It’s a really big deal when converting to a new religion, both personally and culturally. When you decide to follow any religion, it is a deeply personal choice and it is one that these celebrities didn’t take lightly.
Raised by Methodist parents in Pennsylvania, Sharon Stone now identifies as Buddhist. Stone told The New York Times, “It’s important to have a philosophy or way of life or faith that keeps you balanced. For me, that has been Buddhism. It’s something that brings you back to center, and is really the key to serenity and beauty – an internal sense of form and elegance.”
Isla met Sacha Baron Cohen in 2002, and he is a Jewish actor. The two got engaged just two years later and she converted to Judaism in 2007. Isla stated, “I love the focus on family, food and laughter. You know, I didn’t get to go to university because I’ve been acting since I was a kid. So, for me, studying theology was also fascinating. I love Judaism.”
Even though she was raised by a Roman Catholic mum and a Quaker father, Zooey has never been very religious. She did later convert to Judaism and stated, “My family is liberal. I was raised in the ‘you can be whatever you want’ kind of way. And in the end, I was like ‘eh.’ I mean I’m interested in theology, and I love reading about it. But I don’t attach myself to any one religion or other.”
In 2009, Snoop Dogg stated that he joined the Nation of Islam. Even though he didn’t provide any more details, he said he was “already in the Nation.” In 2012, he announced that he was converting to Rastafarianiam, which is a religion developed in Jamaica. Snoop said, “I’m an advocate for peace, I’ve been in the peace movement ever since I’ve been making music. My whole thing is not about really trying to push my thing on you. It’s about the way I live, and I live how I’m supposed to live as far as doing what’s right and representing what’s right – that’s why I was here today.”
Ice Cube converted to Islam in the 90’s, and he told the Guardian, “What I call myself is a natural Muslim, because it’s just me and God. You know, going to the mosque, the ritual and the tradition, it’s just not in me to do. So I don’t do it.”
Katie was raised as a Catholic, however, when she was dating Tom Cruise in 2005, she began studying Scientology. The couple got married in a Scientologist ceremony in 2006 and stayed married for 6 years before divorcing and Katie then returned to Catholicism.
Richard was raised by Methodist parents, but it was in his 20’s that he began to practice Buddhism. He has tried to deepen his practice by travelling to India and Nepal over the 40 years. He says, “I think like most young men I was not particularly happy. I don’t know if I was suicidal, but I was pretty unhappy, and I had questions like, ‘Why anything?’ Realizing I was probably pushing the edges of my own sanity.”
Bloom has been practicing Buddhism since he was 16 when his best friend David introduced him to the religion. He said, “It was one of those ‘Aha’ moments of ‘Wow, this is meeting my mentor, meeting someone I’ve up to so much.” He explained that he is extremely grateful for Buddhism.
The “Grace and Frankie” actress was once an atheist, and she became Christian after her marriage with Ted Turner ended in 2001. She explained, “I felt a presence, a reverence humming within me. It was and is difficult to articulate.” She stated that Christianity has made her a “deeper, more embodied feminist.”
he pop icon embraced Kabbalah, a mystical branch of Judaism, in the late 1990s. She has been an active follower and has supported various Kabbalah centers.
Dave was raised by a Unitarian Universalist minister, but in 1998, he converted to Islam. He said, “I don’t normally talk about my religion publicly because I don’t want people to associate me and my flaws with this beautiful thing. And I believe it is a beautiful religion if you learn it the right way. It’s a lifelong effort. Your religion is your standard.”
The Academy Award-winning actress converted to Hinduism after filming the movie “Eat Pray Love” in 2010. She has since expressed her deep interest in the spiritual teachings of Hinduism.
The former heavyweight boxing champion converted to Islam during his time in prison in the early 1990s. He has spoken about how the religion has provided him with stability and a sense of purpose.
Even though she was raised by Catholic parents, Elizabeth says,”I’ve been essentially a Jew for like 15 years. I haven’t had a Christmas tree in 15 years. I’m not officially stamped, but by all accounts yes, my kids go to Jewish preschool, we only celebrate Jewish holidays, I love seder.” She still considers herself as Jewish even though she didn’t complete the process to convert to Judaism.
Shia was raised by a Jewish mother and a Christian father. However, after filming the 2014 film ‘Fury’, he became fully Christian. He said, “I found God doing ‘Fury’. I became a Christian man, in a very real way. I could have just said the prayers that were on the page. But it was a real thing that really saved me.”
The Hollywood actor and producer converted to Scientology in the early 1990s and has been a prominent member and advocate of the Church of Scientology since then.
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