I like the idea of a faith thread.
Religion, IMO, leads directly to extremism, which is extremely dangerous.
I, indeed, was raised Roman Catholic. My family was 'religious' in the sense that we went to Mass very regularly and I took part in all the Roman Catholic rights ... Baptism, Confession, Confirmation and, since my parents did not want to pay for private Catholic schooling, Catechism classes up until grade 8.
As I grew older it became apparent that going to Mass was something that my family did before going to brunch. We were 'religious', but did nothing that followed the teachings of Jesus (PBUH) ... taking care of the poor, feeding the hungry and loving your fellow-man.
With what is to follow I mean no disrespect to my Christian Brothers and Sisters.
I began to question many of the basic teachings of the Christian church, especially the Trinity concept and none of the answers I received (primarily ... 'that is where faith comes in') were satisfactory. I began to drift away from my Catholic roots and from Christianity as it is widely practiced now. I did a lot of research and found that the whole Trinity was decided on quite long after the time of Jesus (PBUH) and that there were groups of Christians, known as Believers, who follow Christianity as it was originally practiced ... living a Christ like life.
I was strongly faithful in my belief in God and I believe that I had a very good relationship with Him, even without being part of any Religion.
Over time I became familiar with other faiths and slowly came to the realization that Islam (true Islam that was practiced by Abraham, Jesus, Moses, Muhammad ... PBUTA) was very closely aligned with my beliefs. A defining moment on my journey was the war in Bosnia. I had not realized that there were many Muslims there and now they were being killed.
In September 2010 (at the end of Ramadan) I said my shahada (the Islamic profession of faith ... I bear witness that there is no god, but God and I bear witness that Muhammad is a messenger of God). I said it a few times ... the most important first one was between myself and God, as it should be. Then I did it twice more ... once on the phone with a good friend and foster son ... a Bosnian Imam ... and again at a local Mosque here in Halifax. There is no official ceremony and the first one between myself and God is viewed as the most important and the others were optional.
My journey is not complete by any means. In many ways it is still just beginning.
I have witnessed many things that have turned my off of Islam as it is widely practiced these days, but I remain a 'muslim' and am trying my best to follow real 'islam'.
Salam / Peace.
Edited by Sabres Fan In NS, 21 December 2016 - 11:13 AM.