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Why We Became Muslims_Master_Vol 2_51 to 100

Why We Became Muslims_Master_Vol 2_51 to 100

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Published by Moiz Uddin Qidwai
This is the Second Part of a five volume series on stories from Newly Converted Muslims. It was earlier posted on Scribd in Tabular form.



Now it is divided into five parts, each covering stories of Fifty New Converts, and it is in "Book Form" for ease of reading.
This is the Second Part of a five volume series on stories from Newly Converted Muslims. It was earlier posted on Scribd in Tabular form.



Now it is divided into five parts, each covering stories of Fifty New Converts, and it is in "Book Form" for ease of reading.

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Published by: Moiz Uddin Qidwai on Feb 08, 2011
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Preface: In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

I bear witness that there is no deity worth worship except Allah (The True God and Creator and Sustainer of this Universe) and I bear Witness that Mohammad is His Servant and Messenger, Afterwards, In 1930, Dr. Sir Mohd. IQBAL, the well known Urdu and Persian poet and Islamic Philosopher, expressed the need of publishing a book, in which the stories of all those who had converted to Islam in India be recorded. He said that it would give a new boost to the cause of Islamic propagation. He was asked, if there are not already books that express the logic and truth of Islam and are they insufficient, the noted scholar said: “Yes they are more than sufficient, but you would get so many new points from such a book that you will be amazed. I think there are different ways to impress the heart and mind. Many times brain rejects the most potent of the arguments, but the hearts gets impressed by a very small incident or some very small point and grads the mind also. Conversion to Islam is al related to brain as it is to the heart. A muslim missionary must know what are the darts that affect heart. There are so many tales of unbelievers coming to Islam thru out the history. We see a person standing firm on his religion for many decades, yet a small point and a small acts of kindness, sweeps him away from his feet and he makes the most momentous decision of his life. You have many logical arguments to prove the truth of Islam, but if you go to a new Muslim and ask him, what impressed him about Islam and what were the points which impressed him. If you have in book form, stories of a large number of such people, it would be a very powerful tool in the hands of Muslim missionaries. Many new arguments of truth of Islam will come out, which might not be available in the vast Islamic literature we have” So many books have been written for past few decades on the true stories of new converts of Islam. I have compiled about 250 of them and abridged them to be between 6000-8000 words for ease or reading and to be posted in many shared channels on Internet and distribution thru emails etc. People might agree or disagree with some of points mentioned here. But these are personal experiences and personal reasons of these people who accepted Islam of their own free will. Some of them suffered much about this new faith. What kept them firm to their faith varies from one person to another person. I pray to Allah to accept this effort and make it useful for those who read it and share it with other people.

M.U. Qidwai Jubail, Saudi Arabia PS: This is volume 2of a five part series, having stories from Serial 51 to serial 100. The full series has already been published in tabular form on this site earlier

Story # 51 Why be became Muslims? THOMAS IRVING (Canadian) To tell you why I became a Muslim, I have to explain what I felt before and after embracing Islam, my first contact with Islam and the faith that it inspired into me. First of all, let me tell you that thousands of Canadians and Americans think exactly as I used to think before becoming a Muslim; they have the same feeling of dissatisfaction; and they are awaiting the Muslims who will teach them the essence of Islam. As I was a child, I held fast to my faith, Christianity, with both hands. For I needed a religion to feed my soul. However, as I grew older, I began to see a number of faults in Christianity. The stories told about the life of Jesus and his being the son of God, –may Allah protect us against saying so,– sounded like superstitious tales to me. My personal logic would never accept them. I began to ask myself questions, such as, “If Christianity is the true religion, why are there so many non-Christians in the World?” “Why do Jews and Christians share the same basic religious book and differ in other respects?” … It was in those days when I met a missionary who had been serving in India. He complained to me, “Muslims are very obstinate. They insist that the true religion is Islam, and not Christianity. So all my efforts to Christianize them end up in failure.” These statements were at the same time the first definition I had heard of Islam. A sensation of curiosity towards Islam, seasoned with a high degree of admiration for Muslims who had been so staunchly attached to their religion, began to blossom in my heart. I felt that I should observe Islam more closely, and began to attend lectures on ‘Oriental Literature’ in the university. I saw that what the oriental people had been rejecting in our belief was the doctrine of ‘trinity’, and that they accepted the belief of ‘One God’, which was perfectly agreeable with common sense. It was certain that Jesus had announced his religion as one based on belief in One God, and himself as a mere born slave and Messenger of that One God… One Merciful, Compassionate God had been adulterated into a tripartite godhood, which was accessible only to priests and which, so to speak, created mankind with a share from the original sin. Then, a new religion with a new prophet was necessary to restore the humanity with that pure and intact belief in One God. Europe, on the other hand, was awash in semi-barbaric cruelty in those days. As savage tribes were invading countries, on the one hand, a small minority was perpetrating all sorts of vices under the mask of religion, on the other.

The human race was moaning desperately under the talons of idolatry and irreligiousness, when, [according to historians], seven centuries after Jesus, in the oriental horizons, there rose Muhammad the final Prophet of Allah, and he began to communicate to people the true religion of the true God, which was based on belief in One God. When I read and learned all these facts, I believed in the fact that Muhammad was the final true Messenger of Allah .. You can be sure that, as I have already said, thousands of Americans and Canadians sense the same deficiencies and errors in Christianity. Sad to say, though, they have not had the same chance I did to do a thorough research into the Islamic religion; they need a guide. (Abridged)

Story # 53 Why I became Muslim? IQBAL SINGH (MOHAMMAD IQBAL) PUNJAB, INDIA I now believe that Sikh religion was an attempt to join Hindu and Muslim during Mogul period. Sikh religion is a combination of Hinduism and Islam. Its First Guru Nanak even performed many Hajj. Teachings of earlier Gurus are very near to Islam. Sikh’s holy book mentions unity of God, angels and even the angels which record deeds of every human. Initially I knew very little about Sikh religion, but as I grew up, I studied many religions, like Buddhism, Christianity. I read many books on these religion. Somehow by this time, no Muslim approached me to study Islam and I do not know why. I feel the Muslims in India lack this Missionary spirit and they do not know as to how to propagate their religion. I met a Muslim medical practioner, who told me about Quran and its nature. He gave me translation of Quran, which I read for the first time. Then I met some Pakistani Muslims who spoke my language and they told me many things about Islam. When I was 21 years, I accepted Islam. My Muslims colleagues gave a banquet in my honor. I had not yet disclosed my new religion to my parents. I used to prey in locations so that they will not be able to see it. But slowly they found that I was preying like a Muslim. They thought I might be interested in Islam and nothing else. Finally I told my parents that I had indeed accepted Islam and I told my parents that if they are able to convince me that Islam is a false religion, I will leave it, but if they cannot do it, then let them leave me to it. (abridged)

Story # 54 Why I Became Muslim? Becoming Muslim, Note: 1.The story of American former Catholic, Nuh Ha Mim Keller, who in the 25 years since his conversion has gone on to become one of the leading contemporary scholars of Islam. 2. It is with a sad hand that I had to abridge this story. I would request people to read full story on the link cited for better understanding of this moving story. Source: http://masud.co.uk/ISLAM/nuh/bmuslim.htm "I studied philosophy at the university and it taught me to ask two things of whoever claimed to have the truth: What do you mean, and how do you know? When I asked these questions of my own religious tradition, I found no answers, and realized that Christianity had slipped from my hands." Born in 1954 in the farm country of the northwestern United States, I was raised in a religious family as a Roman Catholic. … but as I grew older, and especially after I entered a Catholic university and read more, my relation to the religion became increasingly called into question, in belief and practice. One reason was the frequent changes in Catholic liturgy and ritual that occurred in the wake of the Second Vatican Council of 1963, suggesting to laymen that the Church had no firm standards. … A second reason was a number of doctrinal difficulties, such as the doctrine of the Trinity, which no one in the history of the world, neither priest nor layman, had been able to explain in a convincing way, and which resolved itself, to the common mind at least, in a sort of godhead-bycommittee, shared between God the Father, who ruled the world from heaven; His son Jesus Christ, who saved humanity on earth; and the Holy Ghost, who was pictured as a white dove and appeared to have a considerably minor role. … Another point of incredulity was the trading of the Church in stocks and bonds in the hereafter it called indulgences. Do such and such and so-and-so many years will be remitted from your sentence in purgatory that had seemed so false to Martin Luther at the outset of the Reformation. I also remember a desire for a sacred scripture, something on the order of a book that could furnish guidance. A Bible was given to me one Christmas, a handsome edition, but on attempting to read it, I found it so rambling and devoid of a coherent thread that it was difficult to think of a way to base one's life upon it. Only later did I learn how Christians solve the difficulty in

practice, Protestants by creating sectarian theologies, each emphasizing the texts of their sect and downplaying the rest; Catholics by downplaying it all, except the snippets mentioned in their liturgy. Something seemed lacking in a sacred book that could not be read as an integral whole. Moreover, when I went to the university, I found that the authenticity of the book, especially the New Testament, had come into considerable doubt as a result of modern hermeneutical studies by Christians themselves. In a course on contemporary theology, I read the Norman Perrin translation of The Problem of the Historical Jesus by Joachim Jeremias, one of the principal New Testament scholars of this century. A textual critic who was a master of the original languages and had spent long years with the texts, he had finally agreed with the German theologian Rudolph Bultmann that without a doubt it is true to say that the dream of ever writing a biography of Jesus is over, meaning that the life of Christ as he actually lived it could not be reconstructed from the New Testament with any degree of confidence... It was during this time that I read an early translation of the Qur'an which I grudgingly admired, between agnostic reservations, for the purity with which it presented these fundamental concepts. Even if false, I thought, there could not be a more essential expression of religion. As a literary work, the translation, perhaps it was Sales, was uninspired and openly hostile to its subject matter, whereas I knew the Arabic original was widely acknowledged for its beauty and eloquence among the religious books of mankind. I felt a desire to learn Arabic to read the original. … At this juncture, I read a number of works on Islam, among them the books of Seyyed Hossein Nasr, who believed that many of the problems of western man, especially those of the environment, were from his having left the divine wisdom of revealed religion, which taught him his true place as a creature of God in the natural world and to understand and respect it. Without it, he burned up and consumed nature with ever more effective technological styles of commercial exploitation that ruined his world from without while leaving him increasingly empty within, because he did not know why he existed or to what end he should act. … I read other books on Islam, and came across some passages translated by W. Montgomery Watt from "That Which Delivers from Error" by the theologian and mystic Ghazali, who, after a midlife crises of questioning and doubt, realized that beyond the light of prophetic revelation there is no other light on the face of the earth from which illumination may be received, the very point to which my philosophical inquiries had led. Here was, in Hegel's terms, the Wise Man, in the person of a divinely inspired messenger who alone had the authority to answer questions of good and evil. .. I began to learn Arabic at Chicago, and after studying the grammar for a year with a fair degree of success, decided to take a leave of absence to try to advance in the language in a year of private study in Cairo. Too, a desire for new horizons drew me, and after a third season of fishing, I went to the Middle East. In Egypt, I found something I believe brings many to Islam, namely, the mark of pure monotheism upon its followers, which struck me as more profound than anything I had

previously encountered. I met many Muslims in Egypt, good and bad, but all influenced by the teachings of their Book to a greater extent than I had ever seen elsewhere. .. Many other things passed through my mind during the months I stayed in Egypt to learn Arabic. I found myself thinking that a man must have some sort of religion, and I was more impressed by the effect of Islam on the lives of Muslims, a certain nobility of purpose and largesse of soul, than I had ever been by any other religions or even atheisms effect on its followers. The Muslims seemed to have more than we did. As for the inglorious political fortunes of the Muslims today, I did not feel these to be a reproach against Islam, or to relegate it to an inferior position in a natural order of world ideologies, but rather saw them as a low phase in a larger cycle of history. Foreign hegemony over Muslim lands had been witnessed before in the thorough going destruction of Islamic civilization in the thirteenth century by the Mongol horde, who razed cities and built pyramids of human heads from the steppes of Central Asia to the Muslim heartlands, after which the fullness of destiny brought forth the Ottoman Empire to raise the Word of Allah and make it a vibrant political reality that endured for centuries. It was now, I reflected, merely the turn of contemporary Muslims to strive for a new historic crystallization of Islam, something one might well aspire to share in. When a friend in Cairo one day asked me, Why don't you become a Muslim?, I found that Allah had created within me a desire to belong to this religion, which so enriches its followers, from the simplest hearts to the most magisterial intellects. It is not through an act of the mind or will that anyone becomes a Muslim, but rather through the mercy of Allah, and this, in the final analysis, was what brought me to Islam in Cairo in 1977. (Abridged)

Story # 55 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: SUNIL KUMAR (MAULANA USMAN QASMI), PALWAL INDIA A. Family Background: 01.I belong to a poor Rajput family of PALWAL, FARIDABAD. My father was a small former. I left my studies after 8th standard and then started looking for job. I had a friend named Abdul Hamid and we both were learning to be car mechanic. 02. Our friend ship grew and once I visited his small village of NOOH in MEWAT region. There was a small mosque there, where local Imam used to lead prayers and meet day to day religious needs of Muslim community there. There was a small earthen mound there and when I reached people were working to shift the earth from there to another location. Suddenly there was a commotion in the workers and when we reached there, we found a body clad in white burial clothes. No body knows how old it was, but it was looking as if the man had died only now. 03. Local Imam explained that, good servants of Allah, are protected from earth eating their bodies. I was very impressed with this and used to visit him, whenever I went to my friend’ village. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 04. When Imam saw our close friendship, he said to my friend, why did you not invite him to become Muslim. What sorts of friend are you, that does not bother about him burnt in hell fire for an eternity. Then he told me that son, you should become Muslim, if you want to save yourself. I decided to become Muslim and he named me as Mohd. OSMAN. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society:

05. Imam Sahib sent me third day to complete my official papers for registering me as New Muslim. When my case came before District Judge, he was biased against Islam, he said that I was a minor and handed me to local police to verify my conversion with my family. 06. Police Incharge of our village was a very cruel and biased man. He asked me to renounce Islam and when I refused, he beat me mercilessly. When I stood firm, he asked two of his constables to go and heat an iron rod by the nearby smith’ shop and then burn me with it (see again the attitude of Secular Indian Police, there are thousands of cases, where these police men have behaved like extremist Hindus - MUQ ). They brought the rod and placed it on my back, I did not feel anything (My Allah saved me from harm). Incharge cursed his constables and said that the rod was not properly heated, when he touched it, his whole hand was burnt! 07. He asked constable to make me run and when I run then shoot me as an absconder (standard Indian Police Fake Encounter Practice, showing the “Human face” of police – MUQ)… I refused to run. D. How I saved my Islam: 08. We are in this condition when a higher officer of Police came to Police station. He was very angry with Police man and Incharge saying that they have exceeded their limits and unless they desisted, he will get all of them dismissed. Then he asked me about the iron rod incident, when I told him, he said that this was certainly a miracle of Islam, He told me in secret that he was very impressed with Islam. 09. He released me and asked me to not to declare my Islam openly. Later I joined a Islamic seminary and passed out from there as an Islamic scholar, Alhamdolillah. F. Present Situation: I am presently working with an Islamic missionary society in ALWAR district of Rajasthan. I am constantly in touch with Maulana Kalim Uddin, who is my guide in these matters. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 10. They should pray for me and other members of my family and we do our bits for the mission of our prophet.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of July 2003.

Story # 56 Why be became Muslims? Dr. BENOIST [ALÎ SALMÂN] (French) I am a doctor and I come from a fanatically Catholic family. Yet my vocational choice, medicine, provided me a career in positive, experimental, and natural sciences, which in turn caused me to develop a growing hatred against Christianity. With respect to religion, I was at complete loggerheads with the other members of my family. Yes, there was a great Creator, and I believed in Him, i.e. God. Yet the absurdities concocted by Christians, especially by Catholics, various mysterious gods, sons, holy ghosts, the preposterous fibs fabricated for the purpose of proving that Jesus is the son of God, a myriad of other superstitions, ceremonies and rites pushed me away from Christianity, instead of attracting me towards it. Because I held the belief in one God, I would never accept trinity, nor would I by any means recognize Jesus as the son of God. That means to say that, long before knowing of Islam, I had already accepted the initial half of the Kalima-i- Shahâdat, i.e. the part that says, “Lâ ilâha il’l’Allah... (There is no God but Allah...)” When I began to study the Islamic religion and read the Ch 112 of Qur’an , which purported, “Lo; Allah is One. He is not begotten, nor does He beget. There is no being bearing any likeness to Him,” I said, “O my Allah. My belief is exactly the same.” I felt immense relief. I realized that it was of paramount importance to study Islam more deeply. And as I studied Islam I saw with admiration that this religion was completely agreeable with my ideas. Islam looked on religious men, and even on prophets as ordinary people like us; it did not divinize them. Giving a priest authority to forgive people’s sins was something which Islam would never accept. The Islamic religion did not contain any superstitions, any irrational rules, or any unintelligible subjects. The Islamic religion was a logical one, exactly as I wanted. Contrary to the Catholics, it did not smudge human beings with the consequences of the so-called original sin. It enjoined physical and spiritual cleanliness on human beings. Cleanliness, which is an essential principle in medicine, was in Islam a commandment of Allah. Islam commanded to clean oneself before acts of worship, and that was a quality which I had never seen in any other religion. In some Christian rites, such as Baptism and the Eucharist, people consume the bread and wine offered by the priest in the name of the flesh and blood of Jesus, which is intended, so to speak, as a simulated unity with Jesus, i.e. with God, I saw the resemblance between these rites and those of the most primitive heathens, and hated them. My mind, which had improved under the

guidance of positive science, vehemently rejected these puerile rites which did not suit to a true religion. Islam, on the other hand, did not accommodate any of those things. There was only truth, love, and cleanliness in Islam. Eventually, I made up my mind. I visited my Muslim friends and asked them what I should do to become a Muslim. They taught me the (statement called) Kalima-i Shahâdat, how to say it and what it meant. As I have mentioned earlier, before becoming a Muslim, I had accepted its first half, i.e. the part that meant, “There is no God but Allah,...” It was not difficult, therefore, to accept the remaining part, which said: “... and Muhammad is His (born slave and) Messenger.”(Abridged)

