Islam is seen as an energy that motivates and inspires life. Propaganda discrediting Islam is deeply imprinted in the hearts of many people of the world. Through broadcasts and mass media reports that only highlight the negative side of Muslims, many people fail to recognize the true face of Islam.
They only understand Islam as ISIS, terrorism, the bombing of the United States WTC Building on September 11 (9/11), radicalism, ignorance, and all the negative attributes that are often echoed by the tendentious Western media in preaching Islam.
South Korean artist Kim Jae Han (Jay Kim/28 years), is one person who views Islam in such a negative way. At the time when his fame began to grow, around 2015, he never mingled with Muslims in the Ginseng Country.
However, his path in life led to different things. In 2017 he was invited to concerts in Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur. There, this young man came face to face with his millions of fans, most of whom are millennial Muslims.
His heart was so amazed. Unexpectedly, the fans who are very enthusiastic about Jay Kim's skills are Muslims. They are not what the mass media portrays them to be. Their attitude and speech are polite. They mingle in a synergistic social life.
They enjoy the beautiful music to be heard. Their lives are really open, far from the Western mass media which has been very tendentious about Islam.
Since then, the construction of his thinking about Islam collapsed instantly. He built a new understanding of Islam which is full of politeness. Islam is seen as an energy that motivates and inspires life.
After the concert, he saw, Indonesia is a peaceful country. The cultural diversity there is very unique because people with different beliefs can live together. Plus, the food there is so tongue-in-cheek, such as fried rice, meatballs, soto, and satay.
He also discovered the beauty of Islam in Tunisia, a country where Islam, the West and African culture meet. Similar to Indonesia, the majority of the population is Muslim. He saw that the people there were very kind, friendly, and had a high sense of mutual help.
Many young people there are interested in Korean culture. Negative views about Islam are crumbling. After coming to the two countries, he decided to learn about Islam. Jaehan started studying Islam through children's books.
Then, he started reading the Koran with a Korean translation because he didn't understand Arabic yet. Many things fascinated him after studying Islam, especially after reading the Koran. Kalam Divine contains messages of peace that really touch the heart.
After learning a few things about Islam, he was not in too much of a hurry to take the shahada. Jaehan met a number of Muslims to exchange ideas about Islam. Among those he met were mosque imams, Korean converts who are now religious teachers, and friends from other countries who have long embraced Islam.
He began to learn about customs and obligations as a Muslim. Jaehan once interviewed converts Kim Eun Soo or Karam Kim, whose stories have also been published in several media to gain an understanding of what to do when converting and the importance of shahada.
He also studied how Muslims adapt to deep-rooted Korean culture, such as drinking alcohol and eating pork. Jaehan is grateful, he doesn't really like that tradition. Therefore, it is not difficult to stay away from the forbidden thing.
The person who was also invited to discuss Islam was his mother, the woman who gave birth to and raised Jaehan. The mother had seen Jaehan's YouTube content which was different, containing content about Islam. The mother had never interacted with Islam.
Their family has been living in the Catholic tradition. Their grandparents were Buddhists. Practically, Islam is a new religion they know. At first, the mother was worried that Islam would lead to radicalism.
However, after watching his son's Youtube content which contains an explanation about Islam, he believes that it is the true religion. He also invited Jaehan to embrace Islam. Only then did he decide to take the shahada not too long ago. Because his heart already believes that Islam is his way of life.
Jaehan then visited the mosque for the first time. "It was beautiful, someone greeted me and explained about Islam when I arrived at Itaewon Mosque. I visited with a Muslim friend, Dina, and I prayed for the first time at the mosque.
"I was very nervous, but felt peaceful and healed my mind even though I didn't know the correct prayer," he explained. After performing the prayer, he felt something special and could not be expressed in words. He began to understand the substance of Islam as a religion of peace.
Itaewon is indeed a Muslim center in South Korea, so it is not surprising that there are many halal restaurants in the area. Jaehan also tried to find halal food after praying in congregation at the mosque.