One On One with Kabasa Muhammad
Ebony S. Muhammad (EM): In regards to your role as an instructress for Second grade boys, how do you see yourself assisting with the vision of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad and the New World?
Your students are at an age where they are very impressionable and come before you, for the most part, as blank slates. You’re able to work with them in a special way.
Kabasa Muhammad (KM): I think for those of us who are instructors should understand what we have in front of us. I don’t think that we always understand that they come to us with a new mind, and I think that instead of us trying to put into them our thinking we have to approach it as bringing out of them the God that’s already within.
They are very impressionable, but I think we sometimes look at them as if they’re not thinkers, as if they’re not gods, as if they are not creators, therefore, I strive to approach them as if they are gods, they are thinkers, they are creators. The old paradigm of education is about making somebody into a slave. You give them what you want them to have, to do what you want them to do. However, for them and I have boys, regardless of what their condition may be at home, regardless of what they have been taught previously, regardless of whether or not they’re in the Nation of Islam they all have great minds. We must first introduce to them the idea of God and introducing to them that they are gods and give them an understanding of what they’re capable of and not giving them what we think they should have, but we must bring out of them what is already in them and allow them to be thinkers and be creative.
EM: Beautifully said.
The Hon. Elijah Muhammad proceeds to say that Allah will not use anything of this old world or old school system; it will be entirely new. I would like to find out from you how have these young boys pulled out from you something that you may not have known was present to teach them on the spot?
KM: Oh Allah, every minute (laughs). They pull everything out of me every day, but I think that being open enough to understand that they are already thinkers, they pull out of me the willingness to want to study more. Once you introduce to them any concept or idea, they already have questions on every level. They have great thoughts sometimes, in my opinion, then what we do as adults. They foresee things. They pull out of me the desire to want to be more of a student, because anything that I introduce to them I have to always study. They want to know every aspect about everything, which they should. They want to know how everything is created, they want to know the origin of everything, how it got that way, what’s going to happen next, what was Allah thinking when it happened. One of them asked me the other day while we were studying the prophets, “Is there a female prophet? How come we haven’t studied a female prophet?” They digest everything.
EM: What have their parents expressed to you regarding what they are learning and the impact that it is making on them?
KM: Regardless of what religion they are or of what household they come from, they do easily digest everything and they do develop an understanding of what they’re being taught, therefore, they do communicate it at home. Often there are times where I have parents come back pleased, because of what their son reinforced at home. The brothers that I work with are second graders; between the ages of 6 and 8. They are very mature for their age and they take charge of every environment that they’re in. Sometimes they’ll go home and reinforce the diet that we’re supposed to have. They may reinforce how they feel people should act in their household and the different things that we study as it relates to our behavior as Muslims, and not just the behavior of a Muslim but of someone who is striving to be righteous. If someone is smoking in the home, or someone is eating something inappropriate then the parents will come back and share of what these young brothers are reinforcing at home.
EM: Praise is due to Allah!
KM: Yes ma’am, praise is due to Allah.
EM: What is your vision for these young brothers, years from now, as you instruct them using the method that you implement today?
KM: Well not from my instruction but Allah allowing me to be used as a vessel to be able to implement and create an environment where they are free to think and where they are free, first, to know that God is the root of everything. That’s the great thing about being at Muhammad University of Islam. We are able to teach God and the reality of God. That’s why other educational systems fail, because there is no connection. I think with them being so young and able to get it now, I know that if they continue on this path they’re going to be so great. We’re not going to have just one or two, but we’re going to have thousands of leaders for our people and for our future as long as they continue to grow and study. I see them being greater than what we are if we continue to teach them the reality and to use the new educational paradigm and not teach them to make them slaves, but teach them to be thinkers, creators and to do for self.
EM: Awesome! I’m excited to see that vision come into fruition! Thank you and may Allah continue to bless you.
KM: Thank you.
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