why i chose islam | why islam | about islam -1

 M. Emery
From issues : Islamic Propagation Office in Rabwah

Introduction
O seeker of truth, if you really seek the truth put aside
all preconceived notions, and open your heart…do not
let others judge or make a decision for you. This being
said, I would like to share with you this beautiful account
of a man’s journey to the truth…I believe it be best if he
narrates his account to us himself, so I will leave you
with Mr. Thomas…

I was born to staunch Catholic Christian parents. Even
from my youngest days, my father sometimes took me
along with him when he went to preach, it was quite obvious
that he wanted me to succeed him in his profession.
By the time I reached grade twelve, I could preach
the Gospels in my own way. In college, I often met my
Protestant classmates and discussed the differences in
our faiths and the performance of rituals.
By the time I completed the first year in college, I was
sufficiently grounded in the knowledge of the Christian
Faith as held by the Catholic Church. I was given a scholarship
from the Church funds and in return for the help I
received, I was required to receive special coaching in
understanding parts of the Holy Book, under the Chief
Priest of the Church who loved to teach me very much
and was very intimately attached to me.
Having appeared in the first group for my intermediate
course I used to sit working at his subjects till late at
night. One night when all were asleep and I was absorbed
in my studies an idea suddenly struck my mind
to examine the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, the basic
formula of the Christian Faith. The question how god exwww.
ists in three persons, and yet has a single divine nature, a
single will and be of one substance arose in my mind.
My failure to reconcile my belief in the Trinity with the
reasoning of the science of logic, created a mental restlessness
in me. Days passed on and many a time, I
thought of asking my father to help me in solving the
problem which puzzled my mind but I knew that my father
would never appreciate the least doubt in the dogmatic
belief of the Catholic School. However, one day
when I found my father in a happy mood and asked him
to explain the Holy Trinity…he finally said:
“In matters of faith one has to stop reasoning…this
doctrine is beyond the grasp of human reason. One
should believe in the doctrine only by one’s heart and
mind!”
This reply from my father upset me to a great extent…
all my thinking got centered in the question which
had become a definite problem to puzzle my mind further
and I wondered saying: “Is this the foundation upon
which the huge edifice of the Christian faith is built? Is
the basis of my faith only a matter of blind following of
some dictated belief which can never stand reasoning or
the independent scrutiny by the dispassionate and impartial
arguments from the clean conscience?”
I became extremely worried and made up my mind to
blindly believe in the Trinity.
One day one of our senior lecturers was sitting alone in
his room and I entered with his permission and asked
him if he could help me to solve something which to me
was a perplexing problem. He very kindly asked me
what it was. I asked him to explain to me how God, a
single being, can exist simultaneously as three distinct
persons: the Father, the Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit?!
The senior lecturer smiled and said: “Is it that you do
not like my stay in this college?” I asked him: “Why sir?”
He said: “What do you think the college authorities who
are staunch Catholics will do with me, if someone informs
them that I discuss in my private room things opposed
to the Christian faith in general? Will they keep me
on the staff of the College any longer? If you want to discuss
anything here, you must confine your discussion to
the subject of your studies in the College!”
Thereafter, I made an appointment with him to see him
in his house.
On Sunday when I met the senior lecturer he first asked
me as to what made me inquire into the Doctrine of Trinity.
I said that I wanted to know how far the doctrine
stood to reasoning.
He smiled and said, “Why don’t you ask any one of our
priests?”
I said: “I have asked them but they say it is a matter of
belief or faith and it should not be subjected to any logic
or philosophy. This has upset me. This has raised the
question in me, if what I believe in is unreasonable and
illogical, why should I subject myself to any blind following?
Is God so unjust to expect man to believe in a doctrine
about Himself which no human brain can ever reasonably
conceive? I request you, Sir, to somehow give me
some method of arguing out the possibility of such existence
as the doctrine of Trinity wants us to believe in!”
The senior lecturer smiled and said: ‘Dear Thomas,
suppose you want me to prove by some mathematical
formula how water can remain water and the same time
be fire, or how a stone can be a stone and at the same
time be water too, how can I do it? I do not think any
sensible man on earth can ever conceive such a possibility…
how the Ever living God who being the Ever living,
can also at the same time be a mortal! (i.e. be a man to
suffer death at the hands of the other mortals?) And how
