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El concepto de Dios en el Cristianismo

13 Aug

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 Alá (azzawajal) dice en el Coran (a lo que se puede traducir al español):

“No hay nada que se Le asemeje.”

(42:11)

Sin embargo, ¿porqué los cristianos dicen que Dios es Jesús o que Dios engendró un hijo?

Los atributos de Dios son distintos a los del ser humano. La única similitud que existe entre los nombres y atributos de Dios y aquellos de los seres humanos son en nombre, pero jamás en grado.

Los atributos de Alá (el nombre árabe para decir Dios) son libres de cualquier deficiencia humana. Como musulmanes, a Alá lo podemos referir sólo como Él se ha descrito en el sagrado Corán o como el Profeta Muhammad (salalahu alaihi wa salaam) lo ha descrito.

Inclusive, los nombres an-Naasir y ar-Rasheed son nombres que no le debemos de dar a Alá (azzawajal), ya que no se encuentran en el noble Corán ni en los auténticos hadices. Sin embargo, estos y otros nombres se encuentran en las listas de los 99 nombres de Alá, pero desafortunadamente, estos hadices no son auténticos.

El estudio de tawjeed o la unicidad de Alá es un estudio fundamental en cualquier musulmán. Te alejará de las innovaciones en la religión y te ayudará a entender mejor quién es Alá, conforme a lo que Él nos ha revelado con sus profetas.

En el estudio del tawjeed al-asmaa was sifaat, o lo que se puede traducir a la unidad de Alá en sus atributos y nombres, debemos de entender lo siguiente: que nos referimos a Alá sólo como son son mencionados en el Corán y los hadices auténticos, pero sin atributos de su Creación.

Sabemos que los cristianos y los judíos creen que Alá pasó 6 días creando el universo y en el 7mo descansó (Génesis 2:2) Es por esto que los cristianos y los judíos se toman el sábado o el domingo como día libre y consideran trabajar en uno de estos días como un pecado.

Este atributo es meramente humano; todos sabemos que nosotros hacemos trabajo pesado y debemos de descansar para recuperarnos. Decir que Alá se cansa como su creación es atribuyéndole una acción solamente de su Creación y no digna para su Majestad.

Además, en la Biblia y la Torá, Dios se arrepiente de sus malos pensamientos en la forma como lo hacen los humanos cuando nos damos cuenta de nuestros errores. “Entonces el Señor se arrepintió del mal que dijo que había de hacer a su pueblo.” (Éxodos 32:14)

Además de esto, los cristianos han pintado, moldeado y creado figuras innumerables con apariencia humana y las han llamado “imágenes de Dios.”

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Si pueden atribuir características y acciones meramente humanas a Dios, no es de ningún asombro que los cristianos aceptan a Jesús (paz y bendiciones) como Dios, o que Dios haga un acto animal de “engendrar” un hijo, cosa que solo se hace en la Creación.

Una vez que las grandes multitudes acepten el concepto de Dios siendo como su Creación y teniendo una figura humana, no es de ningún problema para ellos aceptar a Jesús como Dios.

Es más, me encuentro casi segura que lo hacen sin darse cuenta. Primero, por experiencia propia. Mis días como cristiana fueron una gran mentira en la que me introdujeron sin derecho a preguntar ni cuestionar las creencias que ni en la misma Biblia se mencionan. Por ejemplo, la trinidad nunca es mencionada en la Biblia, ni lo es el signo de una cruz. Nunca Jesús utilizó una cruz sobre su cuello ni le dijo a sus seguidores que lo hicieran.

Hoy escuché un comentario y la mujer le decía a mi mamá: “Recuerde a Dios siempre, y repita: Jesús, Jesús, Jesús…” Yo me preguntaba, ¿Jesús o Dios? Y me recordé que los cristianos creen que los dos extrañamente pueden ser uno. Que el Creador puede ser la Creación. Que lo infinito puede ser lo finito. Que el ignorante (ya que vienen varias partes en la Biblia donde Jesús no conocía de algo) puede ser el Conocedor del Universo.

Ilógico, pero lamentablemente es una falsedad en la viven los cristianos.

Nosotros como seres finitos no estamos en ninguna posición para definir al infinito Señor de todas las creaciones.

Puede parecer un punto muy relevante o simple, pero se debe de definir y mantener firme para prevenir cualquier descripción falsa a Alá (el nombre  árabe para Dios y el que utiliza Alá para si mismo en el Corán).

Si buscas conocer sobre la verdad, no hace falta asistir a una mezquita o hablar con un musulmán o musulmana para conocerlo. Simplemente leyendo el Corán encontrarás tus respuestas.

Yo sé que yo las encontré, después de tantos años de confusión y de ignorancia. Alá es el más Misericordioso, el más Beneficioso: ar-Rahman, nir Raheem y nunca es tarde para conocer el mensaje de Él, el cual vino con cada profeta y mensajero de Dios; con Abraham, con Noé, con Moisés, con Jesús, con Muhammad (paz y bendiciones estén sobre todos ellos) y muchos más.

Insha’Allah te haya beneficiado. Que Alá (azzawajal) nos tengan siempre en el mejor estado de fé (imaan), de salud, que siempre le agradezcamos todas sus bendiciones, que lo alabemos solo a Él, el único digno de adoración, y que nos abra el corazón y nos ilumine con el Corán. Ameen.

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Fasting Week Two Thoughts

21 Jul

As-salam alaikum. About two weeks ago the entire Muslim ummah began our fasting. SubhanAllah, it’s been great and I’ve been able to pass through the days and take full advantage of them.

One of the things that concerned me the most wasn’t the fasting, but how I would manage my time in regards to reading the Qur’an, reading other Islamic books and reciting and trying to memorize parts of the Qur’an.

Surprisingly it’s gone quite well and I’ve succeeded so far in reading one juz of the Qur’an daily as well and having plenty of time for other things. What I like to do is read some Qur’an before or after my prayers, so that way I can have more dhikr or remembrance in Allah throughout the day.

Since I’m the only Muslim in my household, I was worried if I would be able to wake up every morning for suhoor. I wasn’t much of a morning person before reverting and even as a Muslim we all struggle to wake up for fajr. But Alhamdulillah I have woken up every morning on time, and have been able to have my suhoor or breakfast every day.

A week ago my father came to visit us. My parents are divorced and he lives about 4 hours away, so he always tries to visit us every 2 weeks. I was really hoping he would have come the Sunday before Ramadan began, but he ended up coming right in the middle of it all. I wasn’t concerned about having to fast and going with them to eat, but how was I going to tell him I was fasting? He doesn’t even know I’m Muslim, and quite frankly I’m not prepared to tell him it all just yet. My relationship with my father isn’t the best and since we barely see him, I don’t like to share much with him.

The smells were tantalizing. We decided to go to a mall in San José and I do have to admit my mouth was watering the whole time. However, after a while I got used to it and even forgot about the hunger. He was really worried why I wasn’t eating; he offered me everything there was, from chicken to chili to ice cream to even some mangos at a food stand there.

Finally, I told him in front of my brother, who didn’t know I was fasting, either. You see, I’m not going to go around telling everyone that I am. It’s something very personal and we fast to get closer to Allah, to control our bodily desires and to remember the poor and needy. It’s not to tell the entire world that you are fasting. Besides, they won’t understand, especially if they’re Christian. I did have to tell my mother as I knew she would get worried seeing me not eat all day (especially since I love to cook and make really delicious meals at lunchtime hehe).

So there I was, trying to explain to my father I was fasting.

Nobody really fasts here. There’s this so-called “fasting” during lent in Catholic religion where you abstain from meat for one entire day. Oh, and you can eat fish if you want instead. So, it’s not fasting for me. It’s just a day where you decide to be a vegetarian, but then decide not to and have fish instead.

So I was really worried what he would think. Would he think I was crazy? Or would he scold me and start blaming my mom about all this? I mean I’m 21 but he still doesn’t see me like an adult. But Alhamdulillah he took it quite well and even made a joke about it, how fasting was only for healthy people since he is a diabetic and wouldn’t be able to fast for too long.

Once I got home my mom asked right away what he said. I guess she has this idea in her mind that he would get angry at me or something. I didn’t mention to her that I hadn’t told him I was Muslim. I mean I did say quite clearly “in Islam…” but I don’t know if he associated that with his daughter being a Muslim or not. He didn’t ask any questions, so I didn’t bother to explain to him my personal decisions.

So Alhamdulillah Allah has truly been listening to my du’aas. Of course He always have, but I had taken it all for granted until past experiences that have shown me the mercy of Allah. We are truly blessed to be Muslim, if only others could realize this.

The rest of my fasting has gone quite well. Please share your own personal experiences on the comment section if you’d like.

Strangely, I really don’t get hungry when maghrib comes. I know it’s strange, as everyone is gorging themselves with food, but I don’t know why I don’t get hungry. Maybe it has to do with the fact that maghrib here is at 6:00 p.m. and everywhere else it’s around 8:00 or 9:00. But honestly I don’t feel hungry even at that time. Do you get really hungry when maghrib comes? Let me know if it’s not just me that this happens to.

