"Finding God: A Workshop for new and old converts and friends" is designed to help Muslim converts and friends to negotiate their new way of life. The workshop is free of charge and everybody is free to register here.
What Inspired Me
The idea of this workshop was inspired by writing about issues pertaining to Muslim converts and directly counseling new and old converts. Through my direct interaction with converts and being a convert myself, I noticed that programs directly targeting Muslim converts and their specific needs, questions and issues are rather rare. Therefore, early in my Muslim life I tried to cater to this gap, especially through writing but also by joining several convert circles. However, recently I noticed another phenomenon that makes convert care more difficult. We are living in busy times and everybody is extremely busy. People move places. People get new jobs, get married, have children. I have been studying traditional Islamic knowledge online for the past six years. So, I thought that online workshops for converts that can be accessed at everyone’s own convenience and from everywhere in the world would be a great tool to hopefully reach all these converts that can and want to benefit from such a workshop. Hopefully, the workshop “Finding God” is only the first workshop in a series of workshops to be designed in the near future.
An Outline of the Workshop
In the first part of this workshop, interesting convert stories are supposed to motivate and strengthen our new found conviction. We will feel that we are not alone with our conversion. Through the stories, we will feel more connected with Allah and with our fellow Muslim brothers and sisters. Maybe we see a pattern in the conversion stories that also resembles what we experienced.
In the second part of this workshop, several issues especially concerning converts and friends are discussed. Here again, the aim is to empower and help in the on-going process of conversion. Some of the topics discussed here are: how to deal with one's non-Muslim family, how to find good teachers and guides to support our conversion process and how to go about with all the new teachings and regulations. Suggestions are given how a person can find one’s place in the new community. And the importance about building a strong connection with the Qur’an.
The third part of this workshop is concerned with several important issues in a Muslim's life. We will discuss fasting in Ramadan, love for the Prophet (pbuh) and setting our priorities straight.
Dr. Claudia is a writer and researcher. One of Dr. Claudia Azizah's main concern is convert care. She has been writing on convert issues and councelling converts. She converted to Islam in early 2008. She obtained her PhD in Southeast Asian Studies from the Humboldt University Berlin and Freie University Berlin. In 2017, she was a visiting lecturer at the Humboldt University and from 2018-2019 she was a lecturer at the International Islamic University Malaysia. She is co-founder of the Ulu-Ilir-Institute and permanent scholar in residence and volunteer there.