Asalam alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu,
i dont know why i was hesitant to post my conversion story, i've mentioned it before
briefly without mentioning Sikhism. I felt I may be mocked by other
Sikhs, they may not take me seriously or consider me a traitor.
However, if even just one Sikh reads this and benefits, it is worth for
me to share the story. So here goes. Another conversion story. But
probably not like the ones you've heard of before.
It is important first to know some background information about the history
of the Mughal empire conquering India, there is a lot of detail here,
feel free to read what you want:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mughal_Empire
Most people consider there are only three monotheistic religions: Judaism,
Christianity, and Islam. Ofcourse only Islam is the religion where one
believes in only One God without partners. However, most people
(nonmuslims) would consider Sikhism as a monotheistic religion as well,
as the Sikhs say they believe in One God. The Sikhs believe however the
Essence of God is different, because they believe he is Omnipresent
(exists everywhere in everything). Its only today that I can realize
this is seriously major shirk. You have associated all of creation with
God. But none is comparable to Him. Alhamdulilah I get it now.
What the normal Sikh grows up learning is that when the muslims (Mughals)
came to India, they oppressed the Hindus. They forced them to convert,
tortured them (99.9%, if not more Sikh temples have graphic portraits
of Sikhs and their prophets being tortured by the Mughals, such as
being boiled in pots of water/oil, being sawed in half, woman with
their children's body parts put on a string like a necklace around the
mother's necks-sorry to be so graphic, but i am not exaggerating, just
trying to put you in my shoes of what the average, or probably all
Sikhs see on a daily basis, or atleast once a week when they visit the
temple, regardless of how religous they are or how tolerant they are).
The sikh children grow up being told stories revolving around these
portraits, they are gifted books with such graphic portraits, this is
the bulk of the sikh history we learn at home and at a sunday school.
However we are taught all religions are different paths to the same
God. I think its hard to be a sikh and not grow up with a deep-rooted
hatred for muslims, even if its a secret hatred. However a lot of
teaching of SIkhism are taken directly (or mixed up and combined) from
Islam and Hinduism/Buddhism) however, it is impossible to have a
discussion about this with a Sikh as they will become angry if you
mentnioned this, they believe their religion is unique and not taken
from the polythiestic Hinduism, infact they will argue that they
believe in one God. Infact, the first words in the Sikh Holy Book
translates to exactly: there is One God (la ilaha ill Allah to us,
which is the heart of Islam). The first few words, however, all say He
is omnipresent (everywhere), which contradicts He is One. But the Sikhs
will argue and describe their belief in one God in everything is a drop
of water, and God is like the body of the water, so we are part of Him
and somewhat separate. I no longer believe this, nor does it make sense
to me anymore. But yes, once it made sense, and i did believe it. But
it left me with a lof of other unanswered questions, such as if God is
everywhere/in everything, isnt everything worth of worship? Also, what
part of us sins, our bodies or souls. ofcourse souls, so how could that
be part of a Perfect Creator? In SIkhism we are taught we need to
overcome our egos. Now, i feel this is the most egotistic and arrogant
claim, that any part of you is part of the Divine Creator. This is not
a humbling belief at all. FOr example, if you look around you know,
EVERYTHING has been created for a purpose. But the creator/maker is not
physically part of it. Take a basic table for example. Its made for
sitting at and putting dishes and food on it. The man who made it is
not physically in there. Not at all. The table is a sign of the maker,
and he is SEPARATE from his creation. This is so basic.
Now that i've bored you (hope i haven't)
, I personally grew up not hating muslims,
i had muslim friends. I hated, HATED what the mughals muslims did, but i personally could not
associate the Mughals with all of the muslims (as my parents and other
Sikhs). Growing up i was told to stay away from the womanizing muslim
boys and men. This is extreamly common with Sikhs, to tell their
children to stay away from muslims (esp of the opposite sex) and not to
listen to what they say of their religion). we are told they rip of the
heads of the animals (cruelty), have 4 wives, etc i would say similar
views of the typical close minded nonmuslim. However we were told the
muslims killed our Prophets. Sikhism was created during the Mughal
empire's conquest of India. A man by the name of Guru Nanak came
claiming he was enlightened by God, and that here was no Hindu of
Muslims, we are all equal, his teaching a blend of Islam and Hinduism.
They and their followers rebelled against the Mughals empire and would
not convert, and were tortured and killed brutally.
