After 9/11, curiosity over Islam leads to conversion

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BOSTON (RNS) Like a lot of other people in the haze and confusion of the 9/11 attacks, Johannah Segarich asked herself: “What kind of religion is this that could inspire people to do this?” She had studied other religions, but never Islam. So she bought a copy of the Quran, wondering if her notions of […]

  • Sahil

    Within my friends and aquaintances, I have also met with muslims who already had never digested their islamic beliefs and after 911 they felt more repelled by this religion. However, they couldn’t come out in open and say that. They continue to pretend they are muslims due to family and social pressure, although in their heart, they don’t want to be muslims.

    Unfortunately, I don’t see muslims writing about other muslims who have left or willing to leave islam although there are plenty of cases.

  • W H

    It’s not clear, however, as stated in the article, “Collins Telles said some Christian beliefs, such as the Trinity and priests as intermediaries to God—had never quite seemed right her, these women made “feel good” decisions. I wouldn’t call their decisions “conversions.”

  • Kelly K

    W H – I’m not sure I understand what you are trying to say. Are you saying that Collins did not convert? It seems Collin’s decision to ‘search’ or ‘research’ was triggered by her gut feeling about the religion she had been exposed to all her life, which led her to research and later convert to Islam.

    Sahil – I’m sorry to hear about your Muslim friends who do not know their religion deeply and felt repelled about Islam due to misrepresentation of Islam by terrorists. I can only hope these individuals research Islam and learn that it truly is a religion of peace (despite some media and individuals extracting portions of the Qur’an and Hadith to take it out of context and make it appear violent), and see that humans manipulating the religion is different from the teachings of the religion itself. I hope they come to understand this and not only gain inner peace but eventually gain pride in this beautiful religion.

  • Sahil

    Kelly, you are assuming that my friends didn’t know about their religion deeply. I know couple of them were not very religious, but the ones who were religious started reading the holy book with more attention and found things they didn’t agree with.

    Remember what may be perfect and beautiful for one may not be so for other. You may read quotes from holy Quran and think these are the best verses written ever and someone might read the same quotes and find them very ordinary.

    Lets give everyone a right to interprete the text they feel right rather than trying to enforce our interpretation on them. Sounds fair?

  • Kelly K

    Sahil – My apologies, I mis-understood your words “I have also met with muslims who already had never digested their islamic beliefs”, specifically the words “never digested” to mean that they did not know their religion deeply and therefore were vulnerable to being swayed by purposefully biased misinformation. I apologize for my false assumption.

    If you think my statement that the religion is one of peace or is a beautiful religion means that I was ‘enforcing my interpretation’ (and I’m not sure how one can ‘enforce’ an interpretation over the internet in a country with freedom of religion, especially while all parties are interacting anonymously and have no true power over one another), this is clearly my expression on an internet comment board addressing the myriad of negative comments on other comment boards that seem to be accepted and not countered. Again I apologize if my tone appears somehow dictatorial or somehow forces someone to believe in a specific manner. I again apologize to have misunderstood and cause you to respond in such a manner.