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Ex-Muslim Family Member Makes Me Confused About Islam

Questioner

Anonymous

Reply Date

Aug 03, 2019

Question

Assalamualaikum, I am looking for guidance and help. The past couple of years my faith has taken a hit, and as much as I am ashamed to say this, I was never really a consistent practicing Muslim. I fasted in Ramadan, read Quran at night, and prayed occasionally. An extremely close family member who lived with us until very recently left Islam and became an atheist around 3 or 4 years ago.

That in itself was very shocking. She then started coming to me and telling me why Islam was wrong and how I should take off the headscarf to be free etc. She would often come to me with articles stating things in the Quran that went against “human rights”, according to her. She would talk to me about homosexuality and how the headscarf was a political construct.

Slowly she picked at my faith and my weakest points in life. She argued to me that we came from bacteria and we evolved. To make things worse I’ve suffered from health anxiety for most of my life; I have a debilitating fear of death and separation from this world and my family and friends. Death is inevitable I know that, but I don’t like it.

I’ve received therapy a couple of times, twice this year alone, but I’m still suffering. I currently attend university, and I can’t seem to bring myself to study. Every time I think about doing stuff that would benefit my future my chest feels tight and I get nauseous and I start having palpitations. I don’t mind wasting time reading books or watching tv shows as they give me joy in the present but anything to do with the unknown future scares me.

Because of my anxiety, I didn’t do well enough in my exams 2 years ago and couldn’t study what I wanted to study. My mind just focuses on immediate gratification. I’m completely lost in terms of religion; all I know is that I believe in a creator but even some days that’s not enough.

I’m so scared of dying that I’m not living at all. I’ve wasted all my student loans on medical tests were done privately. I have so many questions that no one around me seems to have an answer to. Like if Islam is the true religion why didn’t Allah (SWT) bring down Islam, in the beginning, why did we have the Torah and the Bible. What about dinosaurs? Where did languages come from? And so many more.

Any guidance would be extremely appreciated. Thank you so much for reading this.

Counselor

Answer


Ex-Muslim Family Member Makes Me Confused About Islam

In this counseling answer:

• When a Muslim woman wears a Hijab, she is stating that her recognition is not beauty, but rather her brain, her strength, her careers, etc. Hijab makes a statement that we are to be judged for our worth, not our appearance.

• I want you to personally reach out to active female members in your community and ask them why they choose to wear Hijab. What was it about Hijab that made them give up a lifestyle without it?

• The only way to overcome the constant fear and worry about the future and anything is to realize that it is not in your control.

• I also suggest that you read and search for answers.


Assalaamu Alaikum dear sister,

Thank you for sending your question to us and for trusting our ability to propose a solution and answer to your question.

Dear sister, from your question, I can see that you are thirsty for knowledge. Your soul is not happy being away from the remembrance of Allah and is confused after hearing the negative comments from your relative. I am very saddened for the loss of your relative who converted to atheism. Dear sister, atheism is unreal.

Before you read anything below, I ask that you read this supplication at least 10 times

It was narrated by ‘Abdullah that: the Prophet (SAW) used to say: “Allahumma inni as’alukal-huda wat-tuqa wal-‘afaf wal-ghina (O Allah, I ask You for guidance, piety, chastity and affluence).” (Sunan Ibn Majah)

Hijab is liberating

Hijab, alongside being a symbol of modesty and obedience for Allah, is a sign of your love to Allah. By wearing a Hijab, you are making a statement that you are obeying Allah and agreeing to wear a symbol of modesty because you love Him.

Ex-Muslim Family Member Makes Me Confused About Islam - About Islam

We tend to only obey those whom we love, those who we know to be speaking in our favor, and those who tend to guide us and help us and are on the lookout for us. We do not simply obey anyone. We only obey those we love and those who love us back.

This is the special relationship that Allah (SWT) has with all His creation, and even more so with His slaves, us. It is what we are doing to please Allah.

Hijab in the Quran?

Wearing a hijab and taking it off is a big step. Hijab is a command by Allah for women. It is a step towards developing a love for Allah and prioritizing what’s important in this life and the afterlife and letting yourself and others know that you value what is more important to Allah than valuing what is more important to the world around you.

Hijab is a symbol of your love for Allah and devotion to what He (SWT) has told. By no means am I implying that it is the ONLY way, but it is one of the important ways that has been especially pointed in the Quran.

Allah SWT tells us in the Quran,

“O Prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to bring down over themselves [part] of their outer garments. That is more suitable that they will be known and not be abused. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful.” (Quran 33:59)

“And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and their ornaments except what appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty…” [Qur’an 24:31].

