Like A Baby
Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, said: "Every child is
born on the "fitrah" (natural inclination) of "Islam"
(surrender, submission and peace to the Creator on His Terms).
And it is their parents who raise them up to be Jews, Christians
or fire worshippers."
Ted Campbell who is the professor of religion at the seminary
school in Maryland and I were both sharing the speakers platform
last year in Maryland University. At the closing of a very nice
interfaith dialog there came a strange question for both of us.
Noah, the moderator said: "This last question is for both
speakers: "Why are each of you in your religion?"
Dr. Campbell took his position in front of the microphone and
then looked around the room as he thought about the question.
I will never forget his words. He said: "I guess I would
have to say that I am a Methodist because, well because, my parents
raised me that way. As a Methodist."
He was right.
That is what we know as Muslims. However, as I mentioned in my
answer to the same question: "And then some are brought back
to their original state as a baby." They are "reverted"
to Islam by the Mercy of Allah.
Actual or Factual Numbers of American Muslims
Many people are claiming that twice as many, or three times or
four times, or even ten times as many people are coming into Islam
as they did prior to the events of September 11. Who could possibly
know the numbers? We are not even sure how many Muslims live here
in America. I have heard the numbers range from around 3,000,000
all the way up to 11,000,000. I'm sure that only Allah Knows for
sure how many Muslims there are in America.
Rate of "Reversion"
Actually, I can't give accurate statistics before or after the
September events. I have heard from some "experts" that
Islam was the fastest growing religion in the world prior to the
September 11 events. I have no reason to doubt it either. In the
many mosques around the United States and in the many countries
that I have been fortunate enough to visit I have found thousands
who have entered into Islam. The Anglican Church of England expressed
concern that if something does not change in the trend of new
Muslims in England that the Muslims will out number the Anglicans
by the year 2010. The number one name of the birth certificates
for new born boys in England was not John, or Michael, or William.
It is "Muhammad." In Mexico, Sweden, Denmark and Canada
I have witnessed so many coming into Islam that I cannot count
them all. Everywhere I go I meet new Muslims. Prisons, universities
and even in the military I have personally seen thousands who
came to Islam. This is all before the events of September 11.
More Exposure to the Message
What I feel comfortable saying is that more and more people are
being to exposed to Islam all over the world. Whether or not the
picture they are receiving is painted correctly or not is not
as important a factor as is the fact that at long last many people
on this planet are looking at Islam as something very real. Therefore,
when they ask about Islam some of the information is stimulating
feelings inside of the people. Naturally we are going to see those
who are stimulated to be against Islam. At the same time you have
to understand that there are a number of people who will take
the position that you cannot always believe everything in the
news media. These are the ones whom Allah guides to inquire and
Allah is the Only Guide
It is only Allah who Guides the people and it is only Allah who
Misguides. The biggest problem in the past used to be the lack
of interest in Islam. People were not interested in talking about
Islam or any religion for that matter, even their own. Now the
problem is the lack of correct knowledge of Islam. There simply
was not anything about Islam out there. Then came the events of
the 1970s with the actions of some of the Iranians when they hijacked
airplanes and we saw on the news, men prostrating on the ground
outside the airplanes. We in the West learned a new word; "Shi'ism".
People said this is some strange religion (Islam). What is going
on? Then came the 1980s and we saw acts of terrorism that occurred
in Palestine and the words "fundamentalist" and "Muslim"
became associated together. At the very beginning of the next
decade we saw something take place in Iraq and Kuwait. Again religion
is brought into the picture. Not a pretty picture, but a picture.
Midway through the 1990s we saw big actions taking place everywhere
in the world. The Trade Center in New York, airplanes, embassies,
attacks and counter attacks. All along we are hearing something
about "Islam" and "Moslems." Still not very
positive to say the least. Then what occurred in September brought
out more information, although distorted, about this religion
of the East.
