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New Muslims New Muslims' Experiences

American Christian Student Converted to Islam by Reading the bible

This is Islam
Islam means submission to God. Islam is the belief that there is only One God, whose proper name is Allah, which means the God. Islam is the same message given to all the prophets, from Adam, Noah, Moses, Abraham, Jesus, and finally to the Prophet Muhammad, the last messenger (peace and blessings be upon them). They all brought the same message: worship only God, and stop worshipping human beings and their ideas.
Become a Muslim Now
If you believe there is only One God who should be worshipped, and no one/nothing else has that right but Him, and you believe Muahmmad, peace be upon him, was a messenger who brought the same message as all the prophets before him, then you are basically a Muslim.

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Articles of Faith New Muslims

Fear and Hope: God’s Two Blessings

sky-nature

If a person acts without concern and fear as if he came to this world only to live, then they should be concerned about themselves.

It is narrated in a prophetic saying that God said ”I will not give my servant two assurances at the same time.” (Ibn Hibban)

Fear and hope are two great blessings that God has given us or will do so in the future. Using these two blessings in a measured way as a vehicle to reach God is another blessing, indeed a greater blessing.

For a Better Life

There’s an association between one’s sense of security and a life of comfort and possibly luxury while fear is connected with leading a life in poverty and destitution. At first glance, this may readily provide a partial explanation to the hadith above, but it would be wrong to assume that this is an exhaustive commentary.

Another way to understand this hadith could be as follows:

If a person is living carefree and in indulgence in the world, is not concerned about the next life, and has no worries about the destruction of his soul and spiritual life, and if that person has no fear of the losing his subtle qualities, no fear of the death of his feelings and the extinction of his spiritual faculties and thus lives without fear, that person cannot be without fear in the next world.

If a person lives with fear in this world-fear in the sense mentioned above, and is always anxious both in his words and actions, saying: ”O my Lord! If it were not for Your benevolence, I could not protect my faith; if not for Your grace, I could not protect my subtle points; if not for Your generosity, I could not survive; if not for Your compassion and mercy, I cannot enter Heaven. If not for the beloved, the mercy of the world, I would not have found my way and would have remained in depravity.”

If he can always exist in this fear and frequently take himself to account, control himself, and take the opportunity to renew himself, in the next world-God willing-there will be no fear for him.

However, there is an indispensible truth in the way this question is phrased, and it is not far from the meaning expressed in the hadith. If a person acts without concern and fear as if he came to this world only to live, and if he never feels any anxiety, then that person should be concerned about himself.

In fact, even if this does not happen often, he should worry about living only in comfort and languor and feel shame for it. The following example clarifies the matter a little more.

As related in sound narrations, `Umar ibn `Abdulaziz would sometimes repeat the verse, ”When the chains are around their necks, and fetters (around their legs). They will be dragged,” (Ghafir 40:71) and would fall on the floor.

In addition, he would read this verse many times and pass out:

You consumed in your worldly life your (share of) pure, wholesome things, and enjoyed them fully (without considering the due of the Hereafter, and so have taken in the world the reward of all your good deeds). So this Day, you are recompensed with the punishment of abasement because of your scornful arrogance on the earth against all right, and because of your transgressing (the bounds set by God). (Al-Ahqaf 46:20)

Sound Heart/Belief

Yes, it is very normal for a believer with a sound heart to have such a concern, and actually this fear is the result of profound contemplations. But God may have also given this world in terms of substantial health to a person as He gave to `Abdur-Rahman ibn `Awf and `Uthman ibn `Affan, two giant believers.

In that case, believers should make use of their wealth for the sake of lofty purposes and serve humanity for the sake of God. It is not necessary to give away possessions entirely; it is better to give in measured terms to those who are in need.

A part of the assets should be retained so that they can be invested and wealth multiplied; thus, in the end one can donate a greater amount. Let it suffice that our intentions are pure, that we know this wealth is a trust from God and that we are ready to give it away when our Lord wants it.

This should be a benchmark against which we frequently check the level of our hearts. Can we comfortably say, deep within our consciences, that we are ready to give every time we hear the command and suggestions by Our Lord? Can we say, ’Yes, O My Lord, I am ready to give!’?

If we can do this, in other words, if the state of our heart is not attached to the possessions we have, then an increase in wealth can bear no negative impact upon us, and our property will not be the cause of any worry concerning the Hereafter, if God so wills.

On the other hand, if a person insists on living heedlessly, having no belief or spiritual quest, simply, yet unwisely seeking to please the never-pleased carnal self-may God forbid-such a person will be bogged down in the swamp, headfirst. Let these two points not be confused.

