Ibraheem Greeves is an elderly British man who witnessed the creation of the state of Israel.
In this talk, he expresses his feelings about Islam and how he embraced it after trying several other religions.
“Since I was a child, I was always searching, I really didn’t know what I was searching for, but my search took me to many places.
It started with Christianity, then I converted to Catholicism, Buddhism, all kinds of religions; and for some reason I felt they weren’t right.
Then I met Muslims many years ago; I didn’t even know they were Muslims. One day, I went to an eating-place in Basra, Iraq. I wondered into this place, then I sat down and someone gave me a spoon. There were people sitting at the table, but no one was eating. It was strange, and I had the sense not to eat although I was hungry.
Then, the adhan (call to prayer) came; but I didn’t know it was the adhan. After the adhan finished, they all started to eat and talk. It was Ramadan of course, but I also didn’t know what Ramadan was.
I’d always been attracted to that part of the world… Back in 1948, all the media was always anti-Islam, there was a lot of propaganda at the time of the creation of Israel about the “brave Israelis” and what they were doing, creating a “paradise”…
Because I lived with Muslims, I didn’t believe what was said in the media about them, I knew that Muslims are not like that, they were always kind to me and friendly.
After I read about Christianity and the other religions, I started to read the Quran. At first I wasn’t that impressed, in a way it sounded all doom, and things like that… Then I put it down, and then I read it again… I wasn’t able to meet many scholarly Muslims back then to teach me about Islam and the Quran.
I went to Tunisia, one Friday; I sat in front of the grand mosque having a coffee. I suddenly noticed that there were a lot of people going into the mosque, a lot of people more than usual, I didn’t know why but their numbers were increasing. Suddenly I just thought that I wanted to be with them, I really wanted to be walking with them without even knowing why.
I went into the mosque and asked someone there about Islam. He spent a lot of time talking about Islam, and it all made sense to me. It was the first time for me to be in a mosque, I was attracted for just being there, and I took the Shahadah there.
Back in England
Then after some time, I came back to England and I lived in a place where there were more Muslims.
The Muslim community have supported me very well as far as they could, but I had special needs as I couldn’t hear properly, but I got what I needed to understand at that time…
I was desperately wanting to know about Islam, I was thirsty to know more about Islam. I don’t speak Arabic but of course the English is very important… Since I had the stroke, I know more about Islam, but now I can only read a little bit, a small amount, and that’s how I educated myself about Islam, bit by bit.
My belief is that we want what Allah wishes to give us, and I’m very grateful for what He has given to me, Al-Hamdulel-Allah”