I would say i was "safe" from the muslims until i went to college. There i became
more open minded, maybe too much to the point that i wondered what was
wrong with gay marriage, two ppl loved each other
I met my dh, and we married despite my parents disapproval and
disownment. I was actually harassed quiet a lot by them (phone calls,
cursing, etc). I think now there was a lot of wisdom behind this,
because this got me to somewhat disconnect from Sikhism. I always
wanted to know more about God growing up, i used to call to God to make
me understand more about Him. I was not finding it in Sikhism, but i
never even THOUGHT about leaving Sikhism. I thought if i learned about
other religions, i could apply it and "add" it to Sikhism and better
understand God. I dont know why I had an urge to learn about Islam, esp
after i got married. dh was not practicing, at that time infact he told
me once "you know what a kafir is aman? a kafir is one who does not
believe in God, so you are not a kafir"
this always makes me laugh when i think of it now. I used to ask him
questions about Islam but i didn't always get the right answer and
sometimes no answer, so i gave up asking but i wanted to learn more.
Once after having my first son, we went to Morocco where my wonderful
FIL (May Allah bless him and have Mercy on him) gifted me the Quran in
English. I was happy to get it and curious to see what this book said.
And there weren't my parents to grab it and throw it or yell at me and
make me feel nervous and guilty for holding it or wanting to read it.
Alhamdulilah for the distance, i dont know if i could ever have read it
without this distance. Exhaulted is the Wisdom of Allah, truly!
Mind you i was not familiar with the Bible or Torah, stories of the
prophets. I asked my sisters in law questions, like how did Noah fit
all the animals on the ark? How did Moses separate the ocean? One
sister in law, may God Bless her, i love her, she's ma'shallah very
intelligent and a teacher, said to me do you believe God performed
miracles through the prophets? She asked me if I believed God was
capable of this? i said yes, definitely. She said, thats how He did it.
It clicked. Now i feel FLUFFY for not considering that. the question
was simple, the answer were even simpler, and i got it.
Then when i read the quran, i found it so strange in a good way. I said this is
different, it says We (for God), like its written in first person. I
never read anything like this before. It was wonderful. I got through
Surah Fatiha for the first time and i couldn't put it down. I used to
wonder why children die, where is there suffering, hunger, poverty,
etc. when i got to the line in Surah al Baqarah where Allah says that
we will be tested with loss of wealth, loss of life, etc. and give glad
tidings to the patient ones, i wept. Again, i got an answer to a basic
question I had that i could not find a clear answer for in the SIkh
Holy Book. In the Sikh Holy Book, i was taught that affliction is a
result of bad sins commited by us in our past lives. This reasoning
never stuck with me, it didnt seem fair/correct to me. But in the
Quran, the purpose of affliction was that it was a test, and the
solution was to be patient. It was like my heart and my head had said
the shahada without me uttering it, and you know, it was weird, because
i didn't want to be muslim
but here i was, i could not deny it. I could not be dishonest to my
soul. A few months later in Ramadan i completed reading the quran in
English, and i said the shahada out loud as just Allah as my Witness.
It was something special to say it alone in private, it was from my
heart, it was witnessed and heard by the the One and Only Knower of All
who had guided me. Perfect Praise be to Him.
i still find it so strange that i am the only Sikh i know that has converted to Islam.
Sometimes it makes me smile and laugh, I used to go to the temple every
sunday and sing hymns there often! And sometimes i feel humbled and
honored at the drastic change but peace of mind, and wonder why me, and
i feel i have some duty to fulfill due to my conversion, like write a
book or article debunking omnipresence, because this is the heart of
Sikhsm, and if they just got it that God is not omnipresent, then only
Islam would be left for them to consider. Sikhism already believes God
has no children. Inshallah one day I will. But I think the beauty of
Islam is hidden from Sikhs and others behind a veil of misconceptions
and deep-rooted hatred for them all due to the horrible actions of a
few misguided ones. This makes me sad and wonder how other Sikhs will
ever come to Islam. But it brings peace to me to know it is Allah who
Guides whom He wants regardless of who it is in what circumstance they
are in. I say to the Sikhs, SEARCH, afterall, Sikh means learner,
or to learn. Learn about other religions, Islam AND other religions,
but read the Holy Books of other religions not what people have said
about them. Go to the correct source, read it with a open mind and ask
the Creator to guide you to the truth. Afterall, if Sikhism is
preferred to you over other religions, then through your study of
faiths you will only come out a stronger and more convinced Sikh. You
may love Sikhism more, but you will probably question it more. But I
ask you, what/who are you afraid of? Your parents, or the truth? What
is preventing you from learning the truth about Islam from the best and
correct source, the Quran? Afterall, aren't the Sikhs, like the
muslims, supposed to fear none but God, their Creator?
Many Sikhs like to say they are Sikh by choice. Infact, my Sikh brother has a
shirt that says precisely that. I feel a lot of Sikhs are Sikh by
choice because they would rather choose not to disappoint their
parents, their friends and they don't want to betray a minority
religion who's followers were brutually tortured. Sikh by guilt/anger.
I challenge any SIkh reading this, read the Quran and then tell me if
you are still Sikh by choice, and do not lie to yourself, or to your