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Source: The Fountain Magazine

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Articles of Faith New Muslims

Islam & Life’s Struggles: What Is Missing in Your life?

nature seat

What is standing between you and God?

What do you struggle with in life? Do you ever wonder what is really missing in your life?

What is standing between you and true peace; between you and God?

In what do you believe? Do you really believe the things you believe in? Are you a true believer? And how do you know you are one? What should we do to enhance our faith?

Do you feel God’s love? Are you struggling with perfecting your faith and getting really close to Allah?

Have you asked yourself these questions before?

Some fellow American Muslims were asked these and other similar questions and here are their responses…

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Source: ibn.net

 

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New Muslims Reflections

Emmanuel Adebayor : I Am A Muslim and That’s Why

Emmanuel Adebayor

Now I believe am a true follower of Jesus.

Emmanuel Adebayor, the Togolese international football star, is now a Muslim. His conversion went viral in the early days of the Ramadan this year after a video was posted online showing the Tottenham Hotspurs striker, 30, clothed in a white robe, while taking his Shahadah (the Islamic Declaration of Faith).

The story was doubted particularly as the Togo football star was known as a practicing Christian with him posting pictures of himself with a priest to Facebook with captions praising God.

It was until the former Arsenal, Man City and Real Madrid forward has all confirmed his recent conversion to Islam in a new post wishing fellow Muslims a happy `Eid along with his manner of dressing.

“SEA, to all my Muslim families: may the blessings of Allah fill your life with happiness and open all the doors of success now and always. Eid Mubarak! ?À toutes mes familles Musulmanes: que les bénédictions d’Allah remplissent votre vie de joie et vous ouvre les portes du succès, maintenant et à jamais. Eid Mubarak! #GodFirst #EverythingSecond #belief #OneGod #HappyEid #EidMubarak #GoodLife #GodIsGood #GoodOverEvil #LifesGood”

The soccer star shared a message on Instagram along with a photo of himself wearing the popular Arabian white thawb and an ankle-length white shirt. He covered his head with a shemagh, a heavy red and white scarf-like head cover.

In the past few months Sheyi Emmanuel Adebayor has been releasing online family issues and how he has been dealing with them as well as vice versa.

As days, weeks, months stretched on, he was reported to have dumped his Christian faith and be a Muslim.

That’s Why I Became Muslim

In his expected usual self, he released the reasons why he converted to Islam.

Check out his reasons

I got 13 valid reasons why and how Muslims are like Jesus (peace be upon him) and true followers of Jesus than most Christians believe:

1- Jesus (peace be upon him) taught that there is only One God and Only God should be worshipped as taught in Deut 6:4, Mark 12:29. Muslims also believe this as taught in the Qur’an, verse 4:171:

O People of the Scripture! Do not exaggerate in your religion nor utter aught concerning Allah save the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, and a spirit from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers, and say not “Three” – Cease! (it is) better for you! – Allah is only One Allah. (An-Nisaa’ 4:171)

2- Jesus didn’t eat pork as taught in Leviticus 11:7 , and neither do Muslims as taught in the Qur’an:

Say: I find not in that which is revealed unto me aught prohibited to an eater that he eat thereof, except it be carrion, or blood poured forth, or swine flesh. (Al-An`am 6:145)

3- Jesus greeted with the words “as-salamu `alaykum” (Peace be upon you) in John 20:21. Muslims also greet each other this way.

4- Jesus always said “God Willing” (in sha’ Allah), Muslims say this too before doing anything as taught in the Qur’an:

And say not of anything, “I shall do it tomorrow,” without adding, “if God wills.” (Al-Kahf 18:23-24)

5- Jesus washed his face, hands, and feet before praying. The Muslims do the same.

6- Jesus and other prophets of the Bible prayed with their head to the ground (see Matthew 26:39). Muslims do too as taught in the Qur’an:

O Mary! Be obedient to your Lord, prostrate ourself and bow with those who bow (in worship). (Aal `Imran 3:43)

7- Jesus had a beard and wore a thawb. It is Sunnah for Muslim men to do the same.

