Tag Archives: convert
NAIROBI – A Kenyan bishop has converted to Islam and turned his church into a mosque, saying that he could not stand how women wore indecently to his church. “My church was known as Nyalgosi God’s Call Church of East Africa, but it is now Nyalgosi Jamia Mosque,” Bishop Charles Okwany, now Ismael Okwany, told […]
Before I converted (or reverted) to Islam, there were many things that I didn’t know about the religion. Islam is very much a way of life. Undoubtedly, there were many things that I needed to change; my habits, my daily routines, my meals. The list goes on. But every step I take towards this change […]
So, I just passed my two year anniversary of converting to Islam last month, and today I wanted to share some of my reflections and thoughts as I look back on the past two years. Firstly, I can’t believe how fast two years has gone! And looking back even just one year, I can’t believe […]
Arguably, the disease of hatred is one of the most devastating forces in the world. But the force that is infinitely more powerful is love. Love is an attribute of God; hate is not. A name of God mentioned in the Quran is al-Wadud, the Loving one. Hate is the absence of love, and only through love can hatred be removed from the heart. In a profound and beautiful hadith, the Prophet said, “None of you has achieved faith until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself” [Bukhari, Muslim]. The 13th-century scholar Imam al-Nawawi comments on this hadith saying:
When the Prophet says “brother” we should interpret this as universal brotherhood, which includes Muslims and non-Muslims. For one should desire for his brother non-Muslim that he enter into the state of submission with his Lord [Islam]. And for his brother Muslim, he should love for him the continuation of guidance and that he remain in submission. Because of this, it is considered highly recommended and divinely rewarding to pray for a non- Muslim’s guidance. The word “love” here refers to a desire for good and benefit to come to others. This love is celestial or spiritual love and not earthly love or human love. For human nature causes people to desire harm to befall their enemies and to discriminate against those who are unlike them [in creed, color, or character]. But men must oppose their nature and pray for their brothers and desire for others what they desire for themselves. Moreover, whenever a man does not desire good for his brother, it is from envy. And envy is a rejection of God’s apportionment in the world. Thus, one is opposing how God meted out sustenance in concord with His wisdom. Therefore, one must oppose his own ego’s desires and seek treatment for this disease with the healing force of acceptance of the divine decree and prayer on behalf of one’s enemies in a way that suppresses the ego [nafs].
“Purification of the Heart” – Hamza Yusuf
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — Muslims in the western part of Central African Republic are being forced to hide their religion or convert to Christianity under threat of death, Amnesty International said Friday.
A Christian militia known as the anti-Balaka, who have targeted Muslims and sent tens of thousands fleeing to neighboring countries.
Muslims told Amnesty International they’ve been forced to convert or hide practices.
“We had no choice but to join the Catholic Church. The anti-balaka swore they’d kill us if we didn’t,” said a 23-year-old man in the Sangha-Mbaere prefecture, whose name was not given to protect his security.
A Muslim trader said it was effectively illegal to pray.
“We have to hide, do it quickly, and do it by ourselves,” he said.
Amnesty International said the bans are happening outside areas under the protection of United Nations peacekeepers and renewed efforts must be made to protect Muslims under threat and bring back those who have fled.
“Many of the tens of thousands of Muslim refugees who were expelled from the country in 2014 would one day like to return home, but are waiting until they can do so in a safe and sustainable manner,” the report said.