My Journey To Islam – Yvonne Ridley Q&A
Channel: Yusha Evans
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Episode Transcript ©
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the first question
my first question, since
this is what
have you thought
stories as a movie, or TV show,
or a short story, you know,
people know exactly some of the
Any slump, the one thing that is taught me
is to be tolerance.
by being more tolerant, I've become much more thoughtful and less reactionary, to,
to things that have happened in a certain distance of becoming an officer.
Some non Muslims out there think that they've got every right to come up, interviews me, Berkeley,
and be quite insulting.
This, this has been quite an eye opener for me, because
all my life has been able to move around quite anonymously. And when I was a practicing Christian, as I said to some friends, I got away with it for years without knowing that I was a Christian.
I remember the day that I took my Shahada, after I said, My declaration of faith, I,
a friend said to me, now, your troubles are really going to start, you will be challenged. And I certainly have and
quite surprised at how tolerant
I have to
say random strangers coming up.
And being quite
rude at times. But I try and use that to turn around and
and talk to them about Islam just in the way the brother mentioned. Mark my story
about the Taliban was in a book and it was published
and sold 20,000 copies when I started to move towards Islam and the publisher started getting orders
for the 1000s of copies from Islamic bookshop. So you think that the most often publishers will be delighted in such large orders. And when they realize that was moving towards Islam freight, the print runs stopped.
So I'm looking for a new publisher.
If anybody wants to
send me the purpose of
having a vision, having a
purpose, to be creative,
and to do something.
But as far as my story
I don't believe
What happened to you?
reaction when you work on? What was the reaction that you were there for seven days?
And what was your reaction of your family relatives and friends?
I really don't know what
what what is the Foreign Office we're doing about my detention. I know that my mother was giving press conferences every morning on the night and
and when I was captured, it was right at the beginning of the Labor Party conference which Alastair Campbell Tony Blair spin doctor has been
carefully preparing for four months. And suddenly this angry grandmother from County Durham was taking all the headlines and they were trying to shut her up, jack straw called her and said, You've got to stop doing these broadcasts. You're endangering your daughter's life when in fact, she was humanizing my case. And,
her daily press conferences were were quite amazing. When I was handed over.
The Taliban were told that they could only I wish that was written. I was not quite sure what language it was sorry, or pashtoon. But it is a written note, from Mullah Omar saying that I had to be handed over only to the British, and the British didn't turn up for the handover. And so after many delays when I got over No, cross, no mouth. There was nobody there from the British Embassy. They did catch up that evening. And
I stayed in,
in the high commission in Islam about
that, that evening and woke up the next morning to listen to Donald Rumsfeld on television saying we now have air superiority over Afghanistan. And I just thought when did the Taliban have an Air
As for the reaction of my family and friends, my family were delighted that I stopped drinking, stop smoking and have stopped clubbing and been a party girl and they were really delighted for diapered embraced Islam. And this was the new reform until I put on a hijab. And it was like, What have you put that on for and you're going to become a fanatic and
and the reaction was really negative once I put on the pit job, but it's
you know, it's, I got used to the idea of wearing it, it took more than a year for me to to do that. And
and I just said to them, you know, it's an obligation Take it or leave it. I know what my obligation is. And you know why it should have pieces of material alter the way that you think about me, and it was it's quite interesting.
And for anybody who doesn't wear the job, whether you're a Muslim or not, it's interesting to put one on for a day and see the challenges that that Muslims face. And it is quite quite an experience.
And make us feel that we are really very bad.
We all know
we need to
we like to do things
like to ask you
Yes, they do. I've been back to Afghanistan many times. And
the last time I was there, I still work as a journalist and I don't go and buy this with the military. And I usually find the easiest ways is just to get a local driver and
just put the burqa back on again and move around Afghanistan. And
on the last trip, we got caught in Crossfire between the Taliban and the
the local police, and this is on the road to Gardez. And the drivers stopped the car. And I've been on one of these the see hostile training courses. And they say that the first thing you do is get out of the car and run away from the gunfire. And what I did, I got out of the car and heard the machine gun fire and it was actually coming from the Afghan police. And I run away from one set of machine gun fire that must have been while the Taliban reloading in a way that is a bit behind his ability, only to bump straight into some Taliban soldiers. And they started shouting at me, I didn't know what they were saying. And then my cameraman running round following me. And they got even more
agitated when they saw him. And then my guide came running around. And he shouted, it's okay. The The, the filming, and she was captured by the Taliban and she converted to Islam martial law either seen this in costume, and they'd heard of me and then they got quite excited and then got on the phone to somewhere else and finally had the Taliban press officers and limitied is called
phoned my guide on his mill violence said is that really evolved really with you? And he said yes. And he said, Well, you won't have any problems from us and Have a safe journey and
telling you the truth about us. So, that was quite a nice experience, but always have somebody with you who speaks a language.
