Bismillahir rahmanir raheem
Allah swt has blessed me with 2 unique experiences: going to university as a non- Muslim and going as a Muslim alhamdulillah. The difference was miles apart and I found it so much easier the second time around because I knew I had the love and support of Allah swt.
When people go away to uni, they’re thrown into a new environment, new people, new experiences and some unfortunately get led astray.
The Prophet (saw) said: “A man will follow the religion of his close friend, so let each of you look to who he takes a close friend.” [Tirmidhi]
We would be naive to think that when our children, our brothers, our sisters, our nephews and our nieces go to university that they act according to the Quran and Sunnah all the time when out from underneath the watchful eye of their elders. I won’t go into some of the things I’ve seen Muslims do when I was at university but let’s just say it was far from halal, may Allah swt forgive us all and hide our faults on the Day of Judgement, Ameen.
So, here are some tips on how to hold onto your Islam whilst at university.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF FRESHERS FAIRS
Freshers fairs aren’t there just to collect bottle openers and other freebies. They can be a valuable tool to find your university’s ISOC (Islamic Society). Here, inshaAllah, you should find other Muslims that you can grow with and learn from on your journey as a Muslim at university. Your ISOC can also put you in touch with FOSIS (Federation of Student Islamic Societies) where you can link with other ISOC’s to put on events and meet even more Muslims. If you don’t find your ISOC at the Freshers Fair, you can most likely find them on Facebook.
FIND THE LOCAL MOSQUE
Most places (don’t quote me on that) will have a mosque close by. It’s nice to pray Jummah with other Muslims on campus but it’s even better if you can go out into the community and mix with other local Muslims. It’s also a great opportunity to get involved with the locals to fundraise, take Arabic or Tajweed classes and really make a difference to your new home town.
GIVE SALAAMS AND SMILE
Obviously, I’m not advocating you give salaams to non- Mahram but, if you see a hijabi sister or a sister you think is Muslim, or if you’re a brother and you see another brother give them salams ans smile. I’ve previously written about the importance of giving salaams which you can find here. Don’t be afraid to get friendly, they’re probably just as nervous as you are.
Your smile for your brother is charity – Tirmidhi, 1879
DON’T ENVY THOSE UNI NIGHTS OUT
Student nights out are rife with fitnah. Alcohol, free-mixing, music subhanAllah the list of fitan is on-going. Trust me, from someone that’s done the university experience twice, you don’t need them!
DRESS TO IMPRESS
Hijab is important. I can’t stress how important. When you go off to university, you’ll see all sorts, subhanAllah, but that doesn’t mean you have to do the same. Whether you’re at home with your parents or out with your new friends, please dear brothers and sisters hold onto you hijab. Just think of your hijab as your own personal fitnah barrier!
Abu Hurayrah (ra) reported: The Messenger of Allah (saw) said, “Modesty is part of faith and faith is in Paradise – Tirmidhi
How did you hold onto your Islam when you went away to university?