8- Jesus followed the law and believed in all the prophets, (see Matthew 5:17). Muslims do too as taught in the Qur’an in two verses:

Say (O Muhammad): “We believe in Allah, and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and in (the Books) given to Moses, Jesus, and the prophets, from their Lord: We make no distinction between one and another among them, and to Allah do we bow our will (in Islam).” (Aal `Imran 3:84)

The Messenger believes in that which hath been revealed to him from his Lord and (so do) believers. Each one believeth in Allah and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers – We make no distinction between any of His messengers. (Al-Baqarah 2:285)

9- Jesus’ mother, Maryam (Mary) (May Allah be pleases with her) dressed modestly by fully covering her body and wearing a headscarf (hijab) as found in 1 Timothy 2:9, Genesis 24:64-65, and Corinthians 11:6. Muslim women modestly dress the same as taught:

O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go abroad). That will be better, so that they may be recognized and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. (Al-Ahzab 33:59)

10- Jesus and other prophets of the Bible fasted up to 40 days (see Exodus 34:28, Daniel 10:2-6. 1Kings 19:8, and Matthew 4:1-Muslims do so also during the month of Ramadan. Muslims are required to fast the full obligatory 30 days (see Qur’an 2:183), and others take it a step further by fasting an additional 6 days to increase their rewards.

11- Jesus taught to say “Peace to this house” when entering it (see Luke 10:5), and to also greet the people in the house with “peace be unto you”.

Muslims do exactly what Jesus did and taught. When we enter our homes and the homes of others we say “bismillah” (in the name of Allah) and also greet with “as-salamu `alaykum” (peace be upon you) as taught in the Qur’an:

But if you enter houses, salute each other – a greeting of blessing and purity as from Allah. (An-Nur 24:61)

12- Jesus was circumcised. Circumcision is 1 of the 5 fitrah (pure nature) in Islam, so Muslim men are required to be circumcised. According to the Bible in Luke 2:21, Jesus was eight days old when he was circumcised. In the Torah, Allah/God stated to the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) that it is an “Everlasting covenant” (see Genesis 17:13).

In the Qur’an verse 16:123 Muslims are required to follow the religion of Abraham. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “The Prophet Abraham circumcised himself when he was eighty years old.” (Al-Bukhari, Muslim, and Ahmad).

13- Jesus (peace be upon him) spoke Aramaic and called God ”Elah”, which is pronounced the same as “Allah”. Aramaic is an ancient, Biblical language. It is one of the Semitic languages that also include Hebrew, Arabic, Ethiopic and the ancient Assyrian and Babylonian language of Akkadian.

The Aramaic ”Elah” and the Arabic “Allah” are the same.

The Aramaic “Elah” is derived from the Arabic “Allah”, and it means “GOD”. “Allah” in Arabic also means ”God”, the Supreme GOD Almighty. You can easily see the similarity in their pronunciation so this concludes that the God of Jesus is also the God of the Muslims, of all mankind, and all that exist.

Now tell me who is the real follower of Jesus (peace be upon him)? Obviously Muslims.

Now I believe am a true follower of Jesus.

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Source: The Herald and other websites.

 

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Ethics & Values New Muslims

What Does Islam Teach about Justice?

(Al-Ma’idah 5:8)

the justice ordained by Him calls for equal understanding and peaceable treatment of everyone, with no discrimination.

The true justice described in the Qur’an commands man to behave justly, not discriminating between people, protecting others’ rights and not permitting violence, no matter what the circumstances, to side with the oppressed against the oppressor and to help the needy.

This justice calls for the rights of both parties to be protected when reaching a decision in a dispute, assessing all aspects of an incident, setting aside all prejudices, being objective, honest, merciful and compassionate. In the event one fails to display any of these characteristics or attaches greater importance to a particular one, then it becomes hard to exercise true justice.

For instance, someone who cannot assess events in a moderate way, and who is swayed by his emotions and feelings, will fail to arrive at sound decisions and will remain under the influence of those feelings. However, someone who rules with justice needs to set all his personal feelings and views aside. He needs to treat all parties with justice when they ask for help, to side with what is right under all circumstances, and not to diverge from the path of honesty and truthfulness.

Justice in the Qur’an

A person should incorporate the values of the Qur’an into his soul in such a way that he may be able to consider the interests of other parties before his own and maintain justice, even if this harms his own interests.

You who believe! Show integrity for the sake of Allah, bearing witness with justice. Do not let hatred for a people incite you into not being just. Be just. That is closer to piety. Be careful of (your duty to) Allah. Allah is aware of what you do. (Al-Ma’idah 5:8)

As it is suggested in the above verse, Allah knows everything a man does. A person who fears Allah and who is aware that he will have to account for his deeds on the Day of Judgment, issues his commands in a just way in order to earn the good pleasure of Allah. He knows that all his words and thoughts will be judged on the Day of Judgment and will be rewarded accordingly.

