Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Muslimah2Muslimah: Interview With New Revert To Islam: Eva!!!

In Muslimah2Muslimah's experience of reverts to Islam, we think the transitions of one's thoughts, opinions, and behavior, in fact a whole transformation of one's perspective in life is very interesting. Eva is far from the ordinary….she exemplifies how thinking can take someone a long way. It's amazing how far a little common sense and knowledge can go. Eva is one our YouTube subscribers who became a Muslimah on of all days, Easter Sunday, masha'Allah!

The negative image presented about Islam since 9-11 here in the states has really given Islam a bad name due to the media as well as people's lack of understanding. The stereotypes about the treatment of women has been rampant in the media for many years with the Taliban and other "extremist" groups. We thought it would be interesting to interview Eva, who in the midst of all propaganda has warmly embraced Islam and get her Muslimah's Perspective on Islam.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What is your name?

Eva: Evangeline meaning "good news"

Muslimah2Muslimah: What made you become interested in Islam?

Eva: I was really doing a lot of reading and researching about myself as an African woman, and the history of our people. I began researching history and culture and various traditions, holidays, and the symbolism of many things. And the more I learned, the more I realized that in the western world we have been taught a very self-destructive way of life mentally, physically, and spiritually. In reading and exploring new things, I came across Islam and what it taught. I realized that it mainly fell in line with the positive changes I was making in my life. After I saw the connection several times, I started to research it, and found peace in it.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What does your family think about your decision?

Eva: My mom is very supportive. She trusted my judgment because she knows I researched it thoroughly first. She didn't know much about it and was just interested in learning more. I haven't had any negative reactions yet, but I have a really big family so we shall see what happens! I am most nervous about telling my Grandmother, she can be judgmental at times, and make hurtful jokes or comments about things she doesn't approve of. Inshallah she will be understanding, and open minded, I will tell her when I see her around Mother's Day.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What types of reactions have you gotten from your friends or coworkers?

Eva: The total opposite of what I expected! There are a few older Caucasian ladies there, who I have heard make some very ignorant (racist) comments, so I was expecting to have to politely tell them off, if they were disrespectful. But they actually came to me basically telling me how ignorant they were about Islam, and that they wanted to know more. This became a dawa opportunity. Also one of them brought me a beautiful Qur'an! Inshallah, I will be a positive influence on their ideas about Islam.

Muslimah2Muslimah: How has Islam changed your life?

Eva: Before Islam, I was unsatisfied in life. I was going through some things that left me really unhappy. In turn I was seeking happiness from external sources, drinking, smoking, getting piercings, tattoos. It was like I was trying to drown out a voice that was telling me I wasn't happy. It gave me momentary satisfaction, but no real peace of mind. Islam gave me that peace of mind. It made it easier for me knowing I am living my life to attain an ultimate goal, so everything I say and do has a purpose.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What advice would you give to someone who is interested in Islam?

Eva: Don't be afraid. It can be scary to change your life, but when you put your faith in Allah, he will make it easy for you. Do your research, examine things with an open mind and heart.

Muslimah2Muslimah: Islamically, women are required to wear a hijab. Others say that you must also cover your face(niqab). What are your thoughts on this?

Eva: I understand the purpose of hijab. I like the level of respect I get when I wear it, there is definitely a difference, I also like that other Muslims can identify me. Niqab, I don't think is required. But I can understand the mindstate of someone who wants to go even further to protect their modesty. Its about the state of mind and your intentions.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What is your opinion on the common labels associated with Muslims ("terrorists", "extremists" , etc.)?

Eva: I look at it like this. Charles Manson believed he was Jesus and was killing people so thy could go to Heaven. Not a single person blamed Christianity for this. But when someone claims to be a Muslim and does a horrible act, the first thing they talk about is Islam. I think its not only racist, based on the fact that this religion is typically represented as one of people of color (although there are Muslims of all races alhumdulilah!) , but there is an illogical untruthful propaganda campaign against Islam in the west.

Muslimah2Muslimah: What is your view on the impression that many non-Muslims have that Islam oppresses the women and the women have no voice in their communities?

Eva: There are many places that identify as Muslim countries, and some of them do treat women unjustly. But this behavior is unlawful in Islam, the Qur'an dictates that not only are Muslim women to be treated equally, but many practices are in place solely for their benefit and protection.

Muslimah2Muslimah: The media tends to give very negative views on women and many non-Muslims base their views solely on this. What was your view on Islam and the treatment of women before you converted to Islam?

Eva: I only had one girl friend in high school who was Muslim. She is smart, funny, and has a great personality. So that made me realize that she wasn't that different than me or anyone else. I always thought she was really pretty too, but always dressed modestly, no make up, and I wondered why she wouldn't want to show off her beauty.

Muslimah2Muslimah: Has your view changed in any way?

Eva: Yeah because I understand that as a Muslima you don't lose your femininity, you can still be beautiful. There are just different guidelines. I have had a lot of fun shopping for appropriate hijab clothes. Its like a fun challenge to put together a look that's cute, expresses who you are, and is modest.

Muslimah2Muslimah: How did you feel the first time you wore hijab?

Eva: Nervous, really nervous at first. I was scared I would be treated differently. But all that subsided when I realized that different was good, and I got more respect this way, and plenty of respectful compliments. A few days ago it was 92 degrees, and I had on hijab, loose linen pants, and a long light cotton shirt. I noticed there were a lot of girls wearing very little walking by an older man who was giving them lewd looks, he didn't even look at me. I smiled inside because that's not the kind of attention I want.
~Insha'allah, everyone... please pray for Sister Eva and welcome her
into Islam by leaving her your encouragement and wisdom, insha'allah! We are very pleased with her decision as we know she is as well. Eva, may Allah bless you in all of your endeavors and may He grant you Jannatul Firdaus! Ameen!
Najwa & Nadira


  1. Assalamu alaikum sisters,

    masha'allah, sister Eva welcome to Islam, I'm proud to call you my sister in faith! :o) Great interview, you guys, good job! :o)

  2. Alhamdulilah! this post is soooooo inspiring! I am also a convert, so I can relate on some level to the interviewee. Thanks for posting this :)

  3. As salam aleykoum

    welcome sister in our oumma
    great to read this interview and to see a pic of this nice sister masha allah

  4. Manshallah sis...just want 2 say welcome!!!!

  5. assalamu alaikum

    Masha'Allah may Allha bless us all and keep us firm in faith amin - as a revert i know the ups and downs but it is worth it. 1 ummah 1 love.



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