Ramadan For Reverts

Umm Jamaal ud-Din


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Isolation Every Year _ Reverts Panel

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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa Salatu was Salam ala rasulillah Radha alihi wa sahbihi wa Manuela just want to say a salaam aleikum to everybody first of all welcome to everybody who's joined us today and hungry now for this you know important talk about you know, basically coping as a revert during Ramadan.

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I want to thank first of all the special panelists that Huntelaar I've invited along today to share their stories I hope we can all gain some you know inspiration by what they're going to share inshallah and also want to of course thank nationals or care foundation for inviting me to you know, to host this session in sha Allah

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Okay, so as you know, obviously the reason that we decided to to speak is because most of us know as reverts

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Ramadan can be quite a challenge especially if you're new to Islam or you're going through different crisis in your life Ramadan will already be a challenge for you but not having a social network we've got we normally have like at least is some sort of social network normally like there's some activities at the masjid there's you know, if our invitations there's something but like locked down

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you know, obviously it's created greater challenges probably for many reverts. So that's why we decided to have this session in particular like just you know, you know, feel that sense of belonging again, we you know, we have handler with we are so blessed to have the internet right this should be going through this trial and to have the internet available to us it's such a huge blessing. Because you know, back in the days there was no connection like this you know, if you were isolated, which I actually have experienced isolation in my life before when there was no internet back then there was no phone there was no nothing and so that that's a whole different type of level

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of isolation to experience. Just ask everybody to keep your mics off place, if you don't mind because it does interfere with the, with the sound.

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So, we're going to get straight in inshallah. We're going to go in and first of all, speak to each of these amazing revert sisters as you know, they're all around Australia. We've got Sister Catherine Jones from Adelaide, we've got Sarah J from Melbourne, and we've got Maria on polar she's from Brisbane

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in Queensland, and myself I'm from New South Wales as most of you know. So getting right into it. I'm going to go to sister Marion first just Can everyone have their can we have everyone have their mics off please? Just make sure everyone's mics off the only people with their mics on should be the speakers. Just a couple more here

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Okay, so getting straight into it so system Maryam. We want to know what was your first Ramadan like, and maybe you could explain to us some of the funny things you might have done from lack of knowledge because we all know as reverts we've done some pretty crazy stuff.

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Okay, it's Gosh, highlights a bit. Hard to remember now because I've been this is probably my 29th Ramadan, I shall live and I'm talking What if I look at him two decades, this close to three decades?

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Sounds longer than the 29 years. But yeah.

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I Alhamdulillah when I decided that Islam was true, and we want and I wanted to embrace Islam, it was actually fasting. That was not stopping me. But that was my concern. Yeah, Ramadan is what I was, you know, I wanted to go into it. It did take us about maybe two years before I actually said my Shahada. And then when I before I actually did that was the last minute it's the first thing that was in my mind. You just don't know how to do it. Like you were just worried about it. Yes, I was worried about Can Can I do this? I'm like, No, eat no drink. And

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you know, and I'm wondering when I when I used to work on beside the computer, but all of the snacks under the desk and yeah, and and really just being conscious of staying away from that. But Alhamdulillah what I realized was that billions of Muslims none Come on. Like if they No, I don't see. And I was in Saudi them. So I don't see people dropping because they're fainting because they didn't eat or anything but Alhamdulillah so I just we didn't humbler honestly now after this year's, the staying away from food and the drink is the easiest bit. I mean, sisters, if that it is the easiest. It is the other, staying away from other things. That's, I believe harder to you know, to

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be more challenging, you know, fasting from bad habits, fasting from acting upon negative thoughts that's in Ramadan. That's to me is more challenging.

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But yeah hamdulillah and well first of all Don was there if

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your husband reverts as well. yes and yes what I was about to say when hamdulillah that was a span a lot one thing I the isolation was I felt that from family but then humbled I had my husband with me and we did a shadow at the same time and so we were all learning things you know at the same time, however like you said, you know, family and like we were into our baby and you know, we go to we go to we have our Ramadan, but it's only us No, no family. Yes. And we I realized that Ramadan is a family thing later on, but Alhamdulillah You know, when you're first embraced, you're all into

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at least for us, we didn't mind much because like I said, we were in it together anyway. So, in humble about me, our Funny thing is that well, how to start but in my mind, we were so used to starting it there no problem. When we moved to Sydney, Allahu Akbar. When did we start Ramadan? we don't we don't know that that was a shock to us.

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Because when we were there,

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you just hear the cannon and palace. Okay.

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When but but the way I was exposed to the differences when we left and went to Australia and Sydney actually, and yen everyone was discussing when is it? Why Yeah, but that's uh, yeah, but then Hamblin I, you know, we love what you're in a place where you will be able to cope and adapt. Yeah, so hunger Lila is Aquino.

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And sister Sarah, this is your third Ramadan I believes you'd like to share about your Ramadan, your first trauma bonds or Yeah. So my

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I was in jail, actually. So I won't talk about that now. But I didn't.

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I just put on his job. I know I hadn't actually Sorry, no. My first Ramadan. When I first converted, I was actually going home from prison only a few weeks later. So I think my mind was so excited about that.

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I sort of gone right on Muslim now that's done. Now I'm going home soon. So my mind was sort of on that sub panel. I suffer a lot. But I'm four years later I gave Ramadan ago, I was practicing four years later. And by that stage, I had a mentor, literally holding my hand everywhere I went. And she had been taking me for a few months to probably two or three talks a week. Like she literally held my hand everywhere we call back from Ramadan.

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I was a little bit excited, but I was I was very like, what I have to not eat and drink. Are you serious? Like, why? You know? So I did a bit of like, sudden listening to the little YouTube talks, you know, and finding out the reward from it. What, you know, how we're 80 years away, or 70 years away from, you know, how everyday we fast? Just all these, all these things. So it started becoming very appealing to me. And I said, Oh, what's this Torah we pray because I heard the Hadith about how you

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you know, Allah will forgive all your sins. And I thought, well, that's like taking your Shahada again, you know, so we'll do that one.

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And Subhanallah I asked my mentor to please find me a lead to the tearaway pray every night. I'm 10 minutes away from me. She posted on Facebook and found somebody I went to taraweeh every night that Yeah, there wasn't necessarily anything funny about like, I don't remember any funny. Anything, like majorly funny about it. But I found it so easy, like so panela I had for myself all those four years I didn't practice and I didn't do Ramadan. I missed out so bad. Like, do you know what I mean? I didn't know like it. No, I didn't. But Subhanallah like, I'm you know, I'm just so so glad I kondalilla eventually, you know, four years later, better late than never. I finally gave Ramadan

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ago and as Miriam said the food and drink it's not. It's not actually that hard. Like, yeah, still a sore stomach, but it's okay. It's only for a few hours, you know? So yeah, that was my first practicing Ramadan anyway, and it's every year since

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it's, I love it. Love it. My advice to you inshallah. I'm in Europe.

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Sister Sister Catherine. How about your first Ramadan? You've been 25 years Muslim? Mashallah. Yes. So, my first Ramadan was right smack bang in the middle of summer.

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undercover Muslim at the time, so no one knew I was a Muslim so you don't realize how often people offer you food and drink until you

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You're pretending that you're fasting on the cover, right?

