Estimated reading time: 16 minute(s)
Ebony S. Muhammad (EM): You’ve been a close companion of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan by way of his security team since you were 19 years old. You’ve been by his side during some of his most trying moments as well as moments of divine heights. How have both (his trials and successes) been a trial for you and a test of your faith?
Rashad Muhammad (RM): I find it quite interesting that you used the term ‘companion’ to describe my relationship to the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan because from my perspective, I think of my relationship with him in greater or broader terms because he means more to me than a companion. It’s out of his existence that my being came to exist. He is the definer of the diameter of my mind, unlocking and undergirding all the principles of my actions giving me the opportunity to become what the creator intended for me to be from the beginning of my creation. I believe that my journey with the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has allowed me to witness this remarkable man on his journey to oneness with Allah (God). I cannot, in truth tell you of his trials because they are his. What I do have familiarity with and have witnessed personally, is the depth of his faith and I can and do bear witness that it is out of his faith that he approaches every situation that comes into his life—no matter what the nature of that situation. I can also speak on how I have seen him act in what I perceived to have been profoundly difficult moments and soaring divine heights.
One of the most difficult tasks that I have witnessed him approach is the restoration of the Black man and woman back to our original self. For example, the Million Man March in 1995, the way it came about, the manner in which he worked to produce the momentum necessary for it to take place successfully on the day of and the day after, and in truth beyond to this day. I cannot fully express in words the absolute beauty of watching a man, guided by a power higher than himself, placing his unconditional trust in that power and allowing that power to govern, not some but all of his actions in order to fulfill the divine purpose of our Creator.
EM: How real of an issue is burn out, resentment or even bitterness when it comes to being in the ministry? How do these sentiments enter the mind/heart of the one positioned to serve? How does one combat against it?
RM: The issue of burnout, resentment and bitterness is very real. It derives from an inordinate self-interest growing out of a lack of understanding of the greater picture and the natural progression of life. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan stated that time brings you in and time takes you out. Then he raised the question what are you doing with God’s time? Each one of us is given a time to serve when we’re given the gift of life. A sign of our growing wisdom is that we will undertake the task of developing our potential so that our lives become relevant in accordance with the time. When we are allowed to serve as a Labour in any capacity, we are allotted time as long as we can remain relevant. What allows us to stay relevant is our service to the Believers. If our service is rooted in vanity, our time will be cut short. But, if our service is rooted in Love and good service, then you can serve the entire span of your individual life. No one serves forever, but if we serve a cause that is bigger than our self, our service may live long after we are physically gone. Sometimes we can out serve our time, which can rob us of the good that has been done.
EM: I always hear the Minister give care and consideration in his opening. He does not waste one word throughout his messages. What kind of spirit does it take and what kind of love does it take to overcome exhaustion where it doesn’t affect one’s ability to convey the word of Allah?
RM: The key to understanding the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan is to understand the nature of his humility. He is the personification of what it means to be humble maintaining himself in his proper positon as a Student to a Divine Teacher, the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad. In all things that he undertakes he is seeking not to please people but to please his Father the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad and Master Fard Muhammad. This core desire manifests outwardly in how he handles the people of God and inwardly in how he thinks about the people of God. There is so much in the word humility that most fail to consider. The true root of humility can be found in true, unconditional love and respect for God, which in turn allow one’s actions to be governed by principles that are upheld by Allah (God) Himself. Most of us fain humility when in truth we are in fact vain, desirous of being served so that our egos are feed which is a denial of the power of God in Others. There is only one kind of love, though we frequently put the title love on madness, which leads to the misunderstanding and misapplication of the word. We are taught that God ‘IS’ Love, with ‘IS’ being equivalent to the equal sign, meaning that as in mathematics, what is on one side is the same, or equal in value and weight as what is on the other side.
EM: If you don’t mind sharing one, what hurdle did you have to overcome to experience a significant growth that may have been life saving for you in the ministry?
RM: The past year or so has shown me that there was something in me that I was blinded to until I was able to look back retrospectively on a particular situation. Briefly, there was a meeting and I was requested to be at the meeting, and I said ‘I am not coming to the meeting’. Now as a subordinate to the one calling the meeting, I did not have that right—to refuse to come. Later when the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan counseled me he said, “As a subordinate you are to obey those in authority as long as it doesn’t conflict with your religion, and when your superior officer calls you to a meeting you are obligated to come.” The result of me refusing to attend the meeting, was that I have been suspended from the post I was holding at the time.