Story # 57 Why I Became Muslim? CHI MEI-FONG, (HAWRA KHADEEJAH) HONG KONG Note: This story is converted from a third person to first person, to match with the style of posts. II was born and raised as a Christian. I studied in a Christian school and never heard about Islam during my studies. During summer vacations, I took up a job in a fast food restaurant. There I met a Pakistani co worker and thru him I came to know about Islam and its teachings. I soon realized that Islam answers my spiritual needs, and despite the stringent doctrines required by Quran, I decided to accept this religion. I was fortunate that my family posed no problem and accepted my decision, but they have shown no interest to follow it. My parents gave me freedom in choosing my religion as long as it was not a cult. My mother did worry about my health and asked why Muslims always ask their believers to fast. She was finally persuaded when I explained that it was a way to experience the sadness and hunger suffered by poor people. Initially I was not allowed to pray at home…but as times went by, they got used to my religious rituals. I realized how different I was from other people in the community when I discovered all the bewildered gazes came from local rather than westerners. May be Hong Kong people are simply unfamiliar with Islamic culture. To some a religious law which urges women to hide their bodies to avoid being a temptation to men as oppressive…however this dress code serves as a symbol of spiritual life and it is more of a protection to women On Polygamy “ I think there is a delusion in many people’s mind and they tend to take the words of Quran at face value. Although Polygamy was allowed due to social needs, it was not encouraged you, mind you, it is very difficult to treat all your wives with equal justice as prescribed in Quran” I found work in the Islamic center of Hong King and my new duties fit very well with my living life as a practicing Muslim. There are more than 65, 000 Muslims in Hong Kong now. (Abridged) Source:: Saudi Gazette 28 July 2000, p7

Story # 58 Why I Became Muslim? The Introduction and Decision (Testimony of Aminah Assilmi) "I couldn't be a Muslim! I was American and white!" I was completing a degree in Recreation, when I met my first Muslims. It was the first year that we had been able to pre-register by computer. I pre-registered and went to Oklahoma to take care of some family business. . Now, you need to understand that while I was attending college and excelling, ran my own business, and had many close friends, I was extremely shy. My transcripts actually had me listed as severely reticent. I was very slow to get to know people and rarely spoke to anyone unless was forced to, or already knew them. Well, back to the story. The computer printout held one enormous surprise for me. I was registered for a Theatre class... When I entered the classroom, I received my second shock. The class was full of 'Arabs' and 'camel jockeys'. Well, I had never seen one but I had heard of them…There was no way I was going to sit in a room full of dirty heathens! After all, you could catch some dreadful disease from those people. Everyone knew they were dirty, not to be trusted either. When I told my husband about the Arabs in the class and that there was no way I was going back, he responded in his usual calm way. He reminded that I was always claiming that God had a reason for everything and maybe I should spend some time thinking about it before I made my final decision…For the next two days, I prayed for guidance. On Thursday I went back to the class convinced that God had put me there to save those poor ignorant heathens from the fires of hell. I proceeded to explain to them how they would burn in the fires of hell for all eternity, if they did not accept Jesus as their personal savior. They were very polite, but did not convert. Then, I explained how Jesus loved them and had died on the cross to save them from their sins. All they had to do was accept him into their hearts. They were very polite, but still did not convert. So, I decided to read their own book to show them that Islam was a false religion and Mohammed was a false God. One of the students gave me a copy of the Quran and another book about Islam, and I proceeded with my research. I was sure I would find the evidence I needed very quickly. Well, I read the Quran and the other book. Then I read another 15 books, Sahih Muslim and returned to the Quran. I was determined I would convert them! My studies continued for the next one and half years.

During that time, I started having a few problems with my husband. I was changing, just in little ways but enough to bother him. We used to go to the bar every Friday and Saturday, or to a party, and I no longer wanted to go. I was quieter and more distant. He was sure I was having an affair, so he kicked me out. I moved into an apartment with my children and continued my determined efforts to convert the Muslims to Christianity. The, one day, there was a knock on my door. I opened the door and saw a man in a long white night gown with a red and white checkered table cloth on his head. He was accompanied by three men in pajamas. ….His name was Abdul-Aziz Al-Shiek and he made the time. He was very patient and discussed every question with me. He never made me feel silly or that a question was stupid. He asked me if I believed there was only one God and I said yes. Then he asked if I believed Mohammed was His Messenger. Again I said yes. He told me that I was already a Muslim…. We continued talking. Later, he explained that attaining knowledge and understanding of spirituality was a little like climbing a ladder. If you climb a ladder and try to skip a few rungs, there was danger of falling. The Shahadah was just the first step on the ladder. Still we had to talk some more. Later that afternoon, May 21, 1977 at Asr', I took Shahadah. However, there were still some things I could not accept and it was my nature to be completely truthful so I added a disclaimer. I said: "I bear witness that there is no god but God and Mohammed is His Messenger" 'but, I will never cover my hair and if my husband takes another wife, I will castrate him.' I heard gasps from the other men in the room, but Abdul Aziz silenced them. Later I learned that he told the brothers never to discuss those two subjects with me. He was sure I would come to the correct understanding. When I first started to study Islam, I did not expect to find anything that I needed or wanted in my personal life. Little did I know that Islam would change my life. No human could have ever convinced me that I would finally be at peace and overflowing with love and joy because of Islam. How Islam changed my Life When I first embraced Islam, I really did not think it was going to affect my life very much. Islam did not just affect my life. It totally changed it. Family life: My husband and I loved each other very deeply. That love for each other still exists. Still, when I started studying Islam, we started having some difficulties. He saw me changing and did not understand what was happening. Neither did I. But then, I did not even realize I was changing. He decided that the only thing that could make me change was another man. There was no way to make him understand what was changing me because I did not know. After I realized that I was a Muslim, it did not help matters. After all...the only reason a woman changes something as fundamental as her religion is another man. He could not find evidence of

this other man...but he had to exist. We ended up in a very ugly divorce. The courts determined that the unorthodox religion would be detrimental to the development of my children. So they were removed from my custody. Friends: Most of my friends drifted away during that first year. I was no fun anymore. I did not want to go to parties or bars. I was not interested in finding a boyfriend. All I ever did was read that 'stupid' book (the Qur'an) and talk about Islam. What a bore. I still did not have enough knowledge to help them understand why Islam was so beautiful. Employment: My job was next to go. While I had won just about every award there was in my field and was recognized as a serious trend setter and money maker, the day I put on Hijab, was the end of my job. Now I was without a family, without friends and without a job. In all this, the first light was my grandmother. She approved of my choice and joined me. What a surprise! I always knew she had a lot of wisdom, but this! She died soon after that. When I stop to think about it, I almost get jealous. The day she pronounced Shahadah, all her misdeeds had been erased, while her good deeds were preserved. She died so soon after accepting Islam that I knew her 'BOOK' was bound to be heavy on the good side. It fills me with such joy! Rather than try to tell you about how each person came to accept Islam, let me simply say that more members of my family continue to find Islam every year. I was especially happy when a dear friends, Brother Qaiser Imam, told me that my ex-husband took Shahdah. When Brother Qaiser asked him why, he said it was because he had been watching me for 16 years and he wanted his daughter to have what I had. He came and asked me to forgive him for all he had done. I had forgiven him long before that. Now my oldest son, Whittney, has called, as I am writing this book, and announced that he also wants to become Muslim. He plans on taking the Shahadah as the ISNA Convention in a couple of weeks. For now, he is learning as much as he can. Allah is The Most Merciful. True, Allah has tested me, as was promised, and rewarded me far beyond what I could ever have hoped for. A few years ago, the doctors told me I had cancer and it was terminal. They explained that there was no cure, it was too far advanced, and proceeded to help prepare me for my death by explaining how the disease would progress. I had maybe one year left to live. I was concerned about my children, especially my youngest. Who would take care of him? Still I was not depressed. We must all die. I was confident that the pain I was experiencing contained Blessings. (Abridged)

Story # 59 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: RAM KISHAN (ADIL) LAKRA, DELHI , INDIA A. Family Background: 01. My first birth was on 27th Sept 1959 and my second birth came after 45 years when I was born to Islam. Our family lived in NAJAFGARH village, which was earlier in HARYANA but later merged to Delhi state. My family members were the leaders of my village, my father expired when I was very young. I work these days as Property dealer in Delhi. 02. I left school after 10th standard. One of my uncle was an officer in Army. He got me enrolled as soldier in the army. I did not like military at all. I wanted then to declare me unfit, I tried many things but I was not successful. Once when a high office was inspecting Parade, I started to mix Chewing Tobacco with lime (a local Indian composition) on my palm. When the office reached me, I saluted him with closed palm. He said what I was hiding in my palm…when I showed it, he got very angry and wrote UNFIT on my military file… that was my end in Indian Army. 03. After that I returned to Delhi and started property dealing business. Soon I got some rowdy friends and we use every wrong mean to cheat people out of their properties… The end of such endeavours is known to every body…soon I was a haunted man and I had many criminal caser registered against me with Police and courts. 04. From my childhood I was against the idol worship. Not only that, no one could do idol worship in the house when I was around. My mother diagnosed root cause of my problem as my opposition to these idols. So when the date for an important case came, she gave my some book of hymn and ask me to go and worship Lord HANUMAN. I did all that, but I lost the case … I returned to home and started hitting idol of Lord HANUMAN with my shoe.. I was very much frustrated and at my wit’s end as to what to do with these legal cases against me.

B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 05. There was a small fruit merchant in my locality. He was a Muslim, I went to her and asked him about a Charm to save me from these cases. He asked me to recite DROOD (Salutation) to Prophet of Islam at least 100 times every day. 06. I started doing that and very soon the cases were being decided in my favor. I started meting him more often….he then gave me some books about Islam and after I had read them…. I saw the mistakes and injustices that I have done to others. How I will be saved in the hereafter. 07. When I told him this, he advised me to become Muslim. I went to JAMA MASJID of Delhi, but they asked certificates from my village. Then I went to Imam of FATEHPURI mosque in Delhi, he told me I have to leave my wife, if I became Muslim… I tried many people but no one was bold enough to make me Muslim (that is a shame for Muslim Leaders in India- MUQ)… 08. Some how I reached PHULAT and met Maulana Kalim Sahib, he was very glad to see me and he immediately asked me to read Islamic creed and made me Muslim. Then I asked Maulana, will I have to leave my wife….he was astonished and asked me how this idea came to my mind. I must start working on my wife and save her from hell fire. Otherwise I would not be the real husband I wanted to be. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 09. When I reached home, my wife, who was a devout Hindu like my mother, became very angry. She started shouting at me and whatever I said made no effect on her so to say. It went on late past midnight, then I used my last trick (told to me by Maulana). 10. I asked if she was a real Hindu wife or a fake one. She said that I am a Real Hindu Wife. I said then you should be where your husband is. I am burnt on the pyre of Islam and she should also burn with me….otherwise she is not a Hindu wife but a prostitute… This asked her to think and finally she agreed to become Muslim. E. My Missionary activities: 1. On Spouse / Children 11. Three of my children accepted Islam when my wife became Muslim. One of my daughter got married before I became Muslim. I am working on her and my son in law. I have given them some books on Islam like “Your Trust…”, “What happens after death”… “Islam and introduction” etc. And I pray to Allah to open their hearts to Islam.

F. Present Situation: 12. I still have some cases pending against me. I am called to court every now and then. But when I am free, I try to study Islamic literature and work along with Islamic Missionaries. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. They should distribute these small books like “Your trust returned to you” and other simple Islamic literature to every one in India. This is not only a help for other people, but they must do it, if they want to answer about their duties in the hereafter.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of Nov. 2004

Story # 60 Why be became Muslims? CAPTAIN (JACQUES) COUSTEAU (French) In France Islam has been spreading at a high velocity …. People who have preferred Islam are not only from among workers and civil servants but also from among people renowned in every respect. Among people who have chosen Islam is Captain Cousteau, whom the entire world closely knows for his explorations about life under water. Captain Cousteau, who has revealed the secrets of oceans one by one with the films that he made and which are being televised world over in a program sub-headed The Living Sea, said that what actually prompted him to choose the Islamic religion was, after observing that the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean did not mix with each other, his seeing that the same phenomenon was written in the Qur'an which had been revealed fourteen hundred years before. Captain Cousteau told of the event that had caused him to become a Muslim, as follows: “In 1962 German scientists said that the waters of the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean did not mix with each other in the Strait of Bâb-ul-Mandab where the Aden Bay and the Red Sea join. So we began to examine whether the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean mixed with each other. First we analyzed the water in the Mediterranean to find out its natural salinity and density, and the life it contained. We repeated the same procedure in the Atlantic Ocean. The two masses of water had been meeting each other in the Gibraltar for thousands of years. Accordingly, the two masses of water must have been mixing with each other and they must have been sharing identical, or, at least, similar properties in salinity and density. On the contrary, even at places where the two seas were closest to each other, each mass of water preserved its properties. In other words, at the point where the two seas met, a curtain of water prevented the waters belonging to the two seas from mixing. When I told Professor Maurice Bucaille about this phenomenon, he said that it was no surprise and that it was written clearly in Islam’s Holy Book, the Qur'an Indeed, this fact was defined in a plain language in the Qur'an. When I knew this, I believed in the fact that the Qur'an was the ‘Word of Allah’. I chose Islam, the true religion The spiritual potency inherent in the Islamic religion gave me the strength to endure the pain I had been suffering for the loss of my son.”

Story # 61 Why I Became Muslim? UKHT KALEEM ULLAH , PAKISTAN After hearing so many stories from newly converts to Islam, here is one story by a Muslim Women, who re-discovered Islam. This could be the tale of many Muslims who are living in western countries and even in so called Muslim countries. We present this story for benefits of both Muslim and Non Muslim readers. I was a Muslim Girl brought up in USA. My parents knew nothing about Islam and we all were Muslims only in name. My parents never used to prey and even did not knew how to prey. There were no fasts observed in our house. We did not know how to read Quran. My parents would leave for job in the morning and would return late in the evening. They had no time for their children to teach them any thing. In the same way, our brothers and sisters also did not have much interaction. Every one was busy living in his or her individual lives. We grew up in this atmosphere and some of my sisters even got married. I also grew up and after completing my college education joined University. All this changed when our Grandma came to visit us from Pakistan. She was a very pious and religious lady and she literally wept when she saw the atmosphere of our house. She used to remind us about out duties and lives as a Muslim, but none of us had any time or inclination for such talks. She objected on the matter of my dress and clothes in which I used to go to university…..so much so that one day I got really angry and slapped her on her face before I left the house… That day I felt distraught about my behavior and injustice I had done to her….that night I could not sleep. I went to her room late in the night to apologize to her. She was just free from late night prayer….she hugged me and forgave me. Then slowly and slowly I got attracted towards her and her talks. I learned as to how to prey and how to recite Quran. I started preying regularly. I still went to University in Western clothes, but soon I decided to go in full Islamic dress. Well, my first day was not that good. All my friends started making fun of me…they would taunt us and call me names….I was branded as a terrorist….when I entered any room, some one would remark that she should be searched….may be she has a bomb underneath these clothes!! My parents became very angry on me and my Grandma. Then one day we had a party in our home. My parents told me to dress in Western Clothes, otherwise their friend would make fun of him. When I entered in full Islamic dress…then my father got very angry and beat me and drove me and my Grandma out of the house for good.

I borrowed some money from one of my friend and me and my Grandma returned back to Pakistan. It is more than three years since that incident and my parents have never even phoned once to know about our welfare. But I thank Allah that He saved me from that evil environment and I have found true path. I prey to Allah to show right path to my parents and my brother and sisters also. May be my story would be an eye opener to those who are dazzled by the glamour and outside beauty of Modern Western Society.

Story # 62 Why I became Muslim? A SEARCHER OF TRUTH Why I became a Muslim is often asked from me, let it suffice that it Was Allah who guided me to it. I was born in a Christian family and had that as a background. My mother used to take us to church every Sunday and would read to us Biblical stories in the night. However that grip loosened when I grew up and decided to study different religion. First book which I read was The Religion of Man. Its first chapter was on Islam. I was astonished to read about the basic teachings of Islam, of the life story of its prophet. What close links it had with Abraham and how close it was to Christianity. All this was new to me. Then I also read about Buddhism, Hindu religion, Judaism and many smaller religions of Americas and other places. Judaism seemed to me a true religion, but was racial in out look. Buddhism takes you away from the world and there is no clear concept of God and life after death. Hinduism deals with countless gods and goddesses. Old religions of America are mostly tribal in nature. Islam seemed to be the only religion which was Universal in outlook and its beliefs and practices were not bound to any region or nation. Then I met a Muslim women, who asked me to join Islamic classes conducted by her father for people who want to learn about Islam. When I went there I found Muslims from all parts of world on one platform and sharing the same beliefs. I was very much impressed and she gave me Arabic Quran along with its English Translation. I would have closed Quran if it said any bad thing about Jesus or any other prophet of God. But when I saw that Quran always mentions Jesus, Moses and other Jewish prophets with equal respect, I knew it must be from God and not any human, because no human can be that broad minded. When I was reading old Semitic languages, I came to know that Son was often used in the sense of Nearness. Son of God might mean one who is very near to God. Jesus is also referred to as Son of Man. How this got changed into Only Begotten Son of God was the question which puzzled me. Then I pondered on the subject of Crucifixion and why it meant what Christians want it to mean. Why an innocent soul has to die to expiate sins of mankind was beyond my understanding. I preyed to God to guide me to true path and when my mind got satisfied that what Islam says is indeed truth and logical, only then I decided to become a Muslim. Islam is not the religion of terrorists and violence, it is religion of all those who want peace and want to worship their own creator with full devotion of their hearts and minds (Abridged)

Story # 63 Why I Became Muslim? Testimony of Asiya Abd al-Zahir I have always, since developing an ability to think deeply, believed in the existence of a single Creator, on whom everything that exists is dependent. Though my parents are Buddhist, from the age of 13, to this Creator, I have steadfastly prayed and yielded guidance from every day that I can remember. Yet, being schooled within a Christian environment, I naturally identified myself as a Christian. Sadly, my knowledge of Islam was minimal. I perceived it as a bizarre religion, limited to only a few underdeveloped nations, most of which were in the Middle East, and which endorsed an astoundingly suppressive lifestyle, particularly for women. Muslim women, I presumed, were considered inferior - a passive domestic slave, bashed often and forced to compete among four for her husband's affections, which he could withhold from them all if he wanted to. The majority of these ideas I developed from hearsay, interactions with others I assumed knew what they were talking about and a few documentaries on Iran and Saudi Arabia I watched on television. As I entered university nearly three years ago, I came into contact with quite a number of Muslim students from various backgrounds. Strangely enough, even to myself, I was drawn to them and developed a curious inclination to learn and understand more about their religion. I observed how content they seemed and was very impressed by their openness and warmth towards myself and each other, but more importantly with their pride in belonging to a religion which holds many negative connotations. I gradually became fascinated with Islam, and through a process of education, developed a greater respect for it than even my beloved Christianity. I was stunned at how wrong my previous conception had been and became particularly overwhelmed at the tremendous entitlements, equality and acknowledgment Islam provided for women. I realised the reality of the Islamic lifestyle and the truth concerning that feeble American innovation termed "Islamic fundamentalism". Is it said that any person who possesses the faulty of reason and an open mind should recognise logic and truth when he/she encounters it, and so it was in my case. More and more, literature, signs and evidence were revealed to me, and more and more, my intellect was stimulated and my heart, warmed. I wanted to know everything about Islam and felt already a sense of brotherhood with and belonging among its followers. What impressed me the most was how practical Islam is - how it encompasses a rule and a lesson for almost every facet of living. And by the sheer grace of God, I at last understood the faults of Christian theology and of the concepts I had previously accepted unquestioningly.

