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broken_soul

Most Difficult Time

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Assalam u alaikum.

I joined this website as I knew it to be one of the largest online shia communities,and i'm so glad to see a large section dedicated to reverts. I don't know what I would class myelf as, having been raised and well educated as a Sunni. I say wel educated, alhamdulillah I had a lot of Islamic teachings, only recently being pointed out to me that it was mostly author written and had little direction as to the actual source of information.

I started looking into Shia Islam about 3 years ago, after a Wahabbi relative showed disdain at my Hanafi/Barelvi practices (which by the way, I could not tell you how they were specifically so, only that it was THE WAY I knew how to practice) and frm there I decided to look into the differences between the "sects".

I have recently, I would say over 8 months decided that Shia Islam is where my heart and faith lies most comfortably. I don't know if this is a foolish way to pick the most important part of your life - but it is. Hwever, my parents are heavily against the idea. Not, that I have told them I want to "become a shia" per se, but that talking to them (well attempting to) about reading shia hadiths, books by shia authors even watching the shia channels on TV has shown me that they have so much hostility against it.

I' m really just looking for advice, especially if anyone had experienced something similar. My parents are of Pakistani origin and out entire social network is only sunni - the mere thought of even trying to understand Shia beliefs is beynd them. I seriously feel a bit hopeless, beause this is the way I want to practice my Islam but since it is creating so much animosity I find myself not practising even the basic a'amals. Muharram has been very tough since my heart desperately wanted to sit in circles which mourned and rememberd Karbala, yet the Sunni mourning just didnt feel so complete and ends so abruptly on the 10th as if it is a novelty. On top of this, I can't even imagine what to do when it comes to the issue of marriage since I a looking i.A to find a shia partner and I don't think my parents would allow it. Some people tell me to just give up on it (my sister included) and to practice in private - but how can I do this when the most important part for me is raising a family - I won't even be able to do this with a sunni partner?

Thankyou so much for even reading my plight and please remember me in your duas.

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Salaam

Sorry to hear you are having a hard time. Inshallah it makes you stronger.

Many people who have come to Shi'i Islam experienced the same thing.

Be patient and try to be compassionate with your family. Although I am sure you are already very good, maybe they will see you become even better when following the path of Ahl al-Bayt, and they will appreciate that.

Use this time to deepen your understanding of the teachings of Ahl al-Bayt.

Also try to spend time with some sincerely religious Shi'i brothers who can give you support.

If you don't say tahajjut/salat al-layl, do that also as it helps you through your daily life.

Don't give up on marriage - you should marry someone who has the same religious views as yourself so that you have harmony in the family.

Pray and have faith and Allah will help you.

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(salam)

Welcome to SC. You have such a sad user name.

I think I can relate to what you are feeling. I spent a big part of my life among the Sunnis. I did not tell a lot of people that I was a Shia because a lot of people had a bad impression about Shias. I always try to gauge someone's knowledge about Shia before telling them about my faith. I tried to learn everything I can about the school of ahlul bayt and Sunni. You need to be patient because this is a trial for us.

Edited by Zareen

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Salam and welcome,

Having had a similar experience myself (but coming from a Christian background), I would assume that you are still relatively young and dependent on your parents. This is the most difficult time for a revert because you are still dependent on your parents/family and yet you don't share all of their beliefs. I don't think you have much choice (for now) except to "keep the peace" by "toning down" your differences with them and trying to stress the similarities (and there are many) between Sunni and Shia beliefs and practices. I also agree that you should do everything possible to preserve (and even improve) your relationship with your family members by showing them love, compassion and understanding at every opportunity. Most of all, don't worry that a close and loving relationship with those with whom you have philosophical disagreements will put you in danger of returning to your former beliefs....it won't (especially if it is your family).

When you get married and establish your own household you will have much more freedom to practice your faith more actively. Even when you move out of your parents home you should still behave in a loving and compassionate manner (of course), however, you will have more freedom to discuss the issues on which you disagree with them in a wise and respectful way.

Also, regarding the "feeling" you describe that is love for the Ahly Al'Bayt (a.s.) (Qur’an 42-23), which is ordered by Allah (s.w.a.) in the Holy Quran and is one of the pillars of faith.

Edited by Abu Ali 2

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WA wr wb..

i would say to con't to study islam and don't think of yourself as odd for being different. it's your choice what you decide to follow. what i would recommend is that you conceal your faith if it may bring too many unneeded hardships. what you could do is mask your beliefs and simply say 'i'm muslim' and just start questioning a lot to spark their minds, inshaAllah. this way they don't judge you for your title but rather your brains.

-we must understand that the more harder we try to seek nearness to Allah, the more trials and hardships one will face. get used to it. these are amongst some of the signs of a mumin.

