Islamic Reflections is a blog turned multifaceted Islamic enterprise for everyone.
Inception: 5th May 2016
Goal: To provide authentic Islamic knowledge and resources through visual and written content that allows Muslim Ummah and others to learn & enjoy reading quality content.
IR is recognized by IOU (International Open University) as an organisation that offers a platform for their students to earn community service hours. We’ve been offering CS (Community Service) hours for the past 9 years, Alhamdulillah!
Who Are We?
We are educated homemakers and professionals from different walks of life sharing the same passion to provide quality Islamic content.
Different ethnic groups, nationalities coming together for one purpose—to make the world a better place for the Ummah.
With over 370,000 viewers worldwide!
Here’s Our Story:
Components That Shaped IR
1.Passion: I was always passionate about writing. However, my English Language wasn’t strong as it was the third language that I had to learn from school. As a Kenyan with Yemeni roots, it was apparent that my grasp of English wasn’t flawless. Crafting stories was a challenge, and I often sought aid from my elder sister, Fatma, for imaginative compositions. I grappled with the idea of fabricating tales on paper; my reality didn’t match the scenes I was encouraged to depict. While others wrote of waking up to birdsong and swaying trees, my mornings echoed with the bustle of a lively street and the clamor of Tuktuks. Why couldn’t I simply be authentic?
2.Love to Share from the heart: However, this obstacle didn’t deter my determination to master the English language and expand my vocabulary. Upon completing high school, I was resolute in my quest to retain the linguistic skills I had cultivated over the years. I delved into consistent practice, writing heartfelt Islamic reminders on various subjects and sharing them within a WhatsApp group.
3. Support from friends and Family: My international friends, that I share a decade-long friendship with, shared these reminders on their social media accounts. The responses flooded in, resonating with numerous individuals and eliciting substantial feedback on how these messages positively impacted their lives.
4. Plagiarism: This disheartening trend began years ago when individuals started claiming my words. They would plagiarize my content, posting it on their social media pages and within groups, deceitfully claiming ownership of the work.
5. Sincere Advice: A dear friend suggested I pursue writing for a website as a hobby to further my reach and secure copyrights for my work. At that time, I was juggling teaching Islamic and secular subjects while pursuing my studies at IOU. I had no clue how a website runs let alone how to be in an organization.
6. Rejection: Following my friend’s suggestion, I applied to an organization. Unfortunately, my experience there was disheartening. My writing style, focused on touching hearts while presenting factual information, was met with repeated criticisms. Despite requesting guidance to improve and expressing my determination to learn, their response was consistently dismissive and harsh. That’s when I learnt “ Don’t try forcing yourself to open a door that keeps shutting on you!”
7. Doubts: Their harsh and rude feedback left me deeply frustrated. I began questioning the quality of my writing, wondering if my friends’ support was merely rooted in our friendship rather than the merit of my work. This internal conflict took a toll on me, resulting in a months-long break from writing. My motivation was shattered, highlighting the destructive power of negative comments on one’s psyche.
8. Embracing New Opportunities: There was a moment when I reflected on my writing, reminiscing about the joy it brought and the requests from friends for my reminders. Perhaps having a door slammed in your face is a sign to seek out and open another door of opportunity!
9. Self-Taught: When I sought guidance on starting a blog, a friend pointed me toward various YouTube channels that proved immensely helpful. Keenly following the steps laid out in those resources made everything crystal clear for me! Alhamdulillah!
10. Opinions of Others: Remember, people’s opinions do not shape your identity or dictate your path. Your personality remains yours to define, and your choices are yours to make. If you’re determined to achieve something, nothing should hinder you—it’s your journey, not theirs. I encountered numerous negative comments from individuals who deemed my blogging efforts as a waste of time, doubting its potential market response. Some even questioned if I was being compensated for my work. Yet, their opinions did not sway my dedication or vision.
11. Istikhara & Duaas: I chose not to heed their comments; their negativity fell on deaf ears. Having experienced the consequences of dwelling on a closed opportunity for months, I opted for a different approach. I prayed Istikhara, seeking guidance from Allah and placing my trust in His wisdom.
