I Am a Convert to Islam and My Fellow Muslims Do Not Return My Salams. What Can I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: I attend a weekly study circle in the Muslim community in my area, and I say salams to my fellow Muslims. They constantly don’t return my salams. Although I try not to let it bother me, this is something disheartening. How should I respond to this in a proper manner?

Answer:Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

Giving salams

Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said: “When one of you arrives at the gathering, then give the Salam, and if he is given a place to sit, then let him sit. Then when he stands, let him give the Salam, the first is more worthy than the last.” [Tirmidhi]

Anas narrated that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “As-Salam (peace) is one of the Names of Allah Almighty which Allah has placed in the earth. Therefore give the greeting among yourselves.” [Al-Adab Al-Mufrad]

Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “You will not enter the Garden until you believe and you will not believe until you love one another. Shall I tell you something the doing of which will give you love of one another?” “Yes, Messenger of Allah,” they replied. The Prophet said, “Make the greeting common practice among you.” [Al-Adab Al-Mufrad]

Please continue to give salams, as it is part of our sunnah, a means of building love, and a reminder of one of Allah’s beautiful attributes. Keep your intention for Allah Most High. Model good character as a means of encouraging others to good. Doing good acts is harder when others do not reciprocate. Persisting in good acts is a sign of your sincerity, inshaAllah.

Good opinion of others

Hamdun al-Qassar, one of the great early Muslims, said, “If a friend among your friends errs, make seventy excuses for them. If your hearts are unable to do this, then know that the shortcoming is in your own selves.” [Imam Bayhaqi, Shu`ab al-Iman, 7.522] Excerpt from Making 70 Excuses for Others in Islam – A Key Duty of Brotherhood by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

I am not sure why they are not returning your salams, but try to make excuses for them. Don’t blame it on yourself. You aren’t doing anything outrageous or strange by giving salams. Please rest assured that you’re doing the right thing.

Convert to Islam

“And obey Allah and His Messenger, and do not dispute (with one another) lest you lose courage and your strength depart, and be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are As-Sabirin (the patient ones).” [Qur’an, 8:46]

I am sorry to hear that you already feel excluded. This is a common challenge for converts to Islam. It is so it is easy to look inwards when others behave coolly towards you. Take heart that nothing is lost with Allah; He is aware of all the good that you do, and He knows your sadness. Take this as a lesson in developing patience with Allah and His Creation. Persevere in doing that which pleases Him, and trust that He will send you an opening.

Please perform the Prayer of Need and ask Allah to send you good companions, and to lift sorrow from your heart. Take active steps to seek out friends who increase your love for Allah and His Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace). Good people can be found in good places.

That being said, remember that Allah is your Closest Companion, and He will never let you down.

Please refer to the following links:

I Became Muslim and Am Now Lonely and Depressed. What Can I Do?
A Reader on Patience and Reliance on Allah
What Are Some Prophetic Supplications That Can Help Me Deal With Trials in My Life?


Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani