There’s More to Islam: A Message to Muslims Doubting Their Faith

Recently, an ex-Muslim told me that he knew very little about Islam’s deep, spiritual tradition. And it’s worrying that so many people don’t. It’s one of the reasons why so many people doubt their faith. 

Doubt is a good thing. It enables us to question what we believe and come to stronger convictions. Those too scared to doubt can become chained to their views, closed-minded and hostile to those who think differently.

Sadly, many people refuse to doubt simply because they cannot begin to face the prospect that, after all this time, they’ve been wrong. After all, for the ordinary religious believer, everything depends on their faith. Literally everything. The way they live their life in this world and their state in the next – either wretched or felicitous – is dependent on their faith or lack of it.

I, as a Muslim, have had my fair share of doubts. After all, I read philosophy, studied different religious traditions, and looked into the works of devout, missionary atheists. But doubting my faith was actually the best thing that ever happened to me.

During my childhood, I was brought up to believe that the Quran was miraculous and that the Prophet Muhammad was a great man who came to teach humanity how to live. And, depending on how I lead my life, I would go to heaven or hell. It was simple and, to a young, unquestioning mind, it made sense. But, as I grew older, I began to question my beliefs.

It is often said in the Islamic tradition that if one truly wants to know the Truth, God will pave the way. So, on my journey to discover the Truth – whatever that may have been – I stumbled across Muslims who understood their religion on a much deeper level. Their focus was directed towards improving the state of their souls, purifying their hearts and returning to God. According to them, the Return to God wasn’t just limited to the next life. You can Return to God in this life through annihilating the ego of its material and worldly desires. This type of religion seemed to strike a chord – it was certainly more appealing than the dry, outward version I knew.

It took me two or three years to discover that these Muslims practiced what is known as Sufism. I often wonder why it took me so long to realise this. Reflecting back on my past, it may have been because I thought Sufism was an aberration, some kind of weird, cult-like innovation in Islam – as some people still do. (This is because Saudi-funded Wahhabi/Salafi/whatever-you-want-to-call-it Islam have anathematised and labelled Sufism as heretical). Perhaps I was veiled from knowing they practiced Sufism, as it probably would have put me off from learning any more.

I eventually discovered that Sufism is the inner dimension and essence of Islam. It is not an innovation and has always been a vital organ of the religion – although during the time of the Prophet, it wasn’t labeled under a specific name.

It is often said that Sufism is like the heart and Islam is like the body. Take away the heart and you’re left with a mere shell. To extend the metaphor a little further: If the heart is dead, the body will enter into a state of rigor mortis. It will become stiff and, if it isn’t handled with care, bones may break.

So, what exactly does all this mean? Well, if you are doubting Islam (the body), you should check to see if your heart (Sufism) is beating. In other words, you must look into Sufism and see if the lack of it – or perhaps your complete incomprehension of it – is what’s causing your doubts and struggles.

The Sufi tradition, alongside facilitating a harmonious state within individuals, is rich with answers to life’s most fundamental and challenging questions.

To cut a long story short. It was Sufism that saved me.

Sadly, some Muslims never resolve the doubts they have and, after failing to shake them off, turn to unbelief. Of course, the reasons why somebody might leave their faith can vary. But, in my experience, it is the lack of contact with Sufism that leads many Muslims to abandon their religion– seeing nothing within it to answer their deeper questions.

It’s a growing problem. Shaykh Hamza Yusuf recently said that for the first time since he embraced Islam 35 years ago, he is receiving pleas from distressed parents about their children leaving the faith. In a time when access to all sorts of information is available, especially distorted information about Islam, doubts will naturally emerge.

What’s worse is when people are often told things that are anti-scientific, illogical and needlessly dogmatic. If someone is doubting, you can’t tell them just to stop doubting. Similarly, if someone is asking deep, philosophical questions, you can’t take them to the local Imam who has no grounding in philosophy or deeper spiritual concepts. It will make things worse. (To be clear: I am not saying people who know nothing about Sufism or even refuse to practice it, will doubt their religion. Of course not. For many, the simplicity of Islam by itself is sufficient to satisfy them throughout their life).

Throughout Islamic history, a great number of Muslim intellectuals were Sufis. The medieval Islamic scholar al-Ghazali, known as “the proof of Islam” because of his immense impact on the development of Islam through his works, had a crisis of faith during his life. It was this crisis that provoked his search through different philosophies and schools of thought. He eventually found exactly what he was looking for in Sufism.

Martin Lings writes of Ghazali’s search for Sufism, stating:

“It was contact with Sufism that saved him; and his autobiographical treatise The Saviour from Error is an affirmation of Sufism as the only reliable antidote to skepticism and as the highest aspect of the religion.”

(From What is Sufism?)

Lings further goes on to say:

“…Atheism or agnosticism can be the revolt of a virtual mystic against the limitations of exoterism; for a man may have in himself, undeveloped, the qualifications for following a spiritual path …[yet] he may be ignorant of the existence of religion’s mystical dimension.”

Lings also addresses the lack of understanding of this spiritual dimension by many religious authorities:

His atheism or agnosticism may be based on the false assumption that religion coincides exactly with the outward and shallow conception of it that many of its so-called ‘authorities’ exclusively profess.”

Now, let me ask you a question. And I’m talking to all of you who are having doubts. What is troubling you? What is it?

Is it The Quran?

The Quran is often described as a mirror: the way you interpret it is a reflection of your state. For many people, the Quran utterly transforms them. But, for others, it appears confusing, jumbled and shallow.

According to the Prophet Muhammad, the Quran has several layers of meaning, and Gai Eaton in his masterpiece Islam and the Destiny of Man, writes:

For the Quran to contain more than a thimbleful of the message it must rely upon images, symbols and parables which open windows on to a vast landscape of meaning, but which are inevitably liable to misinterpretation.”

Rumi, in his book, Kitab fi hi mā fīh, says you can’t just expect to remove the veil from the Quran and for it to automatically open up to you. While, according to St Augustine, God has purposely strewn difficulties in Sacred books so that we may be stimulated to read and study them with greater attention and by using our intellects.

Remember: Treasure can only be found by digging.

Is it the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ ?

Before I came across Sufi scholars, the Prophet of Islam was a distant figure. But as I continued to read his life, certain things began to stand out. I soon realised that although he was a human being, he possessed within him an extraordinary secret, and a reality only known by his Lord.

Despite being offered a life of luxury, he preferred poverty. And, while others slept at night, he preferred solitude with his Lord – standing for hours at a time in prayer, adoration and intimate discourse with his Beloved.

It seems strange that those who malign him tend to disregard the milieu in which he lived. This was the pre-modern world, a world that would be largely unrecognisable to modern people. Arabia was deeply entrenched in patriarchy, hostility, conflict, war, the burying of female babies, idol worship and instability. The Prophet strove to reform his society, and his decisions and teachings must always be contextualised.

Is it The Evolution theory?

Don’t listen to Muslims who flat out reject the evolution theory. They don’t know what they are talking about. Islam has no problems with evolution, provided we recognise God as the sole force behind that which happens in creation. While the evolution of non-human species has undoubtedly taken place, we are a unique creation made in the image of God, imbued with intellect, awareness of the Divine and the capacity to transcend our animalistic instincts.

Is it Reward and Punishment?

An Islamic scholar once said:

Amongst the people and their purposes there are two stations: the purpose of common people is to gain rewards…but the purpose for the people of distinction is nearness and presence, to feel near to God and feel his Presence.”

The purpose of doing good and avoiding evil in Islam is for goodness to become habitual to us. We should reach a level where our heart only emanates goodness. This is known as Ihsan, the highest level of religion. (Read about the different levels of religion here).

Hell, admittedly, is a problem for many thinkers. But it’s important to understand that it’s not so much a place of eternal barbarous torture.

