Bismillah Ir-Rehman Ir-Raheem
Dear Brother justwanttolearn:
May Allah guide you, me, and all of us to the Straight Path.
Brother, how wonderful the desire to learn is!
That is actually what brought me to Islam; I used to call myself an atheist, but Brother, I was guided to the most beautiful gift of my life, Islam. To be honest, I didn't study Islam with any kind of desire to suddenly become a believer, but I studied for my own interest, just as I studied other religions out of sheer curiosity and interest. And well, hmm, it was a long journey. It really completely changed my life, and Masha-Allah ("as God willed"), all of it is extremely good. I feel amazing and also amazingly blessed to be guided to Islam. If someone had told me then what I would be like now, I would have laughed in amusing condescension. I can truthfully say I was not looking to follow a religion, any religion. However, to believe it, you would have had to live my journey... Or live one of your own Insha-Allah ("God willing")!
So, yes, if you are looking to study Islam with a teacher, then I would say find a teacher who appreciates keen interest in a student for learning, regardless of whatever faith or lack thereof the student professes. Brother, if the teacher is sincere, then that person would teach you for the sake of Allah, knowing that whether you accept or not accept Islam is in the hands of Allah. If you find a teacher not willing to do that, then, if I am completely honest, that teacher is not the right one for you: You should run away from such teachers, as I would have. If a teacher fails to recognize the worth of teaching a student, then that teacher will most likely also not appreciate any questions and not have the patience necessary for teaching you or his other students also. It is not your loss, Brother, not ever your loss. Brother, a good teacher genuinely welcomes seekers of knowledge (from whatever path they have come).
Brother, had I been a teacher, I would volunteer to teach you, but I am neither a scholar nor a teacher. However, since I recognize the value of knowledge, as I myself have had to fight so hard to gain it, I humbly ask you, Brother, to please keep to your search for a teacher until you find one who knows the worth of imparting knowledge to a seeker. Brother, yes, you will Insha-Allah find one that suits you. And while I cannot teach you, I can share with you my own story in emotional terms in post #128 and detailed journey to Islam in post #20 (that includes the intellectual, spiritual, etc.) and share with you some videos and a book that I recommend new Muslims to also watch or read for educational or inspirational purposes:
Atheism to Islam: Journey of Dr. Lawrence Brown (Video.)
Divine Speech Prologue 1 (Video.)
Divine Speech Prologue 2 (Video.)
Reliance on Allah: The Cure For An Ummah in Crisis (Video.)
Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources (Book.)
May I give you glad tidings?
Prophet Muhammad also said in his speech: "Acquire knowledge, it enables its professor to distinguish right from wrong; it lights the way to heaven. It is our friend in the desert, our company in solitude and companion when friendless. It guides us to happiness, it sustains us in misery, it is an ornament amongst friends and an armor against enemies."Abu Bakrah reported that, I heard the Prophet saying: "You should either be a scholar, or a student, or a listener, or a lover of ‘Ilm (knowledge) and scholars, and you should not be the fifth which will make you perish. Ata said, Misar said to me: You added a fifth point which we did not have. The fifth point is: To hate ‘Ilm and its people." (Tabrani.)
"He who leaves his home in search of knowledge walks in the path of God." (At-Tirmidhi.)
So, whether you realize this or not, Masha-Allah ("as God willed"), Brother, you are already following a recommendation of Prophet Muhammad .
Also, Brother, Islam is not anyone's property but an open invitation, like Sister Acacia said, in her last post. Brother, if you have any questions, concerns, doubts, please do not hesitate to ask because Masha-Allah ("as God willed"), a lot of reverts are on the Forum, and Insha-Allah ("God willing"), any one of them will be honored to assist you in whatever manner they could.
Thanks for coming to the Forum and making us a small part of your journey for knowledge.
If I have said anything that is good and true, it is from Allah, and anything other than that is my own mistake.