Sister Nadia – The Smiling Pearl


A inspiring account of her meeting with an exemplary persona by TheSisterWhoSmiles.

Everything about her was beautiful. Her face shone as did her character and persona, the way she walked, talked and mostly – her smile.

This particular French sister greeted me with a gentle handshake and hug accompanied with a delicate smile and Assalamu Alaykum. It was my first meeting with her as I entered the mosque to register to begin a week-long traditional halaqah.

As the first class began and a large handful of sisters opened crisp notebooks and crossed their legs comfortably on the carpet, I looked around to find the Smiling Sister. Within my gaze, I saw people of the community as well as friends from school. Also many new faces of sisters who travelled across England in the pursuit of seeking scared knowledge. My eyes continued to search for the Sister but no avail – unfortunately she was not in this class.

Many hours passed and an intensive day of Fiqh and Seerah classes had come to an end and all the sisters swiftly made their way to the room in which dinner was to be served. Everyone was buzzing from the inspiring lectures and the light of knowledge kindled a glowing warmth in our hearts.

I was happily starting my dinner when a niqaabi opened the door and sat down. I could see a smile in her eyes which astounded me; how can someone smile so beautifully whilst their face is covered? I hadn’t given a lot of thought to niqaabis or their reasoning or way of thinking – they were just other Muslim sisters to me at the time. Whilst deep in contemplation and a mild form of awe at the niqaabi’s smiling eyes, she flipped the niqaab over her head and, alhamdulillah, the Beautiful Smiling Sister.

Everything about her was beautiful. Her face shone as did her character and persona, the way she walked, talked and mostly – her smile.

This was a moment of beauty for me and it made me think how covering with hijab or niqaab doesn’t lessen the beauty we have been blessed with by the Most High. It simply reserves it.

I could not see inside the Smiling Sister’s heart but I didn’t need to — to see she harbours inner beauty. The modesty in her attitude and the light which emitted through those sparkling, smiling eyes allowed an element of joyful devotion to be delicately yet deeply encapsulated within her. Devotion to her purpose. Devotion in her worship. Devotion in her love to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala.

Sisters, you are beautiful. With the Deen in our hearts as a seed and eman as the rain and while strife is the sun – a flower of devotion will grow inside of us, inshaAllah; and this devotion – this is the noor on our cheeks and in our eyes and the sparkle of our smile.

This is our beauty.

It was just a smile from you, Sister Nadia. Just a Smile, subhanAllah.

And here is a smile from me to you, to all of you…
Let’s keep the beauty and the sisterhood smiling, inshaAllah.

So Smile. (: