UNIVERSAL FLAG VOID
I can recall the first time I saw a group of brothers attach a price to the flag pin and offered it for sale at the universal parliament in Mecca. This occurred during the mid to late eighties. There was an instant, very severe reaction. A fierce and close to violent exchange took place between those opposed to this activity and those in favor. High explosives and confusion broke out which was a fairly regular feature of parliaments during the eighties. Anyway, the opponents were a handful of mostly older Gods of prominent stature along with others simply swept up in the wave. The proponents were the Gods selling the flags and their supporters, who were mostly Gods and Earths from their very progressive local clan. The opposition contended that the Father never sold the flag. This was a compelling argument on its face, even though someone has to pay to aquire them in the first place. All of the opposition was not however, based on traditional rites of passage and mastery of 120. There were other concerns
Some of it was basic protectionism. There is a prevailing school of thought that holds that the flag is sacrosanct and should not be sullied by unqualified wearers. Therefore it needs to be protected. There is another, less conspicuous view that the flag is unassailable, and beyond reproach. Therefore, any poor conduct by its wearer can not diminish or tarnish it's image one iota.
Ultimately, the sellers held their ground against what I can only describe as a very aggressive battle. Through a very vocal outcry they continued to offer the flag at the rally that day. I should add however, that they were in fact using a criteria when selling the flag. They asked, although they did not confirm, if a god or earth knew their lessons. I knew these brothers, who have since returned to the essence (of natural causes.) It is my testimony that they were bonafide, righteous builders of unassailable character. Could it be that they were just visionary contributors to the winds of inevitable change? Peace to them.
In spite of the expense associated with its production, making the flag available at a cost remains very controversial. For some it is near blasphemous. The traditional custom of awarding the pins as a rite of passage relies in part on the financial generosity of the person or persons providing the pin. Back then the unintended consequence of this tradition was, short of the grace of god, flags pins were just not readily available. In other words, if brothers desiring to award the pins were unable to pay for their manufacture, where would they come from? This condition persisted unabated for years as outsiders reaped the capital gain from our most prominent symbol. During this same period in history, the production and sale of the flag by non nation members was a topic discussed with great concern at universal parliaments. There was much decrying the purchase of flags by nation members from outside sources. Although we didn't sell them, someone did. One in particular, was a Muslim brother named Melchizedek. He had a jewelry store in Medina and sold the flag. He was the only one that I knew of selling the flag. He was not a nation member. Perhaps there were others but Melchizedek was the name oft times heard when these expressions of concern and outrage were in discourse. Even then this issue had great traction. The essence of this phenomenon was perhaps not that obvious to the average nation member, I surmise though, that the thorough unavailability of flags created a void in the awarding of the lapel pins...for years. Basically, during that historic era the procuring and distributing of these pins was basically done at the pleasure of private nation citizens. Those with the wherewithal (finances), and accepted authority, or auspices of those in authority, only rarely undertook the task. This changed during the late eighties to early nineties. This period saw the national posture wrench in dramatic shifts.
It was a time that marked the height of a revolutionary, renaissance-like era in the nation. Immediately subsequent to 1984 parliament attendance began a drastic decline. There is a correlation here worth discussing but perhaps at another time. In any event, amidst a number of tumultuous yet pivotal developments, the universal flag pin was first made available as a marketed national commodity. This practice persists to this day. What should be done about this? Does anything need to be done? What is your view? Is it practical, protectionist or something else altogether? Peace.
P.S. I should add that for a time the universal flag could also be purchased at Allah School In Mecca at a price of $10.00 USC. I thought it was a great idea since the place needs money and could substantially benefit from a consistent income stream. I do not know what the criteria was to qualify to purchase if any. Peace.