Back in the day W.E.B. Dubois developed a theory called the “Double Consciousness.” Dr. Dubois states that “It is a peculiar sensation, this double-consciousness, this sense of always looking at one-self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.” This double consciousness forces people to view themselves through the eyes of the world, even though many times its filled with misconceptions and lies. Our behavior is sometimes influenced by what others think about us instead of what we know about us.
Even though Dr. Dubois is one of my heroes he couldn’t possibly relate to what I call the “Triple Consciousness.” (dun dun dun) A Muslim, American, Black Man! Goodness gracious! Even writing it gave me the chills. It’s like I have to live in three worlds and each world dislikes the other. Don’t worry I’ll break it down. Not as scholarly as Dr. Dubois but I pray the impact is close. Let me be absolutely clear it is not my intentions to offend anyone. If you are offended and my statements are false, I beg for your forgiveness. But if my statements are true then that’s something that you have to deal with on your own. I need you to feel how I feel on a daily basis as I tip toe through a world filled with people who fall into the category when Dr. King says that, “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” People are ignorant and stupid on purpose! But I’ve come to realize that ignorance can never be bliss. Does our ignorance of how hot the sun truly is make it cooler? Of course not! Our Ignorance can’t change reality!
Ok, so back to my Triple Consciousness. I’m an American, born and raised. I’m a Muslim, born and raised. I am black, born and raised. (lol) Three Worlds! Based on polls (which I don’t believe in anyway but for the sake of “research”) there is nothing America can’t stand more than Blacks and Muslims (not even Mexicans). If you fall into these two categories you are somehow “UN American.” Even though my ancestors fought and died and are now seeds for this land? Even though if Muslims locally, nationally, and internationally were to remove their money from American banks it would crash? Wow! Don’t allow the Bill O’Reilly’s and Rush Limbaugh’s of the world determine what it means to be an “American.” Without a doubt they are those who practice “sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
But hold on I’m not done! There are Muslims who don’t like America. I understand that the media has portrayed America as an enemy to Islam. But not all Americans dislike Muslims. There are many Christians, Jews, Hindus, and even atheists who are willing to stand side by side with the Muslims for justice. I am a third generation Muslim and this is my country! I do believe America has to do a better job of bringing freedom to its own land before traveling to others, but that doesn’t mean I want to be bombed! I have plenty of family members and friends who are not Muslims and they don’t deserve to be shot or bombed because of a “Holy War” that in my opinion was created by the media to keep us in fear! I am a McDonalds (halaal) eatin, coca cola drinking, apple pie smashing American. I’m not pledging allegiance to nothing but the Creator but you get my point.
Black people where you going? Get over here! You have some issues that must be discussed! How dare you disrespect Islam? Islam is as a part of your culture as Christianity! Your ancestors were Muslim. If you took the time to research your ancestors, the majority of you will find that your ancestors were Muslims before they were Christians (with all due respect). I know you think that Islam is just a religion for people in jail, but if you think that you are locked up mentally. I’m not talking about the Nation of Islam. (Though in some communities their impact was greater) I’m talking about the religion of Kunta Kente and those before him , 2.2 billion Muslims worldwide. The only thing you know about Islam is that we don’t eat pork, we can have more than one wife, scarves, and that we don’t celebrate Christmas. You’re missing out on getting to know 2.2 billion people! Stop being ignorant, please! These Muslims are your family members and neighbors and in getting to know them you will get to know the part of your soul that was stolen by those who knew very well, that you couldn’t be a slave and be Muslim.
Last but not least to the International Muslim Community, I am black! Because of the European influence many of you have been tricked into believing that I and my tribe of people are inferior. This is not Islam!!! All around the world darker skin people are of the lowest class. Is this the way of our Prophet? Of course not! He would’ve never called Bilal (an African who made the first call to prayer) ABD or Slave. Never! Even though I am a Muslim and some of my family and friends are not Muslims I will not disown them! They raised me into the man that I am today! I will not move over seas and abandon the very community that raised me. I’ll travel overseas but If God wills I will always come back because if I don’t build my community no one else will. The Palestinians are for Palestine! The Pakistanis are for Pakistan! The Indians are for India! The Malays are for Malaysia! As they very well should be. As a black man I am for the upliftment of the black community and every other American community. Why? Because this is Islam!
So in Conclusion, I deal with a Triple Consciousness and before I would I tip toe through these three worlds. But from now on I will stump through these three worlds like Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X (El Hajj Malik Shabazz), Imam Siraaj Wahaaj, and my Mother and I pray that I will leave footprints for all people despite their race, religion and nationality.