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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

I embraced Islam for I loved Jesus


Every personal account of someone embracing Islam is unique and special. I have shared many such accounts previously but this account is somewhat different from the rest. While others had found something peculiar in Islam and embraced it, here is an account of a young Australian Christian who embraced Islam because she loved Prophet Eesa (Jesus, peace be upon him) and found Islam closer to Christianity barring a major difference about Jesus.

She had no idea about Islam except a vague and faint image of Muslim women cloaked in heavy black covering from head to feet somewhere in the Middle East. She thought Muslim world was far from civilization where women rotted in the confines of their houses and had no rights and no careers. In fact she had not met a Muslim while in Australia and had no idea about another religion other than Christianity. All she read about Muslims was from the headlines showing Muslim terrorist and IS men beheading their captives and that they were responsible for 9/11.

And then she went to Malaysia for a University programme and her entire perception about status of women in Islam changed. "My eyes and mind were opened, when, as a journalism student, I did an article about Muslim women’s rights. That was the beginning of everything." She came across women of all ages wearing Hijab with mostly face open, while few had their face covered but still going about the business of life, working in offices and feeling happy about what they wore.

The more she interacted with fellow Muslim students, the more she knew of her ignorance about Islam. While doing an article on Rights of Muslim Women, she was amazed to find that, "Women have many rights in Islam! Muslim women are legally given rights (including divorce, land rights, monetary rights, the right to choose who to marry, etc) in the Qur’an and Hadiths hundreds of years before Western women won the same rights."

One day she went to a mosque and felt an immediate sense of calm and peace inside her. The call for prayer invoked feelings that she had never felt before. She confides that: "When I first bowed my head toward the Ka’aba, I felt home in my heart. I didn't convert to Islam in Malaysia – I did that over a year later – but it introduced me in a beautiful way to Islam and to the Oneness of God."




And that made things moving for her and she accepted Islam, though a year later and more and more readings about Islam and interacting with Muslims.

She then realized that Christianity was much closer to Islam, not only theologically but also historically. She came to know about many misconceptions about Islam but when she read about a letter written by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as to how Muslims should treat Christians with respect. It even said that if a Muslim man is married to a Christian woman, she cannot be stopped from praying in her place of worship.

She found out that Islam considers Jews and Christians as People of the Book for all three religions share the same Abrahamic roots. She was surprised to find mention of Jesus more than the mention of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). 

And then she came to know the major difference about the status of Jesus in Islam: "Take Jesus to be a prophet and not to be worshiped alongside God. Islam teaches the Oneness of God, and to worship Allah alone and we believe that Jesus taught this himself. The term ‘Allah’, by the way, is the Arabic word for ‘God’ and is not just an Islamic term. Arab Christians also call God ‘Allah’." 

Muslims consider all previous prophets as prophets of Allah and regard and revere them with respect. Even they believe in the three earlier scriptures (Psalms, Torah and Bible) as the divine scriptures. Only if Christians realize the difference of Jesus being a prophet and not a God, Islam and Christians can become one. 

Photo | Source |
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