“We are Muslims after our father Abraham, upon him be peace. Our hope is the hope of Abraham, the upright in nature. We are the community of Muhammed the Prophet (SAW). G-d says that He made us a community. He made Adam a man; He made a community. Also, we know that G-d made Prophet Abraham a community. G-d says that in the Qur’an. We are the community of Muhammed the Prophet after the order or hope of Abraham, the “father” to all nations, the leader (Imam) to all the nations.
It’s important to know ourselves to see the picture clearly: Muslims are not just a people of faith, Muslims are not just a people belonging to a religion, Muslims are people obligated to live a model community life. G-d says He made us a witness for mankind, a witness for all people. Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) is a witness for us. He’s a witness for us, if we are following his way, and a witness against us, if we are not following his way.
Muhammed left a model community in Madinah the Illuminated City. We’re only to contribute to that model, so that that model stays on earth and continues to grow. Wherever we live, we should seek to establish a model community life. I used to be a minister for the Hon. Elijah Muhammad, my father, and what we talked about then was big. We were talking about helping African Americans. However, if we are talking now about what Allah ordered Muslims to establish in the Qur’an, we are talking about something bigger today.
If we think in the dimensions that Allah wants us to think in as Muslims, taking care of business and the neighborhood, we will grow bigger. We shouldn’t be looking at a temple or a masjid on some corner somewhere, we should be looking at a community. We should provide a place for the neighbors to have worship, a school for their children, a community shopping with themselves, and money circulating among them at least five times before it goes outside.
If we concentrated on nothing but providing halal meats to our community, that business venture would bring enough money into the community to build the Mosque Cares Project. So, we need to just think bigger. One thing the Hon. Elijah Muhammad did for me – and I am sure he did it for many of you who followed him – he made me have the courage to think as big as the White man, any man. There is no man on this earth who thinks any bigger than I think.
When I studied the Qur’an and really learned what G-d had obligated us to do on this earth, I started to think as big as any man. I don’t care what color he is, my thinking is as free and as big as his. That is what Islam will do for us, if we accept it in its full dimensions. We have to accept the whole life and live the whole life.
So, let us stop thinking Islam is all about not eating pork, not drinking whiskey and not taking drugs. Let us start thinking of Islam as a religion that obligates us to have community life and obligates that community to behave in a certain way. Obligates its stores, its businesses, its schools, its mosques, its transportation services, whatever, obligates everything to behave in a certain way. If we start to think that way, brothers and sisters, these little individual problems and temple problems will become light. They become so light, we won’t feel a burden. It’s said in scripture, take up my burden; my burden is light. Now I know what that’s talking about. It is talking about taking up responsibility for life on this earth.
Islam is a message to the worlds. Islam is a world mission. Its object is to establish something in the world for the whole world. Islam is a human community model, a model of how people have to live in community, and it’s a model that G-d has given us to invite all the people of the world to look and see if a better model can be found.
So, we are offering a human community model to Asia, to Africa, to Europe, to South America, North America, to the whole world. We are offering this to Russians, to Chinese, to Japanese, to Spanish. Allah is offering us a way to live together with each other in community. How can we think small, knowing that G-d has put us in that situation?
“Better relations between Jews, Christians, and Muslims”, September 3, 1999 Muslim Journal newspaper!