Revolution is first needed in the mindBy Ashahed M. Muhammad -Asst. Editor- | Last updated: Jun 4, 2013 - 5:42:31 PM
Farrakhan spreads powerful and empowering message of truth and unity throughout entire city
On June 2, a beaming and energetic Minister Farrakhan delivered a strong message of unity and truth to a capacity crowd at the New Northside Conference Center dealing with the subject: “Surviving the Times: Reclaiming Our Youth.”
Long lines formed early in the afternoon and many who wanted to get into the venue to see Minister Farrakhan were unable to do so. The main seating area, and an overflow room quickly filled to capacity with a standing room only crowd of those eager to hear God’s word. Many St. Louis residents had to go over to Muhammad Mosque No. 28 about a half a mile away to view it via webcast. Speakers were set outside in the parking lot so those who could not fit inside would be able to hear the word, as Minister Farrakhan’s voice thundered along Goodfellows Road.
The Minister described a long line of Blacks who laid the foundation forging the way for those living today, hearing his voice. Unfortunately, the Black masses are still in a wretched condition, because the revolution that needs to take place is in the minds of the people, he said.
“Do you have a renewed mind, or are you the same nigger that the White man made?” he asked. “See, if you look at our actions, how we treat ourselves, our wives, our children, our neighbors our friends, we haven’t had a renewal of our minds, we’re just as the White man made us. The White man didn’t make a man, he made a nigger. So you can write that on the back of your shirt ‘nigger made in America.’”
He named historical figures like the Honorable Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Nat Turner, Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth, David Walker as those who fought for what was right and did not sacrifice their integrity for nearness to those in power.
The Minister said although the Honorable Marcus Garvey did not teach religion, he did teach “One God, One Aim and One Destiny.” Black people owe a lot to him, he said.
“We thank Allah for Noble Drew Ali who was the first to come among us to bring the word of Islam back to America for Black people,” said the Minister. “Elijah Muhammad loved Noble Drew Ali,” he noted. In fact, the Minister said he heard the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad deliver a message in New York in 1955 on the subject “The Forerunners That Made A Way For Him” and those were Marcus Garvey and Noble Drew Ali.
Then the 60s came, and many Black leaders sprung up along the ideological spectrum, such as Dr. Martin Luther King, Malcolm X (later known as Hajj Malik El- Shabazz had, James Farmer, and Stokely Carmichael (later known as Kwame Ture).
The Minister said he had a similar situation with a student of his, Khallid Muhammad. At a point, Khallid Muhammad had disagreements that caused him to move in another direction away from his teacher. Differences of opinion occur, but the same goal remains: the liberation of Black people. The disagreements form for many reasons.
“Khallid was a revolutionary! So was Jesus, but they did not understand his methodology of revolution,” said the Minister. “Jesus was a revolutionary, not of the weapons of war that you replace one government with another but not the thinking of the government that you overthrew,” the Minister said.
“Real revolution has nothing to do with a gun,” he added.
Entire city felt his presence
On June 1, Minister Farrakhan began his visit to St. Louis by checking on Muhammad Mosque No. 28B located in East St. Louis under the leadership of Student Minister Ralph Muhammad. The Minister looked at some of the renovations that have taken place on the property. He said the improvements were nice, however, he cautioned all spiritual leaders to realize that the work of the ministry is not to build big buildings, the work is to reform and teach and help others improve themselves in order to become reflections of God.
“Buildings come and buildings go, but God’s work is building people, and when we stop building people into the way that God wants people to be built, then we are on our own vanity mission,” said the Minster.
‘Do for self’ in action
“He (Anthony Shahid) is the only brother that I know that put up a small market, a restaurant and has acres of land in the back to grow food that he is bringing in to cook,” said the Minister. “We should not let any Black establishment that wants to serve us die, because when a Black establishment dies, that’s killing us as well.”
Anthony Shahid, agreed. The 59-year old businessman told The Final Call what inspired him was the vision of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, who established Your Supermarket on 83rd Street and Cottage Grove in Chicago, Illinois.
He said he can recall as a young 8-year old boy, going into the Muslim owned businesses and feeling a sense of warmth, experiencing excellent customer service and having a sense of pride that those businesses were owned by Black people and that one day, he could grow up to be like them, business owners that are connected to and serving their communities. He believes those experiences in the days of his youth shaped him.