At midday, on August 4th, 1994, before over 20 witnesses, I recited the shahadah and became an official Muslim. I shall never forget the bliss of that day and how much my life has turned around in only a year's time. I have often been asked what it is like to be a revert and of the difficulties I must endure. Though I do not wish to dwell on this topic, as pity is not my priority, I shall give some examples of what I have been through. The period up till the end of Ramadhan was, by far, the hardest to get through. Family disputes took place almost daily; I was showered with verbal abuse, ridicule and threats. On many occasions, my room was physically torn apart, books mysteriously disappeared and slanderous phone messages were sent to my friends and their parents. There have been times I have been locked out of home and forced to abstain from dinner as pork was deliberately served. Even to this day, all my mail is opened before I have the chance to do so myself. Apart from my housing and meals, I must provide for myself financially. My readings, as my conversations over the phone are done in privacy. My writings and my visits to mosques or other Islamic venues must always be concealed. I am similarly not able to visit friends very often as I may be "brain-washed" even more. I cannot perform my prayers until I am sure no one is around. Nor can I express my excitement and celebration during Ramadan. I cannot share the joy at knowing yet another sister has put on Hijab, nor can I discuss the lesson I have learned this day or the speech given by an Islamic scholar/scientist. Moreover, I must continually defend the Muslims and the Islam portrayed on the media, and fight against the stereotypes my parents stubbornly maintain. To see their expressions of disgust at myself is almost unbearable. I am now insecure as to my parents affections and constantly worry of how much I am hurting them. Through the entire month of Ramadan, my mother spoke to me not once. I had to hear her say time and time again at how I had betrayed the family. My pleading with her otherwise was to no avail. I am told over and over again that what I have done is unforgivable and if any of our relations or already few friends knew, my parents would surely be outcasts. However, I do not claim to have a miserable life. I am more content and at peace now than I ever have been. My purpose in relating all of this is to try to display the opportunities that many of you have which are so often taken for granted, so little taken advantage of, but so precious to many reverts like myself. To reflect on these hardships alone would imply I have gained nothing by becoming a Muslim other than pain. On the contrary, Islam has given me already so many vast rewards, I shiver to think of how much more wonderful the gifts of Paradise would be. At the time of my reversion, although I had accepted Islam as being true, I had no idea of the

vast internal changes it would incur upon me. Even I am astounded at how much I devour knowledge, how Islam is in my thoughts every waking moment, how compelling I feel my responsibility is to the Ummah and how much more of a Muslim I became every month. … Over the past year, I have developed quite an extensive breadth of Islamic knowledge and have studied ayats of the Holy Qur'an in much finer detail. Not once have I come across anything which would make me doubt the authenticity of the Qur'an and the relevance of Islam for contemporary society, for even one minute. This has been the only religion I have ever been completely sure of and am more sure of each day that I serve. Furthermore, I have established my identity, I am more confident of myself; a stronger woman and person of colour, I am more aware of my existence and more secure in my battles. (Abridged)

Story # 64 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: PROMOD KUMAR (MOHD. ASLAM) A. Family Background: 01. I was born in a religious JAT family and we lived near DEOBAND UP. We are three brothers and one sister. When I was six years old, My father renounced the world and devoted himself to running a Hindu ASHRAM near the river Ganges. He is a very much learned scholar of Hinduism. I have studied upto 12th Standard. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 02. Since I was a child, I was interested as to how to reach to the Creator of this Universe. I asked many Hindu scholars, but their answers did not satisfy me. Once I asked this question to a Muslim scholar and he explained to me about Islam and its concept of Allah. It appealed to me and specially the concept of cleanliness in Islam. How can a man be clean if his clothes have a drop of urine on it.. 03. Then he introduced me to Maulana Kalim Sahib in PHULAT, he also explained to me about the concept of Islam and I accepted Islam on his hands almost seven years ago. After I became Muslim, I was under the wrong impression that it is now the duty of Muslims. When I did not get much support…. I got myself registered with a Christian Mission. 04. When I saw the atmosphere there, I realised the value of true love and respected which I got from the Muslims. I phone to Maulana and left the mission and met him. He was very happy top receive me back and told that every one accepts Islam for the sake of Allah and for his own self. 05. There is burden on the Muslim community, it is like if some one saves a drowning man, will he become responsible for his boarding and lodgings for his whole life? I realized my mistake and repented to Allah. Then I spent four months with an Islamic missionary group and learned Quran , prayers and other items needed for Muslims.

E. My Missionary activities: 2. On Parents. 06. As I told earlier, my father was head of a Hindu ASHRAM and he was a great scholar… Maulana asked me to go back to him and invite him to Islam. Initially I was very hesitant , but I took courage and gave him the book “Your Trust…” My father was very much impressed with reading this small booklet and he asked me to take him to Maulana. 07. When he met Maulana and talked to him, he was very much impressed with him and his talks… and after a few days, he also accepted Islam , Alhamdolillah. Some of his disciples also accepted Islam on the hands of my father. 3. On Family members / Others. 08. I am working on him. Initially they were hesitant to mix with me, but slowly they started to respect me. I gave them the same book “Your Trust..”. I pray to Allah to guide them to the right path. F. Present Situation: G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 09. I just want to remind my Muslim brothers that it is their duty to spread the message of Islam. This was entrusted to them by their prophet, when on the occasion of Last Pilgrimage he said “Let those who are present, tell this to those who are not present” This is the only way for our recovery and gaining our position in this world And they should be sympathetic towards New Muslims and should try to look after them and help them so they can start their new life in Muslim. Because changing one’ religion in this country, cuts him off totally with his family and friends.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of Feb. 2003

Story # 65 Why be became Muslims? MUHAMMAD EMÎN HOBOHN (German) (Muhammad Emîn Hobohn is both a diplomat and a missionary. He is a man of knowledge and religion with a social career.) Why are Europeans abandoning their religion and becoming Muslims? It has various reasons. Among them is the ‘Haqq=Truth; Right; Reality’. The principles that Islam is based on are so logical, so true and honest that it is out of the question for a wise and educated person seeking for truth and reality in a religion not to accept them. For instance, the Islamic religion professes the existence of one god. It appeals to the human common sense, and never descends to inculcating people with superstitions. The Islamic religion states that people all over the world, regardless of their races, are the born slaves of God, equal and similar. …. An awareness of the fact that Allah will subject human beings to an equitable interrogation in the Hereafter on what they have done in the world, will urge them that they should abide by justice and integrity in the world. For this reason, true Muslims never attempt to do something before thinking well and being firmly convinced that what they are going to do is really something useful. Thereby this great religion establishes control over human beings in such a degree as could be managed by no worldly police organization, and permanently keeps them on the right way. Another aspect that makes Islam an attractive choice in the eyes of Europeans is its norms of worship. The namâz (the five daily ritual prayers) teaches punctuality to people, and fasting drills a strong sense of will power into them. What other factor could be as essential to success in life as punctuality and determination? Great men owe their accomplishments only to these two determinants. Now I come to a most beautiful aspect of the Islamic religion: While educating people in the ethical and humanistic areas in the most logical styles, the Islamic religion never compels them beyond their capacities. On the contrary, it offers them many opportunities to lead a prosperous and comfortable life. Allah wishes people to live in comfort and happiness. To this end, He commands people not to commit sins….

I have been to many places and districts of the world on diplomatic and religious missions. I have studied other religions and social systems minutely. I have seen neither a religion nor a social system as faultless or as immaculate as Islam. …. Islam is a practical religion, not a theoretical one. Islam means submission to Allah who is compassionate and forgiving and who always shows the right way. What on earth could be more beautiful? (Abridged)

Story # 66 Why I Became Muslim? PROF. DAN (YAHYA) FLOOD, USA Here is an interesting and somewhat detailed description of a sincere and unbiased person, as to how gradually, he became learnt and accepted truth about Islam. There might not be many who can have as varied experience as him. I was born in Trenton, NJ. My father was an Engineer by profession, and as is usual in USA, we used to travel a lot. We belonged to protestant faith, but we only went to church as a social obligation. My parents never forced any belief on me, and I knew very little about Jesus and Christianity and may be that was the reason, I was not biased towards any religion. My mother was a very pious and generous women and would help any one in need and send gifts to relatives and friend. That could be the reason, which helped her in the ending portion of her life. After completing my college education in Indiana and then enrolled for Business Administration course in Texas University. Later I changed it to Latin America when I noticed that this was a far more interesting topic than Buss. Admin. I then studied about Latin America and also studied books on many religion. I took a room on rent, where many students were living together. We had a student from Saudi Arabia, Iran and Indian Hindu as my fellow roommates. I used to enjoy foods from different parts of the world. Still undecided about my future career, I toured USA and Canada, so to think about it. I saw many beautiful natural scenes… by seeing these natural beauties, I used to think that there must be one God who created it all, but I still did not knew His name or as to how to prey to Him…. Meanwhile my Saudi friend invited me for a two week stay in his ancestral village near Riyadh. When I reached the village, I was given much honor. They killed many sheep and invited whole village for a banquet. I saw camels being milked for the first time. After spending two wonderful weeks in KSA, I returned back to USA. My first job was to teach English to those whose mother tongue is not English. It was a joint program between Abu Dhabi and Texas University. I would spent one month in Abu Dhabi and then six months in USA with the trainees. This gave me experience and aptitude to teach English which I later decided as my future career. … After many ups and downs in my professional career, I phoned my Saudi Friend to find a job for me in Saudi Arabia. I got a job as English teacher in Jubail in one of the Professional Training Center. Once my Saudi Friend took me to a mosque, I did not know anything about a mosque or as to what to do there. They advised me to wash my hands and feet and do as other Muslims do. I did it a couple of times and felt much peace and tranquility in my heart. I attended a picnic that was

arranged especially for Non Muslims , there we took part in many activity and even listened to some public talks about Islam. In Jubail I met a fellow American (named Ali Basheer) who had become Muslim. I told him that I am very close to Islam, what I need is a little push by some one and I will fall into it. He gave me a CD to look at. Topic of the CD was “What is your purpose of life and what you know about Islam?” This talk was delivered by a Newly converted American Muslim named Khalid Yaseen in 1990 in Jeddah. After watching this Video, I got convinced of 3 basic facts. 1. The purpose of life should be Islam, i.e. submission to the will of our Creator. Islam is the best word for it. 2. The word Islam is mentioned in Quran. No other religion is named as such in their scriptures. 3. He gave a very beautiful example for one who is Christian and wants to convert to Islam. It was as if one has a precious old suit, which has become loose and not fitting the body properly. No one will throw it out, but make a fix and it will fit on the body. One does not have to discard every thing when he becomes a Muslim after being a Christian. After this I got convinced of the truth of Islam and became a Muslim and chose YAHYA (John the Baptist) as my new name. Every one in the mosque came forward to greet me, when I became a Muslim and that was very wonderful for me. I later married an Arab Woman and our children speak very good Arabic. When I went back to USA, my friends made fun of me and my wife. They asked me how can you marry a women, whom you do not know fully. I told them about Islamic concept of marriage and restriction on free mixing of sexes. I told them that in Western System…it is like taking a car for test drive before one buys it!!! They became silent as they knew what I meant. My parents did not react favorably or unfavorably and accepted my choice as is the case with most American Parents. But my mother was much impressed by sincerity of my wife and the way she helped her. Later I got a phone call from USA, that my mother is very sick and I and my wife should reach there ASAP. We found my mother very sick and started to take care of her. My mother was much impressed by sincerity of my wife and the way she served her. Once I asked my mother, do you believe in One God and that we should only worship her. She said yes. I asked her to repeat that three times in English and once in Arabic. Then I asked her, do you believe in all prophets of God, Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Mohammad (May peace be on All the Messengers of Allah), she said yes. I asked her to repeat it three times in English and once in Arabic. After accepting Islam on my hand, my mother expired after five days. May be her good nature and good deeds helper her in the last.

I am still teaching English, I have written a small booklet on comparative religion “The Best way to live and Die” which was published by WAMY. If any one wants to know about Islam, he can contact me at dflood58_2000@yahoo.com

Story # 67 Why I Became Muslim? CAROL L. ANWAY, USA Note: This is from parents of an American lady, who converted to Islam many years ago. It shows broadmindedness and openness to Islam from those who are Christians. When our daughter married a young man from Iran, we had no idea what it meant to be muslim. It was comforting to us that he was Muslim, because we were a religious family and assumed that before long he would convert to Christianity. They enrolled in a college several hours away from us. Thru telephone calls and occasional short visits we began to notice a change taking place in our daughter. During one weekend about one and half years, she broke the news to us that she had become Muslim. She made it clear that it was not because her husband asked her to do it, she had chosen to be Muslim herself. She assured us hat she was not rejecting us. Our world fell apart, and we reacted with deep grief and loss. It has been 12 years since that day. We have healed from the grief, rebuilt our relationship with our daughter and her husband, and have come to have deep respect for that what she has chosen. I have been impressed with all of her friends, both American converts and those from other countries who are Muslim. A little over two years ago, I started a project to survey American women in the US and Canada who had become Muslim. I distributed Questionnaires at Muslim conferences, advertised in Islamic magazines….and this is our findings: A. Approx. 40 % of women work outside the home either part time or full time. B. 12 % are working toward college degrees. C. 25 % choose to home school, their children of school age. All but two women in the survey were wearing full time Hijab. 90 % of the women in the study are married and reflect successful marriage, …From this survey, I have written a book Daughters of another path: Experiences of American women choosing Islam…. As parents of an American Muslim convert, my husband and me now feel that the two paths are not so different…It has broadened our world to see it thru the eyes of a daughter who has chosen another path. (Abridged) Source:: Islamic Horizons , Sept-Oct 1995, p26-27

Story # 68 Why I Became Muslim? Testimony of Chahida Zanabi I have always believed in God, since I was very small. My family was not religious, but for a period my mother prayed for us children, by the bedside every night. Since then I have seen Gods existence as a fact of life, and for me the question was how to live according to Gods will so that I could be admitted into Paradise. When I was about 12 years old, I started to study the Bible, to seek guidance. But I was disappointed, I could not sense Gods nearness in these words attributed to him. The more I read about the Christianity, the more confused I felt. My concept of a religion did not support important teachings of the Church. God was in my eyes someone raised above all, I could not accept the idea of God having to let his 'son' die for humans to be saved. God, who says "be", and it is, whatever He would please? Certainly He could forgive the humans without such arrangements? Jesus could be no more than a wise man with guidance and knowledge from God, for God does not take a human shape. And why are all humans born sinful because of what Eve did? What is the meaning of the trinity? How can one say the Bible is Gods word, when it is clearly written by humans? When I was seventeen, I moved away from home to attend a Christian school. I thought perhaps staying with Christians would help me understand the religion better. And I did enjoy their company very much, the non-alcoholic parties, their concern for each other and their tolerance. I told them of my doubts, and they told me that it was a part of the wonderful mystery which I just had to accept. They said it was all a matter of faith, I just had to keep believing Jesus gave his life for me, and I would be saved. But i found it illogical and unjust. What about all the righteous believers around the world who never heard of the crucifixion, would their faith and work be in vain? Would God deny MY faith and deeds, in spite of the fact that I believed in him with all my heart? This could not be the Truth! A year later I was married with a Muslim by origin. Religiously I was at a point of zero, my only knowledge was that I believed in God, I knew nothing else. Some of my husbands friends had Norwegian wives who had converted, and I was provoked by the thought of a Western woman embracing Islam. We discussed religion until early morning hours, but I remained skeptic towards Islam. So they challenged me: Why wouldn't I join them in the mosque to learn some Arabic and find out more? I wanted to learn Arabic, and I had never been in a mosque, so I came. It became an emotional and very surprising experience! I remember watching myself in the mirror in the mosque, wearing the Hijab, and it felt so right. I remember watching the Muslims pray, and I wished so much I could join them in their prostrating for God. I had an overwhelming feeling of submission to God. I did not know how to pray, and I cried inside of not being able to do so. I bought the English translation of the Qur'an, and when I read it, I could sense Gods voice, the words hit my heart.

Though, everyone warned me from embracing Islam. I knew too that this was just too emotional, and I needed more knowledge, so I spent the next seven months reading and studying Islam. But only to find out that Islam matched my concept of a religion and my concept of God. Then, in May-1988, I went for a holiday in Greece. It was a perfect holiday, a lot of sunbathing, swimming, good food and drink, lots of nice people, and so on. I enjoyed it all, at least the first week. But then I became more and more annoyed with the same things. It seemed meaningless and empty. Why did one have to drink to have fun, something must is missing in peoples lives! Why did not the men respect me, though I was married and probably they were too? I found myself by the swimming pool when I made the decision. This was enough! I wanted to go home to embrace Islam! I started to pray three weeks after, and I have never regretted since. Today I am happy to be reminded again of the favor and mercy God has given me. Wa alaikum salaam! Chahida Elisabeth Zanabi)

Story # 69 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: RAGHUBEER SINGH (ABDUL RAHMAN) HARIDWAR, INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born in a poor family of KHATAULI in 1950. I studied only upto 8 th standard and then left education. I did many odd jobs and now I have a general merchant shop in my village. My mother died the year I got married, I have three brothers and two sisters living. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 02. I got married to a well to do family in a neighboring village. My wife was very beautiful and I loved her. She was more educated than me. Due to the difference in our standard of living, she went to her house and refused to come back. I went to her house, even I send my father, but she did not come. I was very much in love and I wanted to get her back at any cost. First I tried prayers in Temples, and met many Hindu TANTRICKS, but nothing helped. 03. Some one told me to go to Muslim mosque and get some charm from them. They have a program on Friday night and by Saturday morning,, I will find some Muslim Scholar who would give me charm. When my father and I reached there Saturday morning, we found a young man of about 13 years (Maulana Kalim in his younger age) giving lecture. When he came out, we told him of our problem. He said that he has nothing on him now, but if we could after two weeks, he will have some thing for us. 04. We reached there after two weeks, he asked me to take bath and he wrote on a piece of paper Islamic creed in Arabia and told us to keep on repeating it. I did not know its meaning, but nevertheless I recited it for next three or four days. It gave me some peace of mind. On fourth day, my father in law came to our house with my wife. I was very happy. I got used to the wording, that I would recite is most of the time. Once a Muslim friend heard me reciting it and asked did I know what it meant? I told this was the thing which brought back my wife, he said It was Islamic creed and if I read it, I become a Muslim.

