Address to The Nubian Leadership Circle, Summit IX
[Editor’s note: The following article contains excerpts from the address delivered by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan during the live broadcast of The Nubian Leadership Circle’s 9th Summit held on Saturday, October 14, 2023. To view this message in its entirety visit media.noi.org]
In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful.
Brother Sadiki Kambon: Brother Minister Louis Farrakhan! How are you doing? Brother Sadiki, here. You know, it made my day seeing you sit up here!
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan (HMLF): Thank you, Brother Sadiki, and thanks to all of you that I was blessed to hear of the wonderful work that you are doing. And all of it is important, and every one of you is important to what Brother Sadiki is trying to do to bring us all together in a wonderful way to build a Black Nation. But that must have a great foundation that includes us all.
Awareness of the time and what must be done earns us the respect of our Creator
Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim. Al-hamdu lillahi Rabb il-’alamin. (“In The Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful. All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all the worlds.”) I bear witness that there is no God but Allah. And I bear witness that the Honorable Elijah Muhammad is that messenger that was longed for, looked for, hoped for; and he came into existence because The Great Mahdi, Master Fard Muhammad, came to North America by Himself and was searching for one that He could put on his shoulders a weighty work and a weighty word. He found that one in the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, and He gave him wisdom.
This word that I wish to bring today is a part of my thought as time makes me very aware of my mortality. Time is a gift from God. Time is a blessing. It’s what we do with time that earns us the honor and respect of our fellow human beings. But above all, it earns us the respect of our Creator.
I am so thankful, Brother Sadiki, for your inviting me to be a part of this wonderful ninth meeting of the various cadres; that we started with just one, or two, and now I see so many. I’m very proud of your work, Brother Sadiki, and all of those who have come forward to help in this effort. But I thought on what could I say to you that would be a blessing to you, and a blessing to those whom you represent.
The Honorable Elijah Muhammad is my teacher. And I am so grateful to Allah that I met this wonderful teacher at the young age of 20. And now, as I am 90 years of age, I am still teaching what I learned from him that was so instrumental in helping us not only to be better human beings, but to be better in the exposition of our gifts, skills and talents; that in our work, we can glorify The Creator Who gave us time, Who gave us life, and Who blessed us with something of Himself in our nature and being.
Elijah Muhammad did not represent an “Arab religion.” He represented the religion, which is the natural religion of man, which is the nature of God and the nature of His creation. And of course, the last great representative of that religion is an Arab, and a prophet, Prophet Muhammad ibn Abdullah; and here we are.
But if we try to take possession of something that belongs to us by nature, and call it an “Arab religion”—as people who are not considered “Arab”—we have a tendency to reject it. Because the last exponents of this religion were not the best exponents of it; but we thank Allah for them. We thank Allah for The Qur’an. We thank Allah for what they did to spread The Qur’an, the Hadith (the “Sayings of The Prophet”), and The Way of Allah, which is our very nature.
So, when I say that I am a “Muslim,” I am actually saying “I am striving to be myself.” Because my own self is not a “Negro,” my own self is not an “African American.” My own self is: “I am created in the nature of God, and I am one of the direct descendants of The Creator.” That is why we are called “The Original People of Our Planet.” And as I listen to each one of you, and learned from each one of you, we have to respect who we are, and respect The God Who created each of one of us. And the honor and respect that we should give to one another makes our coming together, to build a nation, easier.
A nation needs to ‘wash and be clean,’ root itself in the universal order of things
As a student of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, he developed a Program for us that was on the back page of Muhammad Speaks newspaper back in the 1960s. There is no way that I could think to bring back his teaching, his way, the culture of Islam, without starting from The Program that he brought us, which is the very constitution of The Nation of Islam.
When we talk about “laying a foundation for a Black nation,” you couldn’t lay a foundation for that nation unless you understood that the foundation of it should be a part of the very nature of those of us who were created by Allah and are now coming back to our self; we want to be a nation. But my brother, earlier, said he wanted us to be clean… And he said it with such strength, and “gusto,” if you will. And Jesus said the same thing! “Wash, and be clean.”
We can’t build a nation that will stand the test of time unless that nation is rooted in the universal order of things. So we have as our Flag: The Sun, The Moon and The Star. And these three Representatives of The Faith help us to understand what is the nature of God, the nature of His Way, the nature of Ourselves.
What greater light is there in our Universe than the light of The Sun? And that sunlight is what gives light, life and power to everything in existence in what we call “universe.” Sun! That Moon out there, that people like to sing about, talk about; but the only thing that makes The Moon great is the light that it borrows from The Sun, that equalizes the waters of the Earth and gives life and growth to the vegetation of the Earth. So, it’s very productive.
We can’t say we are a part of The Creation and are not productive. Everything that Allah creates, it must justify its existence by being itself! “What did God create it to do, and to be?” And when it is doing what it should do, what it was created to do, it justifies its existence.
