The Muslim community does this thing were as soon as someone converts, they love and praise them so much for doing so. But when that person has any difficultly with assimilating with the community, or disagrees with a mainstream opinion, they jump down their throat, judge, back bite, and in some cases be abusive. And they act shocked when the convert leaves, shake their heads and gossip about how they were never a “real Muslim” anyway.
I’m sorry but I hate this idea. Yes, as Muslims we should be nice to one another and help one another and be as a family toward one another. But the fact remains that if someone converts to Islam and then leaves because of how others treated them, then that’s shirk. They’re putting the hostile attitude of others above Allah and just abandoning the religion.
Yes we, as an ummah, need to work on being better to one another, but the attitudes of people should NEVER be a deciding factor on whether you stay a Muslim or not.
We as Muslims do not have the right to declare a person is committing shirk or call them kafirun. It is not our place to backbite upon those who leave Islam. We have no control over whether someone leaves Islam. We have control over only ONE thing - ourselves, and our behavior. We can choose to criticize and backbite and speak poorly of people, or we can choose to encourage each other and support our fellow reverts in difficulties, and try to continue giving dawah (even just through our manners) to those who leave Islam.
The fact is, our lives are written by Allah: He knows what choices we will make and we have no way of knowing what is really in someone’s heart. Maybe someone says, “I’m no longer Muslim because I can’t stand the way I’m treated” but in their heart they still believe. Maybe in the future their iman will grow and they will return to Islam. Maybe they will, even unintentionally, provide dawah to a future revert.
I think it is better to speak kindly and remember that we are all in the hands of Allah than it is to declare that someone has declared shirk and speak without knowledge about why someone has said they’re no longer Muslim. What matters is in the heart.
Before you make such a bold statement like “we as Muslims don’t have the right to declare someone is committing shirk” I think you better have proof. The Quran itself states in 3:104 (and many other places honestly) to forbid what is evil and enjoin what is good. Many scholars speak about shirk; if we don’t talk about what is and isn’t shirk then people could be committing it and not even realizing. Furthermore, I never said any specific person was committing shirk; I said the action of leaving Islam because of the attitudes of people is shirk - there’s a huge difference.
Also please show me where I called someone a kufir. Committing shirk doesn’t automatically take someone out of the fold of Islam. You (I’m using you general not specific) need to learn that there’s many forms of shirk, not just straight up disbelief of Allah swt and the Prophet saws.
Please also show where I was backbiting anyone. I simply said that leaving Islam because of people is shirk. I didn’t belittle any specific person. You see me as speaking so harshly when in reality I didn’t do that. You’re the one backbiting me saying I said what I never did.
I never disagreed with the fact that we as Muslims should behave better. Literally go read what I said again because it seems you greatly misunderstood me.
Muslims on tumblr are so obsessed with being ultra liberal and taking the responsibility away from reverts, “if you leave Islam it’s ok it’s our fault we were too mean”. No, that’s not how it works. If you leave Islam that’s on you. I’m not at all saying our Ummah doesn’t need to improve. Of course we do, we will always need to improve and better ourselves. But what I am saying is do not blame the Ummah for every bad thing that happens, if someone leaves Islam that’s not the Ummah’s fault.
TBH I don’t really feel like arguing with you but I feel like it’s not appropriate ever to say someone has committed shirk. We don’t know what’s in someone’s heart, so I don’t feel I would be comfortable EVER saying someone committed shirk because Allah knows best, not me.
The Prophet was reported saying that “Whoever bears testimony against a Muslim of which the latter is not deserving, let him prepare for himself a seat in the Hell fire.” I’m not prepared to risk that.
If the concern with the trivialities of how this particular sin works or that particular one works, and what are the specific requirements for them is more important than simply being kind than that’s up to you.
There’s a post going around right now that says that this generation will be known as the Muslims who were more concerned with the length of a man’s pants than with feeding the poor; I hope we won’t also known as the generation who were more concerned with saying reverts who leave Islam are committing shirk than with treating those reverts kindly to begin with.
I’d like first to add that OP never once claimed that mademoiselle-carly, in particular, was back-biting. That was a general statement. If you actually read what they wrote. Just FYI.
