Historians have often divided the life of Malcolm X, also referred to as El-Hajj Malik Shabazz, into 3 periods. First, from 1948 to 1964, he was established in the Nation of Islam. Then, in 1964, he went through the Black Nationalist Period of his life. Lastly, prior to his assassination, from 1964 to 1965, Malcolm X evolved through the Universalist Islamic Period. I, however, have chosen to divide his life into two major periods from which his most poignant ideologies were formed. He demonstrated that reading, learning and reason were indispensable qualities for the economic and social development of the masses. Within these two distinctly opposing periods of Malcolm Xs life, his ideologies, prior to and following his holy pilgrimage to Mecca, revealed two very different men. The once militant African-American Nationalist had evolved into an equalitarian Islamic missionary, in search of global brotherhood.Order now
It is first important to visualize his hatred towards oppression and racism, with his own words, in order to understand the plague that faced him personally. In 1963, while still with the Nation of Islam, he said the problem itself was created by the white man and it was created because the white man brought us here in chains against our will. It was a crime. And the one who committed that crime is the criminal who should pay….You don’t put the crime in jail, you put the criminal in jail. And kidnapping is a crime. Slavery is a crime. Lynching is a crime. And the presence of 20 million black people in America against their will is a living testimony of the crime that Uncle Sam committed, your forefathers committed, when our people were brought here in chains. These strong words penetrated the ears of society who, in effect, saw Malcolm X as one of the leaders of the Militant Black Nationalists. He and his followers were strong willed and determined to reach justice, by any means necessary. Malcolm X had a goal, and this goal was to put an end to giving birth to children who see no hope for the future but to follow our miserable footsteps.
Every Muslim is commanded to make the pilgrimage to Mecca at a certain point in their lives. Once Malcolm X traveled to Mecca, letters sent to the states spoke of encounters with such sincere hospitality and overwhelming spirit of true brotherhood as is practiced by people of all colors and races. The brotherhood, justice and respect for each other’s rights, that he only dreamed and spoke of in the past was finally becoming a pleasant reality. Amongst tens of thousands of pilgrims, Malcolm X saw brotherhood and unity exemplified by all, regardless of race or color. It became evident that such an uplifting and enlightening experience would shape the rest of his life as well as guide his actions towards justice as well.
It is clear that Hajj guided Malcolm X towards righteousness, equalitarian justice and a retreat from his hatred of whites. This newfound ideology following his pilgrimage to Mecca allowed him the opportunity to enhance his knowledge of other worlds, and hence, other value systems. You may be shocked by these words coming from me. But on this pilgrimage, what I have seen, and experienced, has forced me to rearrange much of my thought-patterns previously held and to toss aside some of my previous conclusions Through this period of enlightenment for Malcolm X, true traits of leadership were demonstrated, including honesty, intelligence, a respect towards logical thinking, self-sacrifice, brotherhood and uncompromising morality.Words/ Pages : 585 / 24