For this reason, what one has to do to earn the good pleasure of Allah, to be saved from the torment of Hell and to attain the infinite favors of Paradise is to fully live by the Qur’an. In order to attain this morality, everyone must make personal efforts and set aside all his selfish desires and personal interests and adopt the guidance of justice, compassion, love and peace.

Allah gives a detailed description of true justice in the Qur’an and informs us that all sorts of disagreements can be solved by the maintenance of justice. In a society made up of righteous administrators and just people, it is obvious that all problems can be readily overcome.

In the Qur’an, Allah gives a detailed description of justice and informs believers of the attitude they have to adopt in the face of incidents they encounter and of the ways to exercise justice.

Such guidance is a great comfort to believers and a mercy from Allah. For this reason, those who believe are responsible for exercising justice in an undivided manner both to earn Allah‘s approval and to lead their lives in peace and security.

Justice Should Be Exercised Equally Among All People, With No Consideration of Language, Race, or Ethnicity

A close examination of developments all over the world reveals that the performance of justice varies according to place, time and people. For instance, in some societies, the color of someone’s skin influences decisions. Even under the very same circumstances, the same decision may not apply to a white and a black man.

In some societies, race is of great importance to people. In the 20th century, Hitler’s annihilation of millions of people solely because he deemed the Aryan race superior to other races is a good example of this. In our day, too, there are people being subjected to cruel and unjust treatment because of the color of their skin or their race. In the United States and South Africa, black people were for many years treated as second-class citizens, and savage disputes raged in many Asian and African countries simply because of racial differences.

The fact is, however, that Allah reveals in the verses of the Qur’an that one of the pieces of wisdom behind the creation of different peoples and nations is to allow them “to come to know one another” (Al-Hujurat 49:13).

scale of Justice

Those who believe are responsible for exercising justice in an undivided manner both to earn Allah‘s approval, to lead their lives in peace and security.

Different nations or peoples, all of whom are the servants of Allah, should get to know one another, that is, learn about their different cultures, languages, traditions and abilities. In brief, the purpose of the creation of different races and nations is not conflict and war but cultural richness.

Such variation is a bounty of Allah‘s creation. The fact that someone is taller than someone else or that his skin is yellow or white neither makes him superior to others nor is something to feel ashamed of.

Every trait a person has is a result of Allah‘s purposeful creation, but in the sight of Allah, these variations have no ultimate importance. A believer knows that someone attains superiority only by fearing Allah and in the strength of his faith in Allah. This fact is related in the following verse:

Mankind! We created you from a male and female, and made you into peoples and tribes so that you might come to know each other. The noblest among you in Allah’s sight is the one with the most piety. Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Al-Hujurat 49:13)

As Allah informs us in that verse, the justice ordained by Him calls for equal understanding and peaceable treatment of everyone, with no discrimination.

Perfect Exemplar of Justice

In his time, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) treated people of different races and places with the utmost justice. He severely criticized subjecting people to different treatment because of their race, and attributed such acts to the “morality of the ignorant.”

The Prophet Muhammad reminded his people that people in ignorant societies may harbour enmity towards other people because of their color or race, and warned all Muslims against such an attitude, which is described as “ugly” in the Qur’an.

1,400 years ago, all these primitive ideas were abolished through the Qur’an, which was sent to mankind as a mercy, and it was proclaimed that all people, regardless of their color, race and language, are equal. The Prophet Muhammad criticized the unbecoming practice of people of ignorant societies who assessed others according to their race and color.

He cautioned the Arab people in these words in his last address (Farewell Sermon) to them:

“An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over a black, nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action.”

With these words, the Prophet Muhammad once again reminded all mankind the fact related in Surat  Al-Hujurat verse 13; that superiority among people is attainable only through fear of Allah.

Islam, as the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) also stresses, completely abolishes all these primitive ideas. In an environment where the values of Islam are established, a man cannot be accused, subjected to discriminatory treatment or oppressed because he is a Jew, a Christian, a black or an Indian.

Allah decides what race a person should belong to. He shaped man in the most perfect manner. Man’s duty is always to be just, loving, respectful, compassionate to and at peace with everyone.

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The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “Justice and Compassion in the Qur’an”. 

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Ethics & Values New Muslims

The People of the Book in the Qur’an

Religion of Peace

the Qur'an

While they rely basically on Allah‘s revelation, the People of the Book- as the Qur’an reveals- have moral precepts and know what is lawful and what is not.

There are many nations in the world with different colors, creeds, and languages. These differences have been a cause of enmity throughout history in societies that did not live by religious moral values.

