In general, how would you describe Malcolm’s experience of the Hajj?
Malcolm’s experience of the Hajj indeed is remarkable and delightful. He explains how Islam has managed to solve one of the most difficult and fundamental world’s problems – racial relations. For several hundred years, racism has been poisoning society, and even now, when it is considered to be in history, it still exists on some levels. Malcolm says that a white person in the Muslim world treats him as only a king would be treated in America. He claims that people here are free from any prejudice, and brotherhood does not distinguish any colors, just people.
We will write a custom Essay on Islam and Racism: Malcolm X’s Letter from Mecca specifically for you
301 certified writers online
What difficulties did he expect to encounter on pilgrimage? Did he encounter them?
At the beginning of the letter, Malcolm says that America has made him think that the real brotherhood, unity, and mutual understanding can not exist between whites and non-whites. Hence, although he is Muslim and he believes in his religion, he still has been ready to encounter some difficulties related to racial relations on pilgrimage. Nevertheless, he did not. It turns out that discrimination can be erased from society, and when it is, a lot of other problems vanish as well.
What effect did this Hajj have on Malcolm’s understanding of human nature and relationships?
Malcolm’s experience of the pilgrimage has made him believe that real unity and understanding actually can exist between people regardless of their country of birth, the color of skin, or the language they speak. And he determines Islam as a way to achieve all of this. He states that other nations and countries should understand Islam to be able to rise above racism and solve this problem once and for all. When a person can accept the Oneness of God, he or she becomes free from all whiteness in the mind, attitudes, and behavior, and as an individual open to new knowledge and experiences Malcolm steps away from his previous conclusions in this regard.
What lessons does Malcolm believe Islam can teach America? Can Christianity teach those lessons? Why or why not?
First of all, Malcolm describes America as the country, which has taught him about the impossibility of equal and respectful relations between whites and non-whites. Because of his experience there, he was ready to face the same problems even in the Muslim world. He says that racism leads this country to the suicide path and destroys it as cancer. However, if only people can see and understand the Oneness of God they can stop measure others because of their skin color.
As for Christianity, probably, it is not able to do the same since it has not coped with racism yet, but people open to this religion can be more susceptible to Islamic paradigms. As the ‘target population’, Malcolm identifies young people, for example, students of colleges or universities because they are more progressive and open to changes, and that is why they are more likely to follow the spiritual path of truth.
Is this letter still relevant? Why or why not?
This letter is still relevant since even though many people believe that racism is already in history it still exists and influences society and people’s relations. Black people in America still face many difficulties because of their skin color while trying to find an apartment or get a job. They can be treated impolitely by co-workers, shop assistants, or just people on the street. Very often, they have to fight for the opportunities, which white citizens have by default.
How has this reading affected your understanding of Islam?
This letter has shown me, Islam, from an entirely different perspective. The paradigms that make people step away from racism, discrimination, and prejudice are more interpersonal and universal, not just Islamic. And that is why I believe that other religions and nations should borrow them.