In essence, believing women are asked to cover themselves up as it is better for them.

Hidden Benefits of Obedience to Allah

Although we are obeying the commands of Allah as an act of obedience towards Him so that we can please Him, there are in fact hidden benefits for us.

In the society in which we live today, women are seen more as objects rather than individuals. A woman is usually praised and complimented based on her beauty. I am sure you have heard this before, but there are lots of feminists who are promoting the fact that women should not simply be praised on their beauty, but also on their intelligence, wit, strength, etc.

Therefore, when a Muslim woman wears a Hijab, she is stating that her recognition is not beauty, but rather her brain, her strength, her careers, etc. Hijab makes a statement that we are to be judged for our worth, not our appearance.


Check out this counseling video:


A female who conceals her beauty is basically saying to the world, “You know what? Everything about me besides my beauty should matter to you.” Therefore, make Hijab your identity, not simply an action done without any consideration.

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I realize that you are 19 and are living in a place during a time when there is an overemphasis on beautifying externally and not giving much attention to intelligence. However, despite such times, there are some women who choose to wear the Hijab. There are female doctors with Hijab, female athletes, female politicians, female engineers, female teachers, and scholars, etc. etc…

I want you to personally reach out to active female members in your community and ask them why they choose to wear Hijab. What was it about Hijab that made them give up a lifestyle without it?

And, after you have enlisted their thoughts, I suggest reviewing which of them you agree and disagree with.

Islam and controversial topics

Evolution

I suggest that you read a few articles on this topic. I don’t think that I can do justice to this topic.

PLAYLIST – COLLECTION: EVOLUTION IN THE SCALES OF SCRIPTURE

Homosexuality

LGBTQ and Islam Revisited: The Days of the Donald

Trials and tribulations are meant to make you, not break you.

I am sure that you have heard the saying that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

I am sorry to hear of the internal troubles you are currently undergoing. Rest assured that this a test from Allah.

The Prophet (SAW) said: “Never a believer is stricken with a discomfort, an illness, an anxiety, a grief or mental worry or even the pricking of a thorn but Allah will expiate his sins on account of his patience”. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

We are the slaves of Allah. We have been created to seek happiness, forgiveness, comfort, subsistence, and satisfaction in life from His remembrance. If we seek happiness from anything other than Allah, then we will always, always be disappointed. Because nothing in life is permanent. We must work on making our source of happiness acts of worship, with the intention of being rewarded by Allah alone.

As for your worries, I think they are a result of being emotionally hurt given the negativity you face and the abusive environment you live in. The only way to overcome the constant fear and worry about the future and anything is to realize that it is not in your control. What is in your control are your thoughts and your present. You can change your thoughts for the better and work hard in your present for a better future.

You need to divert your mind from everything that surrounds you. Sometimes, when you are not keeping yourself busy, all the negative thoughts multiply and grow and make it hard to be positive about anything in life. You need to let your mind free. Read books, watch interesting documentaries, do fun activities, get physically active, converse with positive people, do art, or go on a nature walk.

In addition, the Prophet (SAW) said, “If anyone constantly seeks pardon (from Allah), Allah will appoint for him a way out of every distress and a relief from every anxiety and will provide sustenance for him from where he expects not.” [Abu Dawud]

So, make a habit of reading “Astaghfirullah-I seek forgiveness from Allah” at least 100 times daily.

And we’re never afraid to do good deeds. Allah SWT is all merciful. In fact, He, SWT, is the epitome of mercy.

The Prophet SAW said, “Allah created a hundred mercies, and He placed one mercy among his creation, they show mercy to one another by it, and there are ninety-nine mercies with Allah.”  [Jami at -Tirmidhi]

Therefore, dear sister, do not despair in the mercy from Allah. If He is testing you at this point in life, be sure that He will certainly bless you at another point in life.

Occupy yourself with seeking knowledge

I can guarantee that once your faith is strengthened after realizing the importance of Hijab and the Quran and the knowledge of controversial topics, then the topics such as language and the order of religion will be easy to absorb. I also suggest that you read and search for answers. This will prevent you from being overtaken by those who have been misguided and from depressive and anxious feelings.

Salam,

***

Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

Is Procrastination a Sign of Weak Faith? How To Get Over It?

Help, My Faith Is So Weak: What To Do?

How Do We Know Our Faith is Weak? A Powerful Talk




About Madiha Sadaf

Madiha Sadaf in an undergraduate student at the University of Ottawa, enrolled in BSc. with Major in Biology and Psychology with Minor in Health Social Sciences.

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