My Muslim name is Karima, I am from the United States, and I’m 23 years old.
My family was never religious. My mother was always condescending towards organized religion, whilst my father was a full atheist.
We never went to church or any place of worship growing up, but my mother always told me she would respect our decision to decide for ourselves.
I Found God
Well cut to me suddenly believing in God out of pretty much nowhere in my teens, I was perhaps 15 or 16 years old.
I had felt strongly agnostic until one day, I truly believed in my creator almost overnight.
All praise to Allah!
That has kept with me ever since.
I was in high school at the time, in my world history class, we had a group assignment, where we were designated to research a particular festival of certain religions. My group was tasked with Eid Al-Adha.
Since I’m someone who tends to pick up the slack in any group project, I ended up being the primary information gatherer for our assignment.
Of course, I learned a lot from that assignment and fell in absolute love. I had only heard horrible things about Islam and never met Muslims before, so it was surprising to me.
I Want to Convert, But…
I thought to myself, “I want to convert now!” But I gave myself time to think it over and research other religions, but nothing came close; every thing seemed so man-made in comparison.
I did research and on 14th February 2014, I walked home from school, pulled out my handwritten shahadah transliteration and said it in front of my neighborhood Mormon Church.
I felt happy and nervous while taking shahadah because I knew I would be tested by Allah as a result. I began to learn prayers and fell in love with hijab quickly.
I had Quran and information in my fingertips. The problem was my parents.
My mom said she would be supportive, but wasn’t, especially in the beginning. She tore my Quran, and my father called me terrible things.
I couldn’t practice in front of them for a long time, but I never gave up my faith in Islam.
Now, my mother doesn’t agree still, but her heart gets softened a little more as time passes. My father is still very against it. But honestly, if Allah wills, he could be an even stronger Muslim than I someday!
Islam is My Nature
Islam has made who I am into a person who feels whole. I feel like my purpose is fulfilled through Islam and my heart is always filled with happiness towards Allah and His messenger (peace be upon him).
Islam fits with the nature of man. To me, Quran being unchanged and memorized by so many is nothing but a miracle of God. Salat itself is such a uniting moment for so many Muslims.
For me, being a Muslim is my nature; it’s in my innermost soul and touches the smallest atoms of my body. I feel more at peace and less stressed about things I can’t control.
I feel as though I’m putting my life into God’s hands before anything else. And to me, that is so freeing to answer to my creator and not let a man dictate my existence.
I feel like I’m free to be me now. And I thank Allah every day for it’s a gift in my life.
For those who think of reverting, few things bring me true peace:
I only broke the cycle of pressure to society and man-made religion, when I truly yielded to God and God alone.
You lose nothing by connecting to the One who created you beautiful as He willed you to be.