Do You Think You Will Enter Paradise? 2:214
Amid the struggle Allah sent the Muslims a message that struck their minds and hearts:
“Or do you believe that you will enter the garden which holds trees, rivers, and fruits while not yet experiencing the remarkable parable of those who died before you? Among the believers were those who withstood hardship and persevered with patience. They were grievously afflicted and overtaken with extreme poverty and sickness. Until the one who was raised up in matters of faith and who was most upright as compared to any other, and the obedient and truthful ones with him said, “When will come Allah’s aid and support?” Certainly Allah’s help is close. The Believers received the response from Allah like those believers of prior times, “Surely Allah’s help is coming.”
This verse speaks directly to the current, poor situation and burdened psychological/emotional mindset of the African American in the United States. First, we must realize that hardship, toil, and struggle are prerequisites for success. “Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that you dislike a thing that is good for you and that you love a thing that was bad for you.” We must put in the work!
Certainly, as a people we have been subject to extreme oppression, poverty, and sickness. However, the worst act may have been the plan to neuter our competitive spirit with so called free programs. Programs that focused our attention on short term benefits only. Programs that formed us into the ultimate consumer and cash cow of the industrialist.
American slavery set the African American back psychologically. Subtle domination and oppression after emancipation was a setback. We must realize that much of our racial sensitivities exist to enslave our mental capacities. When we are addressing our psychological need, we are doing a far greater service for the liberation of our people than those who are addressing short term benefits. We are cheated out of our future by those who make an emotional play on our “blackness.”
What is the solution? Who will raise up? Who will represent us? We must take personal responsibility to raise up our moral integrity, our intellectual curiosity. The cause of our problem and the remedy are near. They exist within us. We have infinite riches within our reach. To gain them, all we must do is open our mental and spiritual eyes and work to understand how our current mind and heart were formed.
After purging ourselves of our mental and spiritual toxins and being grateful for full recovery, we then will be in position to create a climate for community life. We will be ready to compete in the race toward establishing a beautiful community life. A garden complete with refined trees of knowledge and pure waters of morality, which will lead to producing the fruits of our labor: money, good homes, excellent schools, food production, hospitals, cutting edge industry, outstanding expressions of language and art, and friendship in all walks of life.