05. Then he told me about Islam and gave me some books on Islam. I got impressed and then I decided to become Muslim. I learned from him how to pray. Then I told my wife that I had become Muslim, first she was very angry, but when I told her that as a Hindu wife, she must do what I did, she also decided to become Muslim. Then I went to Delhi for some days. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 06. My father got alarmed and he complained to local police that Maulana had abducted me. He of course knew nothing about him. I reached the village on the same day when the dead line given by police to Maulana expired. It saved a lot of unpleasantness. D. How I saved my Islam: 07. Afterwards I spent some time with Islamic mission and learned more about Islam and its teachings. I moved to POONA and worked in a bakery, I brought my wife also and now we are living happily.

E. My Missionary activities: 1. On Spouse / Children 08. My wife accepted Islam soon after I accepted Islam, we have five children, three sons and two daughters and they all are trying to live like a good Muslim. 3. On Family members / Others. I thank Allah that many persons in my in-laws have accepted Islam on my advice. I am busy is Missionary activities, whenever I get time. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 09. I want them to pray for me that I die as a sincere Muslim and this gift which Allah bestowed on us , is not taken back. I also pray to Allah for the same.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of

Story # 70 Why be became Muslims? Dr. ’UMAR ROLF FREIHERR VON EHRENFELS Austrian Rolf Freiherr (baron) von Ehrenfels is the only son of Prof. Dr. Baron Christian Ehrenfels, who is known as the founder of Gestalt psychology all over the world. He belongs to a wellknown family. He was only a small child when he felt a growing concern for the orient and began to study the Islamic religion. You ask me why I became a Muslim. In the following lines I shall give an account of the factors that formed the cause of my becoming a Muslim and realizing that Islam is a true religion: 1) Islam contains the good aspects of all the world’s religions known to us. All religions are intended for men’s living in peace and tranquility. Yet no other religion has managed to teach it to people as explicitly as Islam does. No other religion has been successful in imbuing with such deep love towards our Creator and towards brothers of the same faith. 2) Islam enjoins a perfect submission to Allah in a mood of peace and tranquility. 3) A retrospective look into history will automatically expose the fact that the Islamic religion is the final true, heavenly religion and that no other religion will appear. 4) Muhammad who communicated the Qur'an is the final prophet. 5) It is doubtless that a person who enters the Islamic religion will automatically have separated himself from his former religion. Yet this separation is not so big as it may be anticipated. The tenets of belief are the same in all the heavenly religions. Qur'an acknowledges the heavenly religions before itself. Yet it rectifies the wrong beliefs inserted into these religions afterwards, exposes the religion of Jesus in its essential form, and declares that Muhammad is the final prophet and that no prophet will come after him. 6) In other words, Islam is the true and perfect form of other religions. Various clashes of interests and contrasting ambitions have made men inimical towards one another. And this animosity, in its turn, has been exploited by other people, who have tried to change religions into rival camps and thus to build their worldly advantages on religions, which, in actual fact, are essentially paths guiding to knowing Allah 7) In fact, it takes a little alertness to see that the Islamic religion acknowledges the other heavenly religions and that it purifies them of the human interpolations that they had been subjected to in the course of time. To accept Islam, therefore, means to render a spiritual and material service which is needed by all people, men and women alike. 8) In no other religion has the concept of brotherhood among people been stated so expressly as it has been in Islam. All Muslims, regardless of their race, nation, colour and language, are

brothers of one another. Whatever their political views are, they are brothers of one another. No other religion possesses this beauty. 9) Islam is a religion which gives women great rights. The Islamic religion has allotted women the most proper place. Muhammad stated, “Paradise is beneath mothers’ feet.” 10) Muslims have displayed greatest justice and mercy towards people of other religions. For reasons such as these, I chose Islam for my faith .

Story # 71 Why I Became Muslim? KARIMA BRINNS , USA I belonged to a Christian family living in IOWA in the Mid West. If you know, Church is very powerful in Mid West and no can live in peace by ignoring Church there. I had a religious bent of mind and used to go regularly to the Church and listen to the sermons. But I had a belief that God is only one, He alone is present everywhere and is Most Powerful. While in Church we practically worshipped Jesus and we could reach God only thru the personality of Jesus. Secretly I believed in only one God. Then I used to listen to all sweet talks in Church, but when I used to come out of Church, I would find a totally different world. How come Church has no influence in personal life of people, why we have to go to Church only on Sunday, that too for a short period and have the rest of week to ourselves? There were many such questions, which would come into my mind and did not get any reply. If I asked priests, they would tell me that religion and intellect are not related. Just believe what is written. Then I was troubled by so many contradictions in various versions of the Bible. When I asked our local priest, he replied “How does it matter, any way?” It was in this state of mind that I graduated from high school and before joining college, I took a tour of Europe. May be I could find some answers to these questions during my tour of different European countries. I was in Spain, visiting ALHAMRA Mosque in Granada, when my I suddenly felt fascinated by the most beautiful calligraphy I ever saw. Pillars and walls were decorated with it. I watched for much time and asked the local guide, what language is this? Arabic he replied. I collected every tourist information in Arabic thru out my tour of Spain and other European countries. In University, I took Arabic as a special subject (I had only two more students in the class), the teachers felt troubled my showing this much attention to this language. I used to do my home work with the Calligraphic pen and even visited Muslim locality in Chicago to get more samples of Arabic righting. In my second year I took Mid eastern studies and attended many lectures where this was discussed. I even attended special lectures on Quran. Once I took the English Translation of Quran to my home for homework, I was so fascinated by it, that I went on reading like a Novel. It answered many of my doubts which I had from my earlier days. It told me as to how to live for other six days of the week. I went to my teacher, to get more books by the same author. He told me that I was reading the English Translation of Quran, and as per Muslims the author is God Himself and there are no sequels to it!! Muslims believe that this book is preserved as it was revealed and no changes have been done to it. This was a new thing for me.

I decided to learn more about Islam and see a Muslim country by my own eyes. I visited Egypt and spent most of my time seeing mosques, Arabic Calligraphy and listening to Quran being recited in most beautiful of all tones. So much so that one day…one Muslim asked me “If you are so much interested in Islam and Arabic, why did not I become Muslim?”. “But I am already a Muslim!!” I told him. He then told me that to be officially recognized as a Muslim, I have to declare my faith in front of two witnesses…I did so and they gave me a certificate…. I kept is along with all other Arabic literature I had with me…..I was Muslim long back….Arabic and Quran had converted me long back (abridged).

Story # 72 Why I became Muslim? ABRAHAM (IBRAHIM) KWAN, MALAYSIA I was born in 1907 in a Buddhist family. I was placed in a Chinese Scholl when I was 6, and read basic books of Confucius. From there I got the basic idea of one God. Later I joined a Christian missionary school and read Bible thoroughly. I accepted Christianity at the age of 16. In 1923 I was posted as a priest to KULALAPIS and was to go on my new assignment, one of my Muslim fried presented me with an English translation of Quran. I liked it very much but not to degree to leave Christianity. When I reached KUALALAPIS, I was shocked to see that Protestant Church was divided into so many sects and denominations, each arguing and denouncing each other. Then differences between Protestant and Catholic Church are also very severe. I got so much confused that I looked back to Quran for guidance.

Story # 73 Why I Became Muslim? Convert Find Women's Rights in Islam By Elizabeth Clarke, Palm Beach Post Religion Writer. Wednesday, November 6, 2002 Fourteen years ago, Mimi Ma became an American religious pioneer of sorts: At age 18, the former Indiana boarding school student converted to Islam. Now a West Palm Beach resident, Ma says the decision wasn't difficult, but her life since has not been easy. For starters, her faith cost her, her family. Born in Vietnam to Buddhist parents and raised as a Christian in Africa by her eldest sister and American brother-in-law, she has had no contact with her relatives since her conversion. She also lost a part of her identity. When she swapped blue jeans and T-shirts for head scarves and long skirts, some people suddenly couldn't see past the clothes. And since Sept. 11, few people see her as Asian anymore; they think she's Arab. It is an experience more and more young American women can relate to, as growing numbers join Islam, the faith's leaders say, although they don't have statistics available. "In the past there were more African-Americans coming into Islam," says Altaf Ali, director of the Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. "Now I'm seeing an influx of white, Caucasian females. This is a very strange phenomenon. It's not anything negative, but it's something that's very unusual, something that's new to our religion." Today, many of those converts will begin their first Ramadan, the Muslim holy month that calls on believers to fast from sunrise to sunset every day in an attempt to learn discipline, selfrestraint and generosity. Ma and Ali know it will be a tough test for new believers, but they also think they know why many of them have converted: women's rights. Despite stereotypes that portray Muslim women as subservient and silent, many women convert because of the freedom they find in Islam. For years, women converted only for marriage and for their husbands, Ali says. But today many single and married women convert based on their own convictions, especially those teachings about equality. "It's common across the board," Ali says. "They always say they enjoy the respect that is given to them by members of the opposite sex."

Comfort in the Quran Islamic teachings don't dictate subservience for women, Ma says, although some Islamic societies do. Ma found more in the Quran to ease her concerns about equality than she ever found in the Bible. She likes being able to challenge Muslim men, including her husband, whom she married after converting, when they tell her something about women's rights. "I can say, 'Open it up. Prove it to me,' " she says of the Quran. And if they're trying to show that women shouldn't own property, be educated, take leadership in government, vote, control their own finances or do anything else that men do, they won't find the proof in the Quran, she says. The Quran does speak about dress for women, but Ali hasn't found many converts who balk at wearing a scarf to cover their hair and long clothes to cover their arms and legs. Many embrace the idea, he says. "It's easier to undress in our society than to dress," Ali says, laughing. Ma agrees that many find relief in covering themselves. "Women wear the scarves out of modesty, so people see us for who we are and what we do, not as sex objects," she says. "You can have an Islamic society where women are covered and have rights. And you can have a society where women who are very scantily clad don't have those rights Women's rights was the primary reason Ma herself converted to Islam. Born during the Vietnam War, Mimi left the country at age 4 with her oldest sister and her sister's American husband, who worked for the Foreign Service. Her brother-in-law was sent to Africa to work, moving over the years from Chad to Cameroon to Mali to Mauritania. The family practiced Christianity in the primarily Muslim countries and, according to Ma, held a low opinion of non-Christians. An observant Presbyterian, Ma started studying the Quran and other Islamic teachings at the Midwestern boarding school. She thought it would be simply an intellectual experience, but almost immediately she found something in the faith of the Prophet Mohammed that filled her spiritual needs. As a devout teenager, the Bible's teachings on women and their roles had started to disturb her. She found nothing but equality for women in the Quran. Family rejected her After just a month of study, as an undergraduate at George Mason University in Virginia, she made the short profession of faith required to convert, immersed herself in Islam -- and was immediately rejected by her family.

"That's one of the most difficult aspects of converting," Ma says. "That didn't stop me. My concept of God can't be dictated by them." After Sept. 11, she feared for her life and did not leave her Washington, D.C., apartment alone for months. Since she and her husband, Mohammad, moved to West Palm Beach in March, they have encountered a broader range of reactions, Ma says. More intolerance and yet more kindness, too. They considered returning to the nation's capital but have decided to build a home in St. Lucie County instead. They work together as project management consultants. Until the house is finished, they're living at CityPlace, where Ma loves being so close to the bookstore. And as Ramadan begins, they look forward to getting to know the Muslim community here. Ma expects to break the fast on some nights at a local mosque. She also plans to start a Quran study this month. "It's like a self-reformation time, like a boot camp," she says. "It's very rewarding and comforting feeling to know that Muslims all over the world are doing this together: abstaining from these things during the day and then breaking the fast at night." Muslims also try to read the entire Quran during Ramadan -- Ma didn't make it her first year -and to be kinder to each other. They become more focused on the important things in life. They often give money to the poor. Concentrating at work is the hardest thing to do during Ramadan. But she insists fasting isn't so difficult. It's really just skipping lunch after a pre-dawn breakfast. The reason makes it worth every midday craving, she says. "It's different when you're doing it for God," Ma says. "You're not thinking about food as much. Of course, you do. I fantasize about a chocolate mousse or a bag of chips. But thoughts of a Snickers bar, that leads to God and why you're doing this."

Story # 74 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: ADVOCATE SATYENDRA MALIK (MOHD. SADIQ) A. Family Background: 01. I was born on 15 August 1952, in DORALA in Jat family. My father was a renowned freedom fighter and he was head master in the Govt. School. Gandhi Ji had adopted him as his son and he visited many countries with him. My grand father was also a freedom fighter and he was killed in 1857 fighting with British. He was half Muslim and was nick named as Maulvi Prem Chand by Islamic schoar of his time. 02. My father knew very good Urdu and he was educated in the Muslim Seminary of famed DEOBAND. My father did not have any son for a long time, a Muslim learned man prayed for him, and I was born when my mother was aged almost 50 years. My father was very close to Gandhi Ji and he used to say that Gandhi was half Muslim. He died when I was very young and my uncle brought me up. 03. I passed High School, Inter , BA and then passed LLB exam from Meerut college. I started doing practice in Meerut, but I left it, when my conscience told me that I cannot carry out that profession as it involved telling too much lies. I am now doing farming in my village. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 04. I think that I was a born Muslim. My father wanted me to be educated in a Muslim Seminary. I used to watch Muslims at prayer and I wanted to join them. Once I went to the Jama Masjid of Delhi to watch Eid prayer and I could not control myself and joined the congregation! It so happened I received a wrong mobile call, it was some one (Maulana Kalim Sahib in fact) asking for his friend Rashid. I said it was wrong number and hung up. 05. After a week or so, I received the same wrong call, and I said forcefully that I am not Rashid, but my name is so and so.

After two weeks I again got the call from same person, and This time I lost my temper and said, why is he bent upon annoying me. He laughed and told that he wanted to talk to his brother. I told I am not his brother. He said, yes we are sons of the same father. 06. This brought down my anger and after some talks, he asked me to come to PHULAT and meet his younger brother. When I reached there, he met me with lot of emotion and took good care of me. After some time, he explained Islam to me and gave me some books. I was impressed and I accepted Islam on his hand. He gave me my new Islamic name. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 07. When the news reached to my family, they became very angry and became my enemy. They called a meeting of all village elders. I was also a lawyer so I knew my rights. I gave applications to High police officials and due to that they could not harm us. D. How I saved my Islam: 08. Later on Maulana s advice, I shifted to Delhi, where I had a house and we moved there. My children are studying in Delhi and I plan to stay away from my other family members for a while. E. My Missionary activities: 1. On Spouse / Children 09. Maulana had given me some books like “Your trust…” and “What happens after death”…..when I told my wife about my conversion to Islam, she started weeping. I told her to read these books and if she still thinks that I had done a wrong thing, I will turn back. After reading those books, she got convinced and she also accepted Islam. My Children also became Muslim once my wife accepted Islam. F. Present Situation: 10. Whenever I think about my father and grandfather, how close they had come to Islam, but yet, they died as Non Muslims, I become very sad.

I think it was the fault of local Muslims there who did not even once asked them to become Muslim. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 11. There are many like me, my father and my grandfather, who are already half Muslims. They only need some encouragement and missionary works from Muslims to save them from hell fire. Muslims should remember what is their real mission as a Muslims and they should be more serious in spreading their faith. If these half Muslims accept Islam, condition of our own country, nay whole world would change significantly.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of Nov 2008.

Story # 75 Why be became Muslims? MUHAMMAD AS’AD LEOPOLD WEISS Austrian (Weiss was born in 1318 [A.D. 1900] in the Lvov city of Austria [in Poland today], visited Arabic countries as a newspaper correspondent when he was twenty-two years old, admired and professed the Islamic religion, then visited all the Islamic countries, including India and Afghanistan, and published his impressions in ‘Frankfurter Zeitung’, one of the greatest newspapers worldover. Weiss worked as the publication director for Frankfurter Zeitung for some time, then, after Pakistan’s winning its struggle for liberation, he went to Pakistan with a view to cooperating with that country’s government in the establishment of a system of a religious education, and later he was sent to the United States Center to represent Pakistan. He has two books, one entitled ‘Islam at Cross- Roads’, and the other ‘The Way Leading to Mecca’. ..I was from a fanatical Catholic family. Throughout my childhood I had been inculcated with the belief that Muslims were irreligious people worshipping the devil. When I came into contact with Muslims I realized that they had been lying to me and I decided to study the Islamic religion. I acquired a number of books written on this subject. When I began to read these books with close attention, I saw in amazement how pure and how valuable a religion it was. Yet the manners and behaviors of some Muslims I had been in contact with did not conform to the Islamic principles that I was reading about. First of all, Islam dictated cleanliness, open heartedness, brotherhood, compassion, faithfulness, peace and salvation and, rejecting the Christian doctrine that “men are ever sinful,” it substituted it with quite an opposite belief which tolerated “all sorts of worldly pleasures with the proviso that they should not cost someone else’s harm and that they should not overflow the free area defined by Islam.” …As long as Muslims preserved their perfection as true Muslims, they always made progress; and a downfall began the very moment they relaxed their grips of Islam. In actual fact, Islam possesses all the qualifications required for a country’s or a nation’s progress. It contains all the essentials of civilization. The Islamic religion is both extremely scientific and very practical. The principles it lays down are completely logical, intelligible to everybody, and do not contain one single element that would run counter to knowledge, to science, or to human nature. …Eventually, in 1344 [A.D. 1926], as I was discussing these matters with a governor in Afghanistan, he said to me, “You have already become a Muslim without you yourself noticing it. Only a true Muslim would defend Islam as earnestly as you are doing now.” Upon these words of the governor’s a lightning flashed in my brain. When I was back home I plunged into

deep thoughts, finally saying to myself, “Yes, I am a Muslim now.” Presently I pronounced the statement called Kalima-i-sahâdat. I have been a Muslim ever since. You ask me, “What aspect of Islam attracted you most?” I cannot answer this question, for Islam has penetrated and invaded my entire heart.… It is impossible to separate any of its parts from its entirety. All its parts are pivoted, clenched on one another in a certain order. There is a tremendous harmony among the parts. There is not a single part missing. Each and every one of its parts is in its proper place. Perhaps it was this extremely admirable order which attached me to the Islamic religion. … So I embraced Islam with all my heart and love, and it settled in my heart so as to never leave there again. (Abridged)