Gai Eaton says:

“Islam and Christianity offer a highly synthetic, condensed view of the ‘hereafter’. The simple alternative heaven/hell, provides the ordinary believer with as much information as he needs for his salvation. But these doctrines also employ a symbolism which, if it is understood by those who have a need to understand, extends the horizon beyond the images of heavenly joy and infernal flames. The language of myth and symbol is the only universal language.”

According to Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, it’s a place of “alienation from the Divine”. Islamic scholars have even argued that the pain of hell is not eternal.

Is it The Sharia?

The corporal punishments in Islam only account for a small percentage of the Sharia. The bulk of Sharia is to do with one’s spirituality, like praying, fasting and giving to charity.

The Sharia is also profoundly nuanced: not only is it open to interpretation but is also flexible and able to move with the times.

According to Shaykh Hamza Yusuf (yes, I know, I keep quoting him) corporal punishments should be avoided in Islam. Shaykh Abdullah bin Bayyah, one of the most prominent Islamic scholars alive, says the punishments in Islam are largely intended to act as deterrents to warn people of the severity of what they are doing.

Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad, says:

“The Sharia has been thoroughly veiled by almost everyone in the modern world by the fact it has been applied in such an abusive way [in places like Nigeria and Pakistan].”

Most people’s understanding of the Sharia is limited, limited to what we see in the media, and the flawed practices of some ‘Islamic’ countries.

Final thoughts

The inner dimension or Sufism was never meant to be separated from Islam. As I mentioned before, the dangerous form of Islam that is being spread around the world from Saudi Arabia, not only rejects Sufism, but is an ugly, distorted version of Islam. It is this version that often makes headlines and that has, sadly, spread to many of our own homes.

There will always be things that, no matter how strong one’s faith, will trouble the mind. Metaphysical notions in religion would be suspect if they contained no contradictions in terms of our experience here. We are bound by our limited senses and flawed dispositions.

Here’s another thing. Don’t be put off by negative or confusing experiences with Muslims. And don’t do yourself the disservice of wallowing perpetually in doubt, or even leaving the faith, before you explore all avenues, especially Sufism.

Dive deep into the vast ocean of the Islamic tradition, but do so gently. Keep descending until you pick up all the ocean’s jewels that you need. You will ascend to the top of the ocean refreshed and crowned with jewels of knowledge.

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  2. You seem to be giving off your ideals of the afterlife as if it is fact. Hell-fire is definitely not a place of just ‘alienation from God’ and is this is a form of bidda what you’ve done. Dont say things clearly contradictory to the Quran because some imaam told you so, and don’t say its your interpretation therefore its valid, because its not in Allah’s eyes. Poor article that didn’t really provide anything informative about Islam itself but just an individuals personal ideals of the religion and its theology that goes against the basic of its teachings. Thanks for wasting my time.

  3. Do you mean to say that Pharaoh, Abu Jahl, Adolf Hitler, Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley are going to leave the Hellfire after all ?! Did Allah, glorified be He, go into the trouble of building the Hell just for the fun of it ?! Excuse me but this is your own desire

  4. I see where you’re coming from, but the main problem I see is not just with Islam. It is with most religions. If you take away the mumbo jumbo, there’s not much left, other than basic morality. Morality which can exist quite independently of religion. Indeed, this humanistic morality can exist despite religion.

    You speak of spirituality without defining what the spirit is. And herein lies the problem. Other than the logic of basic morality, which is quite distinct from religion, there really isn’t anything that can be tangibly defined that holds up to close scrutiny.

    You speak of God. The Beloved. Is that He? She? It? Where is this entity located? Does it have a throne, as mentioned in the Quran? Does it have a form? Is that a human form, as suggested in Surah Az-Zumar (39) Ayah 67 where God’s grip/grasp is mentioned as well as reference to ‘His right hand’? Why the painfully ambiguous language used in religious texts?

    Some basic questions that one would expect to be answered in a text from the ‘Creator’ would be about what is really the purpose of creation? Why reveal the Truth to only select males? And why end revelation? These are just some of the questions I’d like to hear your thoughts on.

