How Long Does It Take To Convert to Islam? A Timeline

Converting to any religion is not a decision that’s easy to make. There are many things you need to learn, do, and understand before you can become a convert. In Islam, the process Is quite simple, actually.

How long does it take to convert to Islam? In order to convert to Islam a person should declare his faith by saying: “I bear witness that there is no true god except God (Allah), and I bear witness that Muhammad is the (Final) Messenger of God.” However, to take that step a person takes from 6 to 12 months to understand Islam and acquire all the knowledge he/she needs about it before taking the big step.

If you want to know how a person converts to Islam, and how many people convert each year then keep reading.

How to convert to Islam?

Converting to Islam is not hard, it’s rather easy. All you have to do is to declare your faith by saying the Shahada. You can do so alone or Infront of other Muslims if you want. But before you do so, here are some steps you must do first.

Understand Islam.

Before you convert to Islam you should first make sure that you truly understand Islam, and what it means to be a Muslim. As a Muslim you should believe that there is only one God, Allah is the only God, and he created the heavens and earth.

You should worship Allah and seek to do only good deeds to please him. You should also believe in all the prophets that Allah has sent us and that the prophet Muhammad was the last messenger Allah has sent and there will be no other prophet after him.

From the holy Quran, you will learn that all prophets were calling their people to Islam, and they were all Muslims. Muslims call God “Allah”.

Islam also tells us that both the Bible and Torah were indeed the true word of Allah. However, Islam also tells us that people have heavily modified them over the years that Allah considers them lost.

So, you should also believe that the Bible and Torah we have today are not the real versions and that the only holy book that is in its original state is the Quran.

Don’t Follow Sects

As a Muslim, you should follow Allah and the prophets’ instructions, and it’s better not to tie yourself to any sect.

As long as you’re following Allah and his prophet then you are a real Muslim, so avoid following any Bidah, if the prophet and Allah didn’t command us to do so then it’s a Bidah.

“Indeed, those who have divided their religion and become sects—you, [O Muhammad], are not [associated] with them in anything. Their affair is only [left] to Allah; then He will inform them about what they used to do.” [6:159][2]

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: “Beware! The people of the Book before were split up into seventy-two sects, and this community will be split into seventy-three: seventy-two of them will go to Hell and one of them will go to Paradise, and it is the majority group.

Read the holy Quran.

To understand more about Islam, you should read the Islamic scripture which is known as Quran.

When you read the holy Quran, you understand the truth of life and how we were created. You could also read the prophet hadiths. Haiths refers to what the prophet said and did in his life. When you read the hadiths and Quran you will understand Islam.

Talk to an Imam.

It’s normal to have questions and to clear it all out you should talk with a scholar that you will find them in a mosque.

They understand the Quran and Hadiths, therefore they can greatly help you with anything that you don’t understand and can clear any misunderstanding that you might have. The Imam can give the advice you need and tell you if you’re ready to become a Muslim or you still need to learn more before you take that step.

Declare your faith.

Now that you read the holy Quran, hadiths and learned about Islam and you see that you are ready to become a Muslim then the only thing left is to say the Shahada. But before you each this step make sure that you understand the Islamic believes and know how to be a muslim.

The Shahada is an oral declaration of faith, and it’s said as follows:

“Ash-hadu anla elaha illa-Allah wa ash-hadu anna Mhammadur rasul-Allah”

In English, it’s recited as follows:

“I testify that there is no other god but Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is Allah’s messenger.”

Now that you said the Shahada you have become a muslim. The first part of it which says “Ash-hadu anla elaha illa-Allah”, not only means that there is no other God but Allah, but also refers to not letting anything be more important to you than worshiping Allah.

The second part which says “wa ash-hadu anna Mhammadur rasul-Allah” means that you believe that the prophet Muhammad is a messenger sent by Allah and that he is the last prophet sent to us. Now that you have become a Muslim you should follow the Quran and the prophet teachings.

It’s not just about the Shahada

Also, you should know that saying the Shahada without believing in not doesn’t make a person become Muslim. To be a Muslim you should believe it and every word of it from all your heart.

You should try your best to do only good deeds and stay away from committing sins like killing, stealing, lying, or anything bad, and you should follow the rules of Islam which is known as Shari’ah.

As we said you don’t have to recite the declaration of faith in front of anyone and you can do it all alone, however, to become legally a Muslim you should have two Muslim witnessing your Shahada or in front of an imam.

When you are ready to tell your family about the change, be ready for some mixed reactions. You can learn more about what happens when a family member converts to Islam here.

Do you need an imam to convert to Islam?

No, you don’t need an Imam to convert to Islam, you can do it alone, all you have to do is to declare your faith by saying the Shahada as follows.

“Ash Shadoo an La ilaha illa Allah, Wa Ash Shadoo ana Muhammadan rasoolu Allah.”

The translation of which is:

“I bear witness that there is no true god except God (Allah), and I bear witness that Muhammad is the (Final) Messenger of God.”

However, to understand Islam you better talk to an Imam and ask him about anything that you don’t understand.

How to convert to Islam for marriage?

First of all, you shouldn’t convert to another religion just for marriage, you should believe in the religion you are converting into.

Here are what you should do to understand Islam before you convert to because remember when you convert to Islam you should follow the beliefs of a Muslim and live as a Muslim.

Before you convert to Islam you should first make sure that you truly understand Islam, and what it means to be a Muslim.

The Belief in one god

As a Muslim you should believe that there is only one God, Allah is the only God, and he created the heavens and earth.

You should worship Allah and seek to do only good deeds to please him. You should also believe in all the prophets that were sent by Allah to us and that the prophet Muhammad was the last messenger sent to us and there will be no other prophet after him.

From the holy Quran, you will learn that all prophets were calling their people to Islam, and they were all Muslims. Muslims call God “Allah”.

They believe that Bible and Torah were lost over the years and the version that exists now is not real and was greatly modified. The only holy book that is preserved in its original state is the holy Quran and it hold the truth. 

Be A True Muslim

As a Muslim you should follow Allah and the prophets’ instructions, and it’s better not to tie yourself to any sect. As long as you’re following Allah and his prophet then you are a real Muslim, so avoid following any Bidah, if the prophet and Allah didn’t command us to do so then it’s a Bidah.

“Indeed, those who have divided their religion and become sects—you, [O Muhammad], are not [associated] with them in anything. Their affair is only [left] to Allah; then He will inform them about what they used to do.” [6:159]

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: “Beware! The people of the Book before were split up into seventy-two sects, and this community will be split into seventy-three: seventy-two of them will go to Hell and one of them will go to Paradise, and it is the majority group.

It’s okay to have Questions

It’s normal to have questions and to clear it all out you should talk with a scholar that you will find them in a mosque. They understand the Quran and Hadiths, therefore they can greatly help you with anything that you don’t understand and can clear any misunderstanding that you might have. The Imam can give the advice you need and tell you if you’re ready to become a Muslim or you still need to learn more before you take that step.

Now that you read the holy Quran, hadiths and learned about Islam and you see that you are ready to become a Muslim then the only thing left is to say the Shahada. But before you each this step make sure that you understand the Islamic believes and know how to be a muslim.

The Shahada is an oral declaration of faith, and it’s said as follows:

“Ash-hadu anla elaha illa-Allah wa ash-hadu anna Mhammadur rasul-Allah”

In English, it’s recited as follows:

“I testify that there is no other god but Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is Allah’s messenger.”

Now that you said the Shahada you have become a muslim. The first part of it which says “Ash-hadu anla elaha illa-Allah”, not only means that there is no other God but Allah, but also refers to not letting anything be more important to you than worshiping Allah.

The second part which says “wa ash-hadu anna Mhammadur rasul-Allah” means that you believe that the prophet Muhammad is a messenger sent by Allah and that he is the last prophet sent to us. Now that you have become a Muslim you should follow the Quran and the prophet teachings.

Also, you should know that saying the Shahada without believing in not doesn’t make a person become Muslim. To be a Muslim you should believe it and every word of it from all your heart.

You should try your best to do only good deeds and stay away from committing sins like killing, stealing, lying, or anything bad, and you should follow the rules of Islam that is known as Shari’ah.

As we said you don’t have to recite the declaration of faith in front of anyone and you can do it all alone, however, to become legally a Muslim you should have two Muslim witnessing your Shahada or in front of an imam.

How did Islam start?

One of the largest religions around the world is Islam it comes as the second-largest religion after Christianity, with more than 1.8 billion Muslims. It started in Mecca, which is known now as Saudi Arabia.

The beginning of Islam was when the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) got his first revelation and he shared the words of Allah he received.

The prophet and his followers were persecuted and not many people believed in Islam, so they had to leave mecca and went to medina in 622.

