The Nation of Islam, perhaps better known for its promotion of Black Nationalism, is putting the spotlight on something else€”the existence of UFOs.  The Chicago group held its annual Saviors′ Day convention last month.  During the three day event, there was also a notable discussion on UFOs.  A panel of scientists talked about worldwide UFO sightings.  The panel postulated that the number was on the rise all over the globe and this led to speculation over what was causing the rise.

The late leader of the group, Elijah Muhammad believed in €œThe Mother Plane,€ a hovering object loaded with weapons, and talked about it in speeches and in writings.  The belief in UFOs by the group is one of their more misunderstood and ridiculed beliefs.   Although religious experts, Nation of Islam leaders, and believers vary in their beliefs about what is happening on the plane, they all agree that it is important.

“There’s enough evidence that has been put before the world and public,” said Ishmael Muhammad, the religion’s national assistant minister. “I don’t think you would find too many people that would call it crazy.”

The convention began on Friday and ended on Sunday, with a keynote address from Minister Louis Farrakhan.  In the Saviours′ Day speech in 2010, Farrakhan described a vision he had in 1985 about an object he refers to as €œthe wheel.€  Farrakhan, 77, has said the wheel, with its great capacity for destruction, contains the “wisdom to purify the planet,” but has harmed no one so far. He also claimed there have been governmental attempts to cover-up proof of the wheel, which he says many call UFOs.

In Muhammad′s teachings, he described a planet-sized manmade vessel that orbits earth and is purported to be loaded with 1,500 planes or wheels, words that have since been used interchangeably. Their purpose is unclear.

It is unknown why the Nation seems to be addressing the wheel more frequently.  Muhammad insists that the wheel is an important part of the religion and that the theme for the convention was scientific analysis.  “It is written, that these things would happen,” he said about Scripture. “We should prepare for such calamities.”