President Says "Islam is Peace"
Every home, every business, every place on earth became exposed
to this religion called: "Islam." The president of the
United States went on television at a time when everyone who had
a TV set was watching to see what the United States Commander
in Chief was going to say about the events of September 11, and
what US was going to do. His message contained a lot of threats
and promises about what the Americans were going to do to those
who committed these horrific acts of terrorism. But the words
that stick in my mind are the words that introduced Islam to a
lot of people around the world who had never heard of Islam before
in their lives. The words of President G. W. Bush when he said:
"Islam is a religion of peace." Every single place on
earth that could receive the broadcast signal from the TV towers
or the satellites orbiting the earth got the message. And for
those who were not so fortunate as to have a TV set, it was simultaneously
broadcast on every radio station in the world. And for those who
might have slept through the broadcast, it was rebroadcast over
and over. And then for those who did not speak English of course
there was translation. And then the written word took over where
the broadcasting left off. There was not a newspaper in the world
except that it carried something of the meaning of what Mr. Bush
said on that occasion. It was a historical speech. One that will
go down in the books of history as the retaliation of a nation
against terrorism. He said it. "ISLAM IS A RELIGION OF PEACE."
Now we know that Mr. Bush is not promoting Islam by any stretch
of the imagination. However, he still could not afford to say
something derogatory against all the Muslims in the world by attacking
Islam. That would then unite all the Muslims against America (at
least most of them).
In fact it was to the advantage of the Americans to make statements
that would help divide the Muslims over the situation existing
in Afghanistan and the situation that was sure to occur. By making
this statement, he left the door open for the Muslims who did
not want to see any problem between the materialism of the West
(which they personally enjoyed or would like to enjoy) and the
sacrificing of those who were willing to stand up against the
tyranny and oppression of the Western society and all that comes
along with it.
So the strategy was to say things that made certain Muslims look
bad while at the same time not exactly attacking Islam. This led
up to the next desirable situation for shayton: Divide the Muslims
against each other. So, now we had "mainstream Muslims"
and "fundamentalist Muslims" and "terrorist Islam"
and "modern Islam." It worked too. The Muslims did the
thing that the non-Muslims could never have done. The Muslims
defeated themselves. Anytime that Muslims fight Muslims and Muslims
kill Muslims, then Allah's Protection is lifted from them and
they will loose. That is what happened.
People Want to Know
Still in the midst of all of this negative propaganda and bad
press, non-Muslim people were curious to learn more of this "cult"
of Islam, its people and their beliefs. Books about Islam and
Muslims were disappearing off the shelves of the bookstores faster
than they could replenish them. Unfortunately almost every single
book was written either by a non-Muslim or authors from the various
deviant sects of Muslims. So the people were still not getting
the real message of the true Islam.
Websites, chat rooms, email and message boards became alive with
information (and misinformation) about Islam, Muslims, Quran,
Muhammad, peace be upon him. Some people wanted to know the truth,
others wanted to hide it. Discussions and arguments about what
Islam is about and what Muslims do were very common place. This
was the most exposure that these subjects had ever had in the
world at one time.
Open Communication Between Muslim & Non-Muslim
The good news came when the various dialogs between the Muslims
and Christians began to take place. When the non-Muslims began
to enter the masjids and sit with the Muslims and shared together
in discussions and shared together enjoying the food and traditions
of other cultures an amazing thing began to happen. They opened
their minds and their hearts to the true message of the submission
and surrender and obedience to the One True God, Allah -- in Islam.
Back to Islam
Since September 11th, I have seen a huge increase in the interest
of people wanting to know about Islam and at the same time a marked
increase in the "dawah" (invitation) to Islam on the
part of the Muslims around the world. This is how the people are
coming to Islam. The same way people have come to Islam for 1,400
years. By learning the true message and being with real Muslims.
Those who are inclined to "revert" back to the natural
state of baby-like submission and peace with Allah, are finding
their way back to Islam.
Many New Muslims
Islam today, is growing faster than ever. It is the Will of Allah,
for only He Guides. The people want to know. The interest is keen.
The materials are available in more simple terms in many languages.
The Muslims are starting to carry the responsibility of sharing
the message of the true "Peace With God in Islam."
Islam In Every Home
Somewhere in the middle of all of this is occurred to me an expression
of our prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him. When he said what
might translate to English as:
"The Last Day will not come until Islam has entered every
house on earth, whether it is made of animal skins or from the
And now it has.