“I was young but it affected me,” said Mr. Shahid. “All we did was follow the blueprint of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad. No cigarettes, no beer, no alcohol, no crack pipes, no Ez-Widers, no Tip-Tops, no Black and Milds, nothing other than what Allah tells us, exactly as The Messenger taught us. He said if you follow his program, it’s not that you might be successful, you will be successful!” he said.
Mr. Shahid reflected on the time spent with the Minister at Yours Market and the fact that the workers there had a chance to meet him.
“I was so honored to have the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan to bless us with his presence, and to have the opportunity to be in his presence just to hear him say that he loved what we were doing, and it’s because we push the Honorable Elijah Muhammad forward,” said Mr. Shahid. “He loves the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and we love the Honorable Elijah Muhammad.”
Leadership lessons at Camp Kiswah
Later that afternoon, the Minister arrived at Camp Kiswah where he delivered an historic and memorable message to the men assembled there for the Nation of Islam Student Captain’s retreat. Despite the tornados and strong storms that tore through the area the previous evening knocking down trees on the property, the men eagerly awaited the inspirational words from the Minister. Electrical power at Camp Kiswah was also knocked out by the storms, however, some fast-thinking, quick moving members of the Fruit of Islam set up generators, and portable lighting to make sure the Minister’s words would be delivered and received without hindrance.
In a powerful moment following his message, the men who gathered for the retreat lined the grassy area along the road leading to the exit of Camp Kiswah and saluted the Nation of Islam’s Commander-in-Chief as his caravan sped away to the next destination. After pulling off, the Minister’s son, Student Supreme Captain Mustapha Farrakhan called out in a powerful voice that carried throughout the hills of the compound, “Allah-hu-Akbar” (God is the Greatest) and the men responded in unison “Allah-hu-Akbar.”
A Better Life
The Minister’s next destination was the Better Family Life Cultural Center and Museum, for a private reception where he greeted influential social justice activists, community, and political leaders. He also took an extensive tour of the property which has just completed $16 million in renovations conducted by the director of the center Malik Ahmed and his wife Deborah.
“We should honor them for the work that they do,” said the Minister. “Don’t let envy creep into your heart when you drive by and see a beautiful building. You want to go in and see how you can help to make that building everything that the envision and then some!” he added.
The building is not yet officially open to the public for another month and a half, however, Malik Ahmed, the director, said he loved having the Minister there to deliver such an inspirational and meaningful message on leadership to those in attendance.
James Clark, vice president of community outreach for the Better Family Life Foundation spoke briefly with the Minister about the “Put Down the Pistol” campaign and discussed their success stories. He and several participants were present at the reception, including some young men who presented the Minister with a poster and a t-shirt.
Mr. Clark said he was very happy that Minister Farrakhan came to St. Louis to deal with such a relevant subject targeting the youth. Mr. Clark said there are many who believe it is time to move beyond the rhetoric and into action, going into the most challenged neighborhood, door to door, and corner to corner, in an attempt to end these senseless conflicts that often lead to death. In the St. Louis metropolitan areas where they have been active, Mr. Clark said murders are down.
“We think that this is the next movement, this is the most important message in Black America today, we’ve got to stop senseless crime and violence against each other,” said Mr. Clark. “We believe it is time to look for internal resources.”
Zaki Baruti, director of the Universal African Peoples Organization said, “We take our hats off to what they are building right here which is another edifice in our community. The name is powerful, the Better Family Life foundation because that is what we need,” he said.
Among the guests at the private reception were members of the influential and groundbreaking Hip-Hop group Public Enemy, in town to perform as part of the “Kings of the Mic” tour. Along with PE, the “Kings of the Mic” tour includes Ice Cube, De La Soul and L.L. Cool J.
Later that evening, The Minister went to the concert at the Scottrade Center and after enjoying Public Enemy’s energized 30-minute performance which rocked the crowd of over 16,000, the Minister spent some time with members of the Hip-Hop and Entertainment community who said they considered the Minister an important leader, a mentor and a guiding force in their lives.
“I’m trying to get these young cats in Hip-Hop to understand we in Public Enemy have had success and longevity because we are tapped into the spirit of divine through the man Farrakhan!” said Professor Griff.