Bismillah walhamdu lillah
This complaint is one that is probably more common from the sisters. I know for me personally, when I first decided to be serious about the deen, I had this tremendous desire to attend lectures, take notes in my Islamic notebook and be surrounded by other serious Muslims. I would make sure not to miss any of the events or lectures that were offered by my college MSA. But when it came to attending stuff outside the small perimeter of the campus, the answer from my parents was usually a “no.” At one point, it became such that the answer was even a “no” for events on campus! I mention this not to complain, but because I am pretty sure there are other sisters out there who are going through something like this. I felt like everyone else had it so easy. They probably just had to “tell” their parents they were leaving, not even asking them for permission. This is how I used to think.
This post is not so that I can tell you that it gets better. Even though it does get better, assuming you meet certain conditions (patient perseverance, among other things) inshaa Allah. But if your family is like mine, it will still take some time. And when you are someone who has just been granted hidaya, you can’t help but feel sad when you think about all the time you spent doing wasteful and/or impermissible actions. Now you just want to be left in your room to read books and articles and pray and make du’aa. The last thing you want to hear me say is, “it will take time.”
So hear this: Sisters (or brothers, if you have a similar problem), if you are sincere about learning the deen, then stop fighting with your parents so that you can attend the local classes and sit in the gatherings. There are plenty of resources online that we can utilize, and the person who fails to take advantage of that which is available to them, needs to question their sincerity in seeking knowledge. Is it really to gain a better understanding of Islam, or is there some other motive involved? I know for me, sometimes I just wanted to go out there and see for myself that I wasn’t alone. That there really were other “practicing” Muslims out there. But honestly, that reason was/is not enough. I am telling you, you’re not alone. There are others out there just like you.
Now that we understand that, begin to take advantage of what you have available at your fingertips. You can order Islamic books online instead of going to the bookstore. You can listen to online lectures and full series on websites. You can even attend classes and earn degrees, right out of the comfort of your home! It really is an amazing time that we are living in, in terms of technological advancements and using it to learn the deen.
This doesn’t mean that you should give up attending Islamic courses and gatherings of dhikr. Don’t completely isolate yourself from the community. Attend, but with moderation. And continue to make du’aa and appeal to your parents. But don’t sit around and wait for them to say “yes,” when you know that you have other outlets of Islamic knowledge that they would be more accepting of. (You can check out my right-side bar for links that will lead you to what you are in search for inshaa Allah.)