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So my job at the time, I was a senior manager in IT industry. And so I was expected to go to a lot of business lunches. So it was a whole month for finding excuses. But a business luncheon. And that was really tricky. I mean, I had to be quite creative to figure out how I could go a whole month without going to business lunches, because it would have been quite an issue at my work. I mean, as it turned out, when my boss did find out how to become a Muslim, his reaction was to tell me that it was as if he'd heard the news that his son was a heroin addict. That was his reaction to me, embracing the sensor. My intuition was spot on to keep it undercover at that stage. But it was also

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important keep it undercover with my family, too, because I'd really detected that they weren't real impressed about Islam, either. And my parents were heading overseas, and they wanted to have a farewell dinner. So of course, we're breaking fast at like, 836 or something like that. And so I'm trying to think of an excuse of why we need to meet for dinner late and I thought 830 so late, I said, oh, I've got something. I know that I can come at eight o'clock. So we and then I'm thinking, Oh, no. What about the food being Hello. And so that's day 1995 96. There's no Hello restaurants. There's no

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anywhere anything like. So my main concern was avoiding pork at that stage, because I've only been a Muslim say three months. So it's still fairly early.

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So I picked the Lebanese restaurant because I thought, well, at least they won't have pork there.

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How the law. And so we met at eight o'clock. And for the first half hour, I thought, well, it'll take them a while to bring the food and everything. So for the first half hour, I sat there pretending I was drinking my juice. When can I actually drink? We actually had a heatwave of 10 days over 40 degrees.

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So it was a really tough Ramadan because no one knew I was Muslim. And I yes, I had to pretend a lot. And it was very long, hot days. The other thing was not having anyone to tell me that it was advisable especially with hydration. What I would do because I was always so tired at the end of the day is I'd eat too much at nighttime and drink heaps of water. I wouldn't sleep very well because I was uncomfortable. Then we were having some horror, like getting up at 330 in the morning or something for some horror. And no do the same thing again, thinking you need a lot of food to get you through the day because it's a long day, which actually is not the case. It's all the water,

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it's the hydration, but then I'd guzzle all this water. And then I wouldn't get asleep after fudger either because I just felt so uncomfortable. So I really had no clue what I was doing. I was on my own just trying to figure it out. Yeah, if it's helpful

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because I know a lot of sisters go through a lot of challenges. But I really didn't really taste the sweetness of Ramadan until my ninth Ramadan because it's not until 2004 when I left the marriage I was in Ramadan, actually for me for the first eight Ramadan's or I can't remember that I remember dance was just a trial. Because I was working full time during the day I was expected to cook when I came home then I was expected to cook again for another meal at 10 o'clock. And then I was expected to cook again for another meal for a budget we

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only get maybe two or three hours sleep and then I'd be up and going to work again the next day. I was in a very

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bad marriage unfortunately. And so I just resented Ramadan because I just got eaten every time and my very last Ramadan in that marriage. I reached the point where I wanted the lunches to take me away I'd had enough it was too hard, but the very first Ramadan out of that marriage on my own with my kids, they'd be asleep before I had to break my fast that'd be asleep because there were less than five when I had my sophomore and it was the most beautiful spiritual amazing Ramadan I was in a town with no other Muslims. I was on my own. It was just me and Allah and it was the most beautiful experience felt

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amazing ever since Mashallah, Mashallah that's beautiful desert Kealoha for sharing that.

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Sometimes how hard it is for some converts Absolutely. Well with myself.

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I actually started fasting before my Shahada.

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What happened with me is that I didn't even know you have to take Shahada like

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I had any read a translation of the Quran like from a friend

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And, like, I got to give you a bit of context. So we're talking about the late 80s.

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I was still going to school, leaving leaving with my, my parents, like, obviously non Muslim parents living in the bible belt of the hills area. Right? Very rare to find any Muslims, you know, in that that area, like I just had a couple there's a couple of people had met up at school, like about two people, you know, in a in a school of like 1000 kids. So I basically, you know, the only way I could learn I mean, you're talking about, you know, people can understand what that was like, there's an age of no internet, so you're not connected to information as readily. Right. No bookshops

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you just have to rely on word of mouth. And trust me back then.

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To catch on, I will know that word of mouth was as good as Chinese Chinese whispers. Right.

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So, um, so basically, I guess so people, someone had told me because I've sort of expressed showed them that I, you know, I told her got someone at school that, you know, I'd read the Quran. And then they said to me, Well, you know, there's something called Ramadan, you know, you're going too fast. So I was like, Oh, okay. So, basically, what I was doing is, the way I would fast is like, my mom would give me she'd make my lunch to school. And then I would save my lunch. And that would be my support. Okay.

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And then what I would do is, I would, I thought that you had to wait till it's pitch black before you can break your fast like, it's sunset, I thought it means like, the sun is set, you can't see even one little bit of bread in the sky.

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That's what I would do. I'd wait all the way till then. And then another thing one of the kids had told me that, you know,

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there's like, they used to have what's called the they're, like, from the Kimber MSG, they had like a little radio station that would play in the mornings. So he told me, you know, this guy told me from school, that, you know, you can turn that on, and they have the event, so they'd have a little talk before the event. And then, you know, when you hear the event that you have to, that's when you start

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fasting. But you know, back then everything was basically an Arabic like you couldn't really understand anything.

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Either basically had this this was the first this is a copy of the first

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first translation of the Quran I ever read. So this is this is basically all the information I had, where is it?

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And anyway, like, there's a little page here, that sort of fasting so that so that basically, I could just read that bit of information there. That was what could tell me how to fast

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anyway, so that was that was high school, then I went to uni. Again, I hadn't met any practicing Muslims until now, right? Anyone who really knows what they're talking about?

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I remember back then that I you know, sometimes we'd get invited for dinner by some families, like some, you know, friends at uni would say, Oh, do you want to come back and have some dinner?

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You know, at my house, it was obviously thought I had no idea that there's something called expired or you know, these social events for thought.

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But, um,

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I want to just one thing I should mention, too, that I didn't, I didn't foster whole Ramadan. Okay, I wasn't fasting Ramadan. At this stage, what I would do is, I would fast during the week, and then on the weekend, I wouldn't fast because I didn't want my parents to know.

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It was like self styled fasting. You know what I mean? Another thing another thing that I did as well is

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that I I remember once I was wearing lipstick, I was seeing it. I was sitting in the library of my uni and then someone came up to me and said to me, are you fasting I said, Yeah, I go, Yeah, she goes, would you've got lipstick on? You know, you can't fast when you're wearing lipstick. Like, and I go Okay, so then I stopped fasting don't mean because I wanted to add my lipstick. So that was

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that was all before I actually took my Shahada like these were just like, it was just very random type of fasting but so that's why I didn't think I had a problem, because I'd already done the fasting before I actually took my Shahada. Like I said, I didn't even know you're supposed to take Shahada. It wasn't until someone said have you taken Shahada? I go, what's that? And then I realized

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it was back in those days was very difficult. People do not understand how honestly it was like trying to work your way in the dark. It was it was really hot.

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Even the books Oh, yeah.

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No, the books were literally translation from from Arabic and English. That doesn't make sense. Yeah, because it's a literal translation from the Arabic panel. Yeah, somehow Lola unless someone actually guides you then.

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And the the cassettes when we were talking vintage Now you remember that? I was like, yeah.