the same mortal being at the same time be the Absolute
Immortal God? It is a problem which our priests want us
to believe and we have to merely believe in it and none
has any choice of even questioning the practicability of
this inconceivable dogma.’
He went on saying: “The fact is when God, Whom we
believe as One, is absolutely One, it means that God is
singularly One in natural essence of His existence, free
from any different or variant factors having anything to
do with His pure or Absolute Unity to justify His being
the Absolute One, owing an indivisible existence, by
Himself. Division suggests that the One is not an Absolute
One but a compound of some variants and that
which is a composed being can never really be One in the
true meaning of Oneness. And certainly the one dependent
in its existence upon its different components can
never be independent in its action, whereas God is the
Absolute One, independently Omnipotent in His Will
and His action.
Besides how can any three which are three separate beings,
with three variations justify being three separate entities,
remain three separately individual native properties
differentiating them from each other, and become
conceivably the absolute indivisible one, without the
least variation in the essential oneness?
An absolute one must be totally independent in its existence,
Mr. Thomas…it is impossible to reason out the
doctrine of the Holy Trinity for it is an inconceivable
human riddle!”
He continued: ‘The only thing is that we Christians are
shut out of the vast sources of knowledge about the truth
and of the higher factor in matters of religion which are
available outside our own fold, by damning every non‐
Christian as the Devil’s work. We Christians, Mr. Thomas,
in our madness to swell up our ranks have played
such a disgraceful role that a scholar like Sir Dennison
Ross had to helplessly disclose truth about this in his
foreword to the translation of the Quran by George Sale.”
I was amazed to hear the arguments of the senior lecturer
who was himself known as a Catholic, and at the
same time I was very much encouraged to know that my
doubt about the unreasonableness of the doctrine of Trinity
was something which had made a highly educated
and enlightened mind like the senior lecturer of Mathematics
to enquire into it. I was much benefited by the discussion
with the senior lecturer for I came to know arguments
justifying the doubt created in my mind.
My study of the matter in the ‘Islamic Literature’ and
the translation of the Quran opened my eyes to many
great and very important factors that effect human life on
earth. Once I visited the senior lecturer in his house and
to my amazement I found him possessing a great amount
of literature on Islam!
I further asked him: “May I know sir, if you have embraced
the faith of the Muslims?”
He replied: “Do not worry yourself about my personal
choice!”
I took the copy of the translation of the Quran by
George Sale and read the introduction by Sir E. Dennison
Ross. The introduction needs to be read with special attention.
Sir Ross said:
“For many centuries the acquaintance which the majority
of Europeans possessed of Mohammedanism was
based almost entirely on the distorted reports of fanatical
Christians which led to the discrimination of a multitude
of gross calumnies. What was good in Mohammedanism
was entirely ignored and what was not good
in the eyes of Europe was exaggerated or misinterpreted.
The unity of God and the simplicity of his creed was
probably a more potent factor in the spread of Islam
than the sword of the ghaziz.” (G. Sale’s translation of
the Koran – Introduction)
This statement of the great Christian scholar of international
repute, created in me the thirst to know the original
teachings of Islam especially about the Islamic concept
of God.
About four years passed away and by this time I knew
the contents of the Quran. Many things had aroused my
attention. I had discussed many doubtful points with the
senior lecturer whom I found to have read the Quran
several times with a better and more critical view. I was
now longing to meet some Muslim scholar to cross examine
him about certain doubts about the Islamic Faith.
Once I thought of Hinduism but what I saw daily with
my own eyes, curses of untouchability and the reservations
of the caste system prevalent before us and besides
everything else, the idol worship and the observance of
innumerable rituals did not prompt me to take up any
enquiry into its tenets. I could never understand the superiority
exclusively and arbitrarily claimed for the
members of certain castes, simply because they had accidentally
been born in those folds. I had seen with my
own eyes how the people belonging to certain castes are
imagined as lower in the society and are treated as the
untouchables, not allowed even to enter into the Hindu
Temples. I had seen these poor souls being prohibited
even to take drinking water from the wells reserved for
the superior classes.



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Section : why i chose islam | why islam | about islam
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Date : 20/7/2011
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