Plato’s Prayer Circle
Plato gathered the men in a circle to his rear while he continued vending books. As each man came to his table, he ushered them into the circle of brothers who were attempting to heal themselves from the addiction to white supremacy. It was a motley crew; one brother had had a private session with Plato earlier that morning. The brother was thirty years old and in grief due to losing his father, a doctor, who was murdered on the streets of Oakland six years ago at the age of 54. As the brother talked, the conversation eventually came to the death of his father. At this point the brother broke down in tears and had to depart for a moment to compose himself with a cigarette. He returned but his pain was so great he began crying again, embarrassed at himself. Plato hugged him and let him know he too had lost a loved one, his son, who committed suicide at the age of 38. Plato told the young man how much he hated the term closure, because he would never get over the death of his son. The young man said the movie Pursuit of Happiness broke him down because his father had raised him alone, had given him consciousness, while his mother, a Nigerian, had returned home, leaving him to be raised by his father. He said his mother was an arrogant woman with class issues, thinking everyone, including him, was her servant. And he despised her for the way she talked to his father, very demeaning and castrating, while his father was humble. He said the good in himself came from his father, the negative from his mother. While visiting Nigeria, he observed their supreme arrogance. Plato said Black Americans have this same arrogance, no doubt because so many of us are descendants from that area of West Africa.
Other men in the circle included two black CIA agents. Well, one was a Special Forces Operative, the other a Consultant to the military in Southeast Asia. They debated each other about which one of them was still on the payroll.
Plato only occasionally listened to their conversation which included a variety of topics, but Plato’s objective was to let them talk, free style, to detoxify the pain of white supremacy. The Special Forces brother told Plato he was not well after his service to America. He said no man who kills can ever be well again, no matter what is said about recovering from post-traumatic stress. He said he has been trained to kill his mother, if ordered to do so.
Another brother was a Five Per Center, so when a customer asked for literature on this cult founded by Charles 13X, Plato pulled the young man out of the circle to speak with the customer. The Five Per Center showed him the literature, the basic text and other writings on the group. The customer claimed the Five Per Centers are the wave of the future. Plato did not argue with the customer, but told him to make sure he studied the writings of Noble Drew Ali, Master Fard Muhammad and Elijah Muhammad.
As per the prayer circle, Plato wished the men would be diplomatic with each other rather than attempt to doctor the patient to death, since we are all sick to one degree or another, but we must and will heal ourselves, so there is the urgent need to practice patience and kindness with each other. We must understand the fragile condition of our personalities, our damaged self esteem. And this is especially necessary for the elder brothers when speaking with the younger generation who are hostile to any message from the elders, especially if it is not delivered with gentleness, kindness and respect, even when we know the young brother may be ignorant. But do we want to save our people or simply express age superiority because this attitude will not heal the brotherhood or sisterhood. We must engage in the spirit of revolutionary love and submission to the higher cause, the salvation of our people.