Halimah David, Ex-Christian, USA
Description: A young American girl who was raised by her father as a Catholic got introduced to Islam in her journey to college from Chicago to Colorado.
By Halimah David
My father raised me on his own and as a Christian. He worked hard to teach me Christian values. I read the Bible a lot when I was in elementary school (I skipped the words I did not know) and noticed there were some contradictions (i.e. eating pork, Jesus’s death , may God praise him, etc.).
When I was twelve I knew I did not really believe in Christianity anymore, but I did not know what to think. I continued searching out God and praying to Him for the truth. I sought God a lot and very hard. I had a lot of questions on my mind: “Everybody, at some time or another, asks themselves the question: “Why do I exist?” or “For what purpose am I here on Earth?”
The variety and complexity of the intricate systems, which constitute the fabric of both human beings and the world in which they exist, indicate that there must have been a Supreme Being who created them. Design indicates a designer. When human beings come across footprints on a beach, they immediately conclude that a human had walked by there some time previously. No one imagines that the waves from the sea settled in the sand and by chance produced a depression looking exactly like human footprints. Nor do humans instinctively conclude that they were brought into existence without a purpose. Since purposeful action is a natural product of human intelligence, humans conclude that the Supreme Intelligent Being who created them must have done so for a specific purpose. It is for this reason that human beings need to know the purpose for their existence in order to make sense of this life and to do what is ultimately beneficial for them.
When I was nineteen while calling myself a “truth seeker”, I traveled a lot looking for other cultures and beliefs to satisfy my need for finding God. I looked into Taoism, Wicca, Buddhism, Rastafarian, Judaism, Free Masonry, Christianity, Hinduism, Animism, etc. I even looked at one or two pages about Islam but immediately dismissed it as it did not suit my own desire. I saw that Muslims worship Allah, and that Muhammad, may God praise him, is their Messenger and that they pray five times a day.
Five times a day!?
I thought that sounds like too much work; and it could not possibly be the religion of God, the Creator of the Heavens and the earth!?
By time, I returned to the United States almost twenty one; I was not satisfied with any of the religions I had looked into. I decided to attend medical school (which was my dream). I filled out entrance exams and papers and was accepted at my delight. I took a Greyhound Bus from Michigan and headed to Colorado for college. While I was traveling, I met a young guy who was sitting behind me for most of the trip. I asked his name and learned he was Ibrahim from Africa, traveling to college to be an engineer.
We began talking, and he told me he was a Muslim. I asked him what that was and he explained that Muslims believe there is none worthy of being worshiped but Allah alone and that Muhammad was the last and final Prophet of the Abrahamic faiths.
I concluded that Jews were behind on two Prophets: Jesus and Muhammad; and Christians were behind on one Prophet: Muhammad.
I inquired further into the religion Islam, and he shared with me a small book of collected prayers (dua and dhikr) that Muslims make. Inside the first daily remembrance I read was this:
“None has the right to be worshiped but Allah alone, without partner. To Him belongs all sovereignty and praise and He is over all things Omnipotent.”
It was then that I knew Islam was quite possibly what I had been looking for. I then looked further into the book for more clarification on who Allah is and focused on these two:
“In the Name of Allah, Who with His Name nothing can cause harm in the earth nor in the heavens, and He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.”
“O Allah, whatever blessing has been received by me or anyone of Your creation is from You alone, You have no partner. All praise is for you and thanks is to You.”
I then turned to Ibrahim and asked him how I could become Muslim. He told me to say my Shahadah: La ilaha illa llaah Muhammadur Rasoolullah(There is no deity that has the right to be worshiped but Allah alone and Muhammad is His Messenger). And in believing that and stating it, I became a Muslim right then and there on a Greyhound Bus. So, after speaking with Ibrahim for fifteen minutes I became a Muslim. This was about seven years ago. I never went to medical school. I decided to spend my time learning my new religion and moved to Utah. I met a great many Muslims there who warmly welcomed me into the community and spent much time teaching me the religion.
To sum up some of the most important things I have learned as a Muslim would be this:
· There has to have been a Creator due to the fact that there is creation.
· A proof that there is a God is shown through the masses; whom all feel the need to worship and do so through the vast amounts of different religions and beliefs.
· Otherwise, where would we have ever gotten the idea from to even worship?
· If there were more then one god there would be complete and utter chaos from them arguing amongst themselves.
· Consequently, every human being is responsible for belief in God, which is imprinted on each and every soul. It is based on this inborn belief that Allah defined the purpose of humankind’s creation in Chapter Adh-Dhariyat (which means):
“I created the jinn and humankind only to worship Me.” (Quran 51:56)
· The laws that we build our societies upon are a proof that there must be a Creator for everything and that we are mimicking Him and His divine laws by creating our own rules and legislation. Unfortunately, societies often make laws and legislation that are contrary to the divine laws of God.
Without these laws there would be complete panic and disorder spread out through the entire world, which would make life very different from the one we live in and experience.
· A religion cannot be properly judged by its’ followers but can be properly judged by its’ teachings.
· Islam is for all of mankind with complete structure and guidance for every aspect, condition and affliction that mankind ever meets and suffers with and/or from.
· Islam cannot be changed and ‘put into a box’ in regards to how you want to practice it, you must change yourself and your way of life to meet and fit into Islam.
· Thus, the essential purpose for which humankind was created is the worship of God. However, the Almighty is not in need of human worship. He did not create human beings out of a need on His part.
If not a single human worshiped God, it would not diminish His Glory in any way, and if all of mankind worshiped Him, it would not increase His Glory in any way. God is Perfect. He alone exists without any needs. All created beings have needs. Consequently, it is humankind that needs to worship God.
– Why do human beings need to worship and glorify God by obeying the divinely revealed laws? This is because obedience to divine law is the key to success in this life and the next. The first human beings, Adam and Eve, were created in paradise and later expelled from paradise for disobeying the divine law. The only way for human beings to return to paradise is by obedience to the law.
– Divine laws represent guidance for humankind in all walks of life. They define right and wrong for them and offer human beings a complete system governing all of their affairs. The Creator alone knows best what is beneficial for His creation and what is not.
The divine laws command and prohibit various acts and substances to protect the human spirit, the human body and human society from harm. In order for human beings to fulfill their potential by living righteous lives, they need to worship God through obedience to His commandments.
I am now married with children and am a stay home mother. I write and illustrate books for children.
I also maintain three websites on the Muslim’s belief, character, manners and business ethics.