Understanding Religions in the World – Part 16: What is the Nation of Islam?

Hi there brothers and sisters, how are we doing? I’m Clark, and welcome to the continuation of this series! Today we explore part 16 of the “Understanding Religions” series: What is the Nation of Islam? Just like Theosophy (explored in part 15), the Nation of Islam is a pseudo-religion. Like religions, it is customary for pseudo-religions to have a founder, principal text, liturgy and faith-based beliefs, however they are non-mainstream. The term pseudo-religion is usually used in a derogatory way.

Anyway, here’s part 15 of the series. If you want to read other parts of this series, you can visit my Series page and look under the “UNDERSTANDING RELIGIONS series” section. Now without further ado, let’s get into it.

The Nation of Islam Core Beliefs

The Nation of Islam believes that Allah is the one and only God. It is said their beliefs are similar to traditional Sunni Islam.

They believe their founder, Wallace Fard Muhammad, is the Mahdi, a redeemer who will rid the world of evil and rule over Muslims for five/seven/nine/19 years (there are different interpretations) before the Day of Judgment or Resurrection. It is said the Mahdi will come together with Jesus to defeat the Antichrist.

Their beliefs can be found in books and other writings that the Nation of Islam published, as well as in speeches by prominent members. The Supreme Wisdom is a book containing lessons that were passed on from Fard to Elijah Muhammad, his student.

The followers of the Nation of Islam are taught that the world population can be separated into three groups. About 85% of the population are “deaf, dumb and blind”. They are manipulated by 10% (who are rich) through ignorance, mass media and religious doctrine. The remaining 5% are those who know about this manipulation, and are always in conflict with the 10% in order to “free the minds” of the 85%.

A Bit of History

The Nation of Islam was founded by Wallace Fard Muhammad in Detroit, USA in 1930. He wanted to “teach the downtrodden and defenseless Black people a thorough knowledge of God and of themselves, and to put them on the road to self-Independence with a superior culture and higher civilization than they had previously experienced”. The Nation of Islam is said to be a political and religious movement that aims to improve African Americans’ spiritual, mental, social and economic condition. However it has also been described as a hate group, as well as an organization that promotes black supremacy, antisemitism (hostility to or prejudice against Jews) and anti-LGBT rhetoric.

Elijah Muhammad became Fard’s assistant in 1931, and then Minister of Islam. When Fard disappeared in 1933 before choosing a successor, Elijah became its leader. He started establishing temples/mosques, the Muhammad University of Islam, real estate and farms. There were 75 Nation of Islam centres in America when Elijah passed away in 1975.

Today, its number of members is expected to be in the tens of thousands.

Stay Tuned, Sisters and Brothers!

That’s it for part 16! I hope you’ve enjoyed it, and come back often for I am always posting new content. Subscribe to my emails and you’ll get a free personal development book (one of the best I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading). If you have any questions or comments please do not hesitate to leave them below and I’ll get back to you ASAP. Thanks a lot!

Part 17: What is Christian Science?

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