Bismillahir rahmanir raheem
Convert or Revert: What’s in a Name?
Debates on whether we should refer to ourselves as converts or reverts can often lead people away from the folds of Islam, something I have witnessed personally. Most of us who discover Islam for ourselves will simply say we’re Muslim, but for some people that’s not enough.
Whichever phrase used, it seems such a sticking point among the Muslim community. But what’s in a name? Convert suggests that you were of a religion previously and therefore someone like myself coming from a Christian faith may identify with it. Revert suggests that you were always Muslim as some have deduced as being the fitrah.
Each child is born in a state of “Fitrah”, but his parents make him a Jew or a Christian. It is like the way an animal gives birth to a normal offspring. Have you noticed any (young animal) born mutilated before you mutilate them? Bukhari & Muslim
It’s definitely a talking point but I don’t believe it’s something that should be given extensive time to. At the end of the day, if you have chosen to take you shahadah, then you are a Muslim. It’s not how you begin the race but how you end it insha Allah.
It’s not all sex, drugs and rock and roll in jahilliyah
Those born into a Muslim family always seem to want the nitty gritty, sex drugs and rock and roll story that they believe often comes with finding the deen. I personally don’t mind sharing my journey to Islam but not all brothers and sisters are the same in that respect. For them, accepting Islam drew a line in the sand under all the sins they had previously engaged in alhadulillah.
Equally, life may not have been that exciting for you before hand so there may not be such an interesting story to tell.
Personally, I find interest in those who are born in a Muslim family but still have to make that journey towards true Islam. How strange it must be to be judged by your family for praying five times a day and wearing hijab but still being able to celebrate Eid with your loved ones like the 3 acts are mutually exclusive.
THE BACKBONE OF ISLAM
Islam was built on converts. Umar (ra), Abu Bakr As-Siddique (ra), Uthman (ra), (Ali (ra), Khadija (ra), Zayd ibn Haritha (ra) the list goes on and on. But do we embrace and treat reverts the same way the Prophet (saw) did or do we bombard them with “haraam policing”?
Islam is a journey and none of us are perfect. We as an Ummah need to seriously re-evaluate how we treat the people that come to the deen. Criticising girls who don’t adhere completely to hijab, running down brothers who don’t have a lion’s mane for a beard, is wrong and inappropriate. Since exposing myself to social media platforms, this is something I have seen more and more and it sickens me.
“If you wish to mention the faults of your friend, mention your own faults first.”
(Hadith – Bukhari’s Book of Manners 329).
I’m all here for giving people sincere advice BUT if it’s happening in a public forum trust me, it’s probably not sincere at all.
Giving advice is a beautiful thing but the way it is given is crucial. Which would you rather, upsetting your fellow brother/ sister in Islam and push them away from the deen or not saying anything and making dua that they are guided on the straight path?…. I shouldn’t have to tell you the answer!
LET YOUR GOOD CHARACTER SHINE
We should involve our Muslim brothers/ sisters in all the halal that we do. Sharing a good deed does not decrease it’s value. Reverts/ Converts come from ALL walks of life and have A LOT to offer this deen and the Ummah. Don’t assume that because they don’t have great tajweed or don’t cover that they’re dispensable. It doesn’t matter, they’re Muslim now and like yours, their reward is with Allah swt. Never forget that.
Our characters should be a shining light to show people who come to the deen that it’s ok to progress and grow. Islam is a safe place to do that. Perfection from day one isn’t always possible for everyone, especially when coming from a particularly harsh background.
There are numerous hadith about Sahabah’s who made mistakes. Some would still drink, committed zina or did some other shocking sin. The Prophet (saw) didn’t expose them in the masjid. He (saw) loved them, nurtured them and reminded them of the rewards of jannah to incentivise them to come back to Allah. You catch more flies with honey than vinegar as they say.