Our sojourn in America, and the wicked way that we were taught and trained, took us out of being ourselves. And the worst thing that happened to us was that the enemy made us into himself: a Black White man.
That’s terrible. We don’t have our self in this, because he made sure we didn’t have a teacher that could teach us from the nature of our being and connect us back to The Originator of the heavens and the earth. Allah says to us in The Qur’an—listen to these words: “I created you.” “I.” He didn’t say your mother, He didn’t say your father. You are a creature of The Creator Himself, and you are a part of His original creation.
Caucasian people are not a part of the original creation of God. He is not a native nowhere on the planet, because he came from us by God’s permission. So he is not a native African, he is not a native American, he is not a native Asian, or Caribbean man. No! He is what he is:
A “made man,” and “man kind” (a kind of a man that is opposite The Creator). So since he taught us, and made us into himself, we have been fighting him, since we are conscious. But we are fighting him in us: the arrogance, the hatred of self, the envy, the enmity.
That didn’t come from The Creator, that came from the enemy. So, “cleansing,” what our brother talked about; “being clean”: Clean on the outside, clean on the inside, clean in our dealing with one another, clean in our morals, clean in our conduct, clean in the way we live our lives. And by so doing, we add time.
It’s a heck of a thing to live other than yourself. It’s a heck of a thing to be somebody that you never were created by God to be. But as I’m looking at this beautiful array of talented Black men and women, I see people striving to get rid of the enemy wherever we find him, especially if we find him in ourselves. And you know, when you don’t have love for you, how could you have love for me? How could you have love for anyone if you don’t have the love of self? So God’s Teaching to us is “Accept Your Own and Be Your Self.”
“What is my own?” My own is everything I see! The Earth is mine. It’s my home, not his (the Caucasian people)! He is an interloper, who is trying to be settled in different parts of the Earth—but the Earth is now rejecting him.
A nation needs land to farm, produce own food
When the brothers and sisters talk about having land, farming, producing food, that’s one of the most wonderful things that we can do: Own land, and then feed ourselves from our own land.
And we have farms; and, I heard the brother talking about farms. All of us should be having something that we grow our own food! Because even when you know “how to eat to live,” if you go to the supermarket and pick the best foods out, you will still be a sick person if you don’t know how that food was grown. And the best way to know it is to learn about it, and grow it yourself!
And man, when you find children learning about the growth of food … ; Learning about the value of the Earth, learning and seeing how the seed should be planted, how you cultivate the seed—but cultivate the earth before you plant the seed? Knowing that you’ve got a good seed is good but knowing that you’ve got good earth to plant it in is better.
So, having earth that you can call your own is a necessity. You can’t build “a great Black nation” if you’re buying food from somebody else and you’re not growing food to feed your nation. I heard my sister from the Virgin Islands say that they import their food. The question is: Who are you importing it from?
Who is farming your food, giving you your food, selling you your food? Oh, brother and sister! In Barbados, (this island nation) is called the “leader in prosthetics”; because in Barbados, they suffer from bad diabetes. Bad food that looks good, but they come from the enemy, and now we are suffering from diabetes to such a degree that we have the largest degree of amputees in that beautiful island of Barbados.
So, brothers and sisters, when The Nubian Circle tells us that “we should farm,” we should farm; that “we should grow our own food,” we should do that! No matter what little land you have around your house, or in your community that you can get it and start growing food for yourself, do it!
To establish a Black nation, study Jesus The Revolutionary
Many of us are “nationalistic” in our thought, you know, and we don’t like no “religion.” “Religion” is called “the opiate of the people”—and it has been a drug. Not a drug that enlivens you, but a drug that puts you to sleep in ignorance. But! Do you know if we didn’t have the Black church, we would have been in bad, bad shape?
Just the songs that I met in the church made me to know how valuable the Black church is to our struggle! Some of the best preaching, I heard it in the AME Church, I heard it in the Baptist Church. And from the West Indies, my parents, we came from the Anglican experience.
Well, you know, that didn’t have no “oomph” in it! (Smile) But when I teamed up with Reverend Jackson in 1983 to help him in his quest to be the nominee of the Democratic party, Reverend Jackson introduced me to the Black church. And I can tell you, as a young Christian: There was nothing that moved me like a Baptist preacher.
And I want to say that if we want this movement to survive, we must take hold of the Black church. We’ve got to help it to survive, and we must be revivalists! A revival of that Black church, because it is important to our future. Now you may say, “Well, I ain’t for that, man! Them preachers ain’t right!” Yeah, they ain’t been right.
But they have some very good ones… I had a bishop come to visit me the other day; I knew him since he was 21 years of age. He said, “Farrakhan, I’m retiring. But what I want you to do is teach me what Elijah Muhammad taught you that made you so successful in transforming the lives of those who hear The Teaching of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.”
