We interviewed Aisha Rosalie, revert Youtuber and lifestyle blogger, regarding her journey to Islam, and 5 things Islam has taught her since she took her shahada 2 years ago.
“I discovered Islam in Turkey whilst I was there as a tourist. I was kind of bored one day & I visited a mosque, and that’s where I started learning about Islam. That’s where I really become inspired.
I just allowed myself to be affected by the amazing people there, the amazing sounds, that amazing sights in the masjid and the amazing peaceful feeling I had whilst I was in the masjid. And the feeling I was having whilst doing tasbeeh, which is something I started doing while I was there, which I thought were anxiety beads.
“Doing all those things was what really got me learning about Islam. And that was the spark. I’m a very feely person, so it’s all about feeling for me. I’m not logic based. If you give me scientific facts about the Quran, maybe I’ll go wow, that’s amazing. But I believe it’s all about feeling and feeling the presence of God and feeling like God is controlling your life in a positive way. That’s what really got me interested in the first place. Becoming Muslim was not just a big step, it was a huge step for me because I was atheist & I didn’t believe in God.
Number one is self control, which is from building a habit of prayer into your life, five times a day, every day. It’s such an amazing thing that I think everyone should have in their life, whether Muslim or non Muslim, because it forces you check in five times a day, no matter what mood you’re in, whether you’re happy, whether you’re angry, whether you’re sad. It teaches you to do tasks no matter what mood you’re in. It is such an important thing we need to learn if we want to be successful. If we want to build a business or want to be successful in this world, having self control is so important. It’s taught through prayer, it’s taught through Ramadan. We’re fasting, abstaining from things that are very important that we need to survive. It’s very difficult, and it teaches so much so control.
My productivity levels have gone up a lot since I’ve become Muslim because I schedule around my prayers, which is very important. It’s like, my one day has become five days. It’s so amazing. It’s broken up into different parts, and you just get so much more done in that time.
Another one is, Islam teaches you to stay away from things that are dangerous for yourself. There are so many things that we do that we think are it’s not really that bad like drinking and gossiping, but at the end of the day it’s self destructive. You might not be hurting someone else, but you’re destroying yourself by constantly doing things damaging your body and soul. Islam says no, you don’t do these things. These are haram. Again, it’s such an amazing thing that’s been brought into my life that’s actually stopped me from destroying myself, which I used to do a lot.
I think the fourth thing would be anxiety. I feel less anxious in the streets, because I’m not trying to put on a show, as I describe it. It’s something I used to do before becoming Muslim where I would maybe dress in a certain way because I wanted to get some attention. I would constantly be thinking, am I getting that attention that I want? Are people looking at me?
When you’re a Muslim you don’t feel bad about yourself if people aren’t giving you attention; actually, it’s kind of better to not have that attention. Instead, you can think about positive things going on with your day, connect with God & not worry about what people think about you all the time; it’s such a positive thing.
I think the last one, for me, would be charity, because Islam puts such a emphasis on charity. It’s not a choice of ‘should I give to charity’, because you have to give zakat. It forces you to put yourself out there and give, even if you consider yourself to be a nice giving person Islam forces you to be even more of that. You need to be more giving, you need to do better. If someone’s struggling in the street, you need to help them. If there’s an orphan, you need to help them. It’s not just going online and paying 10 pound here and there for charity but actually being better when you see people & when you’re with people. I’ve definitely increased a lot in good deeds & charity since becoming Muslim.
I think it’s really important to connect yourself with God, to connect yourself with the world. When I say connecting yourself with the world, like looking at the world and seeing the birds, seeing the nature, seeing the amazing things that Allah has created. Just experiencing life more and stopping and thinking, What is this about? Why am I here? What is this amazing tree in front of me; who created this? Just stopping and thinking is so important for our mental health because we get stuck in this rat race and it’s so damaging for our mental health. It’s important for everyone, no matter what faith background, no matter where you’re from. Stop, look at your surroundings & pay attention to what’s going on around you. Ground yourself and be present in the moment, because that’s where you start finding God. I recommend everyone starts doing that.“
To learn more about Aisha’s journey to Islam or to follow along with the work she does, you can find her YouTube here.