The perceived wisdom is that people can never manage to co-exist and that disputes arise wherever such differences exist.

However, this is a great misconception and the facts are otherwise. In fact, it is Allah Who created human beings in different communities and in the Qur’an, He calls all people to peace and security:

O You who believe! Enter absolutely into peace (Islam). Do not follow in the footsteps of Satan. He is an outright enemy to you. (Al-Baqarah 2:208)

Allah calls to the Abode of Peace and He guides whom He wills to a straight path. (Yunus 10:25)

All divine religions revealed through Allah‘s messengers summon people to have faith in Allah, recommend them to display moral perfection and warn them against bad morals.

Despite the fact that all divine religions, except for Islam, are distorted, it is evident today that some of their messages are fundamentally the same. That is why these conflicts, which are stirred up artificially, lack reasonable and logical grounds.

As stated in the verse above, the main reason for unrest among people is not complying with Allah‘s summoning but following in the ”footsteps of Satan.” (Al-Baqarah 2:208)

Believers’ harboring hostile feelings to other people who have faith in Allah is a moral weakness that displeases Allah, Who prohibits all believers from displaying such feelings. He calls on people to establish peace and friendship.

In the Qur’an revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, the last Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), Allah gives believers explicit commands and recommendations on this subject.

Their Status in the Qur’an

In the Qur’an, Jews and Christians, the members of the religions who abide by the Divine Books revealed by Allah, are called the ”People of the Book”. What Muslims’ views of the People of the Book should be, their relations, and the status of the People of the Book in social life are described in verses and the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad in detail.

The People of the Book, while they rely basically on Allah‘s revelation, have moral precepts and know what is lawful and what is not. For this reason, if one of the People of the Book cooks some food, it is lawful for Muslims to eat it.

In the same way, permission has been given to a Muslim man to marry a woman from among the People of the Book. On this subject Allah commands:

Today all good things have been made lawful for you. And the food of those given the Book is also lawful for you and your food is lawful for them. So are chaste women from among the believers and chaste women of those given the Book before you, once you have given them their dowries in marriage, not in fornication or taking them as lovers. But as for anyone who disbelieves, his actions will come to nothing and in the Hereafter he will be among the losers. (Al-Ma’idah 5:5)

Throughout Islamic history, the People of the Book have been always treated with compassion in Muslim societies. This was particularly evident in the Ottoman Empire.

It is a well known fact that the Jews, whose rights were denied and were exiled by the Catholic Kingdom of Spain, took refuge in the lands of the Ottoman Empire.

When Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror captured Istanbul, he granted both Christians and Jews all their fundamental rights. Throughout Ottoman history, Jews were regarded as a People of the Book and enjoyed peaceful coexistence with Muslims.

How Should a Muslim Regard Judaism?

As exemplified above, throughout his life, the Prophet (peace be upon him) treated the People of the Book with the utmost understanding and justice.

As a result of this noble attitude, Abdullah ibn Salam, a prominent rabbi, and his friends converted to Islam and came to believe in his prophethood.

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Source: The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “Justice and Compassion in the Qur’an”.

 

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Ethics & Values New Muslims

How to Deal with Unjust People?

flower among thorns

A person of faith knows that he will attain the pleasure of Allah only when he acts justly.

Hatred Felt Towards a Community Does Not Prevent Believers From Exercising Justice

Hatred and anger are the major sources of evil, and are likely to prevent people from making just decisions, thinking soundly and conducting themselves rationally.

Some people can readily inflict all kinds of injustice on people for whom they feel enmity. They may accuse these people of acts they have never committed or bear false witness against them, although their innocence is known to them.

Only on account of such enmity, many people may be subjected to unbearable oppression. Some people avoid bearing witness in favor of people they disagree with, although they know they are innocent, and they keep evidence which would reveal their innocence hidden.

Furthermore, they take pleasure in the misery these people face, their encounters with injustice or great suffering. Their greatest worry, on the other hand, is that justice should be done and these peoples’ innocence proved.

For these reasons, it is very hard for people in corrupt societies to trust one another. People worry about being harmed by someone else all the time.

Having lost mutual trust, they also lose their human feelings, such as compassion, brotherhood and co-operation, and start hating one another.

According to God’s Commands

However, the feelings someone holds in his heart towards a person or community should never influence a believer’s decisions.