Second, as a convert yourself, I’m sure you can remember the way it felt to leave your initial beliefs and learn something new immediately after. I can’t speak for you, because we all have our own individual experiences, but I would argue that you’re currently in a position of privilege, living in a country where the majority is Muslim, and you can practice Islam openly.
Many converts don’t have that privilege - especially those, like myself, who found the religion at a young age, while living at home in an environment that is hostile towards anything and everything related to Islam.
So imagine that, rather than feeling peace and serenity while you pray, you are overcome with a sense of dread trying to perform an obligatory act knowing that if you get caught, there will be consequences. Living under constant fear of being able to openly express your love for your religion is difficult, and as someone new, adds to the difficulty remembering your old life and how much easier (though not nearly as fulfilling) it was. Now, take that same new Muslim and send them eagerly to a mosque where they’re supposed to feel warm and invited - and they do! Until your new shine begins to wear off and you’re no longer the “interesting” and “amazing” gossip for the day, but the “Muslim that has tattoos” or the “girl who doesn’t wear their hijab right” or the “boy who makes eye contact with his friend who happens to be a girl, GOD FORBID.”
Imagine being uncomfortable no matter where you turn, in the only TWO places you should never be uncomfortable - your home and your place of worship. Imagine how damaging that is to your spirit, to your motivation, to your happiness?
My point in saying all this is that I can understand why converts leave Islam. Not from the religious perspective. I cannot understand that. But from the way they are judged and treated and ignored and ridiculed. We like to think that we are tough and unbreakable, but the truth is, we are human. We get hurt. We get discouraged. And we let that overwhelm us.
So the problem here, is not the OP. The OP has an excellent point. It’s a frustrating occurrence within the ummah because it is our job to support each other, to treat each other like family. But we fail at it time and time again, and it is on US, when someone leaves due to OUR behavior. It is most definitely on us.
So yeah. OP is right with every point they make.
We don’t get to decide who commits shirk and who does not. We don’t get to decide how easy their experience was. We don’t get to decide what their own, personal reason for leaving Islam is. But if it has anything to do with our behavior, we have failed them. We have let them down in the worst way.
If someone leaves Islam because of the ummah, that is the ummah’s fault. That is the community’s fault, for pushing them away and for refusing to help them when they needed them most.
I’m sorry but I truly don’t understand the problem you two have with what I am saying.
First of all, I NEVER SAID ANYONE WAS COMMITTING SHIRK. I NEVER SAID A SINGLE PERSON IN THE WORLD WAS COMMITTING SHIRK. I SIMPLY DEFINED WHAT SHIRK WAS.
Let’s imagine a scenario:
We’re all in a room together and I say, “Worshipping both Allah swt and the Hindu deity Shiva is shirk” I have no doubt in my mind that you two would agree with that. In fact I think all Muslims would agree with this seeing as the definition of shirk is to associate partners to Allah or care more for someone/something than Allah. But when I say, “Caring more about the opinions and actions of people instead of Allah swt is shirk” you two jump down my throat and say I suddenly don’t have the right to say what is and isn’t shirk.
Let’s imagine another scenario:
Your friend is studying for a test, and in order to get a good grade she wears what she believes are her “lucky socks”. She gets a good grade and says, “I knew this would happen because I had my lucky socks” She is putting her trust in the socks to get her a good grade rather than, or in association with, Allah. This is shirk. Now you have two options, ignore it and don’t tell your friend that believing objects bring luck is shirk or address the issue and say “Friend, your socks didn’t give you the good grade, it was from Allah”.
There are many kinds of shirk. There’s major shirk and minor shirk. Shirk doesn’t automatically take someone out of Islam. Your friend who believes in her lucky socks isn’t a kufir because she believes in luck charms; she’s simply sinning. As is the case with any sin, we should encourage one another to avoid this act. In fact, we should especially encourage one another to avoid shirk because it’s literally the worst sin.
I totally agree with you both when you say we can’t know what’s in a person’s heart, however shirk can be faith based and ACTION BASED. To use the same example, your friend who believes in the socks believes they have power to give her a good grade (faith) and acts accordingly by wearing them during tests (action). If someone is doing an ACTION I don’t need to see their heart to know if it’s wrong. If someone is eating pork should I ignore this because I don’t know what’s in their heart? Of course not, as Muslims it’s our religious obligation to enjoin what is good and forbid what is evil.
