As the news revealed that Boston suspect widowed wife was an American convert to Islam, stereotypes and misconceptions have been reignited about US women who have chosen Islam, portraying them a…s brainwashed and submissive who sacrificed their American life to satisfy their husbands.
“The moment you put on a hijab, people assume that you’ve forfeited your free will,” Lauren Schreiber, who favors traditional Islamic dress, told NBC News on Friday, April 26.
Schreiber, who became a Muslim in 2010, expected to hear comments being brainwashed after the media revealed that 24-year-old Katherine Russell, a New England doctor’s daughter, was married to Boston dead suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
Comments from former acquaintances and complete strangers immediately suggested that Russell must have been coerced and controlled by her husband.
“She was a very sweet woman, but I think kind of brainwashed by him,” reported the Associated Press, quoting Anne Kilzer, a Belmont, Mass., woman who said she knew Russell and her 3-year-old daughter.
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 “A. R Rahman Islam gives me peace”→
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 “Marc Springer; former Neo-Nazi skin head reverts to Islam”→
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 “My Incredible discovery of Islam- sister Carla”→
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 “Incredible Journey of Genessa Bingham, a former Marine corp.”→
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 “From Prison to Dawah (activist) – Journey of two revert brothers”→
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.
An amazing journey of Sister Surabhi Singh to Islam. She is brave as she decided to tell her story , fully knowing that there could be a hostile reaction from her near ones or society. She still wants to tell her story so that our brothers and sisters can learn and thank Allah to be born as a Muslim. Whereas those not yet Muslim brothers and sisters can seek some inspiration from a brave journey of awakening of her soul and mind. Read her story in her own words
My name is Surabhi Singh, now Saffiyah Subeerah, 27 years old single female living in New Delhi, India and working as a professional in a Delhi based company. I was born and raised as a Hindu in a nice and loving upper middle class family
My name is Rick Fenton and I accepted Islam in 2008. When I was in the 3rd grade, I attended Catholic school. Like we did every morning, I went to Mass and heard a sermon by a priest using a verse from the Bible as the basis. I knew about the Bible, but had never made the connection to it. All of the sermons I had heard in the two previous years of attending Catholic school had never impacted me until this particular sermon.
The verse struck a chord with me so much so that when I got back to my classroom, I asked my teacher, a nun, for a copy of the Bible so I could look up the verse and read it for myself.
She was quite amused by this and told me that only the Priest can interpret the Bible for us because he is the intermediary between God and the rest of us. She further explained that because I had not been trained in the seminary and studied it for years, I could not possibly understand the mysteries of the Bible. Continue reading “Catholic Church brought me to Islam- Rick Fenton”→
Donna Lewis – now using Ayesha lea was brought up Jehovah Witness, but left that at 13 due to too many unanswered questions, and so often being told “don’t ask questions” She was an atheist for many years, and then became a Witch, worshiping Pagan gods and rituals for about 15 years. She also dabbled in Satanism, Hinduism and Buddhism, clearly trying to find what was right, but nothing ever fit. She reverted in January 2013, as she found all answers to her questions
She is 48 year old female and work as an Accounts Supervisor for a Body Corporate management company in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. She was born in Australia (Brisbane) to an English mother and Australian father (with German roots).
Her mother brought her up as Jehovah Witness, but her father never believed in any religion. She came from a family, with alcoholism a constant part of her upbringing along with several siblings
Interview with Donna Lewis (Ayesha Lea)
Q: How did your interest in Islam start and what attracted you to Islam?
Answer: In November 2012 a penfriend mentioned they were a Muslim, so I thought I would read a simple book on Islam to understand their religion. I read “Complete Idiots Guide to Islam” and by the end of it, I was taken. Allah (subhan wa’tala) guided me during this simple book. I saw answers to so many questions, it made sense, and most of all, I cannot explain further than the fact that I was chosen to find the truth, and it made its way quickly into my heart.
Since learning more about Islam, there is never any question that won’t be answered, proof is always provided. It makes sense to me about every aspect of life, and what Allah (subhan wa’tala) truly intended in all his books.
When I met her co-incidentally in one of the Muslims groups online for the first time a few months before last Ramadan, we immediately got connected and soon developed a sisterly relation. She is one who had already taken the first big step of believing in ONE ALLAH. It was inspiring to listen to her words, views and opinions.
It was before the start of Ramadan that she broke the news that she would revert to the religion of Prophet Jesus, Moses and Mohammed (peace be upon them all) called as Islam – an Arabic word meaning ‘submission’. Since then she has been working tirelessly in educating the masses in importance of wearing the hijab and being a good Muslim. She is the symbol of love, tolerance and progressiveness.
Since her reversion she has been tirelessly working to help and guide the new Muslim reverts, building bridges between different faiths by either blogging or putting videos on YouTube.
Islam attaches great importance to knowledge and education. When the Qur’an began to be revealed, the first word of its first verse was ‘Iqra’ that is, read. Allah says: “Read! In the Name of your Lord Who has created (all that exists). He has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood). Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous. Who has taught (the writing) by the pen. He has taught man that which he knew not” [Quran, 96: 1-5]
It is all about a young man, Justin Kahm who reverted to Islam around 3 years ago. Justin is 24 years old and was agnostic before he reverted to Islam. He is based out of USA and grew up on a farm near the town of Circle, Montana, and moved to Billings, Montana at age 15. He currently lives with his parents and enjoys video games, Japanese animation, learning about history, geography, politics, and world affairs. He was the recording secretary for the 2012 Stewart Alexander Presidential campaign with Socialist Party USA. I had a chance to interview him and talk about his quest to seek knowledge that brought him to discover Islam. Imaan: Salam Alekum
It has always been fascinating to see people from different locations, different back grounds who are compassionate and have the power to believe. It is further learning to all of us to see the reason for their conversion and belief in ONE GOD. In my short chat with Mercy Boeck I released that she is a young girl who is fighting against all odds of life. It is people like her who reassure your faith in humanity. I call her a little girl with big heart.
Mercy Boeck who was a Roman Catholic Christian is a 25 year old typical woman based in a small town in North Carolina, USA. She is married to the person whom she has known most of her life and lives with her husband and 4 cats. Only a few members of her family know that she is a revert to Islam, this being her husband and her mother, although her dad has an idea but she never discussed with him directly as she is worried about his reaction.
I remembered a verse from Quran, Chapter 2:38: We Said: Go forth from this (state) all; So surely there will come to you guidance from Me, then whoever follows My guidance, no fear shall come upon them, nor shall they grieve.
I had a chance to interview her and observe all the good words she had to say. Continue reading “Sister Mercy Boeck’s Journey to Islam”→