Chinese Woman Embraces Islam and some Questions

In Brunei it is not rare for Chinese people to embrace Islam, so one comes across such stories quite often. Given below is a news story from Brunei.

Chinese Woman Embraces Islam
By Aemy Azlena

Bandar Seri Begawan – The Muslim community in Brunei welcomes another Chinese convert into its fold as 25-year old Siti Khadijah Abdullah, known as Melly, formally converted to Islam on Friday.

The conversion ceremony was held at the residence of Hj Jadi-Hj Salleh in Kampong Lambak Kanan.

Present to perform the conversion ceremony were personnel from the Islamic I)akwah Centre, lead by an officer of the Conversion Unit, Rokiah Mohammad.

Siti Khadijah Abdullah, the only member in her family to have converted to Islam, revealed that she always had an interest in the religion since she was a young girl and learned about it in school and her everyday life.

According to Siti Khadijah Abdullah, the teachings and practices of Islam fascinated her and opened her heart to accept the religion.

Following the conversion ceremony, Siti Khadijah Abdullah will take part in a programme by the Islamic Dakwah Centre aimed at guiding her to live her life as a Muslim which is expected to start sometime in January. — Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin

What interests me however is how much of this is an isolated phenomenon and how much of it impacts the larger society. One of the main obstacles for many people to convert is the close association of Islam with a certain ethnic group e.g., with Malays which is quite unfortunate. Also many converts change their name which is another reason why Islam seems ‘alien’ to some of their relatives. One reason for changing names is that the new converts want to adopt more “Islamic” names. Since many of them are new to Islam they do not know that in Islam one is not required to change one’s name in Islam. All names that have a good meaning are Islamic names. They do not have to be Arabic names. Chinese, Persian, French, Welsh, Urdu, Quechua names are as Islamic as Arabic names.


9 responses to “Chinese Woman Embraces Islam and some Questions

  1. Very true brother 🙂 I did not change my name, Irving, which means Friend of the Sea in old Nordic. Or Isaac , the son of Prophet Abraham,or Ishaq, derived from the word love :).

    Happy New Year to you and your family. May Allah bless you all with health, happiness, and ever increasing love and wisdom. Ameen.

    Ya Haqq!

  2. I am a Brunei Muslim. I remember a Chinese friend. All members of her family are devout Buddhists. I grew up with her and share sweet childhood memories. I dont know if I did influence her in anyway because we always share each other’s beliefs and traditions when we grow up, but she she converted to Islam just a few months ago. My friend said that she was and will always be fascinated with Islam. She still keep her family name though she choose to use her new Islamic name. She said having an Islamic name means more to her, just as a way to make herself nearer to Islam. Her family accepted her as a Muslim. She now plans to do her pilgrimage…

  3. Brother Irving, Ameen to your duas., welcome to the blog and thanks.

    Ramble_On, Welcome to the blog. That’s a wonderful story. That reasoning also makes sense and in Islam even if people change their name they are strongly encouraged to retain their last names.

  4. do you know why coverts have to change their name?

    its because it is required by law to change the name in Brunei….

    do you know why majority of those women or men converted? beacuse they want to get married to their Muslim partner, hence to be happy, they have to convert – change name and religion….

    do you know the benefits of being a convert in BRunei? free house, free passage to Mecca and other welfare benefits…

    do you know that discrimination occurs and your name doesnt sound “muslim” or Malay in Brunei… hahha…

    sigh.. what is life without discimination… peace…

  5. I am a muslim convert in Brunei. I don’t change my name but instead add Muhammad in front of my previous name. Those who without using his/her brain to the idea of muslim convert, changing his name will certaintly often come into negative conclusion like they are abide to law and so forth.

    Changing/converting one’s own name is just like changing/converting one’s own religion. If you are muslim, so everything that affects your life should also be in practice so what about your name? How about Christian? If someone convert to christian, do they not change/convert their name in a christian way? For example, I convert my name adding Muhammad in front of my previous name that i had before and on the other hand christian convert also add a christian name(such as Daniel, Jacob and so forth) in front of their previous name.

    Why do you think that majority of those women or men converted just because they married with muslim partner? Are you them? Are you judging them by looking? Do you know the Truth? I don’t convert through this manner and most others that you haven’t come across doesn’t go through this manner. Anyway, there are some people going through this manner but this is their choice and they have the choice to reject. We are not just blindly accept things. Why we are given brains? Don’t you know how to think? This is the same example that people nowadays judge people’s act with religion. Just because one’s own act of terrorism, you blame every muslim terrorist. Don’t you have brain? Are you not intelligent enough to think? Take another example Hitler, He had a big cross in his palace, he is christian and if i were you, i would blame christians as hitlers. But of course, I have brain i don’t judge other christians same like him. People are different. Only God knows everything. We are not God. We are only human.

    Its very funny that this concept of anyone convert to islam receives many many benefits. All those people who didn’t know the islamic teachings will come into this conclusion. That is all what you will think of. Prior to investigation, you already jump into this conclusion. In Islam, the benefits they received is a basic needs and to ease and facilitate their daily routine work according to the teachings of islam. Why do you think muslims convert given house? Do you know? Of course in your mind just unjustly benefits. Those given a house perhaps they unable to build a house yet. If they stay in a flat or a rented house, do you think its their own house? Islam teaches to donate and assist brothers or sisters of Islam. Moreover, they were given tickets to Mecca. Why not to Paris, England, Australia and other enjoyable countries? I will let you think yourself on this.

    Discrimination occurs? By the way, I am not Malay but most chinese and some other race(my own race unfortunately)will have a cancer/disease that becoming muslim is becoming Malay so i just let it be what they think. Do you know that this has showed that these people started the discrimination. Why regard someone who are not born Malay and when he/she chooses Islam, they regard them as Malay? Who started it? That is why, before simply put forth your dissatisfaction, why not investigate the truth? In Islam, muslim people regard everyone as son of Adam even you.

    Story about me

    I convert at the age of 15 but i don’t trully practice Islam. This is perhaps i just accept by someone who offers me Islam. After 11 years as i gain more mature, I started to investigate truth of Islam and I finally really practice Islam. Quran is really holy. It contains Truth, guidance, peace and etc. Its sort of a human manual. You can create many manual and guides but nobody can create human manual. Only God Allah Subhanna Wa’taala can. Prophet Muhammad task is to deliver the message. He is human like us also. But he is special since he is pure, great Iman and so forth. We are not like him or any other prophets cause our Iman not as high as him.

    Something to tell to those who don’t believed in God

    In science, we always know that chicken comes from the egg, egg comes from the chicken, chicken comes from the egg, egg comes from the chicken. Hold on there, this will go on and on. Likewise for human and other living things. So where it is come from in the first place? It just there? It just appears?
    We are given Brain, so think carefully prior making any foolish judgement.


  6. I’m fascinated with Brunei and everything I read about it interests me. I wish I could find a way to move to Brunei, where I could learn the language, eat spicy food, and learn to practice silat, lol.

  7. Knowledge needs to read up more and hopefully be enlightened on the real Islam. Who knows in the very near future becomes the next Imam in the local mosque, Insyallah. My prayers brother.

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