Ayesha (died 5 January 2019) was a British-born author and religious educator who reverted to Islam in 1961 and lived most of her life in Nigeria.
Ayesha was born in Poole, Dorset, in 1940, as Bridget Honey [ her name before Islam]. At the age of thirteen, she began to question her faith and began exploring other religions including Hinduism and Chinese Buddhism. She studied at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), pursuing her interest in Chinese history, language and culture. While there, she met Muslims who gave her Islamic literature to read and she converted to Islam at the Islamic Cultural Centre in 1961, during her first year of study.
Ayesha Journey for Faith
Our heroine started her journey by searching in the oriental religions, however, as she said, “I had a problem with the view of some of the oriental religions that life and the material world were evils to be escaped from.”
She kept asking: Was there a God? Was there a true religion in the full sense of its reliability in all senses?
Then Ayesha had books about Islam. However, she didn’t take them seriously.
She said: “ I knew very little about Islam and had never considered it as a possibility because of the negative image.”
However, the books turned out to be interesting in their uniqueness of presentation for the issues. After that, she started to read the interpretation of the meanings of the Qur’an. Once she reached the third Chapter, the meanings melt her heart so that she couldn’t resist her feeling to accept Islam.
Why Did Ayesha Revert to Islam?
There were many ideas attracting Ayesha in Islam. One of these was the concept of the Creator and creation as well as the life after death. Also, the strong perception of Islam for all things, motives, deeds and goals were very attractive for her. There was a deep connection between all these items in a harmonious way. In other words, Islam meets the needs of the soul and body in balance.
Adding to that, the social life in Islam has a noble style. The peak for all these feelings and ideas was in Qur’an. Thus, after a satisfactory journey of search accompanied by reading books and asking the scholars, Ayesha made that decision; to revert to Islam.
Ayesha after Reverting to Islam
Ayesha faced some annoyance by her society, but she was steadfast. Then she got married to a Muslim man. They went on their journey to spread Islam in different ways. Ayesha actually published many books and organized many seminars in this context.
To conclude, this was Ayesha ‘ Bridget Honey’ life. She realized that this life is too short, so she decided to invest in her eternal life. Ayesha died but we still mention her name as an example of true success. There is no time for escaping from the only truth; Islam. Death is so near. Be a Muslim!
(1) Men and Women Converted to Islam, a Book (Translated illustrations)