The people in the medina welcomed the prophet and the followers of Islam and the Islam religion spread. When the number of Muslims grew, they were able to return to Mecca in the year 630 to become the center of Islam. Then Islam grew and reached many people and places in the middle east.

The Caliphate

After the prophet’s death started the period known as the Rashidun Caliphate, where the Islam empire ruled the middle east. With time the Islam religion spread beyond the middle east through conquests to reach the big cities like Baghdad, Jerusalem, and Alexandria. Also, the North and Western parts of Africa were conquered taking control over much of the Byzantine and Persian territory.

The third Caliph Uthman created a version of the Quran to keep the words of Allah spreading for many generations so that people can read Quran at any time without having to memorize it. Also, many mosques were built for people to worship Allah.

After which was the beginning of the Umayyad Caliphate, where the Islamic empire grew to its peak and reached parts of Asia, India, Northern Africa, and parts of Europe. To unite the people and cultures, a common currency was made and the official language was Arabic, and also measurements were standardized. This led to the golden age, during which the Abbasid Dynasty took over by overthrowing the Umayyad.       

How do live as a Muslim?

Muslim is a word used to call a person or someone who believes in Islam, they surround themselves with the religion. and believe that there is no god but Allah and only him alone. 

As a Muslim, you’re requested to pray the Fard (obligatory) prayers, fast the holy month of Ramadan, and give zakat to the people in need. You should also believe in the five pillars of Islam and they are:

  1. Shahada – the act of declaring your devotion and belief in Allah (SWT) and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)
  2. Salat – the act of praying five times a day
  3. Zakat – the act of giving charity
  4. Sawm – the act of fasting during the sacred month of Ramadan
  5. Hajj – the act of undertaking the pilgrimage to Mecca at least once

Here are the beliefs of every Muslim:

  • Here are the main things that every Muslim believes in:
  • There is only one God, and there is no Allah but him.
  • Muslims believe in the angels like the angel Gabriel who brought the revelation to the prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him.
  • They believe in the holy book that is known as Quran that was revealed to the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him)
  • Muslims also believe in all the prophets that Allah sent to us like Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad.
  • They believe in the judgment day and the afterlife, as everyone will be judged for the good and bad deeds, they have ever committed in their lives no matter how small it was.
  • Belief in divine decree. Muslims believe that is all-powerful and merciful, nothing ever happens without Allah’s permission.
  • Muslims pray five times a day and read Quran. The five prayers are:
  1. Al-fajr: dawn, before sunrise
  2. Al-zuhr: midday, after the sun passes its highest
  3. Al-‘asr: the late part of the afternoon
  4. Al-maghrib: just after sunset
  5. Al-‘isha: between sunset and midnight

How many converts to Islam per year?

According to The Huffington Post, “observers estimate that as many as 20,000 Americans convert to Islam annually.”, most of them are women and African-Americans.

Conclusion.

To convert to Islam a person takes from 6 to 12 months to understand Islam and acquire all the knowledge he/she needs about it before taking the big step. 

To convert to Islam all you have to do is to declare your faith by reciting the Shahada which is an oral declaration of faith, and it’s said as follows:

“Ash-hadu anla elaha illa-Allah wa ash-hadu anna Mhammadur rasul-Allah”

In English, it’s recited as follows:

“I testify that there is no other god but Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is Allah’s messenger.”

However, before taking that big step you should first learn and understand what Islam means and the beliefs of a Muslim, here are what you should know and do before declaring your faith:

  • As a Muslim you should believe that there is only one God, Allah is the only God, and he created the heavens and earth. You should worship Allah and seek to do only good deeds to please him. You should also believe in all the prophets that were sent by Allah to us and that the prophet Muhammad was the last messenger sent to us and there will be no other prophet after him.
  • As a Muslim, you should follow Allah and the prophets’ instructions, and it’s better not to tie yourself to any sect. As long as you’re following Allah and his prophet then you are a real Muslim, so avoid following any Bidah, if the prophet and Allah didn’t command us to do so then it’s a Bidah.
  • You should read the Islamic scripture which is known as Quran. when you read the holy Quran, you understand the truth of life and how we were created. You could also read the prophet’s hadiths. Hadith refers to what the prophet said and did in his life. When you read the hadiths and Quran you will understand Islam.
  • It’s normal to have questions and to clear it all out you should talk with a scholar that you will find in a mosque. They understand the Quran and Hadiths, therefore they can greatly help you with anything that you don’t understand and can clear any misunderstanding that you might have.

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