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We now we have everything digital. Yeah.

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So going to the next topic, and that is sister Miriam. You want to just maybe share what was like your first day.

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Or your first few aids or something like that. What How was that? Oh, yes, like I said, we were in of course we were in you know, we were our family was in Saudi Arabia, we wanted to, you know, celebrate. But that is nothing is actually sad because

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it's only my husband and myself. We don't go to we go, we do go to the masjid. And we usually stay in the bank. And the feeling then was that we were not part of anything we do our salon. We didn't realize till later that they also had a place this wasn't a yard where they know it was it genda and they'd had a place for a like a salon that they go out. But the first ones we attended was in the massages. We went to the masjid and we were just in the back and when everyone after this law, you know Salaam Alaikum and they kiss each other and embrace first we can't do that now but

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of course no one approached us and my husband is in the midsection. My girls were little and so I was alone. And I was looking at everyone I was actually and again this is a sad thing with experience there I was in the back with you know hamdulillah with the other ladies I think we do not have families there as well. But none of the locals who are there would come in Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, so it was it was a bit sad but Panama when we did come to Sydney Yeah, that's when we that's when you took us to the first aid in Wiley Park then seriously

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you took us in my family in your dream old van oh my god Hold on.

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I told you we're talking vintage

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and that was Yeah, that was when he was still in wireless like in the Kimber. It was only in the Gambia and the Muslims there and that's when we realized Han Allah that He is actually a lot it's beautiful when when everyone you know or you don't know just greet and just have aid

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and I can feel you know for the you know for the sisters don't have cactus you know family. Yeah, just this inshallah they lift the restrictions.

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A lot I can at least have it's a bit difficult to have not difficult we can't lose its ally on Zoo

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as a selling my husband if the government probably knows how we are after they bought how we all embrace and I don't think they're going to lift it just they are going to apparently Friday you're going to be allowed to have gatherings very soon allowed to have gatherings of 10 big ones. Only 10 I don't think we're going to go to big ones. Not for a long time but really gatherings of 10 inshallah that's at least better than being all alone. Yeah, you know, the beavers or the sisters can exactly yeah 310 1010 Yes. Yeah. That's what how I my first in ages ago Mashallah Ramadan was and how the lights how it's actually better when we left. So, I understand. I live there too. And I

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know what you're talking about. Yes, yes.

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And hamdulillah Okay, what about you, Sarah? Now, how is your first aid also? Um, so my mentor she she said a few days before like, someone sponsored some money to get a few new girls and go for breakfast in the morning and I was like, Oh, okay. Yeah, man. So we went to live a nice restaurant up north.

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I've never had a breakfast like that in my life. is my favorite probably my first RV breakfast. Oh my god. Like I got home and slept the whole day. I was so cool. Yeah.

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Yeah, but my aid we didn't do anything else. Oh, yeah. What about other AIDS? What about something in the morning and then

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I think we left like 4am or so because the girls getting a leaf we bikes to get there really early. My

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sister went early. I do remember actually thinking as we were walking out at, you know, the mosque is packed through tearaway. But the prayer you've got people on the street out the front praying Yes, yes. In some kind of law where all these people through tearaway, you know, and it made me remember the four years I didn't practice you know, and and I was just so grateful to finally be like a part of it, you know, so I've had a lot you know, he's, he's got the most perfect plan. And he's timing is so wise, Marsha, but it still makes me disgrace on Hannah law sometimes like really? Yeah, my life my show like exactly look here. The worries to Katherine. I have been racking my brain

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and I can't even remember

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So here in Adelaide, back then

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to mosques only Adelaide mosque, which is the one that's very famous because it was built by the Afghan camellias and the Marian one which has now been rebuilt. But at that stage it was an had been an old church that had been taken over and was pretty

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falling apart. And that would have been the one I would have gone to, I'm sure. But I don't recall anything because I didn't really have any friends for the first eight years. So it would have been a case we went to prayer and we went home. And that was it. There was no. So for the first two Ramadan's I didn't have children. So it would have just been coming back and being alone. And so I don't have any memories of my first aids really. Now, because I've got kids, we make it special, we do our we have our own traditions, but we've never been invited, really, to anyone's aid parties or anything like that. So it's always just been my nuclear family, me and my children, really, that

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have done things together on aid, these last couple of years, 100 ally, and now have a group of other convert sister friends, there's sort of three or four of us. And so we tend to make plans to do things together. But that's after, like, over 20 years before we even got to that. So it's always been a very quiet affair, go to the prayer, feel sad that Ramadan is over and do something with the kids at home, opened the presence. My parents have

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come and joined us sometimes, which has been really nice and made it seem a bit more of an event.

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But yeah, it's always been very quiet affair for us. Just we're not particularly included in the oma in 25 years of being a Muslim. I've probably been to three weddings and probably similar number of acres. So not that I mind. I'm quite happy. But that's just to let you know how it kind of how the cookie crumbles.

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I think hunter miles actually been she's accidentally muted herself

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into unmute yourself on Jamal.

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So everybody stay in ministry, I'm going ahead and unmute you.

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he does like a lot here. I couldn't unmute myself because he actually had blocked me to get to mute myself.

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Based on language being great if I

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okay, so Well, like I said, going back to my aid,

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the first aid I remember was going to obviously look in the mosque.

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And I remember going there and praying and then I remember, you know, at the end, you know, walking and then just feel like everyone was they all seemed too busy. You know, they all like we're going off. like they've got places to go people to see, you know, and you're just there and you're like, what am I going to do for my day? You know, it's not exciting, because you've got nothing to look forward to, you know, plans. It's very depressing feeling because, you know,

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but one thing I do remember, which was really beautiful. Some sisters may or people may remember a beautiful system where the name of Salah Wagga Shinji

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you know, unfortunately mela Elia ham Has she passed away just last year, but she's a beautiful Egyptian sister. And she just saw me she could tell that I was just like, out of place. And she basically approached me you know, with a beautiful smiling face and just said to me, You know, there's going to be this you know, Egyptian on a picnic on the weekend, you know, would you like to come it'd be lovely if you could come and you're just trying to, you know, cheer me up. And interestingly, when I went to that aid, I did go because I was very open to going to things if I was invited, you know? So I did go and subpanel and that was the first time my husband ever saw me

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so it's upon a lot you know how that worked out? You know what I mean? But anyway, I'll be honest with you like like Sister Catherine was saying, I remember and even use his sister Marian use it as well. I remember many aids for many many years feeling very lonely and eight. I'm gonna I'm gonna be honest, like, even after marriage like I got married Alhamdulillah you got you got your husband but like reality is you go to the aid pray and it's like there's just nothing to do There's no one like it depends on your family dynamic. Like you know some people Mashallah some reverts are blessed in you know, they marry into a family where there's a lot of,

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you know, warmth and welcoming and all that so if you've got that, Mashallah you've got it made, you know, but not everybody has that. Sometimes you don't have that at all and you haven't got your family and you haven't got really the husband's family either. So there's just you just feel like emptiness like you do because especially like

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If you're a real extrovert kind of person as well, like a socialite, you want to, like socialize and a bit, you know, there's no way to go. Like, everyone's busy with their own families busy with their own barbecues, or whatever they're doing.