Story # 76 Why I Became Muslim? DR. SAROJ (SAFIA) SHALINI, INDIA. Dr. SAROJ belonged to a devout and educated Hindu Family residing near Lucknow, UP India. Her father was MD in Cardiology. One of her brother is Reader in BHU Baranasi and another Engineer in BHEL. She competed and cleared PMT (Renowned Pre Medical Entrance Exam) and Completed MBBS from KGMC Lucknow and MD from MA College Delhi. She later did MD in cardiology from AIIMS Delhi and was working there. We pick up the story in one hot summer June day in 2003. I was posted in ICCU Children ward of AIIMS, we had all 8 beds occupied, each child fighting between life and death. As a doctor, I knew that less than 50 % of these would survive. Only one attendant is allowed to stay with each child. I saw one bearded Muslim coming to one of these beds, the attendant left and he read some thing and blew on the child. Then he repeated same thing for all other children. I would have nothing of these…I went to him straight and told “Don’t you know it is ICCU, there are so many chances of Infection…who is your patient…why are you just roaming around the ward…going to each bed?” To my surprise, he remained very calm. He told that I have blood relation which each of these children, They all have been created by one who created me also. What I was reading was nothing other than Words from the Same Creator…” Then he continued “ Don’t you see that sometimes, despite your best efforts, the child dies. Who is the one giving life and death? They are not you nor your medicines” I got interested in his talks and invited him to my cabin, so I could listen to some more. He agreed on one condition, that I would consider each child as my child and world deal kindly with him and his parents or attendants. He told me that my Creator has blessed me to be in a position to help His other creations and I should be thankful to him. He left and I was much impressed by his talks. When I asked from the child’s parents, he told me that he is a very good Muslim and so many Non Muslims have accepted Islam on his hands. I remembered for some time his words but soon got engaged in my own life. I became room partner with another Girl Doctor and moved there. I found that her maid was a Muslim Girl. I asked my friend as to how could she allow a Muslim girl to cook food and take care of house? But she is a very good girl, on so many occasions she had returned my purse intact, without taking any thing from it, my friend replied. Our talks then drifted towards Islam and Muslim. My room mate told be “The more world media is turning against Islam, the faster it is growing. You see Michel Jackson became Muslim,

one Dr. BALBIR Singh in our own Cardiology department accepted Islam and he wants every one to become Muslim. When I called him for consultation about a patient, he told me if you want to avoid going to Hell, become a Muslim” This reminded me of the words which I had heard from the lips of that Muslim gentleman, so I fixed appointment with Dr. BALBIR and met him in his cabin on a Sunday morning. I asked him “When you became Muslim”? He told “Eight or None Years Back” I wanted to know the reason. He told that “Islam is the only true religion which was sent by God to this world. It is the first and it is the last. All prophets preached the same message. If you want to avoid Hell after you die, there is no other way than to accept Islam” I asked him to give me some literature about Islam. He sent me the English Translation of Sermon which Last Prophet delivered on his Farewell Pilgrimage. I was very impressed by the message and specially that women were specifically mentioned there. I wanted to get in touch with MAULANA KALIM UDDIN (the gentleman who visited the ward in 2003), I was told that he would deliver a lecture in Green Park Mosque. I reached there on Auto Rickshaw and when I saw that he was the same gentleman, I bent to touch his feet (as is our local custom amongst Hindus), but he cautioned me against it. I told that I have learned many of your books and I want to become Muslims. He made me Muslim, changed my name from SAROJ to SAFIA, but told me to keep my Islam secret for a while, till the situation changes. But how could I keep my Islam secret? How could I deny the same privilege to others? So I told my close friends about my becoming Muslim. My room partner became Muslim. Her husband also became very close to Islam. I informed my father of my decision. He accepted it but was not very enthusiastic about it. But slowly and slowly, he is accepting it with grace. Now regarding my marriage, my father was trying it for past 6 or 7 years, Many good matches came, but I excused on pretext of my completing my MD. Now this my accepting Islam became a new factor. Then one day Maulana Kalim talked to me about one Dr. Asad Faridi, who was working in PGI, Chandigarh and was perhaps the only Muslim Doctor in Sherwani (a local Muslim dress) and full beard. After some time, we got married and when our parents saw my choice (and the fact that the marriage took place without any dowry and not any financial burden on them, a custom in India), they congratulated me. Now was the tricky issue as to how to announce our marriage to my orthodox Hindu Family, Maulana Kalim solved this problem , by getting both of us jobs in KAA Hospital Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. My marriage and conversion was announced to my family as Post Jeddah affair and “bad effect of living and working in a Muslim country”!!!

When I think all of it, I feel that Allah was indeed very kind to me. Otherwise how could I have found truth in those darkness of idol worship and associating others with God. I feel what this modern and technical world needs is Islam and nothing but Islam. It is Islam which can solve the problems of the world. How come we Muslims who hold the solution and salvation for this world, should have inferiority complex? (Abridged)

Story # 77 Why I Became Muslim? BUSHRA FINCH I was brought up as a Christian, much as most people in this country are. I was christened, studied scripture at school and never went to church, except for the occasional wedding and even less for the midnight mass service on Christmas Eve. Whilst I believed much of what I was taught, there were many aspects I found unacceptable, particularly the idea of the Trinity and deification of Jesus. I did however believed in a ‘supreme being’ and that Universe had a Creator… I knew next to nothing about Islam and most of what I had picked up came from media reports of a stern and unforgiving God, Fanatical followers, Terrorists, subjugated women and all the usual negative and untrue images. How wrong and ignorant I was, a few months later I met a Muslim friend. I was very much impressed by him as a person, his attitude towards life and other people. I also remember the way his face would light up from deep within, whenever he spoke about islam. While visiting local library, a borrowed a copy of Holy Quran and two other texts on Islam, much to my surprise, I found myself agreeing with what Iw as reading rather than arguing against it. By the time I had finished reading the Quran, I was convinced that I had found something important and very meaningful. I was embarrassed for my earlier prejudice. I found myself Isolated, as my friends became unsupportive or could not understand. I had no Muslim where I was now living. However I borrowed more books from the library and learned myself how to do ablution and how to perform prayers, I fasted during the month of Ramadan… Where did I go from here? I really could not carry on alone and still I had not made declaration of my faith. As I was worrying about my next step, Allah provided me with the answer. I met a Muslim lady. When I told her what I was going thru, she was wonderful and arranged every thing. Within a week I met Imam, made declaration of faith and adopted my new Muslim name. by Grace of Allah, I was now officially a Muslim. (Abridged) Source:: Islamic Voice, May 1999, p 22

Story # 78 Why I Became Muslim? Haji Maryam Mohammed Ahmed, American Muslima, She lives only to talk about Islam Note: : Sister Haji Maryam, responded to my call for Volunteers in the main page of www.usislam.org , now we work together in answering many Christians inquiring about Islam and Christianity in a civilized way. If you are a Christian, and want to talk about Islam and Christianity, please contact me or sister Haji Maryam. My name is Maryam and I am an American Revert to Islam from Christianity. I also brought my Mother to Islam. I study only the Quran and Sahih Hadith (authentic books of the doings and sayings of the holy Prophet of Islam) I don't study Muslims because they don't represent Islam. If you would like to know the truth about Islam or have questions about things in Islam feel free to e-mail me anytime. I also have the holy Bible in memory as well being I studied Christianity most of my life, so I can relate to Christians who would like to ask questions. I don't try to push Islam on anyone and I would not make you feel bad for being who you are, Just God knows best! My door is always open, Islam is not for me but all humanity. I live only to talk about Islam, I am available to talk to Christians about Bible and Quran, Email: im_hear_786@yahoo.com Video Haji Maryam Mohammed Ahmed, American Muslima, Yahoo User Group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sahih_Bukhari/ 360 link: http://360.yahoo.com/profile-zWgi2pwwaKeKia99.p3wXLXs.udm Thank you and God Bless, Sister Haji Maryam Growing up I was an only child and had plenty of time to reflect. I saw my Mothers struggles trying to be "a good Christian" funny thing is when ever she asked meaningful questions she was always turned away. We pounced around from church to church. Never finding what she was looking for. I always new My God and he were very kind to me but I was very lonely growing up I didn’t consider myself a Christian. I just couldn’t believe that the Bible was completely the word of God. I always knew something was missing, something just wasn’t right. I knew the Prophets were real. It was the stories I felt had been corrupted over time. I only had my God, and I always new in my heart I would someday make God (Allah Subhanna Watallah) proud of me. I was visited by what I believe to be was Angels, they didn’t show themselves. I think they felt sorry for me because I was so sad. I was told one day you will be a

big part of something that comes from God (Allah Subhanna Watallah). I was only about seven years old, but it made me cry. I felt safe happy calm. I always used that day as strength when I felt at the end of my rope. Then in October 1998 I was traveling around Europe and on one occasion I was asked if I knew who Mohammed (saw) was. I replied Mohammed Ali the boxer? The questioner laughed at me. I didn’t find it amusing, so I asked him who was this Mohammed then. The man told me he was a messenger. I said messenger of what he said Islam. I had never heard this word before “Islam” I asked what is Islam he said “it’s a religion” (the amazing thing was I had never heard about Islam the entire 25 years of my life). I said like Hinduism or Buddhism? He said NO Mohammed (saw) was the last messenger. I said Jesus (as) is the last messenger. He went on to tell me not only was Mohammed (saw) the last messenger who came after Jesus (as) but he also had a book, the Quran and it is unchangeable unlike the Bible that was rewritten by King James. At this point I was very interested in knowing more but had no time to listen further, but that day was the day a seed was planted in my heart, it grew and grew and even today it continues to grow. I carried on learning and asking questions. For example I saw things in my travels like one morning the people (full of Muslim people) I was staying with all got up for breakfast and my friend was arguing with one of them. He said to him come on and eat with us the man happily said, “No thank you, I’m ok”. I looked at this man and wondered why he is happy not to eat with us. What is this book he is holding in his hands so respectfully? I later learned and realized that morning was the first day of Ramadan and he was reading the Quran. He was the only Muslim that was observing Ramadan. On another occasion I was walking with a friend and there was a group of people walking in the other direction and they called out to my friend and said to him come on come with us. My friend said no thank you I’m fine. I later learned and realized that those people were calling him to pray (my friend of course being a Muslim) couldn’t be bothered. That friend of mine was like a brother, actually he is my brother in Islam, but his faith is weak. Even today he will tell me don’t be a Muslim it’s not a good life. What he doesn’t realize it was because of him I became a Muslim. It was him that asked me if I knew Mohammed (saw). For all he knows Islam might just have saved him from the hell fire. If you bring someone to Islam, then you’re granted Heaven God willing. I had to learn Islam not from Muslim but direct from the Quran and the Sunnet (sahih hadith). After a year had passed I went to the United Kingdom and Asked for a Quran with an English translation. I had not made the choice to convert/revert to Islam yet. But three Imams came to tell me how to respect the Quran. They taught me about “Intention” and “Purification firstly and then talk a lot of respecting the Quran. They said it was unlike any other book. By time I finished listening to them and had a bath with my intentions. They then handed me the Quran. As the Quran was laid in my hands and everyone left the room, I just sat there crying. From that time on I have been alone. And I have never been happier in all my life. I converted to Islam on July 7.1999

Story # 79 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: AIYESHA , PANIPAT, HARYANA , INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born in a Brahmin Family in Panipat, which is known to whole India. I have four brothers and three sisters all elder to me. In my village, there are a few houses of Muslims, but they are very weak economically and also religiously. I doubt if they even know what is Islam. 02. I was educated in my village upto primary level and then my brothers tool me to Ludhiana for further study. I passed High school and then Intermediate from there. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 03. From my childhood I did not like religious rituals of my family. To me they just seemed like dramas, something without any real emotions behind it. I was studying in a Christian Missionary School. They gave us Bible to study, but I was not impressed by it. 04. Once I passed by a mosque, where some religious function was in progress. There were a few book stalls there. I bought some small booklets, that included small biography of prophet Mohammad. That impressed me much and then I read many books on Islam, unless I decided to become Muslim. I left my house and I did not know where to go and how to become Muslim. After asking so many Muslims…. I was finally brought to PHULAT, where I accepted Islam and he gave me my Islamic name. 05. I stayed there for few days and they took good care of me and treated me like one of their family members. I learned about Islam and how to recite Quran. After I had done that Maulana married me to a Muslim from Delhi.

06. He does the business of Import and Export….there were many ups and downs in his business and it seemed that it is the end. But Allah had mercy on us and his business survived. Now it is quite stable and we are happy. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 07. My family members searched for me. They even reported my loss to police. I had written them a letter that I am not running away from house, due to any love affair or things of that kind. I am in search of truth and want to find it. They searched for me and after some time gave up hope. E. My Missionary activities: 2. On Parents. 08. My father had died, when I was young. News reached to me that my mother is very sick, I was very worried that she should not die as a Non Muslim. I told my husband that I want to visit my dieing mother. I went there in full Islamic Hijab. My mother saw me and started weeping…. After some time I told her about my Islam and how good is my husband and his whole family. 09. After much pursuance she accepted them and what more…she read Islamic creed in the dead of night in front of me … she died after a Month as a Muslim. 3. On Family members / Others. 10. I am working on my brothers and sisters. Two of them like us and want to continue our relationship. The truth is , our family members are not so much against us, but it is the local people. F. Present Situation: 11. My husband is very active in the field of Islamic propagation and many people have accepted Islam on his hand. I have two sons and two daughters and they are undergoing Islamic education. I hope that they will memorize whole Quran and be active in the Islamic Missionary works. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims.

I left my home for the search of truth and Allah guided me to the truth. That is my message to all Muslims / Non Muslims.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of August 2009.

Story # 80 Why be became Muslims? Mrs. CECILLA CANNOLY [Rashîda] Austrian Why did I become a Muslim? Let me tell you sincerely that I became a Muslim without even noticing it myself. For, at a very young age I had already completely lost my confidence in Christianity and had begun to feel apathy towards the Christian religion. I was curious about many religious facts. I was disinclined to believe blindly the creed they were trying to teach me. Why were there three gods? Why had we all come to this world sinful, and why did we have to expiate it? Why could we invoke God only through a priest? And what were the meanings of all these various signs that we were being shown and the miracles that we were being told? Whenever I asked these questions to the teaching priests, they would become angry and answer, “You cannot inquire about the inner natures of the church’s teachings. They are secret. All you have to do is to believe them.” And this was another thing that I would never understand. How could one believe something whose essence one did not know? However, in those days I did not dare divulge these thoughts of mine. I am sure that many of today’s so-called Christians are of the same opinion as I was; they do not believe most of the religious teachings imposed on them, yet they are afraid to disclose it. The older I became the farther away did I feel from Christianity, finally breaking away from the church once and for all and beginning to wonder whether there was a religion that taught “to worship one single God.” My entire conscience and heart told me that there was only one God. Then, when I looked around, the events showed me how meaningless the unintelligible miracles that priests had been trying to teach us, and the absurd stories of saints they had been telling us, were. Didn’t everything on the earth, human beings, beasts, forests, mountains, seas, trees, flowers indicate that a great Creator had created them? Wasn’t a newly born baby a miracle in itself? On the other hand, the church was striving to indoctrinate the people with the preposterous belief that every newly born baby was a wretched, sinful creature. No, this was impossible, a lie. Every newly born child was an innocent slave, a creature of Allah. It was a miracle, and I believed only in Allah and in the miracles He created. Nothing in the world was inherently sinful, dirty, or ugly. I was of this opinion, when one day my daughter came home with a book written about Islam. My daughter and I sat together and read the book with great attention.

O my God, the book said exactly as I had been thinking. Islam announced that there is one God and informed that people are born as innocent creatures. Until that time I had been entirely ignorant of Islam. In schools Islam was an object of derision. We had been taught that that religion was false and absurd and infused one with sloth, and that Muslims would go to Hell. Upon reading the book, I was plunged into thoughts. To acquire more detailed information about Islam, I visited Muslims living in my town. …My daughter and I read many other books written about Islam, were fully convinced as to its sublime ness and veracity, and eventually embraced Islam, both of us. I adopted the name ‘Rashîda’, and my daughter chose ‘Mahmûda’ as her new name. As for the second question that you ask me: “What aspects of Islam do you like best?” Here is my answer: What I like best about Islam is the nature of its prayers. In Christianity prayers are said in order to ask for worldly blessings such as wealth, position and honour from Allah through Jesus. Muslims, in contrast, express their gratitude to Allah and they know that as long as they abide by their religion and obey the commandments of Allah, He will give them whatever they need without them asking for it.

Story # 81 Why I Became Muslim? PROF. DR. SUFIA , SWEDEN I was brought up in a devout Christian family, my mother used to us to Church every Sunday. During my studies, I used to get many doubts about Christianity and its teachings, which Church was not able to answer. I joined Oslo University and enrolled in Department of Religious studies. I studied History and Comparative religions. After these studies, I did not have any favorable opinion about Islam. The reason was that most of these books were written by Non Muslims, who had a grudge against Islam. Then some one gave me “DENIYAT” Written by MAULANA MAUDOODI & some books of SYED QUTUB of Egypt. These books answered many of my questions. Then I studied Islam thru the books written by Muslims and studied English translation of Quran written by Muslims. When I was fully satisfied with Islam and its teachings, I went to Local Islamic Center and accepted Islam. After that me and my husband joined and gave our support in the Missionary works of Local Islamic center. We established societies and circles where Muslim women could study and understand Islamic teachings. I also plan to translate Quran in Swedish language. We have in Sweden Muslims from many parts of the world. They speak different languages and have different ethnic backgrounds. Despite all these, they all are united in belief and practices of Islam. Many of them have no proper understanding of Islam and do not present a good example of a Muslim to attract others. Then I visited many Islamic countries and took part in many Islamic Conferences and represented Swedish Muslims there. I performed UMRAH and felt very satisfied. All I can say after visiting so many Muslim countries, that I praise God that I became Muslim before visiting these Muslim countries. If I had known already the real teachings of Islam, before hand, I would have been detracted from accepting Islam by seeing the life style of many of these Muslim Countries. Very few Muslim countries and societies present a good example of what Real Islam is…. I do not want to condemn any one….I definitely saw and met many good Muslim men and women… they are striving to practice Islam and present a good picture of Islam. But the majority is trying to just imitate western style and western thinking in their lives…(abridged)

Story # 82 Why I became Muslim? BENJAMIN (BASHIR) LARATE, GHANA I praise Allah that He guided me to the true path of Islam after I was in search of truth for many years. I am a Plant Engineer and in 1987 I accepted Islam. I was born a Christian, but it puzzled me, that to run any Organization, we only need one head, how come this whole Universe is running so smoothly with three heads? Then I studied Buddhism, but I decided that to renounce world and live in jungles and caves cannot be the cure for humanity. Then I started studying Hinduism to know the position of self and humans in it, but I soon gave up after so much confusing theories. It was at that time that my Brother (who had become Muslim many years back) ‘ wife gave me some books on Islam to study. There was a book by Ahmed Deedat on “Is Bible God’s Word?”. I got into a sort of mental turmoil after reading that book. Upon then my Sister in law introduced me to other Muslims, who told and explained to me about Islam. I got convinced about the truth of Islam and joined the faith in 1987. I think it is a very big achievement for any human to know his Creator. Islam showed me the path to my creator. Then I found Islamic prayer as very forceful means to establish direct contact between man and his Creator. It is a thing about which should really feel proud of. No other religion has such gatherings, which five times a day removes all distinctions between men and brings them in one row, praying to their common Creator. When I accepted Islam, my friend told me “You want top join HOUZZ” In Ghana most Muslims belong to this tribe. I explained to them that Islam is a universal religion for mankind and it is not linked to any ethnic or racial group. I would request all my Muslim brethren to remove all these distinction of race and color which have got into them. Muslims should be united and preach their common sense religion to those who are still uneducated about it (Abridged)

Story # 83 Why I Became Muslim? Karen's Testimony I was born whole and healthy on July 8, 1960. I was second eldest of what would be seven siblings, which naturally placed me into a life of observation and responsibility, as I began to help my mother with the younger children. My mother, who was herself very spiritual, had converted to the Roman Catholic religion after a miraculous experience early in her adult life, and my father had always been a devout catholic. The churches we attended (every Sunday) seemed always to have been unique and not quite the normal traditional teachings of the Catholic church so that I got a very "universal" teaching of the messages of Jesus with the emphasis being on God and His kingdom in heaven (not on Jesus as God). It was a requirement back in my early days for young girls and women to wear a scarf or some type of head covering when we attended church services. At Catholic School, we girls also were required to wear a specific type of head cover at all times. I went to a Baptist affiliated college where studying the Bible was a requirement. Much to my surprise (and delight), however, "The Bible" was taught as an historical artifact, an archeological piece of literature. The class was taught by an ordained Methodist minister who also happened to be a very learned and well-respected archaeologist. He taught us all about the many modifications and literary styles of the bible, how you could tell that the various books and sections of the Bible had actually been written at different periods over very long stretches of time, and how it has so many different versions now. He told us about how the monks used to edit the texts according to political requirements of the time (and that those original and edited versions have now been uncovered), or how often times words were simply mistakenly translated incorrectly, etc. Needless to say, the class material was a shocking, but enlightening experience. In 1983 I graduated college and received a degree in Special Education. …I spent 2 years teaching before I met my future husband, a seemingly pious, devout Catholic who was not only gentle, kind and giving, but highly intelligent and insightful. Everything seemed perfect, in fact, he seemed to have been "heaven sent". We met in the church where he had been assigned to work for the summer and we came to have many long philosophical conversations about life and family. … Six years after we had been married, and having had to quit work because of the pregnancy, my husband and I agreed that I should stay home to raise the twins. After this the domestic violence and abuse would escalate, despite my constant pleas to God for help, and despite many varied attempts to make the marriage work. ..After several years of this abuse in my marriage and especially after one particular nightmarish event (my 9 month old babies and I almost lost our lives in a car accident the cause of which would have been the drunken and drugged out hands of my husband), I lost my connection to God and fell into a state of numbness. … Four more years of the worst abuse in my marriage passed before I finally broke free from my husband. Finally, ..