  5. Religion is way overrated. Lets face it, most muslims are muslims because they were indoctrinated with Islam. End of story.

  6. Salaam, I am going through something similar and my doubts aren’t going away. Can I please have your email so I can tell you in detail? Thank you

  7. Salaam Omar,

    I’m currently a 21 year old law student, currently in my final year of finishing my degree, and I live in New Zealand. I find that just recently I’ve been facing some doubts regarding Islam’s violent predisposition in Islam…which kind of ties into what you were talking about under the sharia law. I just feel lost at the moment as like you I’ve grown up in a western country but with a very strong religious background, and now I feel as though that is working against me and my imaan. Many people I know around me have doubts and have stopped practicing the religion and before I used to ignore it and think they were the ones who were at loss…but now I’m starting to understand more and more as to why some people do forsake the religion and it scares me to even think this way. My dad is very religious and has taught me the ins and outs of this religion he has even spoken to me about Sufism and completely agreed with you, it’s not what many people claim it to be, it is the heart of Islam. He also said its okay to have doubts.

    But I just feel uneasy and guilty and scared as to why I’m even doubting my faith. I don’t want to feel like a kafir I wish I didn’t have any of these thoughts, I don’t know how to combat this and feel strong and happy again as for me my faith has always been the purpose and pinnacle of my life…I have no doubts in Allah (swt) and the Prophet (saw) it’s just with some of the ideas under Islam, sharia law and some verses of the Quran that are dissuading me. Also nowadays with how the media portrays Islam and the prophet etc. it’s all so violent, cruel, and they comment on aspects of the prophets life like how he married Hadhrat Aisha who was much younger than him at the time….I just don’t understand why this had to happen, why did Allah make the prophet marry a girl so much younger than him, knowing full well that one day disbelievers could use this against the prophet and his life etc.

    I have similar other queries just like this one, also to do with the differences for men and women in Islam – why are men promised hoors in jannah? It paints out a picture that Islam (Allah please forgive me for saying) is sexist and I hate that. If women were promised the same and if there was not such a stark contradiction, things would make more sense to me.

    Please Omar if there is any advice or any book, website, scholar, you can refer me to that may help me with my current situation it would be greatly appreciated, as right now in the month of Ramadan I feel very lost.

    • Wa-alaykum salaam sister Yasmine 🙂

      As we both know, doubt is normal. We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t doubt things. But what’s important is what you do now. Do you let these doubts linger or do you make an effort to clarify whatever you’re confused about? I know you want to remove these doubts – so aside from seeking advice from others, make plenty of dua that answers will come your way. I guarantee that if you make sincere dua for answers, the answers will come. I’ve seen it time and time again.

      We have to remember that God doesn’t fit into the box we often like to place Him (swt) into. God has the picture, we have the pixel. Our current societal normals will try to dictate to us what is morally right or and wrong, but the truth doesn’t lie with what our society tells us, the truth is with God.

      You will pass this phase, insha’Allah. I can tell by the little you’ve written that you’re a person of faith and have a good heart. This will all pass.

      Perhaps email tjw31@cam.ac.uk (Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad) and ask him some of your questions. He’s an amazing individual who should put you at ease insha’Allah.

      Enjoy the rest of your Ramadan my sister.

      Omar

      • I just want to say thank you so much 🙂 I do tend to allow my doubts to linger, and then i try to gain some clarity by reading and researching…but i think i’ll learn to be more proactive and also refer to more authentic sources. You have no idea how much you have helped me! Even just saying that i will “pass this phase” is something that i just needed to hear! And i shall definitely message the Shayk you referred me to. Thankyou Omar.

        Hope you and your family have a blessed Ramadan Inshallah.

