ZAYNAB'S CONVERSION STORY
From Ignorance to Islam
My upbringing did not
really include anything about God. I was christened, although I am not sure why,
I would guess that this happened as it was the 'done thing' in my family. In
addition I have vague memories of going to Sunday school, and of course the
religious education later at school, which could be re-named 'Christian
education' as no other religions ever got a look in. Without any firm religious
values, I lived my life according to my own set of moral values. Basically I
just used to drift from one point of view to the next, and do my best to 'fit
in' with whichever group of people I was with. I did have a belief in God,
although I have to admit that I did not do a lot about it. Then I met a Muslim.
This opened new channels of discussions, and re-kindled the flame of my belief
in God. Many a conversation took place on all sorts of topics, the existence of
God, Heaven and Hell, other religions, the Holy Prophet and his Family PBUT,
even topics such as what was the point of dinosaurs, and aliens.
was a muddle in my mind, question after question I asked, and to each question
there was an answer that satisfied it. I was confused though, if this religion
was so correct, why hadn't I heard about it already? What about all the kind
people I had met that were not Muslims, surely their good deeds would count? Why
do you have to become a Muslim if you live your life properly, i.e. do not
steal, commit adultery etc. etc.? As time passed I soon realised that I was just
searching for excuses. I knew that Islam was correct, but I needed to dig deep
to find the courage to change. No longer could I hide behind a wall of questions
and 'what ifs', it was time to stand up and be part of something that I believed
I was very nervous, every few minutes my stomach churned, rushes of
adrenal waves through my body. It was the night that I would declare myself a
Muslim and change the rest of my life. I was sure about my decision to revert,
but scared at the prospect at the same time, conflicting emotions and feelings
taking it in turns to pop into my head, but all along I knew that Truth would
win. The time had come, we gathered in a group. I repeated everything that the
Imam said to me, I hung onto every syllable and repeated as best I could, I was
afraid that if I didn't pronounce the Arabic words properly then my declaration
would not count, and it had to count. I went into a kind of dream world, feeling
as if this wasn't really me, I was watching someone else. The emotions started
to rise, I looked around and realised that I was not alone with my tears. My
declaration was touching the hearts of those around me. The Imam then said a
number of prayers for me and also for my family, I felt somehow indebted to him,
I felt the need to repay him in some way for what he had enabled me to become.
Tears continued to roll as this pious Imam asked me to pray for him that night.
How could one of my prayers be worth anything when compared to his? We shared a
cup of water, I was allowed to drink first, followed by all my good friends, I
was now part of what they stood for. I had been accepted.
point onwards I was a Muslim, not only had this been witnessed by those around
me, but also by all the Prophets PBUT, who I was told grace every declaration
with their presence. I felt so honoured that I could hardly believe it.
final part of the transformation was to wash. I needed to purify myself and all
my sins would now be forgiven, as if they had been washed down the plug hole
with the soapy water. It was as if I had just been born, from now on it would be
up to me.
The world now appeared differently to me. I noticed aspects of
people that I had missed before, I was much more aware of good and evil around
me. I could look back at my past and it really felt as if that wasn't me at all,
I had a feeling that I had been given a whole new life, and I had been detached
from my previous actions. This carried with it a responsibility, a desire not to
blemish my new clean record. I had so much to learn, so much to read and take
in. I had to be different towards people at work and even my own family, I had
to get rid of clothes, books and pictures, now that I had been purified I had to
make an attempt to purify my surroundings.
With the help I have had from
Allah SWT, I have now found the true path, and take the Holy Prophet and his
Family PBUT as my examples to follow, I must try and remember them with my every
thought. My only wish now is that they may remember me on the Day of Judgement.
You can email Zaynab on ZAYNAB5@AOL.COM