00:30:14--> 00:30:33

But you know, I have to say that was very blessed in knowing a beautiful sister also, you know, in Sydney here, beautiful leather needs to stop by the 50 hedge. Some people may know her. Look over the years, she became, I used to call my Muslim Mum, you know, she was beautiful, like she would, you know, always like, you know, invite me like feed me and my husband and

00:30:34--> 00:30:53

and that would really be that would actually make my eight, to be honest, that made my eight just being able to go to her house because she'd had been hurt, you know, the Lebanese, they have the open house and people coming in and out. And I think I just needed that like to be around. I just wanted something, you know, the the socialization of just the excitement, you know, I never otherwise I wouldn't feel I wouldn't feel the excitement of aid if it wasn't for that sort of thing.

00:30:54--> 00:30:58

I'm sorry. I think that's Yeah. And like Sister Catherine said,

00:30:59--> 00:31:09

you know, we can probably talk about that now. But, you know, there is a big struggle for I think, a lot of Muslims. Sorry, a lot of reverts in feeding in that they're actually there definitely is.

00:31:11--> 00:31:43

I might I might just go into the next part. I was going to talk about any Well, I'll I'll answer the question myself, and then I'll let you. I was the next question was going to be, you know, what is the biggest struggle you went through as the revert? I'm going to enter that first book since I'm already on the track? So I'd say yes, for me, I honestly people were probably surprised. But the biggest, I think, struggled I went through was actually fitting in and feeling belonging. Like I married an Arab like my husband's Egyptian. And for some weird reason, I don't know why I did this, but maybe maybe a captain would understand.

00:31:44--> 00:32:15

Because he was Arabic. And he I learned my Arabic and everything. I just felt like I was trying to always, I was always trying to be Arabic, like for a long time, I think I lost myself like, you know, I cooked all the Arab food. And I tried to speak Arabic, like, you know, I was speaking Arabic. And like, I tried it, I was trying to follow all the Arab customs, but I could never cook their food. Like even though I was cooking it, it didn't taste. You know what I mean? And for so long, I tried to fit in with them. But I could never fit in with them. I just I just felt like I was just always outside their circle. You know, they just they just had their circle and you were just

00:32:15--> 00:32:48

always on the outside. And it took me a long time into what we're talking about. Maybe it could be maybe 10 or 15 years. And one day I just woke up to myself and said, Why do I need to be Arabic for why can I just be an Aussie market for me agents for that to dawn on me like suppose I don't know why I made life so hard for myself. But for so long. I tried to fit in and try to do that everything. And then I thought to myself, I don't have to make my move on eight, you know, I can make pineapple upside down cake or I can make you know, tiramisu or you know i can i can make ice stuff.

00:32:49--> 00:32:51

Pineapple upside down cake. It's nice.

00:32:53--> 00:33:14

That once I got to that stage, that just brought me a huge sense of relief that I can be an Ozzy and I can be, you know, I can be an Aussie Wilson, I don't need to be like, try to be an Arab and change my whole self and lose myself, you know. So that's my struggle. But now we'll go to Marian, maybe you want to just talk about what's one of the biggest struggles you went through is as an error

00:33:23--> 00:33:24

stuck in my mind?

00:33:25--> 00:33:28

And I think, not really.

00:33:30--> 00:33:34

Not I didn't get that feeling where I need to be.

00:33:36--> 00:33:43

The biggest struggle was really fought. We were a very close knit family and I'm the eldest in our family.

00:33:44--> 00:34:19

The biggest struggle is for me to be accepted by my mother and being religious and looking at prayers and worshiping alive God. This is from my mother. She's very religious and all that and when I did become Muslim, it's it's how do I express to her the first question I remember I don't know if you it's Ramadan gender when I even had to bring your own phone. It's a mother's day and I used to give her

00:34:22--> 00:34:49

cards. Do I give her Do I still give that to her? You know, I still love it. That's that's the struggle that I have how my relationship with my family with my, with my parents. And because there was a time when they did say, don't come and see us with your hijab when you might as well not visit us. Because that's the struggle but Alhamdulillah through time all we had

00:34:50--> 00:34:59

I think we had to go through the bit women mother had to get a priest, a bishop to speak to us and find out

00:35:00--> 00:35:43

And say that okay, you're right, you're not brainwashed or anything, this is something that you decided for yourself. Only after that, where the restrictions lifted, for me to see her, even with my hijab, and yeah, sadly my father passed away after that, and I say that I felt that that's up until now, this is not so much of a struggle, I feel. This is where I felt the isolation because we, my brothers, we are seven in a family, we're big. Like I said, we're closely knit, we have this messenger group family thing, and they talk about their lifestyle, whatever happens and hamdulillah with anything that I can.

00:35:44--> 00:36:11

I will, I will contribute in. But I feel that I'm out of the bubble. I'm out of their circle. I am the oldest sister. Yes. They in our, in our traditions, you know, the oldest sister is looked up. Upon and but this time, no. So it this is up until now. I think it's how I should be feeling about it.

00:36:12--> 00:36:47

We do talk, it's very cordial. When things happen to me, and things happen to me, but there are certain things of course, in their lifestyle that they do that I cannot actually just say, oh, congratulations. Oh, I'm happy for you. So as much as I think as much as I feel that I'm out of their circle, they do feel that I am out. So that's Yeah, but then Charlize, at least now my mother has allowed me to see her even in my hijab, and, and, you know, even my children, Camille every now and then she still says, okay, so when are you going back to?

00:36:48--> 00:36:56

To how you were before? So as if I'm in a bad state at the moment, but yeah, yeah.

00:36:58--> 00:36:58


00:36:59--> 00:37:41

How about you, Sarah? Um, the main problems I faced was authentic knowledge. That was my main issue. On this sort of person. I like to know every side of the story. That obviously when I found out this different, you know, she has some troubling, Sophie, I wanted to know, so I can make my own mind up. But no one would tell me Everyone was too scared to talk about this, because I didn't want to say anything wrong. I found probably YesI card is the only one that says it straight. So he helped a lot. But in the start, I actually by accident, read some books filled with not authentic disease. And so I was living my life based on based on that for maybe the first year.

00:37:44--> 00:38:00

And then, so it just didn't seem right, like things weren't adding up. So one of the speakers here below Assad, I literally thought, you know what, I can't get to the main section to ask him, I'm just going to add him on Facebook and asked him, you know, I'll just send him a message and ask him.

00:38:01--> 00:38:30

So, so that helped a lot having having someone that I could actually communicate with, to sift through what was authentic and what was not. And then obviously, now that I've got the reverse, we both pass that knowledge, knowledge onto them. And the other thing, I didn't have the issue with the wanting to be in everything, although I get that, because I came from such a fast paced life, and on social. I was running nightclubs for 10 years. So it was very, very social.

00:38:32--> 00:39:01

And as much as I was Muslim, he still you have to replace, you have to replace that with what's Hello. Now, you know, so the first year I was I was very depressing. When I was practicing, even though I was going out. I was only really happy when I was out, you know, at the mosque with these groups of sisters at talks. And as soon as I walked back home, people didn't know because I was on my phone, they think I'm still, you know, quiet, quiet hyper or whatever. But I wasn't I was in bed while I was in bed for the whole whole year, on my phone, you know?

00:39:03--> 00:39:17

And then I thought, you know what, there's all these sisters in the same troubles. Like you see them on Facebook, sometimes screaming out. And so I grabbed a few of them. And we started a whatsapp group and handled we live with our permission, it grew into an organization.

