"My first desire was to learn Arabic, but my soul awakened when I began to read the Quran"

By Mariano Ricardo Calle

My name is Mariano Ricardo Calle.  I am from Buenos Aires, Argentina. […] Since my childhood, I was connected with religion through my mom and my grandmother […]. I read the Bible since seven years old.  I began reading the Bible for kids in Spanish.  My heroes were David, Nuh and Job.

[…] I fell into drugs until a crisis at twenty one years of age.  I have always been searching for the truth. […] This I did for a whole year.  But that didn't help me too much, but God knows better.

[…]I began to study the Arabic language on my own, with the help of a book from the internet.  […] In the book fair, my mom took two little books for free about Islam.  I read them, and the subjects of science mentioned in the Quran, seemed very interesting to me.  And, I read about Muhammad (PBUH) and I felt that person was a model for me.

So, one day I left smoking and drinking.  I never was a drunkard, but I left completely whatever was related to alcohol.  That was my own decision, and I never thought of being a Muslim until the day I said my Shahadah.

I thought of buying a Quran to read something in Arabic and that way, learn faster.  My teacher told me that I could get one for free, in the mosque of Palermo (Buenos Aires).

On the same day, I went to the mosque, just to ask for a Quran and I wondered how such a great place could be so empty.  I understood that Argentina is not an Islamic country but that this mosque was the greatest in Latin America.

Salam Islam, Quran, Islam, Arabic, New Muslim

That day in the mosque a man […] gave me a link to the Quran that I could download from the internet, I later printed it.  It was just an hour, and I had the Quran. […] The Quran I got was in Arabic and Spanish, that way I could read it in Arabic directly.

Since my childhood I have read the whole Bible twice, and the Gita from India also twice, and now I had the Quran to read, and much better, in Arabic.  My first desire was to learn Arabic, but my soul awakened when I began to read the Quran.  […]

Alhamdulillah, I could realize that what the Quran says was the parts that were missing in the Bible.  And I remember well, I understood as well when I read it that all that the Quran says could perfectly be the truth I was looking for. […]

Since then, I began to go to the mosque and in two weeks I said the Shahadah […] because, I was sure that Muhammad was a messenger of God, like Jesus or Moses. So, I began to read everything I found about Islam and began to study Arabic in the mosque. […]

Quran, Islam, New Muslim, convert, Salam Islam

In the two weeks before I said the Shahadah, I was going to the mosque to learn, and I felt that the place was full of peace.  I prayed with the Muslims there while I wasn’t a Muslim yet, but I wanted to know how it feels to prostrate in front of God, because I knew that intention was important for God. So, in two weeks, I learned the whole salat (Prayer).  […] I continued going to the mosque and then came Ramadan, which was a beautiful experience.  […] Since I said the Shahadah, I haven't missed a salat.

What was difficult to me was to leave girls, because I had a girlfriend, but I knew that it wouldn't have worked.  So, I left her and asked God to grant me a good wife. I remember that was the first thing I asked God for.  And I got to know a woman, the same week I said the Shahadah! […]

I told my mother and father that I now was a Muslim.  My mother was a little afraid, but I began to treat my parents better.  […] I got a job and in my first day I asked my boss for a place to pray, which was not a problem […].  So, my life changed to the better, because I began to smile more, and try to act good with everybody.[…]

To read the complete version of this text, go to

http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/1679/mariano-ricardo-calle-ex-catholic-argentina/