No matter how immoral or hostile the person he is considering may be, the believer sets all these feelings aside and acts and makes his decisions justly and recommends that which is just. His feelings towards that person cast no shadow over his wisdom and conscience. His conscience always inspires him to comply with Allah‘s commands and advice, and not to abandon good manners, because this is Allah‘s command in the Qur’an. In Surat Al-Ma’idah, it is related as follows:

You who believe! Show integrity for the sake of Allah, bearing witness with justice. Do not let hatred for a people incite you into not being just. Be just. That is closer to faith. Heed Allah (alone). Allah is aware of what you do. (Al-Ma’idah 5:8)

As is related in the verse, displaying a just attitude is what most reflects having fear of Allah. A person of faith knows that he will attain the pleasure of Allah only when he acts justly.

Every person who witnesses his or her good manners will trust this person, feel comfortable in their presence and trust them with any responsibility or task. Such people are treated with respect even by their enemies. Their attitude may even lead some people to have faith in Allah.

Our Exemplar

gentle flower

A Muslim is responsible for being understanding, forgiving, just and humane towards people, regardless of whom they may be.

The best example to follow for believers in our day is also the actions of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as described in the Qur’an. Similar to the blessed period of the first community of Islam – an age of well-being when people in general adhered to the Qur’an – in our day, too, people of different  beliefs such as Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, atheists, idolaters and pagans live together.

A Muslim is responsible for being understanding, forgiving, just and humane towards people, regardless of whom they may be. It is probable that in time everyone will place his faith in Allah, become a Muslim and surrender himself to Allah.

A believer should always bear this fact in mind. The responsibility of a believer is to summon people to Allah‘s religion with a favorable, peaceful attitude.

The decision to follow divine guidance and have faith rests with another party. Compelling a person to have faith and forcing him to do things are against the Qur’an.

Allah states the following about this:

There is no compulsion in religion. True guidance has become clearly distinct from error. Anyone who rejects false deities and has belief in Allah has grasped the Firmest Handhold, which will never give way. Allah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing. (Al-Baqarah 2: 256)

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Source: The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “Justice and Compassion in the Qur’an”. 

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Conversion Stories New Muslims

German Footballer Danny Blum Converts to Islam

Danny Blum

“Prayer calms my soul”, Blum told Bild newspaper

German Footballer Danny Blum has announced his reversion to Islam, the religion he describes as of hope and strength.

“Islam gives me hope and strength”, Blum told Bild newspaper on January 26.

Entering the fold of Islam was a momentous turning point for the young man who- in his own words- was “short-tempered, erratic and did not know where to belong”.

“Prayer calms my soul”, he said.

Blum joined FC Nürnberg in Bavaria last July. The team plays in the Second Division of professional football in Germany, the Bundesliga.

Shortly after joining the team, he injured his knee and was forced eventually to take six months off.

A few weeks ago, he took the decision to revert to Islam, joining the world’s fastest growing religion.

“Living in the lap of luxury. Every weekend make alarm. No responsibility for anything. And what actually comes after retirement?” the questions came to Blum as he sat at home.

“I have visited a mosque and I immediately risen the heart. I felt this is something for me and wanted to know more,” Blum told Bild.

Ever since, he prays five times a day and eat halal food. Informing his parents with his decision, the 24-year-old player said they were scare at first.

“They are devout Christians. But soon they said that I have to go that route if I believe that it is right,” he said.

May Allah bless him and keep him strong and firm on this true path. Ameen.

The video below talks about that …

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Source: thenewstribe.com

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Conversion Stories New Muslims

Finding God: Why More and More Scots are Turning to Islam

A growing number of Scots are converting to Islam – with the majority young women.

Scots muslims

Glasgow Central Mosque alone is now seeing more than 200 Scots a year ‘revert’.

Glasgow Central Mosque alone is now seeing more than 200 Scots a year ‘revert’. Due to the rising number of Scots finding Islam, mosques across the country are also setting up support groups for new ‘reverts’. Many are fearful of abuse and intimidation.

Reversion is the preferred term within Islam for those who ‘convert’ – as Muslims believe everyone is born believing in Allah.

From Christianity

The Sunday Herald spoke to Hannah, a 25-year-old administrator from Glasgow who recently “reverted”. Hannah asked for her surname to be kept confidential. Though brought up without any particular faith, Hannah is one of a growing number of Scots who are turning to Islam despite what many see as a “demonization” of the religion.

“I’d done a degree in comparative religion and had to analyze all the religious texts,” said Hannah. “I went away from that thinking that maybe I should be a Christian.

“But a few months later, while meditating, I found myself pulled in the direction of Islam. After that I started reading again, but this time in a more emotional way. I found, I preferred the simplicity of Islam.”

