Celebrity Conversion

Famous people generally aren't like the rest of us. Firstly they seem to take themselves really seriously and secondly, many of them seem to change religions like they change romantic partners. Most of us who are normal and average, and only mildly deluded, follow the religious beliefs of our culture and family. If we are born in India, we are most likely to be Hindu, if we are born in Afghanistan, then the probability that we will be Muslim, will be high. If your family is Catholic, or perhaps Protestant Christians, then, that is probably your religious world view. Celebs however often change religions at the drop of a hat (or perhaps G-string) and seem drawn toward the esoteric and the fanciful.

 One must consider, are famous people perhaps deeper and more profound thinkers than most us? That is one idea to consider. Perhaps famous people don't just wish to follow what is cultural, traditional, or the norm in their family or social group. May be celebs genuinely seek the profound and the arcane? Or perhaps celebs are just easily bored and fickle? And looking for the newest, latest religious high?

Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts(124022)Credit: wikipediaJulia Roberts comes from a Baptist and Catholic background, but announced in an interview to Elle magazine in 2010, that she had converted to Hinduism. She is a devotee of Neem Karoli Baba, who died in 1973 and who was famous for saying "Love everyone, serve everyone." Ms Roberts is a regular attendee at a temple in L.A, when she goes to chant and meditate. She also believes in reincarnation. Other famous people who have become Hindus are J.D Salinger (author of Catcher in the Rye), Russell Brand and George Harrison of the Beetles.


Snoop Dog

Snoop LionCredit: wikipedia

Snoop dog was originally named Calvin Broadus after his stepfather, Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Sr. Frequently in and out of prison in his early years and acquitted of murder charges in 1996, Snoop Dog is a soft-spoken rapper. In 2009, it became known that Snoop Dogg was a member of the Nation of Islam, although he came from a Baptist background. However in 2012 Snoop announced that he was "born again", and that he had made contact with Bob Marley's spirit during a recent trip to Jamaica. He has now changed his name to 'Snoop Lion'. As a Rastafarian, Snoop Lion (are you confused? I am!) was given the Ethiopian name Berhane, which means "light of the world". He is now a Reggae artist.

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe(124027)Credit: wikipedia

Marilyn Monroe who was born in 1926, was originally named Norma Jeane Mortenson (soon after changed to Baker). As her mother had a mental illness, the young Marilyn was shipped off to various foster homes. Raised as a Pentecostal Christian, Marilyn Munroe's mother was actually obsessed with Christian Science. Marilyn however, converted to Judaism in 1956. Other famous converts to Judaism are: Sammy Davis, Jr, Isla Fisher, and Elizabeth Taylor, who was also an ex-Christian Scientist.


Blond Ambition World TourCredit: wikipedia

Madonna Louise Ciccone, was born in Michigan in 1958.  She was raised as a Roman Catholic and is often remembered for sporting a huge crucifix around her neck during the 1980s. Her song Like a Prayer, contains many Catholic symbols, like stigmata and a burning cross.  However many Catholics boycotted her concerts, due to the blatant eroticism. During the Who's That Girl World Tour, she dedicated the song "Papa Don't Preach" to the Pope.

After the birth of her daughter Lourdes, Madonna became involved in Eastern mysticism and Kabbalah, which didn't stop her kissing Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera provocatively, at the at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards. In 2004, as a dedicated follower of Kabbalah, Madonna adopted the name Esther which in Persian means "star". During the Re-Invention World Tour, Madonna and her dancers wore t-shirts that read "Kabbalists Do It Better".

Lisa Marie Presley

Lisa Marie PresleyCredit: wikipedia

Talented and gorgeous Lisa Marie Presley, was born at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Famously however, she became a convert to the Church of Scientology, which was started by American science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard (science fiction all right!). The scientologist belief is, that people are immortal, spiritual beings, who have forgotten their true nature. Then there is some other stuff about extraterrestrial civilizations and alien interventions in Earthly events (wake me up!).

Anyway Ms Presley's famous scientologist friends, like Tom Cruise, John Travolta and Kirstie Alley, might not be seeing her around the spaceship much, if her latest album Storm & Grace is anything to go by; with words like "Churches, they don't have a soul". You go girl!

Dave Chappelle

Dave ChappelleCredit: wikipedia

I don't know if you have seen the skit by Dave Chappelle, where he plays a blind, black man who is a white supremacist?If not, let me assure you this is one of the most clever and controversial pieces of comedy ever made!

Dave Chappelle's mother was a professor at Howard University, and also a Unitarian Universalist minister (his father was no slouch either, as a professor at Antioch College). Chapelle rarely talks about religion in public, but it is known that he has converted to Islam. It is hard to imagine however, how his beliefs, and comedy can go together.

Anne Rice

Ann RiceCredit: wikipedia

Anne Rice is famous for being the author of the books, which the film Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, is based. Ms Rice also writes gothic fiction, Christian literature, and erotica! Raised in a Roman Catholic family, Anne Rice became an atheist while a young adult. Some years later she claimed to believe in god, but not organized Christianity. In 1998 she then became a Catholic again, and then later that year she almost died from falling into a coma due to type 1 diabetes. Ms Rice still supports gay and Lesbian rights and is pro-choice.

"The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they've found it." Terry Pratchett

R.E.M. - Losing My Religion