I have always believed spirituality is a personal journey, where one continuously evolves in their quest for a higher truth. After studying Hinduism, Christianity and Buddhism, I have finally found my peace. I have converted to Islam.
My falling in love with Islam was never a coincidence. The seeds were first sown in my heart as a child growing up in Oman, distributing chocolates to the local children during Ramadan. As a schoolgirl in Dubai, I would wake up an hour early just to hear the Fajr prayer by the local mosque in the silence of the dawn hours.
The Adhan has always captivated me. It is as if my mind, heart and soul become transfixed in a sort of divine ecstasy, the allure of which is hard to resist and even harder to forget. It is for me the most beautiful sound in the universe, in the presence of which I need not pretend nor fear.
Though I am not at all a religious person, those close to me know that I am deeply spiritual. As a person whose passion lies in social justice and fighting for others, I draw all my strength from my spirituality. But over the last ten years, my spirituality screamed in anguish. The death of my only sister. An abusive father. A violent marriage. My spiritual turbulence cast a shadow on my days and tormented me at night.
I want to thank Amma, my dearest mother. She gave me freedom to choose my spiritual path knowing completely well the social consequences of a Tamil Hindu Brahmin girl becoming Muslim. It will always be my honor to be called your daughter.
I also want to thank my beautiful Muslim friends who have been a source of strength, patience and enlightenment throughout my journey. You have been my light in my darkest hours and I am forever grateful to you all.
Islam is one of the most misunderstood faiths, where the spotlight is often cast on the fanatical and outlier elements. Very rarely do people experience the true essence of Islam, the racial and ethnic diversity, and the heartwarming hospitality and kindness of Muslims. I invite you all to go beyond the bigotry and stereotypes, and to see the Islam that I love.