One night a cousin came, so I broke my fast with some water and started to prepare some food afterwards. We ended up having dinner around 8:30 p.m. and I really wasn’t feeling like extremely hungry. I don’t know, maybe it’s because I have my mind on other things and not so concerned about the hunger.

May Allah reward you this Ramadan and bless us and protect us from the evils of Shaytaan. May Allah accept our fasting and our salat, and insha’Allah may He reward us Jannah. Ameen.

Chao!

Thoughts on Halal (Lawful) Meat

16 May

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As-salaam alaykum. So I get daily hadiths sent to my e-mail that I like to read each night. Today’s hadith was rather interesting, and I thought it would be very important to mention as it includes anyone living in a non-Muslim country.

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Narrated Abu Tha’laba Al-Khushani (Radi-Allahu ‘anhu):

I said, “O Allah’s Prophet! We are living in a land ruled by the people of the Scripture; Can we take our meals in their utensils? In that land there is plenty of game and I hunt the game with my bow and with my hound that is not trained and with my trained hound. Then what is lawful for me to eat?” He said, “As for what you have mentioned about the people of the Scripture, if you can get utensils other than theirs, do not eat out of theirs, but if you cannot get other than theirs, wash their utensils and eat out of it. If you hunt an animal with your bow after mentioning Allah’s Name, eat of it. and if you hunt something with your trained hound after mentioning Allah’s Name, eat of it, and if you hunt something with your untrained hound (and get it before it dies) and slaughter it, eat of it.”

Bukhari Vol. 7 : No. 387

 —

I’ve always had questions on whether or not we should eat meat – obviously pork not included – that comes from a non-Muslim butcher. However, I’ve taken the easy way out and have decided to hide these doubts at the back of my head ever since I reverted to Islam.

Now however, after reading this hadith I realized that this is of great importance and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Also, it had come up in one of my conversations with the man that introduced me to Islam on whether or not I should share the same utensils with my family, since they do happen to eat pork.

It’s funny, how this afternoon my family and I went to do the groceries and my brother went with my mom to pick out some meat at the stands. I stayed back and waited for them, and I could see how my mom took some pork sausages, and I saw my brother telling her to buy the chicken one instead. It made me smile, as I could read out his lips, explaining to her that I didn’t eat pork.

Alhamdulillah my family respects this.

One time my brother made lunch, and I could see how proud he was after serving it to us. It was some spaghetti with sauce, but once I took the first bite I knew he had added ham to it. Very politely, I told him if he had added ham to it, and he said he did. When I told him that I didn’t eat pork, he apologized multiple times, and even asked me if he should make something else for me.

Subhanallah, what a nice family I have. Despite the fact that they don’t share my religious beliefs (although I do ask Allah (subhana wa’ tala) to guide them towards the right path that is Islam), they still respect my decisions.

Anyways, back to the main topic.

This hadith answers my questions about whether or not I should eat “halal” meat, not slaughtered by Muslims, and if I should share my eating utensils with my family.

The first part of this hadith talks about the utensils you use to eat. If you cannot find utensils of your own, you should therefore wash the ones that the non-believers use. This I do always; disinfecting utensils is of vital importance nowadays, and it’s something that I’m very careful about.

Another option would be that if you have the capability of obtaining your own utensils and having them separate from the non-believers, than you should do so. However, I find this very isolating and personally couldn’t do this. Imagine how uncomfortable having “your own” utensils; I’d feel greedy somehow, and would feel like I’m slowly isolating myself from them.

I understand my family is not Muslim, but I also always wash the utensils I use, and I also know they don’t drink alcohol in them.

Finally, it mentions the eating of meat from non-believers. The hadith is very clear on this point. It says, paraphrasing of course, that you can eat from the meat that you have caught and that have mentioned the name of Allah before slaughtering it. In other words, if the name of Allah is not mentioned before the animal that is killed, then don’t eat it.

In other words, become a vegetarian.

I always wondered if I could eat meat that wasn’t killed in the name of Allah, and this hadith shows me that I can’t.

This explains why Muslims always try to find “halal restaurants” when they dine out like in the United States or other countries. I always thought to myself, why don’t they just eat vegetarian meals instead?

But being Muslim isn’t about being a vegetarian.

You can eat meat as a Muslim; it’s a natural human desire. Did you know that it’s been scientifically proven that men get happier when they’re told they’ll have meat for dinner?

