That experience for Muslims from America-people whose
lives have been reclaimed from among the "living dead" by the teaching of
Islam-going from 47th Street and Nowhere Drive, to touching the Kabah itself, is profound.
In times of great joy, or even when there is tribulation, the exclamation heard among
Muslims is sublime: "Allah-u-akbar (God is great)" "Alham-du lillah (All
Praise is due to Allah)."
Thanks to Allah, Minister Louis Farrakhan returned to
Mecca to perform "Umrah" (which is Pilgrimage to Mecca at a time other than the
"Hajj season") on the 20th day of Zilramadan, 1418 A.H. (January 18, 1998), one
of the last 10 days of the Islamic holy month, leading a delegation of 24 believers. He
and his wife, Mother Khadijah; Mother Tynnetta Muhammad, the wife of the Honorable Elijah
Muhammad; Mustapha Farrakhan, the Minister's son; Alif Muhammad, the grandson of the Hon.
Elijah Muhammad; and several other members of the Minister's party were able to touch the
huge, black-veiled house which is called "Kabah."
As the small delegation completed its seventh
"Tawaf," (circuit around the Kabah with it on the left side), chanting in Arabic
the words which translate in English to say: "Here I am at Thy service. O Allah! Here
I am at Thy service ...." the group, moving as if it was one person pressed through
the sea of pilgrims until Min. Farrakhan was able to not only touch the Black Stone in the
corner where the Tawaf begins, he was able to kiss the stone. Later, reflecting on the
occasion, Min. Farrakhan told his "family" gathered around him, "When I
kissed the stone, I remembered the words of Omar who said: 'I kissed the stone, not
because it was (written to do so), but because the Prophet (Muhammad-PBUH) kissed
it." During his Umrah at Mecca in 1959, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad also kissed the
Two years ago, the Nation of Islam leader led a similar
delegation to Mecca which received a warm welcome. On that occasion the worshipers from
the Nation of Islam walked and ran just a few paces behind Saudi Crown Prince Abdallah as
the two groups of pilgrims retraced the steps of Hagar between the hills of Safa and
Marwa. Prince Abdallah and his delegation were escorted then by Royal Police.
This year, for the first time in Nation of Islam history,
Min. Farrakhan and those worshipping with him, were given a police escort inside the Grand
Mosque during their performance of Umrah, after having been driven in a police motorcade
from the Jeddah Conference Palace, where they were guests of His Royal Highness King Fahd
bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, who is Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques (at Mecca and Medina).
"The Honorable Elijah Muhammad told me that Allah
would go before me and make friends for me all over the world," Min. Farrakhan told
the members of his group, pointing out that Mr. Muhammad laid the foundation for his
current success. It is because Min. Farrakhan has worked to magnify Mr. Muhammad's
teaching, and to restore the Nation of Islam, that he is so highly regarded as one of the
world's most important leaders, and especially so, in the Muslim world and Africa.
In the lobby of the Inter-Continental Hotel in Mecca
following the Umrah, the Muslim leader recalled a previous visit to the Grand Mosque.
"Brother Akbar," he said to Minister Akbar Muhammad, his international
representative, "I remember we were in this same lobby, 20 years ago, and I pledged
to bring 10,000 back to Mecca with me."
Minister Farrakhan has called for 10,000 Muslims to join
him in making Hajj-one of the five fundamental principles of Islam-in the year 2000,
insha-Allah (God willing).
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