After mulling it over for six months, she decided to revert. In July this year, she visited Glasgow Central Mosque to take the Shahadah (the Declaration of Faith) in front of two witnesses, in which Allah is recognized as the only God.

Her conversion was shared online by the Glasgow Central Mosque along with others including 20-year-old Jade from the Shetland Isles, and Katie, also 20 and an administration worker from Glasgow, who made her Shahadah last month.

Increasing Influx

Glasgow Central Mosque says numbers of “reverts” have been gradually rising and they are now dealing with up to four conversions a week. Along with the Edinburgh Central Mosque, it has now started support groups for new Muslims.

The total number of converts is not known, but according to a report by Faith Matters, 5,200 people now join the UK-wide Muslim population of three million every year. Scotland’s community is significantly smaller at 90,000 people, over one-third of whom live in Glasgow.

Rizy Mohammad, a co-ordinator at the Glasgow Central Mosque, said: “We are seeing an influx, particularly in the number of women expressing an interest in Islam. I don’t think there is one reason for it but it’s interesting that after 9/11, where Muslims were blamed for the bombing of the twin towers, a lot of people started doing their own research. Many found out more about Islam that led them to different conclusions.

“There is also the spiritual dimension. They’ve been part of the material world, done the shopping thing and now they are looking for a deeper connection.”

Scots & Islamophobia

But for many reverts, it is not an easy transition. High-profile conversions of white Muslims such as Richard Dart, who is serving a six-year jail sentence for plotting an attack on soldiers in Royal Wootton Bassett, mean alarm bells often sound for family members.

“Because of the extent of Islamophobia in the media, my mum, who is a Pagan, thought that I was going to join IS,” said Hannah.

“People see the violent, loud things. They don’t see the quiet Muslims who aren’t doing anything bad. My brother told her not to be so ridiculous and after about a week she came round. Now she makes sure that I don’t drink when I come to her house and even cooks halal for me.”

Hannah has also found some of the more conservative aspects of the religion, which still segregates men and women at places of worship, difficult to deal with. She admits she has taken off her hijab in parts of the city where she perceived the reaction to Muslim men and women wearing full traditional dress to be less than supportive. Since converting she has not been swimming due to concerns about covering up, and finds it hard cycling while wearing a hijab.

A 2013 Cambridge University study about women’s experience of conversion claimed it was “not for the faint-hearted”.

“I think in Islam men and women are equal but different,” said Hannah. “But I also think there are some cultural issues with equality.”

Inner Peace… Inner Power

Jay (not his real name), who converted less than three months ago after a near-death experience with drugs, said that while some friends had asked if he was going to travel to Syria and fight for IS, most people have been positive about his decision. Before his conversion, he said, he worked and partied too hard, and lived for the weekend.

“One of my colleagues in particular was keen to know why I converted,” said Jay. “He wanted to know how I could give up the clubs, drink and girlfriends, and now spend my time praying.

“I told him that now I had inner peace. I could now go to sleep at night. A few weeks later he also became Muslim.”

The Convert’s Need for Support

However, other converts have been left disillusioned. Dawud Duncan, originally from Oban, who became Muslim nine years ago, believes the lack of support from fellow “heritage Muslims” – people born into Islam -has led some reverts to leave their newfound faith.

“When a person takes the Shahadah they are treated like a superstar and everyone wants to know their story,” he said.

“However, within a week they can be left to their own devices. This can make the individual feel very isolated as they are often caught between two communities.”

Duncan, who now lives in Glasgow, currently hosts an online radio program for converts and also aims to set up a support and advocacy group. He hopes that issues raised by the group can be taken up by the leadership of the mosque to help avoid future problems.

“New Muslims have so much to offer the Muslim community and Scotland,” said Duncan. “This would include a fresh perspective and a deeper understanding of the cultural issues our society faces. Converts find it easier to explain Islam to a Scottish audience.”

His experience chimes with that of Saleem Mcgroarty, 43, from Edinburgh, a member of the Edinburgh Muslim Community Association who was raised a Catholic and converted to Islam at 26.

He no longer attends his local mosque due to concerns about its links to Saudi Arabia, a country with a very conservative approach to Islam, and has found it hard to integrate.

Mcgroarty said: “I think there should be some emotional and community support, a buddy network; the things you really need when you are moving into another world.”

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Source: The Herald

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Articles of Faith New Muslims

Prophet Abraham & the Trial of Faith: Doubt & Trust

What trials did Prophet Abraham and his family go through? How did they come out of them? What is the difference between the Qur’anic and biblical accounts of the story?