And as a matter of fact, I don’t want to be a vegetarian. How boring, the life of a vegetarian. They try to “save animals,” somehow believing if they don’t eat meat they’ll get everyone to be vegetarian just like them.

And I also feel like vegetarians are always picky, gay and annoying.

It’s like something only “rich people” would do, since they can now choose their food.

I can imagine what my grandmother would have thought if one of her children came up to her and told her “I’m a vegetarian now.” She would have wooped that child, since back in the day my father and his family didn’t have much to eat. Alhamdulillah that has changed.

What I mean to say is that I don’t like vegetarians because they throw away perfectly edible food just “to save the animals.” It’s something I don’t believe is beneficial to anyone.

However, when it comes to Allah (subhana wa’tala) there are some sacrifices you must do for the sake of Allah.

When we pray, we say At-tayatu lillahi was-salawatu wa-tay yibatu which translates to: All prayers and worship through words, actions and sanctity are for Allah only.

We should do every act in our lives for the sake of Allah only. Not for the animals. Not for any other bunch of pathetic excuses vegetarians use, because all they really want is the attention they desperately find to being accepted into society.

So no matter how difficult it can be, I understand the importance to find halal meat, and this includes that which has been slaughtered in the name of Allah.

This will be hard to find. Especially here in Costa Rica.

You see, for those not familiar with Latin countries, we’re a bit of a “haram” culture in certain things.

For instance, ticos (Costa Ricans) love pig. You will always see pork being served in every party, like chicharrones, gallos de chancho, picadillo de chancho, etc. There will always be a barbecue outside with pork being the main dish on the menu.

Also, alcohol is indispensable in my family parties. There always has to be beer, wine, whisky, tequila; anything with alcohol in it is acceptable in Latin society.

And finally, how can you exclude the Latin music and the tons of dancing there is in every party. I love Latin music, it’s always so cheerful and it makes you want to dance to the rhythm. But put pork, alcohol and music together and you’re in one big haram mess.

But it’s not impossible to be Muslim in this country.

I’ve heard of a Turkish bakery in San José, so they must be Muslim; and I’m pretty sure the imam and his family at the masjid in San José buy their meat somewhere halal.

Insha’Allah I can find a way to eat halal, even if it means sacrificing my love for meat, all in the name of Allah (subhana wa’tala).

For those living in non-Muslim countries, know that you are not alone. This hadith is clear evidence of the importance of eating halal, since it helps purify and clean our body and mind.

May Allah grant us guidance, reward us for our good deeds, forgive us from our bad ones, and continue blessing us with health, love for His word, and submission to his will.

Chao.

Thoughts on Christianity being a monotheistic religion

21 Apr

As-salaam alaikum (May the blessings of Allah be upon you) 

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We are taught that Judaism, Christianity and Islam are all monotheistic religions. Christianity, I think personally, is not.

As I sit here typing down these few ideas, my family has gone out to attend a Christian church. So now, I face two hours alone, with my own thoughts before we all walk out to grab from lunch.

I’m quite honestly not thrilled about attending the get-together at lunch, as I know I will be bombarded with multiple questions and interrogations as to why I don’t assist the church as well next Sunday. Also, hearing my family chat on about the wonderful shirk –or idolatry- they’re in, will be excruciating for my ears to hear.

You see, my brother was indulged into the religion of this Christian sect a while back from my uncle, my sister went on account of my brother and his friend’s influence, and now finally my mother has decided to join them on account of her non-practicing Catholic faith and has thought she’ll “give it a go.”

So that leaves me out of the picture, as I strongly resist going; not because I “fear” being trapped into their cobweb, but because I have stable reasoning behind my decision.

First and foremost, I have reverted to Islam not too long ago, at the beginning of this year, after many months of research and understanding of the religion Subhanallah. Although, there isn’t much to “get your head around” about Islam. Worshiping One God is quite simple for human nature to accomplish as it comes so naturally to us.

After I reverted, I think I’ve faced very minor but significant changes both internally and externally. For one, as a Muslim revert, your identity (your previous one) is rather washed away, because you find yourself not liking the person you once used to be. You benefit from the religion, alhamdulillah, because you find yourself healthier both spiritually and physically speaking.

Do they not think deeply (in their ownselves) about themselves (how Allah created them from nothing, and similarly He will resurrect them)? Allah has created not the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them, except with truth and for an appointed term. And indeed many of mankind deny the Meeting with their Lord. (Ar-Room, 30, 8)

As I began to read the Qur’an, my thoughts on life changed radically. What was before a ritual of praying to God is now something I do with understanding behind it. I see the truth that is Islam; submitting to God – Allah in Arabic – to our Creator, and not submitting to the creation.

