Lamppost Education Initiative – Muhammad Ali Courage and Conviction
Channel: Sherman Jackson
File Size: 7.35MB
just pointing out that service, if it's to be meaningful,
it has to be principle.
People who are not sincere,
they will often try to fool society.
They will try to manipulate society, even exploit society, all in the name of service.
They want to bring society to a point where society feels a debt to them, for the service that they have allegedly offered,
were important, in fact, what they're really doing is making a down payment on the pursuit of their own interests.
And what we have to understand is that as a Muslim community, for our service to be meaningful, for it to have a long term effect, for it to be transformative of the society in which we live, it must be principle.
And that means that in our offering of service, we have to be people of character,
not just people have interests. And we cannot fall into this service discourse, just in order to buy a little positive press, or to deflect a little bit of negative attention. We have to truly be like those people about whom Allah says in the Quran in a manner, the only way to learn we don't mean Come Jezza and well, I should Cora,
we feed you.
For the sake of God.
We do not want to mu, either any reward, or enemy Monterey to have thinks we do this for the pleasure of God.
And I think that as brother del ood said, one of the things that we have to understand
about non Muslim Americans and our stupid.
And if we want to talk about building alliances, being able to enlist the goodwill of non Muslims in society, we have to be people who demonstrate courage and principled commitment.
That is what will bring the best out of non Muslims in America. I remember
a story written by a sports writer.
And he was talking about Muhammad Ali,
who I hope we will all keep in our dua.
And Muhammad Ali at the time, had been stripped of his title. And you got to remember, this is a man in his 20s 20s for fitting millions. I remember every time I see it on television, I get tears in my eyes, Muhammad Ali is sitting on television has a big fly hat on. And they say, Well, you know, you're gonna be stripped of your title, and you may go to prison. And he said the following. Well, what ever the consequences may be,
I will not renounce the religion of Islam. I'm ready to die. If they put me before a firing squad tomorrow, I'm ready to die. That's what he said.
This sports writer said this. He said, My father was not a man, who was all that given to all this civil rights jazz.
And, in fact, my father, in the last election, voted for George Wallace.
The man who said what? segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation for F.
He voted for George Wallace. When he saw Muhammad Ali, make that statement. You know what he said? He said, You know,
I don't really know a lot about this young man.
But a man gets very few opportunities to stand up in life and be a man.
And this man is standing up and being a man. And you know what's five
have voted for in the next election.
the most liberal candidate, perhaps I'm gonna say most, but a very, very liberal candidate. He was transformed by the sincerity that he saw in Muhammad Ali, being willing to stand up and sacrifice for his own values. This is the model that we as a Muslim community must follow in America. So when it comes to service, we must be sincere in our service, we must be people of character, we cannot be simply people of interest, and we should not be misled by the seemingly short term gains that will ultimately undermine us in the long term. And we should not be misled by this. non Muslim Americans. There are a lot like Nietzsche that the German philosopher Nietzsche once said,
My genius is a man nostrils. I can smell a mile away.
And non Muslim Americans, especially when it comes to religious people.
They can smell insincerity a mile away. And let us not be like the man who goes down into the manhole
and spends all day there. And his clothing absorbs all the stench of the manhole. But when he comes out, he can't smell it.
And therefore, he thinks that other people can't smell it.
We should not be that kind of a community. We have to be a community of principle.