I was born in Brazil in a place called Petronilla.
I didn’t understand why did people follow religion, because religion was like fiction to me.
I started to become far from the church, and I started to go the opposite way.
I said I believe in nothing anymore. Everything is like a joke. And I became like really opposite. I don’t believe in religions. And that time was really hard, I was out of myself like Martin Luther King said, like lost, a hundred percent lost.
It was February, and I was playing guitar in a carnival in Rio de Janeiro. It wasn’t a good day for me, I was sad due to many stuff in my life, and I was in the street and I said I would go home.
I was drunk with my guitar and I said I would go home. Walking in the street to my house, everybody was drunk and everything looked like shadows at that time. It was really a strange night.
In that time I was so sad. That night I took a shower. I came to my room and I did a sujud (prostration) without knowing what is a sujud.
I just came to the floor and cried and I said “God, please take me out of this country or I’m going to die”. It was really intense for me to say this and it was a strong moment.
One month after this day I was in Dubai. One friend invited me to come to Dubai. Before traveling to Dubai, this friend was telling me about Dubai. Then I asked her “Now that you now are in Dubai, what’s Dubai?”
She answered: “Dubai is in the Middle East…”
I said: “Take care, they have a war there, and have Muslims. Take care about Muslims. They will kill you!”
And she started to laugh and said: “No, no, it’s not like this here.” She added “I’m Muslim also”
I said: “Oh God, you are a Muslim? Take care about this!”
She said: “You should come to see if it’s like that!”
I also didn’t pay for the flight, so it was something like Allah took me from Brazil to Dubai.
After 2 months in Dubai, I became Muslim and I said the Shahadah because it became obvious I was in the wrong way, doing the wrong things and Islam is like clarifying it. It is so clear.
Adel is like my brother. He is my best friend in Dubai. He helped me in everything and in every step and we talk a lot. Alhamdulillah, he is my best friend here. He taught me everything like teaching me everything about Islam also…
The first point for me in Islam to ask was: “Do we need to pray every day?”
He said: “Yes”
I repeated my question: “Do you pray every day?!”
He answered: “Yes, every day”
But the big thing that made me interested in Islam was the wudu’ (ablution) because we take a shower for many things in life. To go to work you take shower.
If you go to see a friend, you take a shower and put perfume and everything. But we don’t do this when we talk with God, we don’t take a shower, why?
We should. You are going to talk with the King. You put perfume when you are going to talk with somebody. If you are going to talk with Allah you shouldn’t go dirty.
I also don’t have brothers or sisters I was an only child. So when I found Islam I found true brothers. So Adel is like a blood brother to me.
My mother also never met Adel in person, but she said:
“Cassiano, you have a brother, and he is my son also, now he is my son.”
So we are glad to meet each other. It was something like a plan. Allah has a plan for everything and He had that plan to connect people. He took me out from Brazil from Rio de Janeiro and put me in Dubai without spending one Dirham.
And I came back to Brazil and I came back to Dubai without spending one Dirham again. So Allah has some plans for me here for sure, and I’m trying to keep everything in the straightway.
I went to Al-Jumuah (Friday) prayer in a big mosque in Sharjah. It was full with thousands of people, and when I finished saying the Shahadah and they knew I’m from Brazil. Everybody was like “He is from Brazil, he is playing football.”
So when I said the Shahadah I was too strong in front of everybody. Everyone came to congratulate me. I stayed there for like almost 2 hours to go out just hugging people and they were kissing me and congratulating me and giving me books.
It was so emotional. And for everybody we were like brothers. So I was born an only child and now I have too many brothers, alhamdulillah, I’m really glad.
I have a family in Dubai. Adel’s family is my family and it started to grow. And now I have two mothers and two fathers and they treat me like a son and like brothers…
Honestly I found here the peace that I don’t have there, the true friends, the true brothers I don’t have there. I had friends before with whom I would go to a bar or to a party, only for this. Now also when I became Muslim and I came back they said: “Cassiano is not drinking anymore. He became Muslim. Don’t call him.”
So they started to become far. It’s a matter of selection for me. Allah is selecting who is good to be close to me.
My life started to come to the Middle East, to Dubai, and I cannot stay in one place without a mosque. Mosques have done something magical for me. It’s incredible and beautiful.
My faith keeps me alive, keeps me waking, and provides me with hope. I really love Allah.
In the past, many things took priority in my life, but now Allah comes first in my life.