Prophet Abraham & the Trial of Faith

Beyond his human grief, Abraham develops a relationship with God based on faithfulness, reconciliation, peace, and trust.

There are simple facts alone illustrate the remarkable bond linking Muhammad’s life to Abraham’s (peace be upon them). Yet it is the spiritual lineage that even more dearly reveals the exceptional nature of this bond.

The whole Abrahamic experience unveils the essential dimension of faith in the One. Abraham, who is already very old and has only recently been blessed with a child, must undergo the trial of separation and abandonment, which will take Hagar and their child, Ishmael, very close to death.

Doubt & Trust

His faith is trust in God: he hears God’s command-as does Hagar-and he answers it despite his suffering, never ceasing to invoke God and rely on Him.

Hagar questioned Abraham about the reasons for such behavior; finding it was God’s command, she willingly submitted to it. She asked, then trusted, then accepted, and by doing so she traced the steps of the profound ‘active acceptance’ of God’s will: to question with one’s mind, to understand with one’s intelligence, and to submit with one’s heart.

In the course of those trials, beyond his human grief and in fact through the very nature of that grief, Abraham develops a relationship with God based on faithfulness, reconciliation, peace, and trust. God tries him but is always speaking to him, inspiring him and strewing his path with signs that calm and reassure him.

Several years after this abandonment in the desert. Abraham was to experience another trial: God asked him to sacrifice his first-born son, Ishmael.

Abraham in the Qur’an

The Islamic tradition is that God asks Abraham to sacrifice Ishmael; in the Bible, the tradition is that Abraham is asked to sacrifice his second son, Isaac.

This is how the Qur’an recounts the story:

So We gave him (Abraham) the good news: the birth of a sweet-tempered son. Then, when (the son) was old enough to walk with him, he said: “0 my son! I have seen in a dream that I offer you in sacrifice. Now see what you think!” (The son) said: “0 my father! Do as you are commanded; you will find me, if God so wills, one of the steadfast” So when they had both submitted (to God), and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead, We called out to him: “0 Abraham! You have already fulfilled the dream!- thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For this was a clear trial.” And we ransomed him with a momentous sacrifice. And we left for him among generations (to come) in later times: peace and salutation to Abraham! (As-Saffat 37:101-109 )

The trial is a terrible one: for the sake of his love and faith in God, Abraham must sacrifice his son, despite his fatherly love. The trial of faith is here expressed in this tension between the two loves.

Abraham confides in Ishmael, and it is his own son, the object of sacrifice, whose comforting words to his father are like a confirming sign: “0 my father! Do as you are commanded; you will find me, if God so wills, one of the steadfast.”

As was the case a few years earlier with Hagar, Abraham finds in others signs that enable him to face the trial. Such signs, expressing the presence of the divine at the heart of the trial, have an essential role in the experience of faith and shape the mode of being with oneself and with God.

When God causes His messenger to undergo a terrible trial and at the same time associates that trial with signs of His presence and support (the confirming words of his wife or child, a vision, a dream, an inspiration, etc.), He educates Abraham in faith: Abraham doubts himself and his own strength and faith, but at the same time the signs prevent him from doubting God. This teaches Abraham humility and recognition of the Creator.

Then Abraham is tempted by deep doubt about himself, his faith, and the truth of what he hears and understands, the inspirations and confirmations of Hagar and Ishmael (whom he loves but sacrifices in the name of divine love) enable him not to doubt God, His presence, and His goodness. Doubt about self is thus allied to deep trust in God.

In the Bible

Indeed, trials of faith are never tragic in Islamic tradition, and in this sense, the Qur’an’s story of Abraham is basically different from me Bible’s when it comes to the experience of sacrifice. One can read in Genesis:

After these things God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here am I.” (God) said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering upon one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” …

And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it on Isaac his son; and he took in his hand the fire and me knife. So they went both of them together. And Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father!” And he said, “Here am I, my son.” (Isaac) said. “Behold me fire and the wood; but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham said, “God Himself will provide the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” So they went both of them together. (Genesis, 22:1- 2 and 6-8)

Abraham must sacrifice his son, and here he experiences this trial in absolute solitude. To his son’s direct question, “Where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” Abraham answers elliptically. He alone answers God’s call.

This difference between the two accounts may seem slight, yet it has essential consequences for the very perception of faith, for me trial of faith, and for human beings’ relation to God .

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The article is an excerpt from Dr. Tariq Ramadan’s In the Footsteps of the Prophet: Lessons from the Life of Muhammad, Oxford University Press (2007).

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