Questions and Answers Never Plead Ignorance Frustrations of Converts, Complacency of the Ummah Islam's continued Success in the Developed World Accepting Islam: The Proper Way Was Islam spread by the sword? Let's Visit Converts Around the World! Muslim names (including a list of forbidden ones) Whose Islam is it? Making America an Islamic Country The Incredible World of American Muslims American Muslims must take the Lead A Revolution without Revolutionaries Islam is for Those who Think Islam is your Birthright Afraid to Convert?
What are the requirements of a Non-Muslim who wishes to convert?
Every person is born a Muslim because we are all created by God. Therefore, a preferred term would be reversion rather than conversion. A non-Muslim becomes a Muslim when he believes in his heart : "There is no God but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad is His Messenger" Hence, belief in the Unity and Oneness of God and that Muhammad is his Messenger makes one a Muslim at heart. Recommended steps:
- Officially convert by pronouncing the shahadah (pledge of conviction of faith) in Arabic thus: "Ash HaduAllaa Ilaaha Il-lallaah Wa Ash Hadu Anna Muhammadar Rasullulah" which means "I bear Witness that there is no deity but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad if His Messenger". The pledge is to be taken in front of at least two adult Muslim witnesses.
- It is recommended that he/she take a Muslim name
- It is recommended that he/she take up a basic course on Islam (if he/she hasn't already) and keep the company of other Muslims
Is it compulsory for a Non-Muslim man to be circumcised upon conversion?
A boy who has not attained puberty must be circumcised when his family converts to Islam. Circumcision is optional for a man above the age of puberty. But he who opts not to be circumcised should regularly clean the area underneath the foreskin of his penis because, in Islam, cleanliness of the body is obligatory for performing prayers.
Why is adopting a Muslim name so important upon conversion?
Two important reasons are given below, but otherwise, adopting a Muslim name is not necessary.
- For the sake of identification as a Muslim
- When a Muslim wants to enter Makkah and Madinah to perform Hajj or Umrah, he has to produce documents to show that he is a Muslim as Non-Muslims are not allowed to enter these cities.
Can reverts retain their previous names?
Yes he/she certainly can do so. Here are examples of names of people who have converted:
Hassan Guy Eaton previously known as Guy Eaton, Ruke Aldeen Smith, Aisha Gouverneur, Abdel Rashid Skinner, Ahmed Holt, Murad Aldeen, Ibrahim Hewitt, Ahmad Bullock, Ahmed Thomson, Jodi Anway, Mohammadzadeh, Susan Elsayyad, Jamilah Kolocotronis Jitmoud
How Long Does it Take for a Convert to be a full-fledged Muslim?
A person becomes a Muslim upon pronouncing the shahadah in front of two adult Muslim witnesses. A Muslim has to do the daily prayers, fast in Ramadan and apply the teachings of Islam in his daily life. But if a revert is unable to do all the prayers immediately after his conversion, he should try to do those he could. However, he should aim to be a practicing Muslim as soon as possible in order not to miss out in the race to accumulate blessings.