Saturday, September 3, 2011

Can a friendship of a non-believer be kept?

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "There are three characteristics; whoever has them will taste the sweetness of faith: That Allaah and His Messenger are more beloved to him than all else, that he loves a person and does not love him except for the sake of Allaah, and that he would hate to revert to unbelief just as he would hate to be thrown into the Fire." [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
In Islam, it is extremely important to surround yourself with good companions. Companions who will bring you closer to Allah, help you strengthen your deen, and help make you a better Muslim. I never really knew the importance of friendship until I entered Islam.

Friendship to me meant finding the person who shared the same interests as me, someone to call up and complain to about my problems, and someone who would make me feel better when I was having a bad day. I probably wasn't the best friend that one could have, I was often selfish and always put myself first. To me friendship was based on a give and take relationship and I would often take and never really give. I think a lot of it had to also do with trust issues as it was always hard for me to trust others because of past experiences that left me scarred. I had this mentality where the person I befriended had to "prove" themselves to me before they gained my trust and my friendship. I believe it is still a lot like this in the Western society. Which brings me to my topic of friendship of a non-believer, can it be kept?

Since becoming Muslim, it was a struggle for me to keep my non-Muslim friends. I tried hard to balance my lifestyle with theirs but it just wasn't possible. Many of them didn't understand why I couldn't go anywhere without my husband, and many of them would speak to me as if I was still a non-Muslim. It is extremely difficult to maintain such friendships mainly because I chose to leave the person I was behind as well as the lifestyle I was living. I never took myself seriously, so when I became Muslim a lot of my friends still didn't take me seriously. I was extremely serious about my new life and I wanted to share more about my experience and my decision. Some of them didn't take much interest and some did. I then began to contemplate, is it really worth it trying to keep these friends in my life? Friends who still revolve themselves around materialistic things, friends who didn't care about God or the Hereafter, friends who still believed that the haram things were halal? I slowly started to distance myself from the friends I knew would not bring me closer to my Creator, from friends who treated me like the same person I used to be, and from friends who had no interest in my religion. It took a while for me to decide if it was the right choice, I would keep trying to introduce the topic of Islam to many, but many would just listen to a few words and then began to speak about their worldy life. Perhaps Islam has opened my eyes to what the true importance of life has to offer. Not just parties and fashion magazines and looking "hot". Perhaps Islam has made me realize that the true friends in your life are supposed to be like the companions of the Prophet (pbuh). They should stand by your side and support your beliefs and trust you and your judgement. They should believe in you and believe that the decisions you made in your life would benefit them and the world as well. It's hard to find a good non-believing friend these days as they are blinded by the shaitan. I've tried several times to give them dawah incognito but over and over again I realize just how blind and deaf they are. My non-believing friends in my past life were great people, and for the sake of Allah I respect them, but also for the sake of Allah I have chose to left them for they will not bring me closer to my Deen, they will not help me be a better Muslim, and they choose to be blind when I am trying to help them see. I really can't express the challenges I had to face when having a simple conversation with my non-believing friends. I felt like I was having a tug-o-war with myself and the shaitan and keeping these friendships would just steer me back into my past memories. I want nothing to do with my past life and the importance of building my own "Sahabah" is priority. I don't want friends but I want a sisterhood where I can help my sisters become better Muslimahs while helping them become closer to their Deen. I don't ask for anything in return as I only ask that Allah be pleased with me.

So can a friendship of a non-believer be kept? Well, maybe, but for me?
That is a definite, no.

11 comments:

  1. I was talking about this very thing earlier today on Twitter. Sometimes when we change people dont want us to change, they want us in the darkness with them. Since I converted I lost many a friend, and it has been hard to make Muslim ones, every one I mmet is kind but as for a sister I can really share with so far I have been blessed by a handful thanks to Allah and I so needed them to help make the transition easier.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Assalamualykum sister, thanks for the drop by and so nice to hear from you!
    I agree, after becoming Muslim, I really realised that no non-believing friend of mine was ever a "real" friend. I too am having the same challenge to find new sisters who I can really feel close with, I guess it's almost just as hard to find a good sisterhood just as it is hard keeping a good non-believing friendship. Hope to hear more from you inshAllah.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yes subhannalaah, I agree with the points you brought up sister khadija. Sorrounding ourselves with good companions is extremely important. The Propeht said, a person is upon the deen of his friend, so be careful of whom you take as friends. If I reflect my personal life, the only reason why I would keep connections with non-Muslims is to do dawah and nothing else. <3 love u all my sisters for the sake of ALlah

    ReplyDelete
  4. I agree with those points as well but don't you feel a little sad that because that person is in the Dunya and you disconnect that it is almost as if you are leaving them to rot there. I mean maybe you were the only light in their life the one peice that keeps them from going to far. Save a soul save and you save your soul I think that is a Hadith

    ReplyDelete
  5. True, an I have thought about this many times. Each time I would sPeak to some I would think ok maybe next time they will stop talking about theft ya. As I've stated in my post.... I've tried and maybe yes I should keep trying but when I am trying to forget my past and move forward and the non believers are the ones who are holding me back from moving forward ... That's when it's time to reevaluate.. For Allah says, He will choose who he wants to guide and He will leave whoever He chooses to leave astray. Also in the qur'an it says that we can only show them but the blind and deaf can't be forced to see or hear. I would rather introduce Islam to non believers who I do not have a past with.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Theft ya= dunya... iPhone typo !

