The topic of religion has the potential to be a divisive subject when it really doesn’t need to be. The primary message that religion, no matter the faith, preach is to be peaceful and to accept one another for who we all are.
While some belief there to be over 4,000 different religions in the world, there are six major religions, which are; Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Judaism. Here, we look at six famous celebrities, all with differing faiths.
Christianity – Tom Hanks
American actor Tom Hanks is a practicing Christian, considering himself to be deeply religious. Hanks, who had been raised with a number of religions around him, pledged himself to Christianity in high school and has since thanked God for all of his professional and personal success thereafter. The star of movies such as The Green Mile, Saving Private Ryan and Toy Story is certainly amongst the A-list when it comes to Hollywood royalty.
Islam – Mike Tyson
The former world heavyweight champion of the world, Mike Tyson, converted to Islam in the mid-1990s during a six-year prison sentence, of which he served less than three years. Tyson, known as ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet’, performed the Umra pilgrimage in Mecca in 2010 and is active in the Islamic community. For Muslims athletes, it can be difficult to combine training and fasting in the holy month of Ramadan, but Tyson is known to have altered his training program to fit in with the break of fast.
Hinduism – George Harrison
Famously, George Harrison converted to Hinduism in the late-1960s having already embraced Indian culture. The guitarist used this to heavily influence, not only The Beatle’s sound, but also pop-culture as a whole and is widely regarded as one of the most important contributing factors to the industry today. Following his death in 2001, Harrison’s ashes were scattered by family in accordance with Hindu culture in the Ganges and Yamuna rivers in India.
Buddhism – Orlando Bloom
Orlando Bloom, most known for appearing in The Lord of the Rings and Pirates of the Caribbean franchises, has been a member of SGI-UK (the UK branch of Soka Gakkai International – Buddhist association) since 2004. It is reported that 60 devotees were in attendance for Bloom’s hour-long ceremony as he converted to Buddhism. Bloom is reportedly in a relationship with Katy Perry, another celebrity that has recently reaffirmed her faith having grown up in a Christian household.
Sikhism – Gurinder Chadha
Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Gurinder Chadha moved to London at the tender age of two. The film director uses her experience of growing up in London as a young Sikh in her work, probably most notably in the 2002 film Bend It Like Beckham, which focuses on a teenage girl of Indian decent following her dream of playing football. While Chadha considers herself to be both Indian and English, she retains her faith and took a greater interest in her roots around the time that her father died before the release of Bend It Like Beckham.
Judaism – Scarlett Johansson
Arguably the most famous actress in the world, Scarlett Johansson comes from a Jewish family and was moved to tears as she learned of distant relatives that died during the Holocaust. Johansson’s great-grandfather moved to the United States before the outbreak of the war, but it was his brother and two daughters that could not escape the horrific realities of Adolf Hitler’s Germany. While the actress celebrates Hanukkah, she does also celebrate Christian holidays such as Christmas.
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