00:39:18--> 00:39:32

But um, so handle the law. As I said earlier, I'll use the best of planners and he's, his timing is the most, he's the most wise in his timing. I didn't question why I had to go through that year of depression. I know that it had to happen.

00:39:34--> 00:39:43

And handily like that, that's all I've got to say. hamdulillah. I've got a question. Sarah, when you said that you were struggling with

00:39:45--> 00:39:59

you know, the authenticity of this and that somehow along what I, what brought you on that holidays on that stage where you felt that this is authentic, and that's inauthentic. How do you know like

00:40:01--> 00:40:21

Many of us just knowing not knowing any better, I would honestly just have a feeling in my heart. Yeah. And so because I had the connection, I kind of just barged into your asking people of knowledge, the questions, because you can't look at the Internet, a big mistake reversed is they start looking at websites.

00:40:22--> 00:40:58

You know, some of these websites are really good for the five pillars, the basic pillars, but as soon as you start taking fat wise for specific things that are in Saudi Arabia, for example, just the fact that we're here in a western country with Western laws changes some, some fat was slightly you know, so you can't just grab the situation here. It will kondalilla we've got the the fat was a strange that was canceled now so that that might shed some light on on things, and people might stop looking for things overseas. You know, I don't know humbler. But I think you just get a feeling you know, but I was getting so frustrated because people weren't telling me they weren't being straight

00:40:58--> 00:41:12

with me. They didn't want to say something like are like they wouldn't even say Sophie's believe this. Tamblyn. He believed this share believe that it's just politics. It's just politics. They say, well, it's not just politics. It's not really

00:41:14--> 00:41:19

you need to tell people exactly what happened. There's no there's no harm in doing that. You know?

00:41:21--> 00:41:27

Yeah, you do not. I mean, I do. I had the same situation like people would be afraid to tell me that you have to pray when you become more.

00:41:30--> 00:41:37

But I just send me It's really nice. If you pray. Really good for you. What do you think we can take it?

00:41:38--> 00:41:44

To me? Thank you, for these people. Come up and tell you Oh, you can't do this. You can't do that. Hold on, hold on, hold on.

00:41:45--> 00:41:46

That's not good.

00:41:48--> 00:41:55

I didn't really have time to look at this, you know, it's no good. This is not what Mohammed Salah who.

00:41:57--> 00:42:02

In my time, it was all very, very laid back and probably a bit too casual.

00:42:03--> 00:42:46

Sister Catherine, you're gonna tell us a bit about your probably your biggest struggle as a revert. Okay, you're I can relate to everyone struggles? And in answer to the question about authentic knowledge, when the internet started having classes, there was a thing called power talk. And there was lots of people teaching on power talk. And I ended up in class that was actually quite deviant, I didn't realize and it was my first opportunity to seek knowledge because part of the abuse I went through was also preventing me from actually seeking knowledge. So I went through the first eight years without knowledge pretty much just bumbling my way through. And so what I did when somebody

00:42:46--> 00:43:28

suggested that maybe what I was learning might not be that great. I make dua to Allah to guide me to the authentic knowledge and protect me from the deviant knowledge and subpanel on my journey from there on was beautiful in terms of knowledge. The next person I got to learn from three power talk was Dr. salia, Salah, who was the son in law, they meet and we were doing all the telecom and I was learning about the hadiths in detail and it was the most beautiful. So my journey after that was was beautiful in that that way. And as far as the identity side of things, I had the same problem I was meant to be Moroccan not Australian. And when I hadn't even really been to Morocco it in the

00:43:28--> 00:43:47

beginning didn't even know what that means. So I'm trying to be something I have no clue what it is. And the actual Ramadan where I had my cooler with we had an Iftar where it was a revert revenge rebellion, where we had all food that was not their food because our taste buds deserve to be respected.

00:43:51--> 00:44:02

None of that was really I suppose my toughest challenge and also I did relate to modems, one about being disconnected from the family being the oldest and daughter as well.

00:44:03--> 00:44:18

That was made to Yeah, the same and I had all the hopes in me and then I decided all their dreams and hopes. Yeah, well I was on the fast track to a very high flying it career and ever since being a Muslim I've pretty much lived in poverty. And so

00:44:19--> 00:44:47

the my family see that that was Islam, but it wasn't it was that, you know, I had to I had to make. Well, firstly, it was abuse, but eight years because there was every form of abuse. And that I would have to say was my hardest struggle. My family didn't know how to support me because they just felt at a loss because they didn't understand. My mother even went to see the mom. And that's for my mom that is a desperate measure to try and see how they could support me.

00:44:49--> 00:45:00

I went to the email with my eyes split open and was told not to go back until he says and so he went to see my then husband and then said it's okay to go

00:45:00--> 00:45:39

back. Now, I don't have an understanding that when they send you back, you've betrayed their trust, and you get punished even more. And so I was punished even more when I went back. And there's not an understanding that when you're in domestic violence, it can take at least seven attempts to leave before you successfully leave. And so, before I finally got out of there, everyone gave up on me. Like in the old my family, my family never completely gave up. They just didn't know what to do. Because it was outside their territory, they didn't understand what was the right thing to do, they were worried that make matters worse if they interfered.

00:45:41--> 00:46:02

But as far as the owner was concerned, they took it that because I kept going back, I don't care going back from the manipulation, they don't understand that that of all the people were supporting me were told, leave her she doesn't want to leave. Right. So I guess to me, that was my biggest challenge. In the end.

00:46:05--> 00:46:45

What motivated me to finally leave was my I was so sick, I had shut down completely emotionally, I was holding on spiritually by a thread. And physically I was, I was on the brink of dying, because I couldn't breathe. And the I was on maximum medication. And my doctor said to me, who's going to care for your kids if you die, he had never talked to me about domestic violence. But I think she had figured out that that must have been what was going on, because I just about, I always had to drag all my kids with me to the doctors, and I just about passed out on her floor when I would get there. And so what started then was six weeks where I shut everyone off, I had made a few friends at that

00:46:45--> 00:46:58

stage. And that was what empowered me to realize I had to do something as well from an Islamic perspective that it wasn't okay. And, and those friends actually also reported to the system and it took the system a few weeks to kick it in as well.

00:46:59--> 00:47:36

And so I just cried into my prayer mat for six weeks, I don't know what to do, I have to do something, I can't die, I need to be here for my kids. And Allah said, Will Allah guided me to moving to where my dad lived in coffs Harbour. So we thought I had asthma, I believe I just had, like a permanent anxiety attack at that stage because I don't have asthma anymore. And asthma isn't something you just don't have. So I think that they're not breathing wasn't asthma, it was like just like a constant anxiety attack. Like I just didn't get to stop having an anxiety attack. I just couldn't breathe.