From the bottom, you know there
wasn't the other edge.
Can you particularly
by Christian or that religion and second person you
have analyzed this
particular rate and why not?
Islam and why not
acting upon the teaching of Islam
To listen for questions,
a lot of different than
I don't really like to group everyone together. So when we're talking about Christianity,
Christianity Trinitarian Christianity,
When it comes to Christianity, why Christianity is one of the problems is because of the very simple fact about Jesus Christ.
Because for us, what they say about Jesus
and his worship.
And for them, what we say about Jesus is
where he's at Jesus
in media, and resources, the various weapons they use against you and things are not playing the
things, to redirect them away from the truth is really
A lot while he himself called towards us
as a whole, all when I follow your resume, Sam, what they do better than I will be distributed.
to everybody, no, multifaceted, but to the very outset of that all revolves around us.
I mean, when a human being falls away from the truth is because of a lack of purpose. You know, unfortunately, anytime you see someone who has ever given this
father, they really have lost sight of their purpose, which is to when they need a creator. Because of that purpose in mind, you can see the Most Gracious route to that destination, because every road needs their
abs, all routes, they need to stand in front of the
right way to make that journey. And that is
that they have lost that vision. And
then all of a sudden,
the only question that will be asked,
What role did you take to
the province rise? I mean, you can't generalize 14 days into the Egyptian revolution. I want to talk to you a square and saw my own eyes, Christians and Muslims coming together. And
this was This, to me was something wonderful. And, of course, the Egyptian revolution will go on and on to achieve many things. But to me, sectarianism died in tackiest square, the day that Christian stood around Muslims to protect them while they prayed. And then a few days later, on the Sunday, Muslims returned the compliment and stood around the Christians to protect them while they prayed. And
that whole revolution I think, will be remembered for the the death of sectarianism in Egypt. And I just hope that
that will spread right across the world. What has also emerged now,
and this is quite shocking is that the interior minister in Egypt has now been arrested after it emerged that he was running a dirty tricks unit in Egypt, which caused the horrific bombing of the Coptic church. And, you know, the Minister of the Interior and
Mubarak ran to the media and accused muslim fundamentalists of from from Palestine have been behind the bombing of the Coptic church on New Year's Eve. We now know that that was a big lie, and that that was actually carried out by the various governments
So I don't think in Egypt, any way Christians and Muslims will ever allow anybody to create that fitna that mischeif between them. And they come together as one. And that's one element of the Arab revolution that I really hope spreads quickly across the world.
To take questions from the audience,
my parents, my grandmother passed away, I wasn't really in contact with my mother.
have a heart attack.
So I kind of,
you know, I really kind of
the same time, I was coming from a perspective that I did not know how
to argue proposition was impossible, I had no idea.
And once that took place in a very,
very soon, and he very, very honored some of the work that I do get
loose, I'm never going to see him again. But I've
just, I hope that you
didn't have to ask.
I have the best of
We have a long way.
To go course is
greatly encouraged in, in the UK, into Europe, about the future of Islam, because one of the things that I have noticed is the stronger that we the more that we are attacked, the more that we are squeezed, the more
poison that is poured into our direction, the stronger we become as Muslims. And I think that it's we're entering
almost a renaissance for Islam at the moment, and I think that it's
that somehow even the worst things that have happened to Islam have actually turned around to the, to the benefits. I mean, from the horrors of 911. A lot of Westerners like may thought What the hell is going on in this religion and started reading the Holy Quran? To find out why does it promote violence, why dissidents, and they read it and it's been absolutely bowled over by it. And that is why today, Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world. And I think that what is happening in the Arab world,
the people's revolution, it's not enough.
