A R Rahman (Born (former) Dileep Kumar) is one of the world’s all time top selling recording artist and has sold more then 400 million records. He has sold more records then anyone in the history and is the considered as the greatest living legends. He has won every popular music awards in the world like Oscar, Grammy, Bafta, Golden Globe national awards.
From a non-believer to a worshiper; from polytheist to monotheist; from Dileep Kumar to Allah Rakha Rahman, the famous music wizard has come a long way. This journey, he says, has completely changed his outlook toward life. Rahman is well-known in India. He revolutionized Bollywood music, giving it a new direction. But in Mina (during Hajj), the man was spiritually charged, relaxing in his camp after Isha prayers, remarkably very far from the rhythm of success.
He said that in India’s film world, people change Muslim names to Hindu ones to get success but, “in my case it was just the opposite from Dileep Kumar to Allah Rakha Rahman and I’m very proud of it.”
Rahman’s music is everywhere: in discotheques, in malls, at wedding parties, on satellite channels, in taxis. He is a celebrity in his own right. His face adorns the cover of every album he cuts. Autograph hunters hound him wherever he goes. A couple of companies have tried to lure him into product endorsements, but he refused, preferring to distance himself from the glare and the sometimes self-indulgent afterglow of fame. Continue reading
My journey to Islam is, it safe to say, not the usual one. Most white converts I have met came from a liberal and very open background. My upbringing was far from this. Both of my parents were in the US military and my upbringing was very strict. My father was very racist, and because of this, I was very racist myself until about the age of 24. I can remember as a child listening to my father lambast and attack Arabs and Muslims and bash the religion, their way of life, and their race. As this was the way I was raised this is the position I took as well. I had a very troubled childhood, as the above can only begin to describe.
My father was an alcoholic and a very physically abusive man. I grew up with the constant fear of violence against myself, my mother, and my brother and sister. Coming from such a background it only seemed natural that I seek a group of people to replace the family life that I did not get at home. The problem is, with the way I was raised, the people I sought this companionship from were the worst of the worst.
For several years I was heavily involved in the racist skinhead movement. As with anything else in my life, I was not content to be a follower, but always enjoyed taking the lead, and my involvement in the neo-nazi skinhead movement was the same. I was well known and feared in the scene in the town where I grew up. My longing for family and friends, however, never killed the seed in my heart that what I was doing was wrong, that it was unjust. I remember a Mexican schoolmate of mine asking me when I was 16 “why do you hang out with those loosers, you are better than that.” He was right, but I guess there was a part of me that, even though I hated my father for what he was doing to the family, that I wanted to be just like him. That is where my racism and hatred came from. The situation at home became worse for me so I was forced to move out on my own. I think from this moment this is what sealed my future as a Muslim – getting away from my father, the hatred that he felt, and experiencing the world and people on my own. Continue reading
When someone asked me recently how I came into the fold of Islam, I was taken aback and a bit surprised. For I have never thought of my coming into Islam as having one critical turning point. When did I first question Catholicism? When did I first want to become a Muslim?
The answers to these questions and many others require more thought than I could have ever imagined. To really answer these questions I have to start at the very beginning so that you understand the point to where I got in my life that led me to finally accept the truth of Islam. I became a Muslim at the age of 67, and I thank God that He has blessed me to become a believer in Islam. “Those whom Allah (in His plan) wills to guide,- He opens their breast to Islam; those whom He wills to leave straying,- He makes their breast close and constricted, as if they had to climb up to the skies: thus does Allah (heap) the penalty on those who refuse to believe.” (Qur’an 6: 125)
I was raised in a strict Roman Catholic home, the middle daughter of three children. My father worked hard and long every day. He would leave early in the morning each day and would return late at night. All of this so that my mother could stay home and take care of my sisters and me. One very sad and unfortunate day my mother told us that my father had been in a car accident. He passed away suddenly and our whole world turned upside down. With all the changes that were taking place, my mother told us that she would now have to go back to work. Continue reading
Incredible Journey of Genessa Bingham, a former Marine corp. Her journey took her from being abused as child to the battlefield of Afghanistan to the night clubs in Las Vegas and to the hospital bed, where she accepted Islam as the one and only religion which gave her solace and meaning to her life. Read her story in her own words.
My name is Genessa Bingham, I’ve been catholic, Mormon, Christian, and even wiccan. I am 25 years old, female, college student, born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
As a child I was raised through many religions ranging from Catholicism, Mormonism, all kinds of Christian denominations. Just because I was raised in religious households did not mean that I had an easy road or good upbringing. My mom did all she could to shield me from the physical, emotional and mental abuse that my biological father dished out on a daily basis, but she also had no idea of the sexual abuse I was receiving from my grandfather. Growing up in this situation it was hard to have faith, especially because my dad justified the severe beatings with the “spare the rod spoil the child” praise that he said was in the bible. Continue reading
Abdul and Asim giving Street Da’wah @ UK
From Prison to dawah!!!!! Amazing story of two brothers Asim and Abdul who reverted to Islam in British prison and how Islam transformed their lives to become not only a better person but also a true Muslim who spend their time and energy in propagating the message of Allah and help other people to be a better Muslim.
Abdul Kareem and Asim (revert names) were serving Jail term in UK when they met for the first time. Abdul was serving a 2 year jail term and Asim was serving 13 months jail term. Jail was the place where they decided to change for better and get away from the earlier life and hence they chose Islam to accept Islam, they chose to leave their past and start new lives as Muslims. Asim started praying 5 times day and giving adhan (call to Prayer) for the brothers, whereas Abdul kareem was seeking more knowledge through reading books. Continue reading
Amazing story of Brittnye from Texas, US, whose search for truth led her to Islam. Her tests and trials helped her to awaken of her soul and mind leading to peace and solace in her life through Islam. Read her amazing journey in her own words
My Name is Brittnye, I am 25 years old, and I have lived in Texas my entire life. I am the oldest of 3 children. I have always been a spiritual person, and though my family is Christian, I began to read Qur`an when I was 14, as a way to understand and reaffirm my Christian beliefs. I had always felt that there was something missing from the practice that my family and I had when I was small, so my original intention in investigating religions had more to do with finding a branch of Christianity that suited me, as there are a great many and they are all different. This led me on a path to attempt to understand all religions, so I began to study Hinduism, Judaism, and eventually Islam, and while I felt there were many similarities and valid points in all of them, the one that spoke to me most was Islam. It was so strange to me to discover a religion that already believed what I knew in my heart, but as I mentioned before, my entire family is very conservative Christian, and I knew that I could not practice theway I wanted to should I still be living with them.