In 1975, Dr. Shawki Futaki, a 67 years old Japanese Director of one of the major hospitals in Tokyo, the capital of Japan, embraced Islam. Before embracing Islam, Dr. Futaki was a follower of Shintoism, the religion of the majority in Japan. Presently, Dr. Futaki now presides over the Islamic Center in Tokyo.
This 67 year old practicing physician and journalist is full of enthusiasm and vigor. He used to be the editor of a widely circulated magazine called 'Sekai Jeep'. In 1971, after a long-drawn medical practice trial Dr. Futaki was found guilty. His medical license was suspended and imprisoned for three years. In prison, he spent time reading books on philosophy, politics and religion.
Describing his feelings while he was in jail, "Whenever I sat alone all by myself I felt that the idea of the unity of creation would come to my mind. I used to think of the Universe and its Creator. Then gradually I started to believe in the Oneness of God. As my term ended, I discussed in depth with one of my close Japanese Muslim friend named Abu Bakr Morimoto, the ex-president of the Japan Islamic Association. Abu Bakr Morimoto used to come to me every time he launched a contribution campaign to support the Islamic movement in Japan, and I would always participate with conviction in such campaigns. Once Abu Bakr said: Your deeds are exactly those of a good Muslim, why don't you embrace Islam? I just smiled at him."
One day Mr. Morimoto said: "...the problem of the weakened people would be automatically solved if only the religion of Islam should spread on the Earth. For Islam is the religion of love and brotherhood." On hearing this, Dr. Futaki stood up and said that he has decided to embrace Islam with another friend. They immediately went to the Islamic Center in Tokyo and declared the Shahadah (reciting of the kalimah - There is no God but one God and Mohammed is the Messenger of God.)
After Dr. Futaki's release from prison, he was rehabilitated in the medical profession. His clinic is open seven days a week and he does not charge except within the insurance coverage. He established the Nippon Islam Kyodan. Dr. Futaki is happy that in Islam there is no priesthood as such. And he rightly understands that it is incumbent upon every Muslim to propagate and preach Islam as far as their abilities permit. The membership of his Islamic Society now runs into tens of thousands.
Many observers think that his conversion to Islam marks an important turning point in the history of Islam in Japan. Recently, he led a big delegation from Japan to perform the Hajj (pilgrimage) last year. May The Almighty bless him with more vigor and enthusiasm to dedicate himself in The Almighty's Path.
The Islamic Bulletin
P.O. Box 410186, San Francisco, CA 94141-0186
|July / August 1991|
|Letters to the Editor|
|Islamic World News|
|Happy New Year|
|The Kid's Corner|
|Women in Islam|
|Qur'an and Science|
|Teachings of the Prophet|
|Why I Embraced Islam|
|The Islamic Calendar|
|The Prophet Salih|
|Stories of the Sahabah|
|Islamic Dietary Laws|