Which is what Christians and Muslims differ from. Despite being tagged as a “monotheistic” religion, unfortunately modern day Christians have deviated from traditional Christianity, where only God was worshiped according to the prophetic way of Jesus (peace be upon him).

Now, Christians worship Jesus as if he were God himself, walking on the face of this Earth. How silly to imagine even the slightest appearance of Allah. There is even a hadeeth stating that a slight portion of Allah was shown to a mountain, and it crumbled into pieces when exposed to Allah.

Nobody has even seen Allah. All prophets (peace be upon them all) have never stated that they are God, or have seen God. However, Christians believe that Jesus was God on Earth, or the son of God. This is in fact a form of “shirk” or associating partners or others with Allah, the gravest sin of all in Islam, and the only sin that will not be forgiven.

So no, I don’t think Christianity is a monotheistic religion. Not anymore at least. Maybe years ago it was, but now it has changed. And to know that my mother, brother and sister are all clapping and dancing and singing at a church worshiping Jesus as their “savior” is quite saddening.

“Oh People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion, nor say of God anything but the truth. Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, was (no more than) a messenger of God, and His Word which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him. So believe in God and His messengers. Say not, ‘Trinity.’ Desist! It will be better for you, for God is One God, Glory be to Him! (Far exalted is He) above having a son. To Him belong all things in the heavens and on earth. And enough is God as a Disposer of affairs” (4:171).

Despite these moments that I may consider tragic descended down on them, I know that these are tests sent from Allah (subhana wa’taala). What I might consider an “evil” thing is actually there for the good that will come from that evil. We may never know what that good is, but insha’Allah we can pass these tests of faith.

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A proper way to spread Islam is not by preaching about it, but by your actions. Most people revert to Islam because of how correct and respectful Muslims are. Never insult a religion, or speak angrily towards anyone. Do not disrespect your parents; a mother is truly valued and respected in Islam.

I try to show my humbleness and respect in my manners and actions at all times, and I’ve found that my mother quite likes the “new” me. She’s even said that I am far different from my siblings, that I respect her and others and was quite surprised to hear me, out of all people, wake up at 4:30 a.m. each morning for fajr – or morning prayer – when I usually would struggle to wake up in the mornings, like most people do.

These types of things should be for pleasing Allah only. Don’t indulge in something to show off, or make a point. Quoting a Spanish saying, “The best words said are those unsaid.”

I ask Allah to guide my family, my close friends and all those seeking for the truth, to the righteous path of Islam. I ask Allah to bless us Muslims in our faith, to surpass us in wisdom, patience, humbleness and emaan for us to come closer to Allah.

If any mistakes were made during this publication, I accept any faults, and please forgive me if I do, as Allah is perfect and Islam, whereas we Muslims and humans are not perfect.

And Allah knows best.

Chao.

Who am I?

16 Apr

Bismillah hirRahman nirRaheem

In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

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This is a picture from where I live in Costa Rica. Mash’Allah, such a beautiful scenery.
———-

As-salaam alaikum (May the peace and blessing of Allah be on you)

I’ve gotten some hateful comments on my blog this week, which I clearly won’t allow these hatred-filled emotions to be published on my blog.

Why, you may ask? This is a blog that I created because I love Allah and for the sake of Allah only. I will not accept hate of any sort be expressed on my blog, whether it be to Islam, or any other religion.

I was told to “leave Costa Rica now” since “we don’t want you here on our country.”

I literally Laughed Out Loud.

I am, in fact, Costa Rican. I was born in Costa Rica, raised by Costa Ricans and my entire family and descendants are in fact from Costa Rica.

My parents decided to live in the United States for several years, where I learned English, the northern American lifestyle and I learned to cherish and appreciate the country.

However, my family was always very strong in teaching me as much as they could about my roots. They taught me Spanish and my Latin culture, about Costa Rica and many more.

So for all those that think I’m not from Costa Rica, and that I should leave as I happen to be a “terrorist” (this is laughable, I must admit) then I have nothing to say to you and your ignorant words.

However, most of my followers probably think I’m a foreigner living in Costa Rica since the majority of my articles are in English.

Well, to clear things out, I am Costa Rican. And a Muslim. Subhanallah (All Glory be to Allah).

It might be rather strange for viewers to imagine a Latin Muslim; which is the purpose for which I created my blog 🙂 It’s just like those that don’t understand how a north American can become Muslim, living in the US.

Islam is not a religion of hatred, or of racism, or of oppression or all these other things mentioned on the news. Get your facts straightened up.

Islam has been sent for ALL of mankind.

