Okay, so I was asked a question by somebody, and my answer doesn’t fit on my ask fm page, so I’ve decided I’d write it here instead. Here it goes:
So I’m fully embracing Islam now and now I see everything in a different light. I look at some (and it’s only 2 of them) of my friends and I think of what they’re doing and… that’s it. What can I do? I look around and feel utterly depressed because my view is so different to theirs.
When we fully embrace Islam, our new found faith will be tested in many ways. One of the things is if it will stand the test of time. Now during this time you can be tested in many ways, such as from your friends, your work, your family etc. When I became practising, it wasn’t easy. I felt that I had lost most of my friends, because my way of thinking had changed so much, that my friends found it difficult to grapple with it. What I did and didn’t do was so different to what they did and didn’t do, and some of them retaliated in various ways. On top of that, I had some of my immediate family members who weren’t very supportive, and the ways in which they responded was very hurtful.
I think it’s very normal you’d feel upset because they don’t understand you. It’s human nature to want your friends, the people who you are most likely to be the closest to, to understand your viewpoint, as well as that they may support you. But unfortunately, they will be at a completely different place in their life, and as a result, they most likely wont be the ones to help you with the stage you’re at now as well as with where you wish to get to. Because they too need to get used to the new you, and quite frankly they probably wont carry the means to help you, as they themselves may not know more than you. So it’s normal that you may not get their support.
Alhamdulillah, it’s always good to know that people are embracing Islam, it shows that you are using your mind, and that you’ve decided to walk this path after much contemplation. However since you are new there’s alot of grounding that needs to take place, so that you are much stronger in faith. The way in which you can do this is by being around those that are better than you. Why? Because they’re the ones who can teach you. We need living examples of those we can look up to. And set a clear objective of what is it we’d like to be like. I spent as much time as I could and I still do with a woman who’s 13 years older than me, and there’s always alot to take from people who have experience, people who are profound dawah carriers. So that’s one thing that needs to take place, the people who you spend time with. Otherwise how else can you develop without the advice of those who know better than you?
Now this doesn’t mean that you’ll lose your friends. It just means for the time being, you’ll take yourself away for a little while just to sort yourself out. Don’t expect much from them, because the truth is, they really are not on the same page as you, and where they’re not, there wont be much support. You wouldn’t teach a 5 year old a-level maths now would you? Why? Because they haven’t yet developed the ability to think critically and logically, likewise with our friends, they wont be in the same mind- frame as you. Now the ways in which they’ll respond to you will vary from persona to persona, e.g. I have a non-practising friend who’s very open minded, and generally shows a good understanding of my beliefs, whereas I had others who were quite narrow-minded, in that they showed less appreciation towards my beliefs, and would stubbornly stick to theirs as well as become argumentative. How we deal with them is something we develop over time, and if you’re new to the faith, I suggest you ground up your akidah first, that you earn that stability with your new-found faith.
Going back to the point about standing the test of time, Allah swt says:
So what this is about is obtaining the greatest gift in the world, and that is the gift of guidance. Great things in life, don’t come easy. To achieve top grades in your studies requires time, effort, perseverance, dedication, determination, sacrifice and so much more. You can’t achieve worthwhile things so easily. Likewise, the guidance you receive from Allah swt, doesn’t come cheap, so inevitably, you will face some sort of difficulty before Allah fully grants you this. So this is what I’m referring to when I say you need to stand the test of time, you as a whole need to show that you are worthy of it.
It doesn’t end just there either. If you continuously work on your relationship with Allah swt, that you do the fard (obligatory actions), in that you pray all your salaah regularly, you abstain from free mixing, etc, that you are adhering to His swt commandments with sincerity, then Allah swt will definitely pave the way out for you. This is guaranteed, but whilst you anticipate the way out, be patient in that you also being dutiful to your Lord.
Well this is the end to my previous point, that He swt will give you something so much more, if you do this much for Him. I can vouch for that, and believe me, those that have received this gift, can tell you the same.
Also, do watch this video.
I’d also like to make mention that you probably would also like for your friends to see things as you do, as well as want the things you want, but act upon it when the time comes, because you probably won’t be sure about how it is you work to make them understand things as you do. Right now it would be more practical to work on yourself, and inshAllah as your understanding gets better, you work on them.
Hope that helps inshAllah!
As salaamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi barakatuhu~