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  14. My dilemma is severely more xire. I went through faith crisis and found sufi traditionalist and I believe they are the most honest and academically focused ( I know , against the norm). What strikes me as hard is this that I belueve Allah does us to truth and I believe I have stumbled to it. But its just alot of hardwork, miserable life , sinning and repenting and sinning again. And wondering now that is Allah a hard task master. I know repentannce is always there but i dont like feeling of being a loser all the time. All the things which are sin are so much part of my world. And every time I talk to my teachers tyey say if Allab doesnt get tired of forgiving why do you get tired of repenting? But thats just the thing. I do get tirdd and I want to feel good about myself. Where as goodness is all for Allah and I am suppose to be greatful. But I guess I dont like the feeling of being nothing. It feels awful. I thought it was the ultimate freedom but it doesnt feel like it.

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  18. asalamualaikum,
    Very interesting article, thank you for taking the time to write it. Firstly, I would just like to state I have no problem with the general concept of Sufism, striving to fill the spiritual void in our emaan, after all as you said, without a heart we would simply be empty shells.
    However, I do have some grave concerns when it come to the teachings of some prominent ‘Sufi’ scholars, such as Sheikh Nazim. He has stated that one who becomes a ‘mureed’, a follower of his, will be assisted by sheikh Nazism himself when questioned in the grave. In other words, he will intercede for the mureed. On another occasion, he said that the angels, (yes angels)visited him on his 70th birthday and said his book was now closed (despite him being very much alive), and that he could now do whatever he wanted, including swearing at the ‘salafi’s’. Now to me, this is blatantly wrong, Nobody, not even the prophet was granted these gifts and it seriously makes me question whether he would be within the fold of Islam, but its not for me to judge.
    Furthermore (based on my own observations), I found some thoughts of imam ghazali quite unsettling. In his book, the alchemy to happiness, he speaks of Allah’s (swt) noir, and how this noor extends into all his creations, his light is in the plants, earth, trees and in all of us and that based on this, we are in essence a part of Allah. But how can something so weak and prone to sin be an extension of Allah? Furthermore, in the Qur’an, it clearly states that Allah is separate from his creation. I feel this is very dangerous territory.
    Again, I would just like to state have nothing against the idea and general teachings of Sufism. I was jut wondering hat you thoughts are on these statements?

    I would love to hear your thoughts on this

    Salam,

    Hannah

    • Salaam Hannah,

      Very interesting comment, thank you. I can’t speak for Sh Nazim, and I’m not going to defend him as I’m not familiar with these accusations. Although I’m sure he did a lot of good during his life.

      I’m not qualified to speak about Islam but I wouldn’t completely disregard Imam Ghazali’s passage you mentioned, although I’ve never personally come across it. The human being has been created from the divine breath, the Quran says Allah breathed his Spirit into Adam, as mentioned in creation story. We therefore have an extraordinary aspect to us that we don’t know about. The Quran also says in relation to the Ruh ‘we have but given you very little knowledge concerning it’.

      Hope this helps 🙂

    • Salaam Hannah,

      Forgive me for my terribly later reply. I am not a scholar so cannot comment on a lot of topics, but it’s important to isolate Sufism from the practise of some of the Sufis.

      Let’s leave Sh Nazim and his statements for Allah and not concern ourselves with them. It doesn’t affect us personally.

      imam al Ghazali was a great scholar and has gained acceptance among this ummah. His statement isn’t too dissimilar to what many other scholars have said. The idea is that we are all from Allah and therefore have something special within us. That’s not to say we are a part of God, but our Ruh is lofty and high. We need to remember that all we see and experience most of the time is our physical bodies, of course these are weak and prone to error. But we are so much more.