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “Every other Prophet was sent only to his people, whereas I have been sent to all mankind.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî]

Oh, and for the “terrorist” point of you, please read this:

There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the Right Path has become distinct from the wrong path. (2:256 Noble Qur’an)

Different from Christianity, since according to the Gospel of Luke, Jesus (peace be upon him) said:

But those enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them–bring them here and kill them in front of me. (19:27 Bible)

 Luke 19 was actually one of many Biblical statements that powered the killings of the Crusaders and other “Holy” wars, where Christians would slaughter those that did not accept their religion. Islam has never been a religion forced upon people. War was used only when the Muslims were being attacked and had to defend, not force upon others.

I strongly suggest you consult the imams as to these topics, as I am not a scholar and it’s preferable for this to be discussed with someone of better knowledge than I or any non-scholar for that matter.

Please, I ask you, Muslims and non-Muslims, know the religion of Islam. Know so that you won’t fall in this state of ignorance of which you WILL repent one day, when you’re in front of your Creator on the Day of Judgement pleading for forgiveness because of your actions.

Islam is a religion of God – Allahu Akbar! Muslims are not hated here in my lovely country of Costa Rica. And I will not leave my home country anytime soon to “please” those that “hate” Islam, because I haven’t happened to come across any, alhamdulillah. 🙂

Indeed, those who disbelieve – it is all the same for them whether you warn them or do not warn them – they will not believe. (2:6) Noble Qur’an

And Allah (swt) knows best.

Chao. Que Dios te bendiga a todos (which means, may God bless you in Spanish).

Things that stopped me from becoming a Muslim

10 Apr

Bismillah hirRahman nirRaheem

In the name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

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May Allah (subhana wa’tala) grant us guidance, knowledge and strengthen our emaan (faith). May Allah (swt) bless all Muslims that seek refuge in His Mercy alone, and may Allah (swt) protect us from any evil or harm.

As-salaam alaikum! (May Allah bless you) Islam is indeed the most beautiful religion there can be. It gives you responsibilities, humbleness, takes away that horrendous ego that limits us from submitting to God and so much more.

However, my journey to Islam has been one that took longer than what I would have wanted it to. Looking back, I truly wish I had taken advantage of so many opportunities to change my life and become Muslim. However, Allah (swt) knows why we become Muslim and why those non-believers turn away from Islam.

Why did I prolong my Shahada (declaring that you are a Muslim) so much? Despite the fact that my aqeedah (knowledge) was growing, I lacked salaah (practicing Islam by praying). I felt Muslim for a long time before I finally took my Shahada under the eyes of Allah.

Here are the reasons as to why I didn’t become a Muslim immediately after knowing about Islam.

Fearing the unknown. 

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Prior to learning and researching up on Islam, I knew nothing about the religion. I didn’t even know what a Muslim worshiped, what they believed in, or anything! (Looking back, I’ve learned so much in one year Subhanallah).

 Despite that most people associate Muslims with terrorism or any of these false claims, I never had this idea about Muslims Alhamdulillah. I didn’t even know that the Qur’an existed! Oh Mash’Allah that I became Muslim because Allah (swt) wanted me to become a believer.

When I was told about Islam, I didn’t want to read up on it. I was somewhat afraid of it. You see, when you don’t know about something, you will fear the unknown. Especially in religious matters.

Even after I researched into Islam, I didn’t want to read the Qur’an. I knew that some way or another, this religion would “sneak up” on me, grab me by the feet and throw me into its “cobweb”. And I didn’t want that at the time being. I was happily a Catholic, and didn’t want to explore unknown territory.

However, there was something that really caused curiosity in me. Why is that people don’t like Muslims? This I knew quite well: the media was always attacking Muslims. They were always saying how racist Muslims were, how terrorism was accepted and how these women had to be forced to cover their faces and body.

But, when I read about Islam it felt like such a peaceful and beautiful religion. “These Muslims!” I would think, “How they get on all fours and put their heads to the ground and worship God! I’d like to see those people at my church bow down that way to God! Never!” I would think, “Never, as long as there big fat egos are in the way.”

However, these thoughts were all kept to me, and I never discussed it with my family or my close friends. When I did bring it up, my friends were shocked and told me to stay away from those “terrorists”, to find God in some other Bible, like the Baptist Bible or another Christian sect. Just don’t go into that book! They would warn me, believing they were doing good.

I was “letting my religion down.”

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Another reason that made me turn back from becoming a Muslim was the feeling that I was turning down not only my religion, but also my identity, my community and my family. After several months of reading into the religion, I felt betrayed by my own community.