You saying that I don’t have the right to address shirk is saying I should not enjoin what is good and forbid what is evil. You are saying I should not advise my brothers and sisters in Islam about the dangers of shirk. I’m sorry but I refuse to agree with this. I love every single one of my Muslim brothers and sisters so much that I want them to be the best they can and I want them to attain Jannah.
I’m not being harsh, I’m not being mean, I’m simply saying that caring for other people over Allah is shirk. If you don’t agree with this statement then I don’t know what to say. I didn’t say any specific person was committing shirk. What I did say that you may be upset about, however, was that if you see someone committing shirk or someone tells you about an action they do that is shirk, then it becomes your obligation to give them naseeha in order that they may stop this action.
I understand what you are saying. You are saying we can’t say someone is committing shirk. But as I just said, shirk can be both a faith or an action, so we can in certain situations say someone is committing shirk.
If someone is walking down the street, of course we can’t just say “Hey I think you’re committing shirk.” Obviously you should advise someone if you strongly believe they may be committing it, and if you are wrong then apologize. If your intention is pure and you tried your best to help your fellow Muslim, then there’s nothing wrong.
(*Please note, sincere concern for your fellow Muslim and trying to help them even if you are wrong is NOT AT ALL the same thing as bearing false testimony against one another*)
Leaving Islam because of how people treated you is putting the actions and thoughts of others above what Allah commanded of us. This is shirk. Please read this statement carefully. I am not saying anyone is committing shirk. I am defining shirk.
Also, theeccentricromanian, your comment made no sense to this topic. Of course as a convert I understand and sympathize with converts. Being in a country of privilege right now doesn’t mean I didn’t go through oppression while I lived in America, which you did state. I won’t talk about what I had to endure since it’s private and unimportant. But this topic wasn’t about having sympathy for converts it was about people leaving Islam and putting humans above Allah. You yourself said “from a religious perspective I cannot understand someone leaving Islam.” But then, how can you understand someone leaving Islam because of the people? That’s giving the people more power than Allah. That’s shirk. You should, as a Muslim (which I’m assuming you are, I’ve never seen your blog until now) advise your brothers and sisters against shirk. If someone feels like they can’t handle the pressure of everyone treating them bad, advise them to pray, advise them to read Quran, advise them to focus on their relationship with Allah instead of their relationship with the community. Rather than making them feel ok for leaving Islam you should try to encourage them to have strength.
When issues like this come up - I feel like intentions and good sense need to work together. You can’t have one or the other. You can’t just be tactless but have “good intentions”, and you definitely cannot use the logic of the Qur’an if you don’t carefully evaluate your intentions first. There’s a lot of thinking and care that should go into the decision to give someone naseeha, especially in sensitive cases where the person in question is struggling with his/her faith. When communication between two people happens, God holds BOTH parties individually accountable for his/her actions or words. If what you said to a person harmed his/her faith and caused them to turn away from Islam - SURE the burden of leaving Islam is on them, but this doesn’t mean you’re off the hook for your actions. You will still be held accountable for what you said and how you said it.
The Qur’an tells us to enjoin others in good and forbid evil, yes. But our perfect example, the Prophet(saw) implemented this command in the most perfect way. Any time someone in front of him committed a sin, he CHOSE to react differently based on the situation. He did not simply “enjoin good and forbid evil”. He either corrected the person right away, advised of the better way, got up and DEMONSTRATED the correct way, or talked around the situation to get to a learning point. In a lot of situations, he did not even say or do anything in response to seeing sin - and this was SOLELY because he understood the sensitivity of the human condition and that there is certainly a time, place and manner in which naseeha should be given.
Allah(swt) understands perfectly how delicate our hearts are and He has the sole power to turn it in whatever direction He wants. He Himself gave people 11 years of Islam without any guidelines or restrictions. All of those things came secondary to the message itself. And we can’t even give converts a month before we start throwing around the word “shirk”?
May Allah(swt) give us all greater knowledge, better intentions and better sense to handle such situations. Ameen.