I happened to meet a fellow on the internet who I began to have long philosophical discussions with. He was from another country originally and I found it comforting to find that in his country children are raised as I was. After a month of chatting with him and finding that his beliefs were extremely similar to mine, he told me that he is a Muslim. Here I was, 35 years old, and this was my first ever meeting an actual Muslim. All I knew was that cursory coverage of the subject of Islam in the World Religions classes and that the word Muslim was synonymous with "terrorist". Now I was certainly stuck with a mix of emotions! Fear mixed with that famous curiosity, plus admiration for what he was telling me he practices in his life. I had spoken to him just long enough to crave more knowledge. He gave me my first book of Islam, .. That book lead to another, to another, to another and another until finally I found myself trembling from a mixture of emotions. I wanted to say that this was my religion. I decided, too, that before I get into this any further, it was incumbent upon me to see just exactly how this religion was put into practice… The scarves saved me from the painful earaches and so I was wearing one when I entered the mosque for the first time. .. A sister came through the door. I looked at her, she looked at me and immediately I just KNEW it was the woman I had spoken to on the phone. .. they were so happy to meet me, see me there, and invited me to stay and observe the prayers. On Friday nights and Saturday mornings, I began attending classes. …One night I arrived early and found inside the cabinets of the study room a library FULL of books of all sizes and in various languages. My attention was drawn to one particularly FAT book and as I pulled it from the shelf, I realized it was an English translation of the Qur'an! WOW! Great! It was reading the Qur'an that finally gave me the final -- what should I call it? -- that final percentage of doubt removed. Here in the pages of the Qur'an were explanations of dreams I had had, the visions on rosary meditations, life events, thoughts, scientific things, miraculous things, etc. Once I had begun reading the Qur'an (I didn't have to read it all to know this), I was certain that it was an authentic Holy Book, divinely revealed. It was too complete, too sublime, too eloquent, too beautiful to have been from the hand or mind of man without having come first from the only One who could know all this -The next time I went to the mosque, I asked one of the sisters what was involved in converting to Islam. Were there special classes for a specified amount of time I would have to complete? (This is so for Catholicism...I automatically thought it would be so for Islam, or any other religion for that matter). Was there some special ceremony? I was told that all I needed to do was have it sincerely in my heart and say in front of at least two other practicing and sincere Muslims that "I believe there is no God but God and Muhammad was his messenger". I could even say it in English if I wanted to. The following night, much to my surprise, the mosque was literally filled to the brim with people. It was the eve of Ashura and maybe 1500 or 2000 Muslims had come in from all over California to commemorate that day, that battle, which was so important for the revival of Islam in the world. What a perfect night to take shehadah! I stood there and read in Arabic from a tiny

piece of paper I held between my fingers "Ashadu an la illaha Ilallah; ashahdu an Muhammadun Rasululah." I had not heard the actual pronunciation of it, so I was unsure if I had recited it correctly. When I looked up, I saw that everyone was crying. The moderator for the evening was choking back tears as well, and asked that all the sisters come to the front, to the stage where I stood, and welcome me to the family of Islam. All I remember at that point was a sea of women, crying, smiling, kissing me, hugging me, rocking me back and forth, telling me things in their language that I couldn't understand. I was overwhelmed and it was 45 minutes or more before the last sister came up to express her joy and extend the warmth of her heart. I remember the feeling this way: Imagine being in a room with 2000 of your favorite grandmother. One old woman took my face in her hands, kissed my cheeks and through tears of joy and broken English said, "You will be so happy!" And I am... Karen

Story # 84 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: SAMEER (QADHI MOHD, SHAREEH), ROHTAK, HARYANA, INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born in a Jat family in Rohtak on 23 May 1962. My father was a Judge. I did my Intermediate and BSC from my city. Then my father asked me to study for law. I did my LLB and was selected in the Judicial Exam. I am an additional Judge and waiting for promotion to become District Judge. One of my sister is a Deputy Superintendent of Police and her husband is Additional District Magistrate. 02. We are an educated family and Urdu is very popular in our family. My grandfather was a very good Urdu poet and he used surname MAKHDOOM. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 03. I was working in the court of Additional District Judge. In our family there is great emphasis on human values. Since our childhood we were told stories from great personalities of past. My father was a very honest person, and I also had great sense of responsibility when I used to sit on the chair of Judge. I used to try my best to reach the correct decision and was always impartial in my decisions. 04. Due to that I had a great respect from every one in my court and whom I knew. Once when I was having a morning walk, an educated Muslim came to me and said that every one loves me for my honesty as judge…but have I considered what will happen when I have to face a judge and he will decide on my case. I was surprised and asked , who will come and judge me, then he told me about hereafter and the court of Almighty there. He then told me that his teacher, Maulana Kalim is coming to a near by place and I should meet him to know more. 05. I got interested and then we went to nearby town of SONIPAT. Maulana arrived after a delay of some time. I said immediately that I want to become Muslim. He said that Islam means

the faith from inside and that is it. So when you decided to become Muslim, you became Muslim. He then asked me to recite Islamic creed and asked what I knew about Islam. I said that I have read only about Muslim Personal Law in my LLB exam. 06. He then asked me to read some books about Islam. I read those and my faith in Islam increase. He named me after a great Islamic judge of First Islamic century. And I am hopeful that Allah will give me something from his qualities. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: I wanted to declare my faith, but Maulana asked me to wait a little. That is why I have not declared my faith to my family. D. How I saved my Islam: 07. Some Muslims know about my conversion to Islam. On Fridays I go to Muslim mosque in remote villages and offer prayer there. Other prayers I offer when no one is looking. E. My Missionary activities: 3. On Family members / Others. 08. Some persons from my family have accosted Islam. One of my aunts and her husband have become Muslim and one of my cousin has become Muslim. Six of my servants have declared their faith to Islam and some of them have married muslim girls, Alhamdolillah. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 09. Islam is a religion which is most suited to human nature. It is like water to a thirsty man. Our Hindu society gets very impressed with love and acts and words of kindness. If Muslims use these techniques to inform them about Islam, many will come over to their side. 10. But most Muslims have no thought about that and their responsibilities in this regard. They should remember how their prophet was eager and anxious and worried about his city folks going to hell and how he tried every thing to save them from it.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of Sept. 2009 .

Story # 85 Why be became Muslims? DEVIS WARRINGTON Austria As the Spring’s mellow, warm hand thaws out the earth after an awfully frigid winter, likewise Islam had a similar effect on me. It warmed my heart and clothed me with a new and lovely dress of knowledge. How beautiful, how true, and how logical Islam’s teachings are! How clear, how genuine, and how charming a word it is to say that “Allah is one, and Muhammad is His Messenger.” How could one ever compare it with the unbelievable, unintelligible Christian credo which imposes the absurdity of “Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit”? In contrast with these formidable, fearful and never satisfactory tenets of Christianity, this simple and logical belief draws you towards itself. Islam is an undefiled heavenly religion. Despite the centuries that have elapsed since its advent, it answers all the material and immaterial needs of humanity, not only today, but also forever. For instance, Islam clearly states that men are equal and that before Allah there is no difference of rank and position among men, and it enforces this equality in actual life. The Christian churches profess the same equality, yet there are various echelons among them, such as priests of different ranks, archdeacons, deacons, bishops, and many other ecclesiastics. These people intervene between Allah and the slave and use the name of Allah for their personal advantages. In Islam, on the other hand, no one can intervene between Allah and the slave. Allah communicates His commandments through the Qur'an to His slaves. In the following lines, I will quote a commandment of Allah. It is only an example. This example shows very explicitly how simple and clear the commandments are. “O ye who believe! Give of the good things which ye have (honorably) earned, and of the fruits of the earth which We have produced for you, and do not even aim at getting anything which is bad, in order that out of it ye may give away something, when ye yourselves would not receive it except with closed eyes. And know that Allah is free of all wants, and worthy of all praise.” (2-267) As I read and learned these profound and beautiful commandments of the Qur'an , my soul attained peace and I embraced Islam willingly.

Story # 86 Why I Became Muslim? Dr. ALI BOSIN , RUSSIA Dr. Bosin was the Professors of Communism Philosophy during Soviet days. Then he became Christian and was fielded by Church when elections were held first time in Russia. He was head of “Religious affairs” in the newly elected parliament and served for four years. He made laws that allowed freedom of religion and worship in Russia. He had a very close relationship with Russian Church in those days. His conversion to Islam was a shock to every one in Russian Church. Here he describes his conversion to Islam and aftermath. I was teaching Communism t others, but deep down I was not satisfied with its reasoning. I used to think that there must be some Creator of this Universe. This drove me to study of religion, I studied Christianity and accepted it and became its priests. I was fielded by Church as one of its candidates, I was made head of Religious Affairs department in the new Parliament and made laws that deal with freedom of religion and worship. After four years of Parliament duty I came back and rejoined Church. Now I studied Christianity and Bible in great detail and I started feeling some discomfort on its many dogmas and teachings. I found many contradictions in it. The personality of Jesus, his Divinity, Trinity and others. I found these things against reason and against Unity of God. After 16 years of dedicated service to Church, I finally decided to cut my links from it. After leaving Christianity, I did not know that there is any other religion in world, who teaches Unity of God. I knew nothing about Islam and its teachings in those days. One day I watched a Special Program on Russian TV about Islam and Muslims. That was on the eve of EID Al AZHA festival of Muslims. The program mentioned basic teachings of Islam and that it teaches Unity of God and worship of One God and no one but God. I was very impressed by that program and wrote an article about it in a local magazine. What is more I declared myself Muslim in it!! Even though I had very little knowledge about Islam except what I saw in that TV program!!! My article raised a storm in Russian Church, I was after all a recognized priest, had represented it in Parliament for four years. Every paper or magazine wrote for or against me. I was asked to appear on many TV shows to answer questions about my new beliefs. Mean while Russian Church passed a resolution “Damning me and my next seven generations” and advised my relations to stop all dealings with me!!! After this I started study of Islam in true sense. I read many books about Islam, met and discussed with local Muslims many issues and all this increased my faith (which I had declared based on one TV program). I wrote some books on Islam, First was “Straight way to reach Allah”, next was “ MUQADDAMAT SHIRK” (i.e. Means of Associating others with God). The third was “Gospel from the eyes of New Muslims”. I can say that many thousands of

Russians have accepted Islam or have come closer to Islam after reading my books. I thank Allah for that. We have established a Muslim society in Moscow and we are dealing with issues of rehabilitating New Muslims, which number now in thousands in Moscow alone. Majority of Russians have no religion at all, they do not believe in any thing. They have superficial knowledge about Christianity thru TV, Films and other programs. There is very bright prospects of Islam growing there, but the work has to be done carefully and with planning. First we should remove the hate and bias against Islam by showing that how we respect Jesus and other Biblical prophets. We have to highlight commonality between Islam and Christians and Jews…. Then there are some special points with Russia, due to its dealings with Central Asian Muslims states. There are people from many races that live in Russia. Then we have to help in New Muslims settling in their lives. Their marriages, jobs and livelihood all have to be take care of. (abridged).

Story # 87 Why I Became Muslim? TALASEA (BARRAH ISLAM), NEW BRITAIN USA I can thank none but God that now I am a Muslim. I am fully aware that it is difficult for my Christian friends to comprehend my decision. Why I reject the fiction that Jesus was Almighty God is the result of my long search for the truth about One God. There is no time and space to prove from the text of the gospels that the words of Jesus concerning the oneness of God are a far cry from the language of the Trinitarians. I tried to find the truth about the Oneness of God in Christianity but failed. However I tried to heed the words of Jesus :knock and the door will open, seek and you will find..(Mat. 7:7). Islam reveals to me the correct concept of Monotheism- that the Oneness of God is absolute and there is no mystery about this truth. Jesus confirmed that when asked of the greatest thing in faith is “Hear O Israel, Lord our God is one God” (Mk. 12:29). I have not the slightest doubt that Jesus and Mohammad (May peace of God be on both of them) are servants of the same true God. The true conception of the Oneness of Allah the Most high is to me light from darkness and confusion. At an early age the incredible Trinity was a bitter pill to swallow with the logical 1+1+1 = 3. During my high school.. anew manner of worship became known to me. My teachers persuaded me to join Christian cultists but my heart said no! Noise, temporal joys and emotional swerves were not my kind of bait. The cultists brag as God will not test their faith, not to speak of Satan. If Satan could test faith of Jesus, who are these cultists compared to Jesus. During my undergraduate years the long accepted ‘pagan’ world opened to me with availability of books on major world religions. Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam attracted me. During my readings it occurred to me that I was searching for a religion that defines the absolute Oneness of God. Hinduism and Buddhism lost my favor because of their ambiguous definition of Supreme Deity. Islam’s bold definition of the Supreme deity attracted me strongly; There is none worthy of worship save Allah and Mohammad is the messenger of Allah. A Muslim means one who submits completely to Allah the Most High. Christians submit that jesus submitted totally to the will of Allah, so Jesus was a perfect Muslim.

Jesus’ gospel was a forward to the Holy Quran the permanent revelation. Know this truth and you shall be free. Thus I have come to know and accept Islam the straight path. (Abridged) Source:: YAQEEN INT. PAK. SEPT 1987, P119-120

Story # 88 Why I Became Muslim? Testimony of Dr. Kari Ann Owen Source: http://pwp.value.net/~penomee/penomee.html These are the words of the Shahadah oath, I believe. The Creator is known by many names. His wisdom is always recognizable, and his presence made manifest in the love, tolerance and compassion present in our community. My road to Shahadah began when an admired director, Tony Richardson, died of AIDS. Mr. Richardson was already a brilliant and internationally recognized professional when I almost met him backstage at the play Luther at age 14. Play righting for me has always been a way of finding degrees of spiritual and emotional reconciliation both within myself and between myself and a world I found rather brutal due to childhood circumstances. Instead of fighting with the world, I let my conflicts fight it out in my plays. Amazingly, some of us have even grown up together! I began to look outside American and Western society to Islamic culture for moral guidance. Why Islam and not somewhere else? My birthmother's ancestors were Spanish Jews who lived among Muslims until the Inquisition expelled the Jewish community in 1492. In my historical memory, which I feel at a deep level, the call of the muezzin is as deep as the lull of the ocean and the swaying of ships, the pounding of horses' hooves across the desert, the assertion of love in the face of oppression. I felt the birth of a story within me, and the drama took form as I began to learn of an Ottoman caliph's humanity toward Jewish refugees at the time of my ancestors' expulsions. Allah guided my learning, and I was taught about Islam by figures as diverse as Imam Siddiqi of the South Bay Islamic Association; Sister Hussein of Rahima; and my beloved adopted Sister, Maria Abdin, … Her brilliance, coupled with her amazing (to me) freedom from arrogance, had a profound effect on the beginnings of my knowledge of how Islam can affect human behavior. The course of my research introduced me to much more about Islam than a set of facts, for Islam is a living religion. I learned how Muslims conduct themselves with a dignity and kindness which lifts them above the American slave market of sexual competition and violence.

Why did this seem so astonishing, and so astonishingly new? Like most American females, I grew up in a slave market, comprised not only of the sexual sicknesses of my family, but the constant negative judging of my appearance by peers beginning at ages younger than seven. I was taught from a very early age by American society that my human worth consisted solely of my attractiveness (or, in my case, lack of it) to others. Needless to say, in this atmosphere, boys and girls, men and women, often grew to resent each other very deeply, given the desperate desire for peer acceptance, which seemed almost if not totally dependent not on one's kindness or compassion or even intelligence, but on looks and the perception of those looks by others. While I do not expect or look for human perfection among Muslims, the social differences are profound, and almost unbelievable to someone like myself. I do not pretend to have any answers to the conflicts of the Middle East, except what the prophets, beloved in Islam, have already expressed. My disabilities prevent me from fasting, and from praying in the same prayer postures as most of you. But I love and respect the Islam I have come to know through the behavior and words of the men and women I have come to know in AMILA (American Muslims Intent on Learning and Activism) and elsewhere, where I find a freedom from cruel emotional conflicts and a sense of imminent spirituality. What else do I feel and believe about Islam? I support and deeply admire Islam's respect for same sex education; for the rights of women as well as men in society; for modest dress; and above all for sobriety and marriage, the two most profound foundations of my life, for I am 21 1/2 years sober and happily married. How wonderful to feel that one and half billion Muslims share my faith in the character development marriage allows us, and also in my decision to remain drug- and alcohol-free. What, then, is Islam's greatest gift in a larger sense? In a society which presents us with constant pressure to immolate ourselves on the altars of unbridled instinct without respect for consequences, Islam asks us to regard ourselves as human persons created by Allah with the capacity for responsibility in our relations with others. Through prayer and charity and a commitment to sobriety and education, if we follow the path of Islam, we stand a good chance of raising children who will be free from the violence and exploitation which is robbing parents and children of safe schools and neighborhoods, and often of their lives. The support of the AMILA community and other friends, particularly at a time of some strife on the AMILA Net, causes me to affirm my original responses to Islam and declare that this is a marvelous community, for in its affirmation of Allah's gifts of marriage, sobriety and other forms of responsibility, Islam shows us the way out of hell.

