[This is an excerpt from an interview that was conducted by Shaheen Ahmed and Abdul Malik Mujahid almost exactly 20 years ago at his residence for "Young Muslim" magazine published by Sound Vision.]
It all started with an innocent question: You have beaten some of the toughest men in the world in the ring. What scares you the most?
Ali: [Points to his wife, to much laughter]
Lonnie Ali: Come on, Muhammad, joking aside, tell them what really scares you.
Lonnie Ali: Nothing on this earth maybe, but ... tell them Muhammad.
[There is a long pause]
Ali: Not going to heaven.
[Everyone present became silent. Sister Lonnie Ali had tears flowing down her cheeks. Others present were also shaken and silent. A few wiping their eyes. Br. Malik Mujahid broke the silence, patting Muhammad Ali on his arm.]
Malik Mujahid: "No, Insha Allah, you will enter Jannah because you have helped so many people."
Ali:[Muhammad Ali turned his face towards Br. Malik Mujahid, looking at him as though asking: Are you sure? Are you sure about yourself?]
Malik Mujahid: "The Mumin lives between hope and fear."