12. Inception: 5th May 2016, Praise be to Allah for granting me the strength to persist, disregarding discouragement and moving ahead. My mother’s gentle yet persistent reminders to keep progressing and evolving, regardless of challenges, have yielded blessings, Alhamdulillah! The website proudly bore my initials, BM, in its complete URL. If you had asked me about URLs nine years prior, I would have likely stared back at you with a blank expression. 😶
13. First Viewer: My first viewer hailed from Japan—an inexplicably magical moment. The sheer excitement and wonder that someone from afar engaged with my website left me awestruck. It was a captivating introduction to the incredible world of websites. 🤩
15. Community Service Hours: I successfully applied to have my website contribute toward my community service hours, and Alhamdulillah, it was approved by IOU.
16. Collaborative Growth: Witnessing a friend’s need for assistance with their community service hours, I extended my support. While I focused on crafting articles, she dedicated her efforts to writing poems. As our collaborative efforts bore fruit, I found myself reapplying to IOU to extend this opportunity to other students seeking community service hours.
17. Resolute Commitment & Concentration: Following the approval in 2018, an increasing number of my friends expressed interest in joining, along with a few who have now become my trusted sisters. Our bond transcends words, and I’m immensely grateful for this connection. Allahuma Baarik!
18. Transition from Solitude to Teamwork: Over the years, BM underwent several name changes until we settled on IR. I found myself at the helm of a team despite lacking formal training in management or leadership. Suffice it to say, my learning curve was steep and filled with challenges. Alhamdulillah for IR BOARD to make this a success and less overwhelming.
19. Edge of Surrender: My lack of expertise wasn’t the end, but it did mean I couldn’t manage every aspect independently—from verification and editing to publishing and advertising. The workload became overwhelming, leading to sleepless nights as I worked with these tasks alone. Transitioning from freely expressing my thoughts to writing professionally proved to be quite hard!
20. Trust & Delegation: Despite the lack of initial knowledge among new team members, I remained steadfast. Recognizing their potential, I entrusted them with responsibilities and delegated tasks accordingly. It became necessary to guide them through conducting step-by-step training sessions.
21. Light Amidst Challenges: Building a reputation based on authenticity, originality, and exceptional work wasn’t done overnight. It took nine years of dedicated effort to establish the foundational pillars of IR, and I continue to build upon this groundwork, adding layer upon layer. Rising from the ashes of setbacks to illuminate the world has been a journey filled with challenges and triumphs.
22. Collaboration: Remember the organization that initially criticized me harshly? Surprisingly, they reached out to IR for a collaboration. Did I accept? Well, let’s save that story for another day! Interestingly, a few of their writers ended up joining IR.
And that’s how IR was formed! Alhamdulillah!
Here are a few golden advices that helped me in my journey:
☆ Your delay is your preparation period.
☆ The tears, prayers, and setbacks are sculpting your future.
☆ Be open-minded to advice but sift through and filter the voices around you.
☆ Never let anyone extinguish your light or quench your passion. Don’t allow doubt to convince you that you’re inadequate.
☆ Embrace learning, embrace risks, and welcome corrections.
☆ Knowledge isn’t innate; it’s acquired through reading! “IQRA!”—The first word bestowed by the Merciful above!
☆ Apply it! Execute it! If things don’t align, alter your approach! Pivot your strategies, but never compromise your passion and aspirations!
What Do We Do?
•IR Blog: Offering Community Service (CS) hours in the Adult & Kids Corner within the writing & creativity departments. Operating with varied themes on a bi-monthly basis.
•Annual Programs: Hosting Ramadan Reminders and organizing the Kids Ramadan Challenge (KRC), Live events with qualified speakers on several themes.
•IR Academy: Providing free CS hours by summarizing scholarly books with accompanying quizzes. Additionally, offering paid online courses taught by qualified lecturers. Courses such as Quraan, Arabic, Fiqh Al-Mawaarith (The Islamic Law of Inheritance), The Female Body, Hadeeth Literature and Teens Madrassa Program.
•IR Bookshelf: A Kenyan-registered publishing house satisfying readers of all ages with credible, entertaining, and educational Islamic books. The first publication: “Names and Attributes of Allah Book 1.”
Baaraka Allah Feekum,
Sr. Amatullah B.M.
Founder & President