I would think to myself, Jesus wasn’t crucified? These saints we worship are all wrong? Why wasn’t this explained to me during Bible school? And most importantly, why hadn’t I realized all this before?

So I would put the book I was reading down and continue my pagan life.

However, I never truly stopped researching about Islam. It just made sense. No religion, not even Catholicism, had even made so much sense before. Worship one God. Period. No idols involved, no weird rituals, no intermediaries between me and God. It was like a breath of fresh air, from all this nonsense I was being fed at in church.

So I read about Islam, read about God, read about the Prophets, and about revert stories and the more I read about Islam, the more I wanted to become Muslim.

What would my friends think?

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As shameful as this might be to admit, I was in fact afraid of what my society would say. You see, we live in a world where the society decides what you can and cannot do. It tells you what to think, how to dress, what career you should pursue, how you should treat others, etc.

So becoming a Muslim meant going against – well – everything!

The way I was dressing was completely inadequate. The way I thought was poisoning my heart. I was in a stage in my life where wealth was the only concern I had for my future.

When I would sit down and read about God’s oneness and what our purpose in life was, it felt reassuring. I didn’t fear death anymore. I could stand up to the world and not fear being turned down. More than ever did I want to reject these disgusting and ridiculous people shown on the television and heard on the radio that brainwash adolescents into thinking this is how you will be happy – with money and cars and fame – and how you should be.

Islam is liberating. It’s not like anything you could ever imagine it to be. You find peace in it, and these worldly desires are nothing but – worldly desires!

However, at this moment I was more concerned about my family and friends than about what I really wanted. So I kept Islam closed and shut in my heart and continued living that life my society expected me to. Unfortunately, silencing my beliefs was rather more saddening than I thought it would be.

The hijab.

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One of the main reasons that stopped me from taking my Shahada and becoming a Muslim was this thing Muslim women wrap around their heads.

I didn’t really know that Muslim women had to wear this on a daily basis. In fact, when I read about it from a traveling website, I had read that it was a sign of respect to wear this when entering mosques. So I believed for quite a while that the hijab was only worn when entering mosques.

It wasn’t until several months later that I read about the hijab being something compulsory. When I read that it was mandatory, I began frantically looking for more information as to oppose this truth. I wanted an article to yell out to me, “Relax, it’s not mandatory. Muslim women don’t have to wear the hijab.”

But I never came through an article like this Alhamdulillah and it made me hesitate on my quest for the truth. Despite that this was a disappointment to hear, since my mother’s a hair stylist and I’ve been around the impression that women look beautiful with long, pretty hair, my search for the truth didn’t stop there.

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In fact, as I read about the hijab, it actually started to make sense. I read about how we live in a society where men are allowed to look at women however they want, and that we as women allow them to! And this is in fact the perfect description of my country. Costa Rica is a wonderful country, but unfortunately women grow up with this idea screwed into their head that you are a sex symbol. If you don’t look sexy and attractive and show as much skin as possible, no man will ever lay eyes on you. Because there will always be hotter and more attractive looking women around you, and you have to “beat” the competition.

What a loud of – erm, nonsense! It felt reassuring to know that if you cover and dress modestly, you are in charge of who looks at your body. And I loved the idea of only being attractive to my future husband insha’Allah. It sounded safe and comforting and, something a pious woman would do – someone who loves Allah and will not submit to Shaytaan.

So after many months of debating whether or not I should be against the hijab or not, I listened to the scholars of Islam and of course, the Qur’an foremost. I actually find the hijab beautiful and would love to see more women in my country cover up a bit more.

This is in itself a topic on its own, so I’ll cover more of it in the near future insha’Allah.

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En fin…

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So these are the reasons as to why I didn’t take my Shahada until almost a full year after my quest began.

I struggled with mainly the outer contexts of Islam, such as the society around me and their opinions, the hijab and dressing modestly and the church that has so much power in my country.

Mash’Allah Islam entered my heart and I never doubted it. Yes, you may go through the phases of wondering why eating pork is haram or why men should grow a beard, but these are all external points that are insignificant when it comes to what truly lies in your heart.

Remember that Islam is not just about obtaining knowledge (aqeedah). Why you may ask? Because the one that knew the most about Allah (swt) was, who? Shaytaan. But, he had no emaan (faith) and therefore his knowledge turned into satanic knowledge, which we still have nowadays in people.

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So Islam is not just about the “obtaining knowledge” part. Yes, we as Muslims MUST obtain knowledge. It’s not a decision. It’s mandatory to know our religion, to know what we say in Salaah, to know about other religions, to question this earthly life, etc. (This is what I love about Islam, there are no secrets in it and nothing is hidden from us Muslims Alhamdulillah!)

