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Flash Back Of The Memories Of A Female Convert

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Gear Up & Ride On[using large font size is not allowed]


By Sariya Islam


Assalaamu 'alaykum


Sariya is an Indian and a former Christian Roman Catholic. After 10 years of her reversion, she talks about the challenges she once faced as a new Muslim. You can read about how she chose Islam here.


What were the challenges and the most difficult part of becoming a Muslim?


Well, when we initially became Muslim, we thought that everything was going to be a challenge – learning to pray, to wear the Hijab, to fast- was going to be a challenge – but as I have said many times over now, “Allah Almighty made things easy for us”.

We learnt to pray faster than we thought we would, fasting was tough but we soon settled into the routine of throwing-up and indigestion for me after my first suhur. The Hijab was a challenge but it was also a command of Allah Almighty which made it easier to accept. Throughout this phase of acclimatization to our new religion, we knew that whatever we were trying to do or learn was commanded for us by our Creator. We knew that we were doing these things for the pleasure of Allah Almighty alone. This knowledge made challenges less difficult and easier to overcome.


Did you get enough support to help in taking the first steps in learning about Islam?


Yes I had enough support – from Allah Almighty; from the Muslim community around us, from friends at school, Alhamdullillah. Also the four of us were and are support for each other.

When did you take up the hijaab and what made you decide to take it?


People would not recognize me as a Muslim, my mannerisms, my appearance remained that of a Christian and this frustrated me. I realized wearing a scarf would make me identifiable as a Muslimah and so a year after reverting I apprehensively turned up at school one day wearing a scarf. Alhamdullillah my Muslim class-mates who already knew about my reversion were overjoyed and they made me feel immensely important that day.


How did people react to you wearing one?


I have been the Hijab for more than 6 years now and I think that I was generally more respected wearing a Hijab. And yeah there have many people from the corporate world and others who have commented to me about the excellence of the Hijab as a garment for women, one that makes her more graceful and gives her elegance.


What advice would you give to the Muslim community regarding reverts?


My transition from being a Non-Muslim to a fully-practicing Muslim was made so much easier because of the acceptance and the support we received from the Muslim community as a whole. My only advice to the Muslim community is to make this sort of support the norm. Please support all reverts everywhere.


They are vulnerable, they have in many cases left their homes, families, friends and even livelihoods simply because they love Allah Almighty and believe in the message of our beloved Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him. They merit your support in every aspect of life, so please give it to them.


How has life changed for you after reverting, who were you then, who are you now?


Before Islam I had a different set of ideals, values and aspirations. Today I know that I am not living for this world; I am instead living solely to worship my Creator. I do not just want worldly success; I want success in the hereafter too and am working towards it, InshaAllah.


I have given up my career as a HRM Professional and instead aim to be a full-time qualified, Da’ee, advocate to Islam. Allah Almighty has blessed me with this dream too.


I have been awarded a full studentship to do a PhD on the subject – Islam, Integration: perceptions of Muslim Women. Islam shows Muslims how to balance different aspects of their lives. Careers are important but need to be balanced with Islamic values, practice and faith. Hence as a Muslim woman, I will strive to be successful in my chosen career as a Muslim woman academic speaking for the cause of Islam. But Islam also teaches me the importance of family. I have married a good Muslim man and realize that whatever other good things I do I have to love and look after my husband and my family Insha' Allah.


Do you have any advice for new Muslims?


We reverts are unique in the sense that we bridge the Muslim and Non-Muslim communities and have friends and families on both sides. We stand for choice and freewill. We were not born into this magnificent religion but rather have chosen to be part of its continuum and we represent a united, Ummah, Nation. This makes us a catalyst encouraging not just inter-community dialogue but also discourse within the Muslim community. Our efforts tend to be better accepted as coming from someone who has seen and experienced both sides of the debate enabling us to make important contributions to furthering the cause of Islam, InshaAllah.


Another advice is that in our life as reverts, there are going to be many challenges that we shall have to face on an ongoing basis. Whatever the intensity of the challenge, always bear in mind that you have Allah Almighty and His beloved prophet Muhammad on your side. So when the going gets tough, simply trust Allah and make strong prayer and be patient and have trust that it will all be set right soon, InshaAllah.




Further details of the interviewee:

Sariya Islam is an Indian convert and has been a Muslim for more than 13 years. She holds a Master's in Business Management and is an experienced Human Resource Professional. She recently quit her career in HR and is now pursuing a PhD on the subject of 'Muslim Women and Integration' and is in the process of gradually making a career shift to Dawah and related activities.

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salam alekum



I have said many times over now, “Allah Almighty made things easy for usâ€.

ÇáÃãà ááå ÑÈ ÇáÚÇáãíä

jazake Allahu kola khair sister for sharing this story

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