When I heard the brother say that, I said: “Come on, brother…,” and we sat together for three hours, and we went through the Bible, a little of The Qur’an. But my brother left on high; because what he wants to do now that he’s retired as a bishop, he wants to take young preachers and teach them The Teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad that activates those who believe in Jesus Christ.
You believe in a good man, but you don’t know him deep enough to become the revolutionary that he was. Jesus was a revolutionary. And you just can’t be a preacher singing and shoutin’, and the revolutionary spirit is not in you to build a Black nation. You’ve got to be a revolutionary to just think about a “Black nation.”
A Black nation needs The Muslim Program set forth by the Honorable Elijah Muhammad
Brothers and sisters, I want to ask you to do something for me… I don’t ask you for anything much, but today I want to ask you to do something for me that will be beneficial to you. Here is the paper; it’s called The Final Call … . What’s “final” about The Call? Now, you’ve been traveling: When they tell you “final call,” you’ve got to “put a move on.”
Because, this world is closing down all around us; so whatever we’re doing, and God is blessing us to be successful, we’ve got to pick up the pace, and do it harder, do it faster, do it better—and “do it,” like you said, “with others.”
Sisters and brothers, go to the back page of (this), The Final Call newspaper, and you will see “The Muslim Program: ‘What The Muslims Want’ and ‘What The Muslims Believe.’” I want each of you to study The Program that Allah gave to the Honorable Elijah Muhammad for all of us! It’s not just for Black, it’s not just for Brown, it’s not just for Muslims. It’s for every human being. I want to go through a few of the steps of The Program, just to let you see how valuable it is. It starts with “What do you want?”
Every time we said we wanted to separate from White people, the first thing they wanted to ask was, “What do you want?!” If you don’t know what you want, then you don’t know how to learn what to do to get what you want!
The first “want,” it is universal: “We want freedom. We want a full and complete freedom.” Do any of you not want that? But ask the question, “What is a full and complete freedom?” When it’s “complete” and “full,” it gives you everything you need to be a complete human being. We want a full and complete freedom. Not this foolishness that we’re talking about, here with our former slave masters and their children—no!
A “full and complete” freedom is a freedom that fully develops the talents and gifts of the human being, and shows them how to expose their gift, exploit their gift for the glory of The Giver of that gift. “We want a full and complete freedom.” Everybody (in this meeting) wants the same thing. But freedom is not free if it doesn’t attach to justice.
The second “want”: “We want justice. Equal justice under the law. We want justice applied equally to all, regardless of creed or class or color.” Do you think we can get that type of freedom, and that type of justice, under the political/economic/social system of White America? Talk to me! If we can’t get it under them, why are we wasting time trying to be with our former slave masters in a political reality that cannot guarantee us what we need to be ourselves?
“A full and complete freedom.” I heard my brothers and sisters talking about “education.” What good is education if it does not permit us to develop ourselves fully, to complete our make? The Qur’an says, “I made you complete, yet incomplete.” Well, when we came from the womb of our mother, we were “complete” as a baby. But now we are grown men and women, and we can’t say that we’ve been “completed” in our development! The enemy doesn’t want us to be fully developed, and he doesn’t want us to be fully free. He plays with words with us.
So when we say, “No justice, no peace!” Well, you haven’t had no justice, so now you don’t have any peace. What good is life when you don’t have peace? So how do you get peace? You get peace by living and setting up a system of laws that are in harmony with your nature; laws that cause you to grow like this body grew. Once we came from our mother’s womb, all we needed was the right food. …
The third thing in The Program under “What The Muslims Want” is: “We want equality of opportunity. …” Do you think we can get that in America under this social, political and economic system, and under this religious system? I don’t think so. Do you? Well, how necessary is “equality,” and “justice,” and “freedom” to our being a living people? See, if you want freedom, and you want justice, then you must “…want equal membership in society with the best in civilized society.”
We just don’t want to be equal just to say “I’m equal” (you’re eating a pork chop and I’m eating one, too, and “we are equal”). Come on, now! You’ve got to know what to put in your mouth, you’ve got to know what to put in your head, you’ve got to know what to put in your stomach to help you to become a complete human being!
In this group, that wants to build a “Black nation”: You want a nation of people that love themselves and love each other. We don’t need to be having a nation of people and we’re filled with self-hatred. We’ve got to clean all of that stuff up! That’s why my brother, when I heard him say “We’ve gotta be clean!”: I am with you 1,000 percent, brother! Cleanliness is not “next” to Godliness. Cleanliness is Godliness.
Now, we have to face this: If we can’t get freedom, justice, and equality in this system of things, that says we have to separate from this. “Separation” is not an ugly term; it’s what we do when we can’t get along with each other … .
To be continued.