My husband, Silas, and I are grateful for your presence and your friendship. And as we prepare to lay the groundwork for adoption, we hope that we will continue to be blessed with your warm acceptance, for we want our child to feel the spiritual presence of Allah in the behavior of surrounding adults and children. We hope that as other AMILA'ers consider becoming new parents, and become new parents, a progressive Islamic school might emerge... progressive meaning supportive and loving as well as superior in academics, arts and sports. Maybe our computer whizzes will teach science and math while I teach creative writing and horseback riding! Please consider us companions on the journey toward heaven, and please continue to look for us at your gatherings, on the AMILA net and in the colors and dreams of the sunset. For there is no god but Allah, the Creator, and Muhammad, whose caring for the victims of war and violence still brings tears from me, is his Prophet. A salaam aleikum. Sister Penomee (Dr. Kari Ann Owen)

Story # 89 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: ADESH (MOHD. OMAR) SAHARANPUR INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born in village SAHJI of Dist Saharanpur, UP. I did my intermediate from my village school and then shifted to city and started working in a shop to learn the business. Since my childhood, I used to like many things of Islam. I was very much against idol worship and whenever any one of my family worshipped any idol, I used to say, that why you worship them, who cannot save themselves even. 02. Once I tore all the posters of Hindu gods that were in my house and then burned them and threw the dust into river. When my mother asked, I told that what type of gods are these who cannot even defend themselves. My mother got very angry and said that I had become Muslim…. I told, no I have not become Muslim, but I want to know who speaks the truth, Hindus or Muslims and I will find the truth. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 03. In the shop where I was working belonged to a Muslim. He was very nice and kind to me and seeing my interest in Islam, he used to tell me about Islam and its teachings. Hearing these I was quite certain that Islam and Muslims speak the truth. One day when the Son in-law of my master came and was told of my interest in Islam…he took me to a Muslim scholar in DEOBAND. I accepted Islam and he named me Mohd. Omar and then sent me to PHULAT to learn about Islam and its teachings. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 04. My family members became suspicious of my prolonged absence and not contacting them. I told them that I was working in Delhi, they asked my address and Mobile number etc. When again I did not contact them , they reported to police that one Muslim Scholar in my village has abducted me. Police arrested him and put him in jail. He was released on bail but the case was registered against him.

05. I decided to go and appear as a witness, I went to local MP and he instructed Police to take me and treat me well and see to it that no harm comes to me. 06. When our jeep was entering the village, a large mob of Militant Hindus attacked it, the police people seemed helpless, I was about to be lynched, when another Police vehicle passed us. Seeing this those people ran away. I went to court and told that I had accepted Islam of my own free will. No one put any pressure on me, after my statement, the Muslim scholar was released. D. How I saved my Islam: 07. After that I got admission in an Islamic MADARSA and now I am about to finish my education and I will be active in the Missionary work. F. Present Situation: 08. Due to tension in my family, I have not contacted them and they have also not made any effort to contact me. I do not know when I will meet them and convey to them the message of Islam. I am hopeful and pray to Allah for it. I got circumcised recently because it was the practice of our prophet, and it is helpful in maintaining purity. And I was also afraid, that if I were to die any accidental death, may be they will cremate me as Hindu. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 10. My advice to my Muslim brothers us is that they should value the gift of Islam which Allah has given them. They should take care to propagate this message to as many people as they can. To my Non Muslim brothers I would like to say that , irrespective of whatever trials come in one’s life, if one has a true faith, Allah will help him and save him from harm. 11. Hindus tried to harm the Muslim scholar of my village, but they could not harm him. They once burned his field, but the yield became double!
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of May 2007.

Story # 90 Why be became Muslims? THOMAS MUHAMMAD CLAYTON USA It was almost noon time. Dazed with the sweltering heat of the day, we were trudging along a dusty road, when, from afar, a singularly mellifluous voice began to caress our auditory senses. So rich a voice it was that the entire space seemed to be sated with it. As we walked past a cluster of trees, a bewildering scene came into sight. It was such a scene that we hardly believed what we saw. Mounted on a small, wooden tower, an elderly Arab in an extremely clean long robe and wearing a white turban was performing (calling) the azans. As he performed the azans, he was in a trance, almost completely isolated from the world, and in the presence of his Creator, Owner. As if hypnotized by this noble sight, we halted, and then, slowly, sat down on the ground. We did not know what the sounds and words reaching our ears meant, yet they somehow moved us and instilled a mood of elation, relief into our souls. Afterwards, we learned that the sweet words uttered by the Arab meant, “Allah is the greatest. There is no god to be worshipped other than Allah.” All of a sudden, many people appeared around us. Till hardly a moment before, however, we had seen no one around us. We did not know whence these people came, and there was an expression of great deference and love on their faces. There were people of all age-groups and classes among them. They were different in their clothing, in their manners of walking, and in their appearances. Yet they all had the same expression of earnestness, great dignity and, at the same time, geniality on their faces. The number of comers increased incessantly, so that we felt as if the process of their increasing would never come to an end. At last the comers assembled. They all took off their shoes and clogs and stood in rows. To our great amazement, no segregation of any sort was observed in the formation of the lines. White people, yellow people, black people, rich people, poor people, tradesmen, civil servants, workers stood side by side without any discrimination between their races or ranks, and performed their worship together. I admired so many different people’s brotherly coming together. It is three years now since I saw that sublime scene for the first time. In the meantime, I began to gather information about that lofty religion which brought people so closely together. The information that I collected about Islam brought me all the closer to this religion. Muslims believed in one Allah and professed that men were not sinful by birth, which was quite contrary to the Christian inculcation. They looked on them only as born slaves of Allah, displayed profound compassion towards them, and wished them to abide by the right path and thus lead a comfortable, peaceful and happy life. Whereas in Christianity even an evil thought was deemed as a sin, Muslims defined sin only as a result of disobeying Allah or violating the rights of born slaves, and acknowledged man free as

to his thoughts. According to the Islamic religion, man was responsible “only for what he has done.” For the reasons I have cited above, I accepted Islam willingly. Despite the three years’ time since, I sometimes dream of the Arab muazzin’s touching and effective voice and multifarious people’s running from all directions and standing in lines. It is a doubtless fact that these people, who prostrate themselves altogether and indiscriminately, are doing so sincerely to worship Allah

Story # 91 Why I Became Muslim? WARIS MASIH GUL (ABDUL WARIS) LAHORE PAKISTAN. WARIS MASIH was born in Pakistan in 1979, his family belonged to a poor Christian gardener family in Pakistan. He had many brothers and sisters and could not pursue higher education. His family was a devout Christian, here he tells the story of his conversion to Islam, we reproduce it with some what more details, because it holds many lesions for us and trace the mental travels of a simple minded person. My father used to gather all of us after dinner every night and we used to say many prayers like “Lord’s Prayer”, Ten Commandments, Apostles Creed, Seven Sacraments, Blessed Mary …etc. As a small child I never understood any thing, but when I grew older, I started to muse on these wordings… In Lord’s prayer…we say “O Our father in heaven…” Why we call God as father? I asked a Christian. He told me that when Disciples asked Jesus as how to prey, Jesus asked him to say “O Our Father…” So we also say the same. I was not satisfied with the answer….so I continued in my study of Bible. Apostle’s Creed was the next “I believe in God Almighty the Father and Lord Jesus Christ, who is His only Begotten Son and our Lord…” This was a thing which was not against reason but also against Biblical teachings. For Example Jesus asked every one to say “O our Father…” Then how come Jesus became His only Son? Jesus says “Those who spread peace will be called sons of God” then in Bible God says about Jacob “You are my son, and the First Born”…so the use of Father for God is only allegorical and not literal. How come we call Jesus Only Begotten Son of God? This opened the door for more critical studies of Bible. I found many more contradictions in Bible, some of these I mention here 1. Jesus says “Hear O Israel, Lord our the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart….” (Mark 12: 29) and Jesus says 2. “This is life eternal, that they may know you, the only true God and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent” (John 17:3) Then in the Book of Isaiah we read 3. “I am God and there is none beside me” But despite these Paul calls Jesus as God, Image of God and even Greater God. How it could be when Jesus never himself used that word for him?

Then Jesus says “Think that I have come destroy the law or prophets, I have not come to destroy them but to fulfill them…” (Mat. 5:17-19) But Paul has his own logic “All those that depend on Law are under a curse…” Gal. 3:10-13 Then look at the Dogma of Trinity, this is also against reason and logic. How come Three Persons by themselves are Complete God and their combined also is One God? Moreover nothing is mentioned by Jesus regarding this. When I posed these doubts during my Sunday Church meetings, the priest told me “You study Bible and understand it to the best of your understanding. Leave those parts which you cannot understand leave them, if you ponder on these you will go astray” These things convinced me that Christianity is not what it claims to be, there are lot of serious contradictions in it. I decided to study other religions. Since I was living in Pakistan, so Islam was my natural choice. I asked some one to give me a translation of Quran, He hesitated because he did not want to give Quran to a Non Muslim, but I asked some one else and he presented me with a copy of Quran. When I started reading Quran for the first time, I did not understand much, that happens to most people who take a cursory look at Quran, however I took the serious study of Quran and tried to understand its meaning and message, I also started learning meanings of what Muslim read in regular prayers. Then I read some books about the life history of prophet and then I realized the deceit which Christian preachers do when discussing any prophet that would come after Jesus. The often quoted verse is “Beware of false prophets, they come to you in sheep clothing but are wolfs really” (Mat. 2:24). But this verse refers to false prophets and not true prophet. Then I met Dr. Asrar Ahmed, well know Islamic scholar, whose lectures on Quran are very popular. I listed to his talks and his lectures. Then one of my friend gave me money and Visa to come and work in Dubai. After lots of study and investigation I finally decided to accept Islam and become a Muslim. Here I want to comment on the conditions and problems which New Muslims face in Pakistan. I was first asked to join one of the many sects and sub sects. They were surprised when I said I am only a Muslim and I do not want to be a member of your sect. So much so that some one remarked that “It was better for you to be a Christian rather than not be a member of our sect”!! It is my humble request to such persons that if they cannot propagate Islam themselves, then they should not block or put hindrance in the path of others. Our enemies treat them as Muslims and not member of this or that sect or sub sect. If Muslims put all their efforts on things that do not benefit Islam, they their efforts are in vain. To my Christian friends I would like to request to verify that the beliefs which they hold are truly from Jesus or from some one else (Abridged)

Story # 92 Why I became Muslim? SHIRIN, LONDON UK. I was working in a car garage. Since childhood I had bent of mind to engage in comparative religion. I used to read about different religions. I used to go to church, but some how the teachings and atmosphere there would not impress or satisfy me. So much so that I decided to leave Christianity and join another faith. I was in a dilemma as to what new religion I should join, which should be close to human nature and be true. I discussed this matter with a Jewish customer who was a regular visitor to our Workshop. He was well educated and very serious in his talks. He told me that if I am looking for a true religion, then I should accept Islam. Because Islam is the only True religion. But take care that you should never ask me to became Muslim!! I then started to study Islam with care and slowly the truth of Islam became manifest to me. I met some Muslims who helped me in knowing about Islam and answer my queries. When I was fully satisfied about the truth of Islam, I decided to join it. Now I strive to put into my life teachings of Islam to the best of my abilities. (Abridged)

Story # 93 Why I Became Muslim? A Revert Story by KIMM HENRY I have been asked by many people to tell my personal story about coming to Islam. .. I have attempted to write my story many times and had become thwarted in my efforts many times over. As a professional writer and editor it seemed to me that the task should have come easy but because of my background I expect stories to read with a certain beauty that evaded each attempt. Growing up religion wasn’t a large part of our family’s priorities. Although I vaguely knew that Christmas was a celebration of the birth of Jesus, PBUH. I never earnestly associated the rituals with religion. My earliest memories involve church. Intermittently between the ages of three and four my mother’ s third husband, Tony, made a big show of Sunday morning services. … In my fifth year my mother along with myself and my brother and two baby sisters moved in with my grandmother after her husband had beaten her senseless in our presence. .. In my eighth year, I was selected along with six other top students from my third grade class, to spend the day at my teacher’s house. The main portion of the day was to be spent bar-be-queuing and swimming but since it was Sunday the morning would start at church were my beloved teacher, who would later die of sickle cell anemia, was the choir director. Incidentally, it was in that same period that I heard the word Muslim. There was a very beautiful exotic lady on the television news. She was wearing a lacy square of fabric on hair of which such luster I had never seen before. My grandmother began railing to no one in particular that they claim to be so liberated yet she’s the queen but can’t even appear on television without that thing on her head…. It was at this time that I also heard the word Jew. I had to research a guy named Hitler because apparently these Muslims wanted to do to me what that guy did to those people. I also thought that Jew was a nationality. Which I learned later was the general consensus of all good white Christians. That same year my mother married a man who apparently married her for her four young daughters. I was just coming into my womanly body and was often the subject of his attention, which resulted in severe beatings that for whatever reasons my mother turned a blind eye to. … It was in college that I first saw a Muslim person in flesh. The word Islam would come many years later. There were no Muslimas in the school that I knew of but it seemed the tables at the rear of the commissary were reserved strictly for these beautiful exotic young men and their occasional bombshell American consorts …

At age sixteen I had become sort of the campus mascot often toting my little daughter to various study groups and commitments. Nick and I became friends with a young man, who I thought was a Muslim, that had bumped into me in the hall one afternoon when I had my little girl in tow and made sweet with her offering her ice cream and such. Eventually I agreed to go out with him. Omar was tall, handsome, and kind. Soon we became a regular couple. .. Just after my nineteenth year, near Christmas time, I was engaged in a discussion with a colleague who was Catholic from Columbia, South America and used the term Holy Days instead of holidays. I began questioning her about this wanting to know what her views and doctrines were. I learned that although Catholic the people from South America have a slightly different version. … On a rainy morning in March in my twenty-seventh year, I read the Quran again and resolved to find out what I was missing. I spent three days tracking down a Masjid was denied entrance into two of them; the first I believe was Nation of Islam, the second I don’t know. I was told that a meeting was taking place within and that if I would go to this place the sisters would help me. Uneasy I didn’t follow the door guards advise. Finally, I found the Islamic Society. I didn’t need to be asked if I wanted to say shahada, I was there to be told what I needed to do. And took the shahada that very day. I returned home feeling light and uplifted. I told my husband what I had done but by now he was as disinterested in my pursuits as I was of his opinions. In reality I suppose one could say that I was weekend Muslim. I lived a secular life at home and attended Masjid on the weekend sometimes toting the children along. One day my little daughter said to me, “Mommy, it’s hard to be nice when everyone is always yelling around you.” She was four years old. I knew that I had to get out. I was divorced in my thirty-second year. Initially I stayed away from the Masjid after my divorce because of the misinformation that I received, renewed and expanded my study of Islam. The summer directly after my divorce was final I visited Pakistan to work on a research project concerning the orphans of Kashmir as well as orphans throughout Pakistan and also spent time in Dubai. Over these years I have come to know that every experience that I have is a part of something so much bigger than me and I feel the strength of Allah’s care not only for me but his entire creation and yet I also feel grave pain from recognizing how difficult it is for the Muslims to come together and fulfill their destinies as the khalifa’s of this earth due to the many and deep divisions in our community as Muslims disenfranchise their brothers and sisters by having the audacity to claim to be the one group that is righteous. .

Story # 94 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: RAJKUMAR (MOHD, ASAD) BAGHPAT, UP, INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born in village SAROOR PUR, BAGHPAT in a Hindu Jat family. I did my primary education in the village school. Then High School and Intermediate from BAROT and BAMS in Aurvedic from Allahabad. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 02. My conversion to Islam has a somewhat unusual story, After my medical degree, I did house job & then I started doing my private practice, but It did not go very well. Some one advised me to shift to ELAM Village in KANDHLA, I went there and opened my clinic there. Despite my sincerity, it did not go very well. During that time, the whole area was under the terror of a Dacoit SENSER PAL, alias FAUJI. Despite handsome reward on his head, there was no respite. Every day news reached that he killed this one and that one. So many rumors came that he was killed in police encounter, but they all proved to be false. 03. I had distant family relationship with him, so I decided to join his gang. When I went there, I found in him a better example of a true human being. In his youth he was a very handsome and very powerful man and a man of principle. He got job in army and when he saw that one of his officer had spied on the country and handed over some secret papers, he could not control himself. He killed the officer and left army and started living in Jungle. 04. He came to know that some Hindus were trying to demolish a village mosque in the aftermath of BABRI Mosque demolition in 1992. He told villagers not to worry, then he went and killed the leaders of those who were doing it. They retaliated by killing many men and women of his family. On seeing this he vowed to take revenge on those who killed his family member. He vowed that he will kill every day at least one family member of those people.

Thus started his terror in the region. But he used to distribute the money to poor people and take care of their problem. So these people protected him from Police. Most of these people were Muslims. 05. When news of his good deeds to Muslims reached Maulana Kalim, he started praying for his guidance. He met him once and told him about the next life when he had to give all accounts of his killings. This impressed FAUJI and he decided to accept Islam at the hands of Maulana. Shortly afterwards he was arrested and news of his arrest was published in most news papers. They took him to TIHAR jail in Delhi, where he is reported to have committed suicide. (Maulana told me that he was murdered as a man like him cannot commit suicide). I went to meet him in Jail and he gave me a letter to give to Maulana. When I reached PHUALT and gave Maulana the letter, he told me about Islam and how I will save myself in the hereafter. He explained Islam to me and I became Muslim on his hands on April 3 1993. 06. Then he sent me with a Muslim Missionary group for four months to learn Quran, Prayers and other Islamic teachings. Now many members of FAUJI gang have accepted Islam and have dedicated their lives on the service of Islam and poor people.

E. My Missionary activities: 1. On Spouse / Children 07. When I told my wife about my conversion, she did not oppose me at all, She said that as a true Hindu wife, she was linked to me forever, I was very happy to hear it. She accepted Islam. I have three children two boys and one girl. They are named Abu Bakr, Omar and Fatima. I have decided to give them a good religious education and make them Islamic missionary. 2. On Parents. 08. Initially they were angry with me, but I used to deal with them kindly and used to visit them and bring present to them. Now they are changing their attitude towards me and Islam. I think it is sincere service which changes the heart. Before Islam, I did not care for them much, but now me and my wife both care for them more. F. Present Situation: I have opened clinic in a new village and it is doing quite well, Alhamdolillah. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims.