      Allahu’alam
      Omar

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  47. I think your article makes some very broad generalisations. Based on your own anecdotal experience you claim sufism to be some sort of cure for Muslims doubting their faith. I can tell you i went through a period of doubting the faith about five years ago. I was literally a hair breadth away from leaving the religion. I considered sufism quite seriously. sufism and what I saw of sufis seemed to answer this apparent conflict many Muslims have between the values and morality they gain from growing up in the west and the supposed “pre-modern” morality found in the Quran and Hadith,

    However, upon closer inspection and rational thought I could not become a sufi. why? because sufism to be quite blunt is really a load of rubbish. it has no legitimacy or basis once you go back to the original sources of Islam. sufism is essentially certain aspects of the Quran and Hadith cherry picked (ignoring the whole), these certain aspects are then grossly over-emphasised. and if thats not bad enough, quite a lot of sufism is ideas taken from other religions like christianity, hinduism and then it is claimed to be Islam.

    any person doubting the faith may become sufi for a while, but that won’t last long. once they come to their senses and start reading the Quran or Sahih Hadith, their sufi fantasy will be dead, and they will be left with no Islam whatsoever, if they had any in the first place. i know of many sufis who left the faith, in fact all the ex-muslims i know were sufis. sufism is Islam so watered down, why be Muslim at all? whats so different about Islam then? why not be an buddhist, or hindu or an atheist with spirituality?

    i went the complete opposite way then you. rather than become a sufi, i became a staunch salafi. i realised something very important and this all emanated from my imaan growing. perhaps there wasn’t a problem with the morality in the Quran and Hadith, perhaps it wasn’t for me to twist their meanings into what suited me, or around my own personal beliefs and sensibilities. perhaps my own pre-conceived ideas about morality from growing up in the west was the problem. perhaps I had been indoctrinated with incorrect ideas in the first place.

    once i realised this everything made sense. it wasn’t for me to mould Islam around myself, it was for Islam to mould met. I as a salafi love my religion, i strive to follow it to the letter. this daily striving following the laws of God gives me an immense feeling of spirituality (you sufis are not the only ones who have spirituality). and i speak of a genuine spirituality as it should be in islam, from following Gods commandments. This is contrary to the sufis who break all of the rules, then by dancing once a week claim they are spiritual.

    salafi Islam is pure orthodox Islam, practiced exactly how it was done 1400 years ago, by the Prophet (saws) and his companions (ra). how it was understood by the imams of the madhabs and their followers. once you start re-intepreting Islam according to your own whims and desires it becomes a very slippery slope. what becomes of the religion then? you can change it how you want, anyone can claim anything. tommorow a man can justify the drinking of alcohol, or not praying, or cheating on his wife, just be using his so called “rational thinking”.

    i sincerely advise anyone reading this who is doubting Islam, the problem isn’t Islam. the problem is within your own heart. you must allow your imaan to grow and only then will it all become clear. look at Islam’s beautiful emphasis on Tawheed, look into the miraculous nature of the Quran, look into the Prophet (saws) life, look at the teachings of Islam without a biased mind poisoned by western notions of what is right and wrong.

    salaam

    • Salaam Uthman,

      Your comment is strange. First you say your name is Uthman, even though your email address begins with the name ‘omar….’. That always makes weary of the one commenting.

      Secondly, you refer to yourself as a ‘staunch salafi’. No Salafi refers to themselves as that. This makes me think you could be a hoax. Maybe not.

      Thirdly, you don’t seem to know much about Sufism, apart from, perhaps, the Sufism practiced in say, Pakistan and Bangladesh, which is often a deviant form of Sufism. Sufis are often just as strict as salafis about the rules in Islam, they abide 100% to the sunnah and to a legitimate madhab.

      It’s all well and good if you have become a salafi and this makes sense to you. But your extremely little research on Sufism does not justify you to make a comment like this, as if you are an expert.

      I do not have a problem with somebody who wants to follow a salafi version of Islam. As long as they don’t take the moral high ground and pontificate who is right and who is wrong. In this case, you seem to say you are right and I, and everyone else who thinks differently to you, is wrong.

      Salaam.

