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5 Lessons from Malcolm X Life

LESSON #3: The truth needs to be sought

Malcolm’s endeavor seeking the truth is really inspiring. Although it happened over a short period of time, it appeared as a long journey. He went to the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia and learned a lot in his journey. Allah Almighty said,

{Those who struggle for our sake, we will guide them our ways.}(Al-`Ankabut 29:69)

Malcolm’s journey reminds us of Salman, the young Persian who grew up worshipping fire. He was sent to look after the real estate of his father and on the way he met a Christian priest through whom he got to know Allah. Salman would travel between cities seeking the truth until the his last teacher told him to look for the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) in a land of palm trees.

He sold everything he has to be given a trip to this land and he was betrayed and sold as a slave. From a master to another, he ended up being enslaved in Madinah. He finally arrived at the destination he was looking for. He became Salman that we know of and who is called by Muslim historians, “the seeker of the truth.”

Finding the truth is a journey that we ask Allah every single prayer to {Guide us to the Straight Path!} (Al-Fatihah 1:6)

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LESSON #4: The unsung heroes

What is really amazing in Malcolm’s story is those people who influenced his life. Reading a brief of his biography, I ask, “Who was able to convince this guy to consider Islam? Who had the ability to change Malcolm’s mind? Who met him during his trip to the Middle East? Whom did he meet in Europe and how were they able to change his mind?”

These people are more powerful than Malcolm. They are more valuable to Malcolm than he is to himself. A share of Malcolm’s effort and reward afterwards will go to them. They could have ignored him. Even they could have considered ‘Malcolm of the Nation’ an enemy, an intellectual and social enemy to say the least.

Instead, they, considered him a human who needs guidance. We should not underestimate a word of truth we say to someone even if we think this word is not going make a difference. Even the bedtime story you tell your own kids can be transformational to them. Who knows who will be the next hero?!

 LESSON #5: The Wisdom of Allah and the brilliance of Shari`ah

A transformational moment in Malcolm’s life was his trip to Hajj, pilgrimage to Makkah. Seeing people of different races, languages, nations, backgrounds get together in harmony and peace changed his mind . It shook him how people of color get together with white people to worship Allah. It was an awakening experience for him. This is one of the messages behind Hajj.

We sometimes wish that Hajj is less busy or spread throughout the year but Allah knows better. This gathering in its very nature has wisdom. This wisdom was able to change a black supremacy believer into one who believes that men are created equal and there is no preference of a white over black or otherwise except by piety and good action.

May Allah have mercy on Al-Hajj Malcolm and accept him among the martyrs! May Allah gather us with him in Paradise with our beloved Prophet and his Companions, amen!

Republished, with kind permission and with slight modifications, from the author’s Reflections and Thoughts.

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