09. To Muslims I say that we do not have any outer enemy. We muslims are our own worst enemies. By neglecting to act on Islam and propagate it to others who are in dire need of it, we are doing a great injustice. Non Muslims when they look at Muslims are not impressed, because they do not see any effect of Islam on their day to day lives. 10. When a dacoit and killer can so easily come to Islam, what about simple law abiding people?
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of Oct. 2004.

PS: FAUJI ‘s letter to Maulana Kalim Sahib Dear Maulana Sahib. ASSALAM ALAYIKUM WA SRAHMATULLAH You would have come to know that I am in TIHAR Jail and waiting for my death. I am really enjoying kingdom in the restrictions of Jail life. My last desire is that all members who joined my gang, become Muslim. I wish that they meet you once. I cannot repay my debt to you, which you did by making me a Muslim. WASALAM Your Servant SANSOR PAL, FAUJI

Story # 95 Why be became Muslims? SALHADDIN BOART USA In 1338 [1920 C.E.], I was in the waiting-room of a doctor’s office where I had gone for a medical examination, when I saw two magazines printed in London, namely ‘Orient Review’ and ‘African Times’. As I was skimming through them I read a statement that said, “There is only one God,” which impressed me deeply. Christianity dictated three gods, which we were compelled to believe although we could never explain it to our own minds. From that time on, that statement, “There is only one God,” never left my mind. This holy and sublime belief, which Muslims bear in their hearts, is an invaluable treasure. Now I grew more and more deeply interested in Islam. By and by, I decided to become a Muslim. After embracing Islam I assumed the name Salâhaddin. I believed in the truth that Islam is the truest religion. For Islam is based on the fact that Allah does not have a partner and that Allah, alone, has the authority to forgive sins. How compatible this law is with the laws of nature! In a field, on a farm, in a village, in a city, in a school, in a government, in a state and, in short, everywhere, there is one single ruler. Dualism has always brought about separatism. The second proof that showed me the fact that Islam is the truest religion was that the Arabs, who had been leading a completely barbarous life before Islam, had developed into the world’s most civilized and the most powerful state in a very short time and carried the most ideal concepts of love of mankind from the Arabian deserts all the way up to Spain, and all this was owing to Islam. The Muslim Arabs had found Arabia as a wilderness. And they cultivated it into a rose-garden. John W. Draper (1226 [1811 C.E.]-1299 [1882 C.E.]), an honest historian, in his book ‘The Intellectual Development of Europe’, enlarges on the extremely great and important part that Islam played in the development of contemporary civilization, and adds, “Christian historians, on account of the grudge they have been nursing against Islam, try to cloak this truth and cannot seem to get themselves to acknowledge how indebted Europeans are to Muslims.” The following passage is (the paraphrase of) an excerpt from Draper’s writings on how Muslims found Spain: “Europeans of that time were completely barbarians. Christianity had proved short of delivering them from barbarism. They would still be looked on as wild people. They lived in filth. Their heads were full with superstitions. They did not even have the ability to think properly. They lived in roughly-made huts. A rush mat laid on the floor or hanging on the wall was the sign of great wealth. Their food consisted of vegetables like wild beans and carrots, some oats and, sometimes, even barks. In the name of garments, they wore un-tanned animal hides because they lasted longer, and therefore they stank awfully.”

“Cleanliness was the very first thing that Muslims taught them. Muslims washed five times daily, which caused these people to wash at least once a day. Later on, they took the stinking, tattered, lice-infested animal hides off their backs, dumped them, and gave them their own garments, which had been made from textures woven with coloured threads. They taught them how to cook, and how to eat. They built houses, mansions and palaces in Spain. They established schools and hospitals. They instituted universities, which in the course of time became sources of light illuminating the entire world. They improved horticulture everywhere. The country was soon awash with rose and flower gardens. Gaping in astonishment and admiration, the uncivilized Europeans watched all these developments, and gradually began to keep pace with the new civilization.” Educating so wild a nation; imbuing them with sentiments of civilization; rescuing them from the depths of darkness, nescience and superstitions; all these inconceivably tremendous tasks were accomplished by the Arabs owing only and only to the Islamic religion. For the Islamic religion is the most genuine religion. Allah helped them for their success. The Islamic religion, commanded by Allah and taught and publicized by Muhammad , and the Qur'an , which is the Word of Allah changed the course of the world’s history and freed it from the fetters of darkness. Had it not been for the Islamic religion, humanity would not have attained the present heights of civilization, nor would knowledge and science be in such advanced levels today. This is the Islamic religion which I accepted willingly.

Story # 96 Why I Became Muslim? SAIDA PAULA , COLUMBIA (SPAIN) I was born in Columbia, after completing my degree from Columbian University, I moved to Spain. I am a doctor by profession. I was a Roman Catholic, but only for name sake and I never practiced it. Somehow, I got interested in Arabian Culture, their music and their language. I had a special fascination about Arabic Script. The way it was written and the shapes which Arabic Calligraphy took. The same interest prompted me to learn about Islam. Sometimes in 2004, I left a message on Internet that I want to learn about Islam in Spanish, could some one out there help me. I got a reply signed by one Mustafa Mohi Deen asking me if I am interested to read free Islamic literature in Spanish, then please write your Postal address. I was hesitating to reveal my postal address to a total stranger, but after a couple of e-mails….I received a parcel containing some Islamic books. I was very happy to read them. I maintained my connection with the brother and got many books on Islam. I learnt that this man would sent Islamic books in different languages depending upon who asked what. Soon we established a site to help those who wanted to learn about Islam in different languages. I was engrossed in Islamic propagation, without accepting Islam myself. This intrigued many Non Muslims. I told I am still learning about Islam and the time for me to say SHAHADA has still not arrived. But slowly I got convinced that Islam is the only true path and there is so other way for me. I preyed Allah to show me right path and make my faith firm. In 2007, I went to Libya in connection with one sister becoming Muslim. There Allah opened my hearts for Islam and I said my SHAHADA (Declaration of faith) on Internet. Mustafa Mohi Deen and another gentleman being witness to this. When I revealed this to my family, my father congratulated me on taking a right decision, my mother was shocked initially but after some time accepted my decision. Now I am busy in propagating Islam on Internet and by lectures. We tell them that Islam is not what is shown on TV channels. No doubt there are some Muslims out there who do horrible things, but these acts are not as per teachings of Islam. We must get the true picture of Islam. In the end I thank Allah for showing me the correct path. It was His mercy that today I am a Muslim (abridged)

Story # 97 Why I Became Muslim? Testimony of Madonna Johnson Source: http://www.thetruereligion.com/madonna. Looking back on my past, I say that the turning point in my life was without a doubt the birth of my daughter. Before she was born, I spent my life on a day to day basis, concentrating my time and attention to whatever crisis I could get my hands on. If there wasn't one, then I made one. When I became pregnant, I knew I would be raising my child alone. If it weren't for the love, devotion, and determination of my mother, things would have been different. When my daughter was 5 months old, she died of "Sudden Infant Death Syndrome" (SIDS), which is a medical term for "No known cause". I had never experienced such pain, panic, and complete emptiness. However, throughout the funeral, I was consoling other people, telling them I believed with all my heart that God would not cause me such pain if He didn't have something incredible waiting for me in the future; all I had to do was stay on the right road, and God would show me when I was ready. Friends would say, "You'll see her again someday." I would question them openly; how does anyone know that I'll be going to heaven? Just because I was a Christian was no guarantee, since I couldn't bring myself to swallow all of Christianity. There were too many unanswered questions. So my quest for the "One True Religion" began out of a desire to insure that I would indeed see my daughter again. I went through all the Christian religions diligently. Having been a Christian all my life, I found it very hard to look outside the church, even though my heart wasn't totally Christian. People would say things to me like, "Jesus spoke to me today," or "Jesus is with you, all you have to do is invite him into your heart and you will see your daughter in heaven." I was beginning to think I was doomed. I looked at Tarot cards, crystals, and even entertained the thought that all religions would take you to heaven, if you followed their beliefs. Eventually I put my search on hold for awhile and got a job at a bar in Indianapolis. It was there that I met a girl, who later turned out to be a good friend for a while. She had three or four businesses running out of her home, none of them doing very well, and some of them questionable. One day, she asked me if I wanted to go to Malaysia. She said she wanted me to buy some Malaysian style clothes, get pictures taken of them, and find an importer-exporter to handle the business. Without thinking I said "I'm there!"

I arrived in Kuala Lumpur during the middle of Ramadan. I'd never heard of Islam before, and had no idea that Malaysia was an Islamic country. Almost every woman I saw had a scarf on her head in 95 degree heat! I also noticed that people went out of their way to be nice to me. It took a very special friend (plus, he was one of the few who could speak English fairly well) to explain that Malaysia was an Islamic country, and Muslims believe that whenever we do something nice for someone for the pleasure of Allah (SWT), then we will be rewarded for that deed on Judgment Day, Insha Allah. However, all I could see where the negative aspects of Islam, the same things others see, who are ignorant about Islam; so I bought some Islamic books (including a Quran) and began studying Islam. I asked many questions, such as why do women cover their whole body, except for the face and hands? Why is everyone so happy and willing to fast throughout the day? How could anyone be happy about starving themselves? It seemed suddenly that no one could speak English well enough to satisfy me, so I turned to the Quran. Ever since I can remember, I have felt out of place in Christianity , like I was the only one in the whole church who didn't know the joke was on me. The more I studied about Islam, the more I began to wonder if this was the road to my daughter; would this religion get me into Heaven? Although my biggest obstacle was the Islamic concept of Jesus (PBUH), and how would I explain this to everyone at home, I found the answers to some of my questions and realized that Islam was what I had been looking for. But I had a problem, should I take the challenge…become a Muslim and walk the straight path to heaven? Or deny the Truth I knew in my heart out of fear of disapproval and persecution from family and friends…only to abide in the hellfire forever? I constantly carried with me a feeling of doom and anxiety. This was my state of mind everyday while I was deciding whether I should revert to Islam or not. For me, this decision was not as easy. Islam is not a part time religion; a true Muslim doesn't practice Islam one day a week. Islam is a full-time challenge with enormous struggles, as well as benefits. The more you learn and understand, the more you realize you have only just begun to scratch the surface, which makes you strive even harder to learn more. One day I woke up with the words, "OK, I believe, I will go and revert to Islam", and from that moment on, all of my turmoil and anxiety was gone Alhamdulillah. All of the pain I had felt from my past experiences, including my daughter's death, were gone. The nightmares stopped, and I felt the most incredible peace. I went to PERKIM, the Malaysian Muslim Welfare Organization, and took my Shahadah, filling my life with the peace and love of Allah (SWT) , Alhamdulillah. Looking back, I can say all of the things I experienced on my path to Islam were well worth the effort and pain, because now, Insha'Allah, I will be able to see and hold my daughter again, if I can stay on the right path. Sure, I still have challenges, being Muslim doesn't mean I won't have problems. But being a Muslim does mean that for every challenge I came across, the solution lies

in following the path of Truth. And at the end of that path lies Heaven, my daughter and numerous other pleasures that the human mind can't begin to comprehend. All praises are due to Allah for bringing me to the Truth and for His grace in making me a Muslim.

Story # 98 Why We Became Muslims:
(Stories of New Entrants to Islam, thru Missionary Activities of MAULANA KALIM UDDIN of Village PHULAT, MUZAFFARNAGAR, India) Note: These are stories from India, the local color is predominant, some points may seem strange to those who are not familiar with Indian social life.

The Case of: ANJU DEVI (AMINA) RISHI KESH, INDIA A. Family Background: 01. I was born the most idolatrous country of the world (India) in its most idolatrous center (RISHI KESH). My father was running one of the four biggest ashrams in that place. He is well known to Hindus thru out India. I was born on 20 April 1985. I have one elder brother and sister. I got my education in English medium school (run by my father’s trust) and then I did by BSC and this year I shall finish my MSC. B. How and Why I accepted Islam: 02. It seems unthinkable that a girl in my situation would ever come or know about Islam, but Allah works in miraculous way. It so happened that one Hindu women with her young daughter came to our Ashram, they were lured to a secluded spot and both mother and daughter were raped by employees of our Ashram. This incident shocked me to the core, I told my father that our Ashram should be burned along with us for allowing this to happen. I stopped going to prayers in the Ashram. 03. One night I dreamt that I am being chased by two SADHUS and I am running for my life and honor. I saw a mosque with doors opened, I entered there and one Muslim Scholar said to me, not to worry as now I am safe. When I wake up, I decided that my honor is a t risk in the Ashram and I must look for Muslims to save me. I decided to phone someone at random, if it was picked by a Hindu, I shall remain Hindu, if it was picked by a Muslim, I shall become Muslim. 04. I prayed to God sincerely to guide me which is truth and best for me. The random number that I dialed was picked up by a Muslim. He said that he lived in a village in MUZAFAFRNAGAR. I told that I want to become Muslim. He asked about my whereabouts and said how a girl with my position could live with them.

I told I will live with every one if they take me out of here….he then introduced me to Maulana Kalim and he told me to recite Islamic creed on phone itself. Then he asked me to come to PHULAT, so I could be taken care of. 05. I was married to the son of that Muslim man whom I phoned than I went to Meerut and completed all official formalities needed for change of religion in India. I was very happy with the family of Maulana and my in-laws. They were poor but they treated me more than their own daughter. C: What was reaction of spouse , parents, family and society: 06. My father reported my absence to the local police and some one informed them of my presence in My new place. Police came and arrested my father in law. I asked him to jump from the vehicle as I have to face lone what came next. 07. I was tortured by my family members and even by ladies police to come back to Hinduism. I had read the incidents of early Muslims how they were tortured for their faith and how they stood firm. My own mother tried to strangle me , my brother beat me, I was also poisoned, but Allah gave me strength and I told that I accepted Islam by own free will. You can kill me, but you cannot take away Islam from me and now I am married to a Muslim and I will never marry to another man. D. How I saved my Islam: 08. In the end, they could not turn me away from my faith. My father consulted the members of his Ashram and they told that such a girl cannot live in the Ashram. It is best if she be quietly sent away to her in-laws and to forget the whole episode. Accordingly my father asked my father in law to take me away. They came to a mid way place and I was handed over to them. The whole village came out to receive me and I was given much honor that day. E. My Missionary activities: 2. On Parents. 09. I am in contact with my father and he phones and some times come to meet me. I have not yet presented Islam to him, but I am praying Allah to open their hearts for Islam. It all depends on Allah’ will 3. On Family members / Others. 10. When I was being tortured one of my aunt took pity on my situation. She told me to stay firm and said that surely my religion is truth.

I was much impressed by that and while I was coming, I asked her to become Muslim too to save her from the hell fire. She recited Islamic creed in front of me, Alhamdolillah. F. Present Situation: 11. I am living in village and very busy in teaching Islam to women there. It has made a lot of difference and many women have started to pray regularly and work their lives in Islamic way. G. My advice to Muslims / Non Muslims. 12. I heard Maulana to say that Allah has decided to enter Islam in every house, hut or skyscraper. If Muslims do not fulfill their trust, then Allah is not handicapped because of these Muslims. He will get His work done one way or another. By people who are not in the fold of Islam now.
(Translated from Vernacular Urdu and abridged) Source: Monthly ARMAGHAN of June 2008

Story # 99 Why be became Muslims? Colonel DONALD ROCKWELL USA Why did I accept Islam? For a long time I had been greatly impressed by Islam’s clear logic and formal simplicity, by the magnetizing attraction felt towards its mosques, …. …Only after a thoroughgoing analysis of the Islamic religion, which resulted in my exploring a myriad of beautiful and useful aspects in it, did I become a Muslim. A solemn and, at the same time, sentimental, attachment to life, mutually consultative method in doing daily chores; a habitually soft behaviour flavoured with mercy and compassion in social lives, indiscriminately; charity for the poor; property rights, which women had been given for the first time; … Then, contrary to Europeans’ assertions, the Islamic religion is not a religion for those idlers who expect everything from Allah without doing anything for their part. The Islamic religion commands everybody first to do their best and only then to put their trust in Allah . The justice which Islam rendered to people of other religions was one of its aspects which had had a great impact on me. Muhammad commands Muslims to be benign towards Christians and Jews. Qur'an acknowledges the Prophethood of the other prophets as well, beginning with Adam and including Moses and Jesus. . This is an exalted sense of faith and a great model of justice, which other religions do not possess. While the believers of other religions are casting inconceivable aspersions on Islam, Muslims are answering them favourably . One of the most beautiful aspects of Islam is that it has completely purified itself of idols. Whereas pictures, icons and signs are still being worshipped in Christianity, things of this nature do not exist in Islam. This is an indication of how pure and unstained a religion Islam is. The facts stated and taught by Muhammad the Messenger of Allah, have reached our time without any interpolation. And the Qur'an, which is the Word of Allah, has been preserved in its pristine purity, exactly as it was revealed, without losing anything from the limpidity it had in the time of Muhammad… …The qualities of freedom and equity inherent in the Islamic religion have always magnatized me towards it. Among Muslims, a person occupying the highest rank position and the poorest member of the society are equal before Allah and they are merely two individuals in the general recognition of fraternity. Muslims perform their acts of worship side by side in mosques. There are not any special places allotted for the leadership.

Muslims hold the belief that there is not a third person to act as an intermediary between Allah and His born slave. The Islamic acts of worship are performed between Allah and the slave. They do not appeal to men of religion for the forgiveness of their wrongdoings. Every Muslim is the only person responsible for his personal behaviour. (Abridged)

Story # 100 Why I Became Muslim? SUNEETA (SAMREEN) MUMBAI INDIA. I was born on 9th Dec 1984. I had three brothers and no sister. My parents belong to KANAUJIA caste from DEORIA district of UP. My parents had shifted many years back to Mumbai and my father had a general store shop in Thane District. We had a Muslim family as neighbors, and we had very good relations with them. We would share and borrow things from each other, the difference in our religion would not stand in our way. Some times these people would talk about Islam. I used to listen their talks with interest. Many questions would arise in my mind, but I did not know to whom or to how to get answers for them. Once I asked my Sister in Law, why do we worship all these idols? She did not answer anything. I was following lifestyle of my ancestors, but I was not satisfied, I was in search of truth. It is my belief that whatever the situation be, if you are sincere in your efforts, you will find the truth. The same happened to me, after long study and thinking, I got convinced that Islam is a true religion. I asked my neighbors that I want to become Muslim, they told me that for that I have to change my life style totally and might have to leave my parents. After some time, I met a Muslim boy and wanted to marry him. He told that in order to marry him, I have to leave my religion and become a Muslim. I also wanted that, so I became Muslim on 10th May 2006, and changed my name and we got married soon. The Islamic teachings about hereafter have changed my concept of life….I am still getting more knowledge about Islam to practice it fully in my life (abridged)

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