I honestly don't understand people who call women who choose to become Muslims with no influence from cultures outside their own "brain-washed" as if to do so means they have gone insane or have no capacity to think for themselves.
This always illustrates to me the ignorance of history demonstrated by the person who labels someone who has chosen Islam as their religion as "brain-washed" "stupid" or a "sadist/masochist upon womenkind".
The same people usually fear Islam, as if it is a danger to democracy, is a danger to peace and kindness. These same people usually admire Mahatma Gandhi or Napolean Bonaparte ect... without knowing what historians and indeed historical figures themselves believe[ed] about Islam and what the Prophet Mohammed [peace and blessings be upon him] actually did with his life.
I know alot of people were shocked when Michael H. Hart - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ranked the Prophet Mohammed [peace and blessings be upon him] at the top of the list of the 100 most influential persons in history. Many were angered. Mr. Hart himself wrote: "My choice of Muhummad to lead the list of the world's most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular level."
One of the most influential British historians of all time Edward Gibbon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (and certainly someone not-a-Muslim but with an authority to speak on history [he's the one that wrote "The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire"]) wrote in his "HISTORY OF THE SARACEN EMPIRES" [London, 1870, p.54] about Islam that its appeal is simple: "The intellectual image of the divinity has never been degraded by any visible idol; the honor of the Prophet has never transgressed the measure of human virtues; and his living principles have restrained the gratitude within the bounds of reason and religion."
Another non-Muslim scholar George Bernard Shaw - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia who was most concerned about social issues like class privelage, government, religion, healthcare and education said the following about Islam in "The Genuine Islam" Vol 1. [No. 8, 1936]:
1. "I have always held the religion of Muhammed in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion, which appears to me to possess that assimilating capacity to the changing phase of existence, which can make it appeal at every age.
2. "I have studied Muhammed- the wonderful man and in my opinion far from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the savior of Humanity."
3. "I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving all its problems in a way that would bring it much needed peace and happiness."
4. "I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammed that is would be accpetable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today."
5. "If any religion had the chance of ruling over England or Europe within the next hundred years, it could be Islam."
That's what most Europeans who want to ban hijab and Islam seem to fear I guess, not understanding the state of rule of Islam which Sir. George Bernard Shaw envisioned.
Napoleon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (coming out of the ideals of the French revolution, freedom, brotherhood, and equality) seemed to have the same vision of what was meant by Islamic principles: "I hope the time is not far off when I shall be able to unite all the wise and educated men of all countries and establish a uniform regime based on the principles of [the] Qu'ran which alone are true and which alone can lead men to happiness." [Napolean Bonaparte, Cherfil's "Bonaparte et Islam", Paris 1914].
Now, if you would happen to be one of those people who find Napolean to be a figure who was too war-like for his opinion to be admirable, then maybe what pacifist Gandhi - Biography of Mahatma Gandhi believed and said about Islam and the Prophet Mohammed would be more valuable: "I wanted to know the best of one who hold's today's undisputed influence over the hearts of millions of mankind... I became more than convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the meticulous regard for assurance, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and his own mission..." ["Young India"]
Historian Thomas Carlyle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia in his work "Heroes and Heroworship" states about the ideas behind the prophethood in Islam:
1. "Muhammed (pbuh) was nothing more than a human being. But he was a man with a noble mission, which was to unite humanity on the submission ONE and ONLY ONE GOD and to teach them the way to ideal and upright living based on the commands of God."
2. "Historically speaking, none of these legends [in Carlyle's paper] achieved even a fraction of that Muhammed (pbuh) accomplished. And all his striving was for the sole purpose of uniting mankind for the worship of One God on the codes of moral excellence."
3. "Muhummed (peace be upon him) accomplished so much in such diverse fields of human thought and behaviour in the fullest blaze of human history."
4. "Every detail of his private life and public utterances has been accurately documented and faithfully preserved till today."
Professor J. Masserman of the USA Psychiatric Asssociation has written: "People like Pasteur and Salk are leaders in the first sense. People like Gandhi and Confucius, on one hand, and Alexander, Caesar and Hitler on the other, are leaders in the second, and perhaps the third sense. Jesus and Buddha belond in the third category alone. Perhaps the greatest leader of all times was Muhammed, who combined all three functions".
And surprisingly, for those of you you think Islam suppresses women, this is what women's right activist Annie Besant - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia had to say about Islam and its last Prophet: "Muhammed (pbuh) was a teacher, a social reformer, a moral guide, a faithful friend, a wonderful companion, a devoted husband, a loving father- all in ome... No other man in history ever excelled or equaled him in any of these different aspects of life- but it was only for the selfless personality of the Muhammed (pbuh) to achieve such incredible perfections."
I think only those who have no desire to know history, or who simply wish to live at the status quo and never aspire to anything more noble, can retain the thought that no one of full mental capacity or of any great intellegence or moral character could aspire or wish to become a Muslim, or achieve what Islam sets out for mankind to achieve.
Please forgive me if any of my posts have strayed from those things. I am a deeply flawed human being, may Allah guide me to cleaner and wiser soul, ameen.