00:47:38--> 00:47:42

And so I'm moved to coffs Harbour, and that was

00:47:43--> 00:48:22

so smooth, like, he agreed for me to go because at the time when I was leaving, I thought it was just to get my health back. And I said, My dad has asked me he never uses his puffer and coffs Harbour, let me in the kids go there for three months so I can get healthy. And so he just let us go. And then that was the beginning of it all unfolding and me realizing that there's no way I can be in that marriage anymore. That in fact, being in that marriage was displeasing to Allah because all the time that the spiritual manipulation was that if I left I would be displeasing Allah. When I started to see that I if I stayed I would be displeasing Allah shifted things for me. So I'd have to

00:48:22--> 00:48:58

say that would top it as my toughest challenge. Definitely a huge challenge and handler that you stuck with man because it's a very, it's a huge trial for a sister to go through. Like, one of the posts I had when I originally set up my Facebook page. You know, one of the things I said is, like a revert comes into Islam, like a newborn, like a child comes into the world. You know, you come in with this, you know, it's like you just see Islam is just the way that a young child sees the world with absolute or isn't it? You know, and you've got all the high hopes of a beautiful religion and you've read all those books and it's supposed to be this amazing, you know? And then if you have a

00:48:58--> 00:49:20

bad experience like that, a lot of people get really shaken in the man but the reality is we've got to always remember that this happens inside Islam it happens outside Islam, it's not something unique at all. It's it happens in every we know that now. Like we know from the statistics in Australia, you know, it's huge, you know, high statistics of domestic violence, but like with it, we better move on so

00:49:21--> 00:49:59

what I want to quickly do now is just each person can you please mention what support you that you are involved with that? If people need it? What can you provide? You know, which because it's, this is a great opportunity for people to know what's out there. So starting off with you sister, my name because you work with nzdf Can you just explain to like, in particular, because we're talking mainly to reverse sisters here that there could be other sisters or brothers even here, but um, what sort of services? You know, can people have especially a particularly thorough review, let's say yes. Okay. hamdulillah with with the nzdf. Like we said, we are a faith based organization and at the

00:49:59--> 00:49:59

same time, we are

00:50:00--> 00:50:05

Also our organization, and in a sense that we do support

00:50:06--> 00:50:10

other small groups that who help

00:50:12--> 00:50:39

reverts, we have had someone in Sydney and even here in, you know, in Queensland, we had a support service for sisters and nzdf, you know, help them with the, you know, with some sidecar to give the lessons we provide the kits, you know, the prayer kits and, and I sometimes also give basic, you know, Islam one on one studies for them and

00:50:40--> 00:50:42

learn how to read

00:50:43--> 00:51:05

Arabic that support we also have a sister support group here that's linked with with nzdf nzdf. Also with if we do have sisters new converts, male female, who reaches out to us. And they are if we if we should just be reminded if we can be reminded

00:51:06--> 00:51:45

of at equilibrium, the ones whose hearts are close to Islam is one of those who are the recipients of Zika. So yeah, so yeah, so how many now we, we we have that and we they are, of course we assess the cases and the assistance is always we have that for them. More. So like I said, more importantly, is that we do support the other groups that give the services. Yeah, they give the lessons give the either predicates teach how to pray. We in Queensland, particularly we have that we have that group we organize, organize that so well.

00:51:46--> 00:51:47

Yeah, so that's what

00:51:48--> 00:51:54

I know for myself. There's been a number of occasions where I've had revert in particular,

00:51:55--> 00:52:12

who've been unfortunately, in domestic violence situations, or drug abuse as well. They want to get out of the situation, but they do not have the finances because, you know, the husband's basically taken all the finances so then they don't know what to do not that I will, you know, I refer them to ended it.

00:52:13--> 00:52:51

Because that that's a way for them to be able to get out of that situation. Otherwise, they're gonna stay in it, like just can't get out. So financial is a big reason for for someone. I've spoken to quite a number of them. And they were actually thinking, you know, this is one of the things I don't know that they're thinking about. They are at that point where, you know, like stick effin said where they know they have to eat, then who's going to support them? exactly where they even? They got no fat like them. often they're not close to non Muslim family and, or they may not be in the picture. And yes, yeah, yes. It's also has it's just very difficult to approach a non Muslim family

00:52:51--> 00:52:58

and tell them what's going on. Because you don't want to uncover Islam, you feel like you got to protect this land if this couldn't happen in Islam, essentially, the pert, you know, yeah.

00:53:00--> 00:53:03

Yeah, your whole life around, and people don't realize, you know,

00:53:05--> 00:53:06

like, people come up

00:53:07--> 00:53:14

to me and pay for me to get up there and paid for me to have a unit up there for three months.

00:53:15--> 00:53:26

I've had a way of getting out, right, so I was just really fortunate my family was there willing to help me? Yes. And how hungry are you?

00:53:27--> 00:54:08

Sorry, you go. Yep. I was just saying that spider, like, ended up wasn't here, like seven years ago, there's not very much you can do. Who can you know, where the chi is administered in such a way where it's, you know, it's national, and it's personal. We do have a lot of charity organizations that come vanilla. Yeah, but nothing, nothing like establishing really the third pillar. Oh, yeah. Right. And I think that was dealing with the community, like it was all being sent overseas, there was nothing focused. So you know, I remember we just had to crowdfund most of the time or other reverts would help out other reverts that will. And one of the biggest complaints I used to get

00:54:08--> 00:54:42

which was horrible was, you know, revert sisters feeling like they had no one to turn to in the community, they had to go to like, St. Vincent DePaul, you know, those organizations to, you know, to go to get furniture or to, you know, all these sort of things. And I don't know what happened with one. I mean, she was just at the end, and I don't know if she stayed nice them or not, but that was, that's, that's a huge thing that can actually cause someone to go to the brink, like they're just absolutely desperate feel like no one, that committee is helping them. And they can just go to the brink like that, you know, yeah. Yeah. That just makes me realize as well, the connection of the

00:54:42--> 00:54:45

cow with our Shahada and with our email

00:54:46--> 00:55:00

yesterday, it was just very, you know, mechanical is a case when you pay your money. Yeah, but now that you mentioned that, yeah. 100 denied it is what nzdf tries to do we save them from? Yeah, you know, they've been

00:55:00--> 00:55:22

Nia needs that at the same time to their inshallah or Amen. So, quick quick, brief briefly Sarah can you just quickly briefly say what you do to support sisters I know you're one open Muslim is in Melbourne we started Melbourne Muslim is with the permission of Allah hamdulillah we started because of that year of depression that I went through

00:55:23--> 00:56:01

I just thought you know what, like, this is obviously it's a common thing it's not it's not uncommon. And the thing is people need friends especially sisters, we need friends we need we need that social base to you know, that's what sisters need and you know, but what Melbourne Muslim nurses specifically does is the sisters, the sisters and we hold out events we've got events every month for well that the play date the evening event, couple a couple of different events but but where my passion lies, is they sisters that their anxieties too much for even walking in the door, they'll get to the door and text me and say are on hold, I'll be around the corner, I'm here I'll

00:56:01--> 00:56:20

come in and get you I say I'll go out and see them for a minute but they just can't walk in you know, they've come from really bad lifestyle, some of them from jail, we've got a lot of jail girls handling law. And you know, handily like Allah guides him He wills and for some reason we're seeing a lot of girls convert in prison in the past couple of years, which is fantastic.

00:56:21--> 00:56:55

But then, you know, the same show longer through like the first four years I couldn't practice I went straight back to making money the way I used to make money. So everything I earned had to be given away when I started practicing the no cars watch it because it just it wasn't Hello money that bought it. So I thought well, if I'm having these issues, then these girls are obviously having these issues too. So this is where like, they we refer to this as traitors, I thought foundation foundation had a lot to do with our business, our organization even starting and do something simple. They was supplying the vouchers for the food for the event. something so simple. You know,

00:56:55--> 00:56:57

they helped me as well, I would not have been able to.

