During one of my weekly sessions at Darul Arqam, I asked my friend M (a Catholic convert from the Philippines), "How did you know it was the right time for you to convert?" After all, I was reading, listening, believing completely and changing my outlook on life, but I still didn't know what the 'right' time was. You know, maybe I'd like a drama-mama voice in my head that I could later tell people about. Ok I am kidding, but yeah, maybe like 0.00000001% of my mind was expecting that.
She said, "There isn't a right time, Sister. Knowledge will always come to you along the way. You just have to know that your heart is there."
At that moment, I kinda wished I could just declare there and then. But you know, being sentimental and all, I wanted the person who first got me to know of the beauty of Islam to be there when I said it. So I did my first shahada on 19th Oct 2013. It was also while I was saying it, the Azan for mahgrib prayers sounded from Masjid Sultan Ismail. Please pardon the poor pronunciation.
Ash-hadu an laa ilaahah illallaah wa ash-hadu anna muhammad-ar-rasool ullaah.
I bear witness and attest that there is no god worthy of worship but the One God Allah and I bear witness and attest that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.
I knew my heart was there, I just had to declare it.
*Cover image credits: reem1989.tumblr.com