      • you have just shown what years of sufism does to a person. sufis like to claim they have good character and morals as opposed to the harsh angry Salafis. i purposely hid my name, because I do not want to be identified, yet you have no problem exposing it. shame on you sir.

        as for my post being a hoax because I called myself a “staunch salafi”, i mean that is a plain stupid argument. i am proud of being a salafi and attempting to be staunch upon the deen, therefore the two words naturally fit together. we all have titles, i am a staunch salafi, while you are a homosexuality promoting sufi, as evident from your other articles.

        i can agree with you on one point. some sufis are strict upon Quran and Sunnah, but as far as I have seen they are few and far between. Nuh Mim Keller is no doubt one of them. However the sufis you seem to espouse are not. people like suhaib webb, hamza yusuf mix Islam with modern ideas and teachings. please tell me omar shahid, whats so traditional about acceptance of homosexuality, yet you seem to promote it. many contradictions in your words sir.

        as for me saying i am correct and everyone else is wrong, this is a claim i can make and justify using the Quran, Hadith and teachings of the four madhabs. i can find the evidence from Hadith where free mixing and music are haraam, but you will never be able to show me evidence of where the Prophet (saws) sat there chanting “huwa hu”. a clear innovation.

        you seem to believe that there are many paths to God and many interpretations, therefore their is legitimacy to other religions and sects of Islam. you wrote a quote, i am paraphrasing ” no religion or religious sect has a monopoly on the truth, the truth is with the absolute”

        lovely words sir, but like your sufis beliefs they have no scriptural basis. Allah (swt) tells us in Quran 3:85 the only religion accepted by him is Islam, Quran 98:6 the unbelievers will be in hell to abide therein forever. and the hadith of the 73 sects makes it very clear, that only ONE group will have the correct understanding, not every group.

        and one more thing sir. Hassan Radwan. ever heard of him? i doubt it. but let me tell u a story. this man was a sufi. a teacher in fact at Yusuf Islam’s Islamia primary school. i believe he spent a year at al azhar. he was also doing a pHD in Islam at SOAS at one point. do u know what happened to him. he is now a former muslim. member of the council of ex muslims, and he has made several videos attacking Islam.

        this modern sufism is dangerous, because it waters Islam down so much, people are already halfway to disbelief.

        my sincere advice as your brother in Islam (no i don’t label you a kafir), is to come back to Quran and Sunnah and repent for some of these articles you have written.

  48. I cannot thank you enough for this post. I am a convert of nearly 11 years and have been having doubts due to the rigidity and hypocritical nature of the Muslim community I live in and its “haram police/bidah” idiocy that has permeated my home. In tears, joyous, that you were able to make it so clear to me. Jazak Allah khairyn.

  49. Nice article!
    There is a saying by Imam Al Ghazali(ra) that goes something like this; Doubt is a sign of intellect. if you’ve never doubted you wont see, and if you don’t see you are misguided.
    Anyways great work, but I have to point out something about Hell.
    Contingent Everlastingness of Paradise and Hell
    According to Sunni orthodoxy and consensus, both Paradise (janna) and the Inferno (jahannam), as well as their respective inhabitants, shall never cease to exist and are hence everlasting. There are many verses of the Qur’an that explicitly state this, and it is a point of consensus.
    However, their existence, just like the existence of all of creation, is contingent and hence bound by limits such as time and space, all of which is decreed by the will of Allah Most High.
    So the “everlastingness” of Paradise, the Inferno and their respective inhabitants is one that is within the realm of time — Allah Most High will continue to maintain them in existence, constantly re-creating them as such, forever.
    Moreover, this is His will, and He Most High could have willed otherwise. His existence and eternality, on the other hand, is necessary and absolute.

    Peace

    • Thank you for your comment. It makes sense. But I’m not sure how heaven and hell can be “in time” when they are not of this world, they are metaphysical realities, not physical ones. I’d appreciate a clarification.

      • Some people just are worth arguing with because one should protects ones Islam. Theses days a lot of people who claim to be Muslim argue and make profound statements just like an atheist would. Long and confusing and absurd. Everyone has been given intellect and we all can read so why argue no point tell them to go study the Quran and sirah with a scholar arguing never leads to anything good. That’s why Muhammad peace be upon him advised us to give it up even if we are in the right… Salaam akhi

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