Islamic Revolution. But people can only face down bullets, and can only look down the barrel of a gun if they believe in God. And I think that
there's a lot of Muslims in the Arab world that have been able to rise
because of the faith
in God, and when you get people who are mightier than armies, and mightier than the weapons that have been pointed out that it makes you realize just how strong we all can be when we are united. And I'm hoping that when all the
the revolutions when the people come together to draw up their new constitutions and their new charters, that there will be an Islamic flavor in in there. But as I say, I think we're entering a very, very exciting period for Islam, and we all have to hold on tight to the rule. And then at the end of the day, you know, it is what we do in this life, this is very, very short life. It's the blink of an eye, when you look at things in context and history, what we do in this life will count for the most important phase, which is our next life. And so, you know, I think we've got everything to look forward to, and the great challenges to prove,
you know, that our worth for the next slide
comes to the US.
I'm a, I'm an enduring optimist, at the same time, and for sure, I know that the future holds the sample.
But at the same time,
I know that the more pressure that is put on the Muslims, that they are beginning to slowly come back to the organization that we need something
system, not gonna work.
Today, not working. And one thing that we have learned from history, unfortunately, at this point, is that we are navigating learn about history, that is very important. And the main thing we learn
very much. And it's my real sincere hope, that with all of this turmoil taking place, all over
America very well.
In California, in Santa Clara, in Southern California, with protests, from children and families,
I hope with all this pressure that we return back, because the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon very
satisfied with the transactions in the gaming industry
and chasing cows and gain only what you can
then a lot were placed upon you humiliation, and it will not be removed from
the team. So this is my heart open reality is that all these revolutions that are taking place, my opinion, is that if what comes in light of that is not teaching.
You're ruining rolling a lot longer than this guy did is incorrect, because to place and pull people in harm's way to not establish the truth.
will not be pleased unless we submit
and implement as I was
talking to you
that he did not send his message.
to excel. It looks to me in front of an older way of life.
That I really hope I'm
in control of everything.
But it's my six year old
to show the world the beauty of STEM and the pure teachings of this religion to the world and
to introduce the original exam with complete integrity
as a result,
not be afraid to
connotation that you have
a just society that upholds the rights of all human beings
on the border that we
protects the orphans and the children, and
everyone has it Do
I have an edge over another pig? What's wrong with you? Right?
That way of life would be wrong to each
other. I mean, just almost insanity. And this is
just our society. And I don't mean to say that comes from any other way of life is a very, very dangerous.
have to say that any other way of life is acceptable to live under other than a very, very dangerous,
very dangerous or violent
And final question
from the audience.
Probably the, for me is one of the first lessons that I learned as a new Muslim and others to fear no one and nothing but a lot. And how many nuts total belief and a total trust in God will protect you?
In so many ways? And a lot of you might think, Well, yes, you know, I figured out and
it's just that ability to, to know that.
To put your faith wholly into Allah, and,
and that has,
has given me personally,
the courage to be able to stand up and say things and do things and
and just know that, that I will be protected. I'm not reckless enough to put on a blindfold and walk down a motorway the wrong way, I wouldn't do something like that, but
not having fear. And this is something I guess that I learned as well on this journey to Islam. And I said right at the beginning, that the biggest weapon of the oppressor is the oppressed mind. And if you have
no fear for anything, or any one of us are well, then you are a free person, you are truly free and nobody can intimidate or make your life and misery because you know, you've got the big fellas there for you and
and so that that's that's the one thing that I would say go home tonight and fear nothing and no one but oh
yeah, asking for short, concise advice.
That I have to refer to a statement
and he asked him to give me an advice that I will not need to ask you
It's and it won't be sufficient enough to
give me something that will not
Say I believe in Allah and
say even even a law firm that
say you believe in a law firm upon that, this is
not only this combat
but to remain firm.
And you know the beauty already surpassed the beauty of remain steadfast is
those who say
Vie remain steadfast that will descend upon them at their death.
Every single human being and death is the worst time that is the most frightening experience that will ever face.
But Allah says about those who say
that those animals who come today will say to them, Do not be afraid and do not have any fear loss nor grief, but option for
that he could
have led Payne's agenda.
So this is going to
worries because we know the
is perfect. His decisions are just