00:56:59--> 00:57:03

I mean, I was living in hotels for those four years $100 a night at a hotel.

00:57:05--> 00:57:16

But to get my own house and get bond and first month's rent with Hallo money. Where was I going to pull that from? You know, I hadn't know where to pull that from so that that foundation helped there.

00:57:17--> 00:57:52

So basically anyone that doesn't have friends, we've got sisters, we've got the whatsapp group for reverts we've got the Facebook group for sort of everyone because what we like to do so regionally hold their hand for the first few months and you know, even up to a year and a half and then sometimes gills relapse and go back to their old lifestyles. And you know, that's fine, where they when they want to come back home. The point is everyone else in the community are they for Muslims, they've got their home, they've got a family, you know, but revokes don't. So when when struggles happen, it's more likely that they're going to leave Islam because they don't have that that support

00:57:52--> 00:58:25

base, you know, so we wanted to just, you know, put that out there that hey, we can be home and we can be your sisters. And, and we actually try to not push any teachings on them. What we do is when people share, we check the authentic authenticity of it. I've messaged you a couple of times on Jamal to you know, check the authenticity of things, and we make sure things have been shared from authentic places. But apart from that we refer go Almagro go to, you know, these sorts of seminars, the really good ones. Yeah, yeah, I humbly

00:58:27--> 00:58:48

haven't used this to Katherine, just very briefly, because we're to wrap up very soon or so. We had an initiative start before everything locked down, which was a national car foundation and Islamic Society of South Australian Australia project here where we were having monthly support groups and monthly talks,

00:58:49--> 00:59:28

for reverts, converts. And so that was a new project when things shut down. And we couldn't continue that in person. I took it upon myself and my organization has started up emotional, spiritual resilience, support or well being support for converts online. And so it's a project that's actually now only three weeks old. We have a weekly support group, which I run, I have eight out of my 10 coaches that I trained last year to do this work are actually converts and they're going to also be a part of supporting emotionally and spiritually. So we're talking about

00:59:30--> 00:59:59

anyone who is at the brink of leaving Islam, anyone who's been through abuse or abuse, anyone who's going through anything, where they're feeling weak, emotionally or spiritually, that we're here to help them and it's online, so it's safe. You can come in here like those are here in zoom at the moment. Never put your camera on if you don't feel safe and just speak to us. So there's a support group. And we have Professor Mohammed Abdullah each month coming and doing a talk and a q&a.

01:00:00--> 01:00:15

For us monthly, and he will be on again on the 20th of May. My support group, by the way is for those in the eastern states, it's on Saturday mornings at 9:30am 9am Central Time, and that would make it about 730. In Western Australia.

01:00:16--> 01:00:54

Every Saturday morning, anyone can come, we've had the most amazing conversations about the things we've been talking about today. And the sisters have all because so far is this is a company that is open, if brothers needs support as well, we're not going to turn brothers away, they could they can reach out to you on Facebook, inshallah, Catherine Jones, you can actually they can go directly to the page back to the future.com, slash converts and all the details of their philosophy, I'll just quickly briefly mentioned about what I do as well. And most people probably probably know, like, so I had my obviously, my underground classes, I've always I've specialized in knowledge. So I mean, I

01:00:54--> 01:01:35

found that was a way of empowering sisters in particular, I've gone the full ball and basically learned my RV can, you know, been able to handle and learn the knowledge from the scholars and then try to pass that down to my sisters. So basically, what I try to do besides my undergrad on the ground work is I've got, you know, you would see my social media platforms where I've made myself available, I've got three basic places, WhatsApp, local sisters, Facebook for like, you know, broader community, and also on Instagram a little bit I don't, I don't enter too much on there. But so basically sisters of want to know their status in his in, in their marriage, you know, what's

01:01:35--> 01:01:46

happening in their marriage, where they stand divorce issues, because it's not always easy to reach to a, you know, a chef, or, you know, personal issues, like, women have got so many different things we go through

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so many different cycles of life for a woman, you know, so they've always got so many questions, and I know, they feel very comfortable.

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Obviously, approaching a female. So that's what I, that's my main thing, and then linking people to services, because people don't know where to go. So because I know, I've been that community for so long and hamdulillah I didn't know if I mentioned I've been a Muslim practicing Muslim for 30 years. But you know, my other time of sort of going around the dark was even a few more years extra, you know, so, because of that I'm well placed to know where what everyone's doing the services they have, and I try to link them up to those to the right people. And then besides that, I've got, um, some resources on my YouTube channel as well. Sisters can refer to that if they want to, you know,

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subscribe to my YouTube channel. I try to put, you know, beneficial things on there. But I've got a big surprise for everybody who's here today. And that is we have I wouldn't be I could not believe it. But the day before yesterday, I got contacted by Courtney, who wanted to take her Shahada must

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have my normal class. I'm like, what are we going to do? I thought, you know what, let's invite it to this revert forum. And she can take a Shahada with us.

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That's Courtney there

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pushing a trolley or something.

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in the middle of the shopping center.

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We will wait to get to your car. Maybe the baby

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will be you to a gun to your car.

01:03:31--> 01:03:38

Yeah. All right. How about we'll just give it we'll just keep talking a little bit here. And then when you're in your car will talk to you again, shall I okay.

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We're all bracing ourselves

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01:03:44--> 01:03:45

the front door so

01:03:46--> 01:03:51

you're no problem. Okay, so I'm gonna do now while we're waiting for Courtney to get

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01:03:55--> 01:03:59

Get the baby out of the house. He's dead. I mean, save.

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Once you're in the car, let me know and we'll

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we'll do inshallah. Okay, so what we'll do in the meantime, I'm just a very quick

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advise you about

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01:04:19--> 01:04:29

what advice would you give them meriam quick overall advice. Okay, just don't do your job. It has it has a parlor life has

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is very effective. And just justice trust in the asking for whatever it is. Take the bad thoughts out. Take the sadness out. Have some food in the fridge, Pamela? anything. Just that just that salute and speaking to your Lord directly? Yeah, to me. Subhana. Allah has been through my family law and have the spirit of

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01:05:00--> 01:05:40

Era. Yeah, the next thing that's that's excellent advice Miriam. Um, the next thing I would suggest find a good group of non judgmental sisters to start holding your hand inshallah beautiful not just on find either like in person. Yeah, yeah, of course I am. Now you have to go online. Just to mention on that note, there's, there's revert sisters in Sydney page, there's, there's a few revert, like, you can just go on to the groups, you know, on those revert says to the CD page, for example, and just, you know, talk to the sisters on there, you know, they're all basically revert. But you've also got like what Catherine mentioned, but, but Catherine, what would you be your quick advice? Oh,

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well, I agree with both the sisters because for me, there wasn't anyone to reach out to. So it was just a lot and every single time unless a portal opened all the doors for me. I mean, I wouldn't be here still a Muslim if he hadn't, you know, because

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this and there to actually physically help me. Yeah, definitely, with what system I am to never underestimate the power of the law. Never underestimate how much Allah is there for you never give up on your face, my shoulders, that's the most important thing. And then you've already now got four people in front of you, you can reach out to us reach out for those people who are not going to judge that are here to listen and help you in any way whatsoever. So those who are in Adelaide, reach out to me, you've got three different cities here, too. Now. I think two I think you all understand too, that I've always found more, being more comfortable talking to like a reverb because

