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Converts – Know Islam, Know Yourself, Make Your Space

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Allah Most High has brought you to Islam for the best of reasons, as Allah does everything with perfect Wisdom and knowledge of His Plan.  He is ar-Rahman, sharing His Mercy with all of creation, and ar-Raheem, specifying particular Mercies for individual Believers.  No atom in the universe exists without His Will, nor moves without His Design.

It is wonderful to find Allah’s Religion, especially for those of us who come from a background of misguidance and confusion.  For certain, those who would enter Islam must be sincere and thoughtful people.  It is imperative to give deep reflection in seeking Allah’s Purpose for ourselves.  Along with the clues He has provided in His Book, and the best of examples in His Messenger, we need to also consider where we are in relation to history, and our relationship to the rest of the Muslim Ummah.  This may help us to place ourselves solidly within Allah’s Guidance, have a sense of our mission, and objectively prepare ourselves for fulfillment.

Allah’s Majestic Book is packed with guidance, therapy, and examples of human success and failure.  The stories of Musa, Yunus, Yusuf, and Ibrahim all provide examples of how Allah prepares His chosen people.  Allah put them through trials and difficulties which, like melting gold or hammering steel, finalize in a refined and hardened product of tremendous value.  Our Beloved Prophet, his Wives, and his Companions all entered Allah’s Religion after a life lived without complete guidance.  Their suffering and challenges shaped them into the best leaders, most pious worshipers, and the most humanitarian community that ever existed.  Studying their history reveals that their objectives were clear:  to seek Allah’s Pleasure at all personal cost, to open the doors of Islam for humanity, to build the community that would forever represent Islam’s perfection of human character, and to refine themselves by striving towards full submission to Allah’s Command.  The path and model for all of this was established in just 23 years of our Prophet’s divine mission on earth, may Allah bless him, comfort him, and fully reveal his exalted status.

And the Muslims continued striving for Islam’s elevation and benefiting from its perfect guidance for centuries afterward.   However, in recent centuries, Muslims have fulfilled our Messenger’s prophecies by failing to maintain Islam’s prominence, and have themselves fallen to a low place in global status.   Today, they are challenged by needing to rediscover Islam’s purpose, the value of what has been forgotten, and to reform their lives and their societies.  You will see them needing to properly redefine themselves:  some are rejecting everything “modern”, some rejecting everything “traditional”, and many trying to evaluate our current mode of existence while keeping Islam’s principles in mind.  It is a real struggle, as the best role-models died during a time in which the world was quite different.  Converts need to also understand those role-models in history to establish ourselves as examples for our children, fellow Muslims, and non-Muslims as well.  Obviously, this is a serious task.

The following Diamond from Allah’s Treasure Trove (The Qur’an) offers us a definitive explanation of where the Muslim’s stand, what is required of them, and what is expected of us as Converts:

O you who have believed, if you help Allah , He will help you and establish your foundation firmly.

A basic analysis of the grammar helps us:

  • “If” means it is a necessary condition:  to receive Allah’s Help, we must “help” Him
  • “help Allah” in jussive form implies that Allah is commanding us to “help” Him by working towards His Divine Objectives for ourselves and humanity.
  • “help you” in jussive form means that Allah is guaranteeing His help in exchange for ours, as He tells us in another verse “Verily it is imperative upon Us to aid the Believers”
  • “establish” in jussive form again reiterates Allah’s surety, His Promise, to establish those who establish His Truth on Earth.

By this single verse, Allah has made it clear WHY Muslims have slipped to the low point in their history:  they failed to work for His objectives.  He defines what is required for them to restore their status:  they must return to the effort of helping His Religion to again be elevated over all false religions and misguided modes of human existence.  And He has shone His Light on the path before us as Converts:  our success lies in establishing what has been forgotten throughout these most recent generations.  We must again do as the Messenger and His Companions did:  strive with our entire worth to bring humanity to the Mercy of Allah’s Guidance, for their salvation in this life and the next.

So, as we adjust our ways of thinking, talking, and behaving, we must conform to the correct model.  Allah’s Messenger was perfection in human form.  His community was perfection in human society.  Shape ourselves and our communities toward the same objectives, and call all Muslims to do the same, rather than taking the Muslims we see in a state of failure as our example.  If we become practical images of our Prophet, Allah will bring us forward as examples for other Muslims as well as the non-Muslims.  Allah guarantees our success if we take His Guidance as the means.

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