    ReplyDelete
  7. I personally don't have any problems like these, alhamdulillah. My friends are different faiths, but we all can go along.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing your experiences :D.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sister in Islam,

    MashaAllah, Allah had blessed you with Islam. I had been a muslim for almost 30 years. I used to be Catholic before. All I can tell you is that you should take advantage of your strength. You have a little bit of all what you had learned in your life. Islam is going to enrich your life, but at the same time you can keep all the goods things you have. Take Islam one day at a time and always remember not to mix culture with religion. Don't make your expectation too high. I kept my christians friends. I have muslims friends. Live by example, do not try to convert them every second you see them. You would not like someone else telling you that your faith is wrong. I think that with RESPECT you can accomplish a lot more.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sister in Islam,

    “The believers, men and women, are Awliyaa’ (helpers, supporters, friends, protectors) of one another; they enjoin (on the people) Al‑Ma‘roof (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid (people) from Al‑Munkar (i.e. polytheism and disbelief of all kinds, and all that Islam has forbidden); they perform As-Salaah (Iqaamat-as-Salaah), and give the Zakaah, and obey Allaah and His Messenger. Allaah will have His Mercy on them. Surely, Allaah is All-Mighty, All-Wise”

    [al-Tawbah 9:71]


    “O you who believe! Take not My enemies and your enemies (i.e. disbelievers and polytheists) as friends, showing affection towards them, while they have disbelieved in what has come to you of the truth (i.e. Islamic Monotheism, this Qur’aan, and Muhammad), and have driven out the Messenger (Muhammad) and yourselves (from your homeland) because you believe in Allaah your Lord! If you have come forth to strive in My Cause and to seek My Good Pleasure, (then take not these disbelievers and polytheists, as your friends). You show friendship to them in secret, while I am All‑Aware of what you conceal and what you reveal. And whosoever of you (Muslims) does that, then indeed he has gone (far) astray from the Straight Path”

    [al-Mumtahanah 60:1]

    “Indeed there has been an excellent example for you in Ibraaheem (Abraham) and those with him, when they said to their people: ‘Verily, we are free from you and whatever you worship besides Allaah, we have rejected you, and there has started between us and you, hostility and hatred for ever until you believe in Allaah Alone’”

    [al-Mumtahanah 60:4]

    But this does not mean that a Muslim cannot interact with them in a nice manner that will encourage them to enter Islam, so long as that is within the guidelines of sharee’ah, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

    “Allaah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion nor drove you out of your homes. Verily, Allaah loves those who deal with equity”

    [al-Mumtahanah 60:8]

    The Muslim should strive hard to call non-Muslims to Islam through all possible permissible means, in the hope that they may benefit from that and respond, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

    “Invite (mankind, O Muhammad) to the way of your Lord (i.e. Islam) with wisdom (i.e. with the Divine Revelation and the Qur’aan) and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better. Truly, your Lord knows best who has gone astray from His path, and He is the Best Aware of those who are guided”

    [al-Nahl 16:125]

    “And who is better in speech than he who [says: ‘My Lord is Allaah (believes in His Oneness),’ and then stands firm (acts upon His Order), and] invites (men) to Allaah’s (Islamic Monotheism), and does righteous deeds, and says: ‘I am one of the Muslims’”

    [Fussilat 41:33]

    Muslim narrated in his Saheeh (2674) from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever calls people to guidance will have a reward like the reward of those who follow him, without that detracting from their rewards in the slightest, and whoever calls people to misguidance will have a burden of sin like the burden of those who follow him, without that detracting from their sins in the slightest.”

    ReplyDelete
  10. I do not keep my non believer friends as I stated in my post above. Is there a point to keep friends who talk only about " i saw this guy and he was hot, i went partying last night, i'm went to the gym and saw so and so and he was with so and so" ...Do I really need that? especially when I asked them already to not talk about those things? I'm glad you keep your Christian friends. I would only keep non believing friends in hopes to call them to Islam and that is really the only reason you should keep them. Or at least if they don't decide to take on Islam, then I remain distance. It is different for everyone and for me, my Islam is more important. I try my best with daw'ah and continue with patience but for me, it's hard to have non-believing friends due to major differences. I don't travel alone wihtout my husband, I don't eat anything tats not halal, I don't swear, I don't watch tv and I dont listen to music. All the non believers I know do all the opposite of these things. So what do you think? I should please them instead of my Lord? I think not.

    It's different for everyone, I keep my friends who help bring me closer to my deen, and in MY opinion and MY experiences, the non-believing friends I had did not do so. Who is more important ? My non believing friends or Allah?
    I don't mix culture with religion, I'm not sure where you are getting that I do.
    I mix Qur'an with Sunnah and thats the only thing I mix together.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am not saying that you mix culture with religion, I am just saying that because lots of my new muslims friends tend to do that at the beginning. Of course if the non believers friends are wild like that then they are not worth to keep.

    ReplyDelete

Assalamualaikum, please be mindful about what you are about to write. Think about it before writing and make sure it is something positive and beneficial, otherwise it will be deleted and ignored. JazakiAllah kheyr ! Sisters ONLY! xo