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we've all we've all come from that life. We know what's there. We're not we haven't grown up with the roses, you know, we've seen, you know, and we've all come from cloth, you know, so we know what's out there. You can't shock us with anything you've tell us because we've seen it all. You know, I think that's the difference. Whereas with maybe a born Muslim, they you know, they get shocked, like, if you told them certain stories, it just like, it's just like totally shocking. They've never been exposed to things like that. Whereas for us, it's like, Yeah, well, we know about that already. And you know,

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just for my advice, I really believe in being proactive. I really feel that,

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you know, you can like without meaning to sort of develop like a bit of a victim mentality, you know, you start feeling sorry for yourself. I can see I did that in many cases, you know what I mean? I didn't think about well, how could I change my circumstances you don't have to say so I do believe that, um, as a revert, really, I would say that your survival will pretty much depend on how proactive you you try to be, you know, in trying to keep reaching out, you know, if that group doesn't work out for you go to another group. They're not the only group. There are other groups. There are other people, you know what I mean? You just got to keep on going until you have lots of

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hands on inshallah we'll guide you keep on making it until you find the right people. You know that that's probably the best advice I can I can I can give.

01:07:57--> 01:08:01

Yeah, Scorsese, so if we don't maybe do some art anyway.

01:08:02--> 01:08:03

Okay, where did Courtney go now?

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Maybe she lost her section in the car park or something? Yeah, she might have

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Okay, well, while we're doing that, how about we take some questions brother below. You want to maybe give us some questions from sisters or she might be coming if you can't she comes in. We'll take her Shahada.

01:08:26--> 01:08:30

Yep, so chill while we while we wait.

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We'll just I can just see the messages coming through from sister Courtney. So just went on her phone there. But if there are any sisters or brothers on any of the social media platforms, including Facebook and YouTube, feel free to ask your questions in the comment section. There's been a few

01:08:55--> 01:08:58

there's been a few messages of support already.

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Yeah. Sister sonica mentioned is saying Michelle water clear. That's That's amazing. This is with regards to sister Courtney. taking her Shahada, Sameera nibandh and I do apologize if I'm not pronouncing this correctly.

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01:09:16--> 01:09:17

Lisa, Bernie

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bata how exciting.

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happy tears from Laura. Say I'm not going to try.

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01:09:32--> 01:09:35

Miami shell there has been has been a few people

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showing showing support

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I'm sorry.

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I'm so sorry. But I actually need to go on to 30 minutes late.

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Not not an issue.

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So anyone got any questions?

01:10:04--> 01:10:13

No questions in at the moment. But if anybody does have a question you can feel free to take we can take some quick questions now if anyone who would like to just ask a quick question inshallah.

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I guess

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I guess I have a question.

01:10:33--> 01:10:38

Yeah. Being being somebody who has to reflect sister in laws most

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thing that they journey coming into Islam

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and sort of getting used to the getting used to the family, I guess the family life overall.

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My question would be, you know,

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01:10:59--> 01:11:14

how long did it take you to to embrace what I guess, a traditional Muslim family? or How long did it take you to embrace I guess the the the family structure of what is a traditional Muslim family? if, you know,

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those are the sorts of

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what do you mean by additional Muslim family?

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I think I mean, our family to be quite honest with you.

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Based on your family, some of them are welcoming and some of them are terrible. It just depends. You know, so it will just depend on the dynamic there like some of them, you know, how you hit the mother with the classic mother in law syndrome. If you have that you're not going to fit into the family. But if you have a really nice welcoming, soft, gentle, humble Muslim family then Mashallah, you're very blessed. It just, it just really depends, doesn't everybody?

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I've never had in laws in the country, so I've never ended family. So it was always about trying to create our own culture.

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01:12:07--> 01:12:11

How about yourself to Marian, you've kind of be on your own too, because you both reverse Oh, see.

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As I said, I think I might have mentioned that when I was talking about struggling with my identity for a very, very long time, it, it just took a long time to work out what where I'm supposed to go with that, you know, being a Muslim, being an Australian, it took me a long time to kind of figure that out until I realized, wait a minute, I can still be an Australian, I can, you know, have all my Australian culture that I used to do, but it just obviously, within the, within the boundaries of Islam. And so once I got to that stage, I felt so happy and content and, and peaceful, I don't try to you know, I just make the food that I feel comfortable with. Now, I don't try and compete with,

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you know, Arabs with their food or, you know, try to be like them, you know, I just tried to be myself, let's see, and I feel I feel happier for it.

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I think that there is something to be said for

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those who are marrying a convert revert to accept that they should be allowed to bring some of their culture into the family as well that it shouldn't be about us having to drop our culture, culture that we've married into, because for my parents, that was heartbreaking, they felt I would have rejected, especially because I was known as a DJ back then that I'd rejected the name they gave me that I rejected the way of life they brought me up here. And they just did not know how to relate to me. And so that's why they disconnected not because they didn't love me, but or they just didn't know how to how to deal with it, and hurt them a lot. And it wasn't necessary to do that. But it was

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made clear to me at the beginning that that's what I had to do. I had to drop all of that to the extent that it was like if I wasn't behaving Muslim enough, I was called Catherine but if I was behaving Muslim in that house called Khadija which was exactly why I claimed the name Catherine back again because I am Catherine and I was always okay as Catherine and I didn't need to change myself to be a good Muslim Islam just came to polish me not change me. And so I'm very happy to have claimed My name back again as part of that process that Jamal was talking about of just finding my own identity again hmm yeah, I think you might think as as a revert, you'll often go through you may

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go through

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a stage where you just don't you don't feel like you're always good enough like you didn't feel you can never be as good enough as a born Muslim or never as good enough as an Arab I think that was the big issue for me for a long time. You know,

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but anyway, okay, so I think we might wrap it up I think comes its sister Courtney.

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Unfortunately so what is that she will be contacting me again later on today. I'm really sorry but you did get to see her all so you know that inshallah she's got a heart in the right place, but it's just she's you know,

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The shops with the baby crying and stuff it's a little bit difficult for her right now. So it will make up to her that you know she can get through her own challenges because we all know what it's like to go through challenges is reverts and once you start your life as a revert, there's gonna be inevitably there will be challenges it's never going to be a smooth ride to Jana, it's going to be a rocky road that you're gonna have to go through a lot of different you know, a lot of different you know, experiences May Allah make it easy for us and keep it fast inshallah I mean, so we'll wrap it up there and May Allah reward you all for coming I asked Allahu taala that you all benefited a lot

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from this you know meeting and if you're interested in having something like this again, let us know and shall we may be able to meet up again and we can share our two cents on some other issues relating to rubrics because there's so much to talk about but we tried to keep it all pretty much you know, centered on Ramadan and aid this time. But we can always come back and talk about marriage experiences or you know, there's a lot of things we can talk about.

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All right, and shall everybody so as salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah castles of panic alarm will be Hamdi. cnor shadow Allah Allah Hi.

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Beautiful panelists. I really appreciate your time and everybody who came melee would you all and ask Allah that you all got up listed we need your amen for this gathering inshallah. So, let's go