On February 2nd, 2002, the second day of the Eid al-Adha and a warm Sunday afternoon, an audience gathered at the Zaytuna Institute to celebrate the days of Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca) and more specifically, the life of an American Muslim man whose story and spiritual transformation was so intricately associated with those sacred days: the life of Malcom X. In their respective lectures, Zaid Shakir and Hamza Yusuf discuss the tragic yet extraordinary circumstances that went into creating this exemplary man. From having his father murdered by the KKK and seeing his mother end her life in an insane asylum as a result, it is not surprising that Malcolm became a bitter racist who attacked the system and the people he feltand was quite justified in feelingreduced him and other Blacks to the lowest of the low. But in responding to the ancient call of the prophet Abraham to perform the Hajj, explains Zaid Shakir, Malcolm took a step that would transform him: he would rise above what America had made him by realizing that at his core he was no different from the whites he resented. Moreover, he realized that those who were oppressive were in worse shape and in more need of sympathy than those being oppressed. In experiencing the equalizing event of the Hajj, stresses Hamza Yusuf, he recognized that it was only true belief and submission to the Creator that could remove from peoples minds a focus on the incidentals of race and color and allow them to recognize that everyone is equal in their powerlessness before God. The footage of the event in this set will also give viewers a taste of the tranquility and spirit of brotherhood that pervaded throughout the day, perhaps a glimpse of what Malcolm witnessed and was transformed by on the Hajj.
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