Edited by gogiison2

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Dear brother,

First of all please realize you are not alone. There are many of us, on this forum and otherwise, who have faced trials and tribulations unimaginable due to the fact that they sought to practice Shi'a Islam, but their families prevented them from doing so or made the atmosphere extremely hostile. I know of a Sheikh in the US, who was from a non-practicing family, who told me that family members of his cut off ties from him because he refused to shake hands with the female relatives. I know of practicing brothers who grow up in mediocre Shia families which mock and deride them constantly for being "mullahs" or being too religious. Again, what you're experiencing is something many of us experience, and it requires STEADFASTNESS; as they say in Urdu, "the fruit of steadfastness is sweet." So, I advise you to be patient and steadfast, and bear your family's treatment; maintain proper Islamic adaab and akhlaq - perhaps your parents will see that Shi'a Islam has made you a better person and will accept your new identity. Make du'a for them and for yourself constantly.

Regarding marriage, I would say do not compromise. The decision about who to marry is the most important decision you will make in our life, and will determine your future happiness and will have a strong effect on the state you in up in in aakhirah. Do not "settle" for someone you know you won't be happy with - you will only be hurting yourself, and also the girl. I would say stay strong and maintain your abstinence until such time as your parents accept you for your Shi'a views, and allow you to marry a Shi'a sister (mutaa is an option for you during this time as well). If they absolutely refuse to allow you to marry a Shia, I would consult a local aalim.

Also, as a sister above suggested, please try to get in touch with some Shi'a brothers in your area, socialize and spend time with them and try to attend a nearby Shi'a masjid with them if you can. This will alleviate the frustration you're feeling at not being able to participate in Shi'a commemorations, amaals, and duas. Where do you live in the US? People on this site can point out a Shi'a masjid near you, and may even be able to put you in touch with specific Shia brothers.

You are in our prayers.

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yahan dast o pa kataingay yahan jaan par banay ge

ye mohabat e Ali hay koe dilagi nahi hay

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Assalam u Alaikum.

Thankyou all for your messages and kind words. There may be oe confusion, I'm a sister not a brother (and personally I think that is making it much harder right now) I'm not from the US but in the UK. (just thought I'd clear that up!)

At the moment I do most of my research and learning to practice shia islam while I am away from home (im a student so during the semester, I am mainly away) and that is fine, it is when I go home and try to practice that it becomes difficult. Especially since it is when I am at home I get the opportunity to watch eg Shia channels (especially Ahulul Bayt TV which I love) or when I pray my salah (which is noticeably different from the way i used to pray) that I get a hostile response from my mum.

Concerning the marriage issue, hat is probably the heaviest thing on my mind. I know that I can carry on learning to be a shia all I like but when it comes to marriage, my parents would never approve a Shia man and no sunni man (or at least his family) would allow me to raise my children shia even if they condone my own beliefs.

Inshallah my faith in Allah is strong and he'll help me through these times.

Again, thankyou for responding to me. May Allah grant you all happiness and strength.

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salaam alaikum,

The struggles are indeed mighty at times. As a former Christian I have had to sever ties with some of my family (not my mother or father mind you). They would not eat with me and shun me and that is fine. I am content with that. Every day I try and build myself up and bring myself closer to Allah (swt). If there is a particular time that I draw strength from, it is Muharram. When I think of the example of Imam Hussein (as) I feel very empowered. I feel that much is possible with sacrifice. The closer I bring myself to Allah (swt) the easier things become even in the darkest hour.

I wish you the strength from the example of Ahlul Bayt (as). A good character builder would be to read the hadith and stories of Lady Zaynab (as). They are the best examples. Please know that your brothers and sisters are with you.

wa'salaam,

br. Stefan

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Assalam u Alaikum.

Thankyou all for your messages and kind words. There may be oe confusion, I'm a sister not a brother (and personally I think that is making it much harder right now) I'm not from the US but in the UK. (just thought I'd clear that up!)

At the moment I do most of my research and learning to practice shia islam while I am away from home (im a student so during the semester, I am mainly away) and that is fine, it is when I go home and try to practice that it becomes difficult. Especially since it is when I am at home I get the opportunity to watch eg Shia channels (especially Ahulul Bayt TV which I love) or when I pray my salah (which is noticeably different from the way i used to pray) that I get a hostile response from my mum.

Concerning the marriage issue, hat is probably the heaviest thing on my mind. I know that I can carry on learning to be a shia all I like but when it comes to marriage, my parents would never approve a Shia man and no sunni man (or at least his family) would allow me to raise my children shia even if they condone my own beliefs.

Inshallah my faith in Allah is strong and he'll help me through these times.

Again, thankyou for responding to me. May Allah grant you all happiness and strength.

Dear sister,

Do you have a specific Shia man in mind for marriage? If not, it's best not to dwell on this matter until you actually have to face it.

Marrying the right person for you and your future children is worth fighting for. Yes, you may have to resist your parents and the situation could get difficult, but again I'd say do not compromise. If the guy can prove to your parents that he is a sincere Muslim and will take care of you, I think your parents will eventually come around and accept him.

As always, we're here to answer questions and support you if you need it.

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