Sub: Reverted to Islam Assalamu alaikum. I’m Kanna, from Japan and working as a teacher. I started thinking of converting but before making the decision, I have a question and I will appreciate you if you would answer this. (if not, would you able to forward this email to someone knowlegeable?) The question is as follows. Which is better, 1: to convert under the situation which seems I cannot practice some duties of Islam (praying on time, and wearing hijab), or 2: to wait for the time of conversion until the situation to be ready for me to practice Islam properly? I ask this question because I found it would be difficult to become a good muslim when working in Japanese school. Teachers rarely have break (= no assured time for prayer), need to teach music (= doing what should be avoided in Islam), are meant to eat the same meal with students for food education (= recommended to eat something haram), and should dress just like other Japanese people. (Wearing hijab has once prohibited as a result of a trial where a muslim teacher lost a suit with a public school. Therefore, it would not be permissible to wear hijab in other public schools too.) Now, I plan to change my jobs in few years so that I might be able to find the situation that I can practice Islam without restrictions at work. However, as I asked, I am still not sure which should be better, to convert soon (but cannot become a good muslim), or later (and become a good muslim InshaAllah). May I have words from scholars, or any ideas based on authentic sources, please? Thank you so much in advance. Wish you all are blessed by Allah. Kanna


All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad , is His slave and messenger.
Islam is the true religion of Allaah and embracing it helps the person attain happiness in this worldly life and the Hereafter. Allaah, The Exalted, concluded the divine Messages with the religion of Islam; accordingly, He does not accept His slaves having a religion other than Islam. We have underlined some of the proofs which indicate that Islam is the True religion of Allaah in our Fataawa88906, 88051 and 111063.
Whoever dies while following a religion other than Islam has lost the life of the world and the Hereafter. Hence, it is obligatory for the person to hasten to embrace Islam as one does not know of the possible hindrances that one may encounter, including death. Therefore, there should be no procrastination in this regard.
As for work, it should not be an obstacle that prevents you from embracing Islam or delays it. Allaah, The Exalted, may bless you with a good job opportunity once you embrace Islam. Even if we assume that you would not find a job except one that involves committing prohibitions, the Islamic Sharee‘ah has set rules and exceptions to relieve Muslims from hardship in (similar) exceptional circumstances, such as deeming a forbidden act allowable in case of necessity or pressing need.
It should be noted that a Muslim is obliged to adhere to the apparent devotional rites and duties such as performing the prayer on time; however one can perform them secretly and even combine two prayers when a need arises, like combining Thuhr and ‘Asr prayers and combining Maghrib and ‘Ishaa’ (i.e. performing two prayers together in the time of one of them).
The Muslim woman is obliged to observe the Islamic Hijaab; however, if she is in need of work and earning a living because of having no one to provide for her and the only job available involves committing a forbidden act like taking off her Hijaab, there is an exception for her to take off her Hijaab at the workplace and wear it once she leaves it. This is because Islam promotes easiness.
To conclude, it is worth noting that dying as a non-Muslim is not like dying as a Muslim sinner. A non-Muslim will abide in the Hellfire eternally. However, even if a Muslim enters the Hellfire because of sins, one will be punished for them but will not abide therein permanently. Moreover, Allaah might forgive the latter's sins, save such a person from Hellfire, and admit him or her into Paradise. Verily, there is no room for comparison!
Lastly, we advise you to hasten to embrace Islam and everything will be better, Allaah willing. Allaah, The Exalted, says (what means): {And whoever fears Allaah - He will make for him a way out * And will provide for him from where he does not expect.}[Quran 65:2-3]
Allaah Knows best.