But there is also the emaan that we cannot ignore. Without it, our religion is not a religion. It’s just an empty belief.

Never underestimate the power of your Salaah. Praying is our relationship with Allah; directly, no intermediaries, no one looking, nothing. It’s just you and Allah (swt). Praise your Creator, thank Allah for the life you have, for the calamities and tests He has put in your life.

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And most truly Allah knows best.

Chao.

How to Survive a Non-Muslim Country

3 Apr

As-salaam alaikum (May the peace and blessing of Allah be on you)

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 As you all may already know, I live in the wonderfully gorgeous tropical lands of Costa Rica. Living here is definitely not something you can ever get used to; the weather has a mind of its own, government issues will always prolong far too long than expected and evil-minded tourists will continue to overflow in our territory nonstop.

However, despite the urges to exploit the haram factors in my country, I’ve decided instead to post an article on how we as Muslims can practice our religion peacefully and adequately on non-Muslim territory.

First off, I’d like to say that what I’m referring to as “non-Muslim” is the country in which Islam is not the dominant religion.

What drew me into the religion is its universal message. The prophet Muhammad (salalahu alayhi wa’salaam: peace be upon him) came as the final messenger for ALL of mankind. As is mentioned in the Sacred Qur’an:

And We have sent you (O Muhammad SAW) not but as a mercy for the ‘Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that exists) (21:107)

So as you can witness, there is no cultural or ethic tag on Islam. Islam is in fact a religion sent to all of us, whether we are Chinese, Indian, Pakistan, Norwegian, Costa Rican, Argentinean, Turkish, etc.

However, our society may not accept it. This is why it is futile for us to know how we can practice our religion and at the same time, be able to do it in a peaceful-like manner.

Pacience, patience, patience

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This is by far the best approach. Muslims are subconsciously taught to obey Allah (subhana wa’tala: Glorified and Exalted be He) over everything else. This requires patience from us, since Shaytaan is in every corner of our thoughts and actions. As we are already learning to seek patience in our own hearts, it won’t require you much strength to adapt it to your everyday life.

On a daily basis, I get tested on my patience. Living with Christians, it’s rather difficult to hear them when they will say things like “In the name of Jesus” or “the blood of Christ!” (usually they’ll say this out of surprise) and not overreact from it.

It’s even harder when they will debate you and try to defeat you in illogical manners. However, patience must always come before everything.

Nobody has ever become a Muslim by force. Islam is in the heart, and even though you may know that Islam is the right path, this won’t mean that everyone around you has the same opinion.

And most of mankind will not believe even if you desire it eagerly. (12:103)

What also caught my attention of the religion was the peace and goodness in Muslims. This was something that made me, as a non-Muslim at the time, want to learn more about Islam.

So make the difference and be as patient as the prophet (saws) was.

Those will be given their reward twice for what they patiently endured and [because] they avert evil through good. (28:54)

Obey Allah. Period.

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We have all been tempted to disobey our Lord. As a Catholic, I remember thinking about God almost – well, almost never actually. It’s hard to remember Allah (swt) when you are not obliged to on a daily basis. And thus, easier to fall into sin.

In non-Muslim countries, haram will be halal, and halal will be haram. Alcohol is permissible, pork is very common, partying and touching the opposite gender is quite normal and other things that are haram will be allowed in these countries as well.

Furthermore, your family and friends will have a huge influence on you. If you don’t go out with them at nights, they’ll start to push you into joining them. If your family realizes you’re Muslim, they will try to convince you to leave the religion.

But in the end, what only matters is to please Allah (swt). These desires, these people, they will never give us Jannah. Only our Lord (swt) will. So think before doing things, and ask yourself: Can I say Bismillah (In the name of Allah) before this, and Subhanallah (Glory be to Allah) after this action or thought?

If you can’t, then don’t do it. It will not please Allah (swt).

It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allah and His Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. (33:36)

If Allah (swt) has ordered us through His messenger (saws) for us to pray 5 times a day, will you really try to contradict your Lord? Allah (swt) knows what is good for you, and we know not!

So remember that we as Muslims submit to Allah (swt) despite our circumstance. Thank Allah each and every day for making us Muslims and giving us the religion that will be the ONLY one accepted on the Day of Judgment to enter Paradise: to our original state. The Qur’an says:

Inna deena indalahil-Islam.”

Certainly, the only acceptable way which Allah will accept is Islam. (3:19)

And Allah knows best.

Chao 🙂