“What is your religion?” We ask this as if anyone can have a religion. religion belongs to God and not to any individual. Those born into a religion often feel like it belongs to them, and want those who convert into it, to treat it with the same respect and abiding faith as they do. So what if your view of the religion doesn’t match theirs?
I find this to be the most troubling part of studying Islam. I do not believe in the more extreme perspectives, I would even go as far as saying that I’m more progressive than many of the moderates. This angers many who wish I would share their views of the religion. They’re willing to accept that some may stray away from the beaten path but not those who have just chosen the religion. They want to see progressives as “lost lambs”, but what if progressive views are the ones chosen by the new generation of Mulsims? This often shatters their ideals for Islam.
Unfortunately, I was never much of a follower. God is the only one I follow, and those who feel faith belongs to them: they can go to Hell. Religion belongs to God and God alone, and he alone can judge me. Unless and until they are granted knowledge of God’s every desire, they have no right to tell me how to believe.
I hope and pray that those of you out there considering converting into any religion will not let others impose their views on you. Guidance is one thing, imposition is another! Let there be no compulsion in religion!