor’s Note: This article is a reprint that was published online on Aug. 22, 2006.]
“To all those deeply concerned about poverty and cultural decay in America, this book is a call for dialogue. For those of us who carry suspicion of Louis Farrakhan’s past statements, or are influenced by the demonic stereotype that has enveloped him, this work may serve as a springboard for enlightened conversation. Communication is the lifeblood of democracy and the precondition for personal and social change.”
So wrote Professor Cornel West, of Princeton University and author of “Race Matters,” about A Torchlight for America by Minister Farrakhan.
It’s loosely said that Black people don’t read. True, but not entirely true. Meanwhile, we who do read are duty bound to change that.
Prof. West’s words raise questions, like how many libraries–of all kinds–are there that we can get A Torchlight for America by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan into? How many professors (or other teachers) would be open to place his book on the required reading lists of the required subjects their students must take? Or how many of them would, at least, accept his book on their suggested reading lists?
Tomorrow’s potential leaders are writing term papers in response to their teacher’s requirements of them. They would read Minister Farrakhan’s book if it was made available to them.
In his book, they would find that which would satisfy their desire to find ideas or approaches to America’s problems that are far clearer, more cogent and sensible than that which they have been taught, or that is offered by politicians or others to the resolution of problems they believe that they are in school to qualify to help solve.
Young students–or older people with “young” minds or the ability to look at realities from different angles–are usually more open to new ideas than are others whose minds have become too rigid or calcified to consider other ways of looking at old realities, while remaining within Allah’s bounds.
Minister Farrakhan’s book would help readers think more creatively–if it was made available to the public on a wider scale. It would stimulate their minds to see how to solve seemingly unsolvable problems. It could prevent many from going down the same dead end paths as others before them have, only to wind up contributing to the piles of fruitless and delusional material, for those who come behind them to wade through, in their efforts to find solutions to the same old problems.
America’s problems seem overwhelmingly unsolvable to most people trying to solve them. They’ve become ever more complex for the next generation or group of people who try to tackle them with the same exhausted way of thinking.
His book is filled with “fresh” approaches to all of America’s problems–for Muslims, too. They are “fresh” in the sense of really being tried properly. They are “fresh” also in the sense that they are truly creative and really innovative, in the deeper sense that everything in his book is from the depthless wisdom of Almighty God that he has and continues to drink from, what his teacher, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, has taught him.
This wisdom really is Supreme Wisdom. This wisdom is new to us. However, we, as a people, have hardly understood these facts. The reason we have hardly understood this, as a people, is because we have yet to really comprehend the most awesome fact that God really did dwell among us right here in America. He really did choose the best qualified human being, not just among us, but on Earth from among us, to whom He revealed. He really has begun the process of the establishment of the Kingdom of God right here on this Earth! He really did initiate the process in Minister Farrakhan (even before his birth) and later introduced him to the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.
They (God and His servant) really worked on and prepared Minister Farrakhan to sit in the seat of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, in his absence.
He really chose each of us for His glory.
From the July 15th interview about A Torchlight for America (for the soon-to-be-published book, Allah willing) Closing the Gap, Minister Farrakhan said:
“Although I wrote it for America, highlighting the diseases of a great nation, subliminally I wrote it for the Nation of Islam and the diseases that could, would and have affected us, as a people. Sometimes when we see America, we say, ‘Oh that’s for them.’ We miss the point. It was written with double meaning for America and for us.
“The Honorable Elijah Muhammad told us when we study the history of Israel, that under that we’re studying about ourselves. So we should pay attention to what happened to Israel, her many rebellions, her many chastisements and yet the God was merciful to her.
“That’s good for us to study and see and know that God is no respecter of persons–that He will punish, chastise us because He loves us. If that is the only way to get us to think and act properly, then the chastisement is overdue, but it is on its way.”
This is really Supreme Wisdom and provides divine insight into all of today’s news.
In connection with the above, I’d like to share something that helps me be of some help to Minister Farrakhan and others. I was first blessed to have personally met the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, with others, at his home on July 1, 1956.
At one point during dinner, when he was mentioning the articles that he had just begun to write in The Pittsburg Courier, he told me that he wanted me to look up every word that he was using in his writings. He said: “I want you to look up every word [then, as he gestured with his hands, he continued] this way, this way, this way and this way.”
His gesturing was done in a way that clearly meant that I was to look up every word of his from every angle.
I did as I was told.
Minister Farrakhan also stated in the July 15th interview for Closing The Gap:
“Have we really read it to understand what the Minister [he, of course, was referring to himself] was saying to America openly and to the Nation [of Islam] subliminally? If you did understand it, or do understand it, why then is there seemingly no desire to push a book that not only represents the thinking of the Minister but the heart, mind, soul and spirit of the Minister.
“You can’t read these penetrating words and see him as the world now sees him. This is not autobiographical. This is the Minister elaborating on that which he has learned from his teacher, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.”
His words remind me of these words from Dr. C. Eric Lincoln, of Duke University and author of “The Black Muslims in America,” about Minister Farrakhan’s book: “and it is unfortunate that those old echoes of anti-Semitism have not been put to rest. … Perhaps this book will be the vehicle for dispensing with those old charges once and for all.”
More, next issue, Allah willing.