Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Spirituality Troubles?

I haven't been motivated in a long time, and I've gone from barely practicing to not practicing to wanting to but feeling lost. Oddly, my family drama had no effect on me like this. . . In fact, it made my faith stronger. But then certain internet "celebrities" got me questioning. Or really, the responses to certain celebrities leaving got me questioning. I found it hard to associate myself with a group of people I disagreed with, and. . . I know it's stupid, but it happened.

I planned to start wearing hijab starting the new year (keeping with the idea I've had in my mind since I was young that you should start goals at certain points, and that a new year is as fresh of start as any), but now? I have a long way. I need to figure out the basics again. Sort of a personal Islam Renaissance. Does anyone know how I should go about doing this? Have you been in a similar situation before?

Thanks muchly. <3


  1. Salaam alaikum Maddie,

    Don't worry, I think that everyone from every religion experiences "iman lows" at some points in their life. No one is expected to remain static in their faith because no one is perfect. Sometimes we feel very faithful and devoted, sometimes not.

    I too read a lot of the comments that people left regarding these "celebrities", and many of them left me very angry and hurt. Not only were a lot of what they said just plain wrong factually, they were giving Islam and Muslims a terrible name. Everyone be warned: Youtube comments are NOT the place to have religious debates, and nothing that these people write should be regarded as the be-all, end-all Islamic opinion.

    I think it would be beneficial for you at this point to do some reading about Islam. For websites, I would highly recommend and They are both filled with articles on a variety of topics. Islamfortoday features a lot of articles giving both sides of issues, and Soundvision gives practical advice on how to implement Islam into your everyday life. For books, I really like "Islam: Religion of Life" by Abdul-Wadod Shalabi. Of course, the Qur'an is the best Book to read and listen to. Abdullah Yusuf Ali and Muhammad Marmaduke Pickthall have good English translations of the meaning of the Qur'an, and they have a lot of tafsir and explanations of the verses. I've heard Muhammad Asad's translation of the meaning is also very good. Try and avoid the Hilali and Khan translation, since it inserts a lot of parenthetical notes directly into the translations, making it very difficult to read (these parenthetical notes may not be correct interpretations of the meaning, either).

    Try and incorporate as many Islamic practices into your life as you can. If you want to wear hijab and feel ready for it, by all means do it. If you feel you're not ready to eat only halal meat, or are unable to do it, then don't worry about it. But make sure that you keep up with the basics, like the five daily salat. As difficult as it is to start up praying, it is something that really can't be ignored. Also, don't forget the power of du'a. Do this often, and consider it a conversation just between ALLAH and you. You can talk to Him about anything you want. The more you talk with ALLAH, the closer you will feel to Him.

    I can't imagine what it must be like to be a new Muslim and live in an area with very few Muslims. Being involved in the community is so important, and it can make you feel less alone and more motivated to live Islamically. Whenever you get a chance, try and go to places where Muslims "hang out", whether that's the masjid, halal stores and restaurants, etc. Call the imam at the masjid and let him know that you are a new convert and are looking for ways to meet people in the community. Insha'Allah he will let the congregation know and they will reach out to you.

    Insha'Allah things will get better for you. ALLAH knows your struggles, and if you remain faithful to Him He will always help you and never let you down.

    Love, Anne

  2. Salam aleikom Maddie,

    Maybe this article would be of some help inshaAllah

    And I think Anne has given some great advice.

  3. Salam Alaykum

    I had this problem around christmas time last year. it was the first time ever in my life not celebrating xmas & it felt weird & my faith was shaken because i just didn't feel like myself. for about 10 months (long time i know) i just wasn't as motivated as i was when i first converted. Then one day i was reading this girl's islamic blog about her being scared to wear hijab then one day she just did it & people didn't even know she was a muslim till she wore it & some reason that girl's blog sparked my imam again. Its just i felt a connection that i didn't before. Being a convert is HARD because no one is there to help you or explain things to you. It feels lonely. But finding one person who was talking about the same things that i trouble with (wearing hijab, rude women as mosques, trying to learn salah...etc) & seeing others comment with the same problems made me feel like I'm not a horrible muslim. We all struggle & eventually, insha'allah, the stuggle pays off & our imam comes back. Try listening to an audio cd of the quran. It helped me because anything i read anything i fall asleep instantly lol. If it's hard doing salah, do it in english until you can memorize the arabic. Nothing is compulsory, but everything we are told to do is better for us. Before doing something like salah or hijab, question it like an interrogator & find the reasons for yourself. WHY is it better for you to do such things? I don't do anything until I can support the reasons to do so. I always find a reason unique to my life :)

    Sorry this is long, hope it helps!

  4. Salam sister,

    I can't say I understand what you are going through as a convert since I was born into a practicing Muslim family, but I definetely understand what its like having a low iman. I know what you mean by having certain responses to "internet celebrities" affect you. It has happened to me too. I don't if this will work for you... but the best thing I did was avoid these kind of pages or sites which focus on degrading our faith or show Muslims who have seem to have forgotten their manners or respectful conduct that is required of us when interacting with others whether they are Muslims or NonMuslims even if they are insulting us. Two wrongs don't make a right. The best thing for me to do when my iman weakens is step away from all the distractions and focus on Allah SWT. Try not looking at what Muslims these days are doing, but rather at the beauty of life and blessings Allah has bestowed upon us. Think of everday as a fresh new start. Trust me sister none of us are perfect Muslims. There are days I feel like screaming at myself when I become caught up in this transient world. Allah knows we aren't perfect human beings, thus as long as we seek repentance he is oft forgiving. So don't ever think you have to be perfect. Take things slowly and you will gradually progress. Start with salat as Anne mentioned. This is for me the best time to feel closest to my Lord. Slowly try to learn the meaning of the words you are reciting and InshAllah things will become easier. As Allah says "take one step towards me, I will take ten steps towards you. Walk towards me, I will run towards you." For now forget about people just focus on the deen. We wouldn't judge a car by its driver thus we shouldn't concern ourself with other Muslims when we feel they aren't practing in the correct manner. As me and my dad were talking about today many Muslims have deviated from practicing the faith the right way. If possible try finding Muslims sisters who will help you and are understanding. Sister, I wish you all the best. InshAllah I hope things become easier for you and I will keep you in my dua's. Remember you don't have to be perfect as the prophet Mohamed SAW said "this religion is easy. Do not make it a rigor, or you shall be overcome. Be steadfast, seek the closeness of Allah, grow in virtue, and implore His appeasement day and night". Wish you all the best. Also when you have time check out www. Its a great website, it might be able to answer some of your questions about Islam.