Sean Stone, son of the conspiracy-theorist filmmaker Oliver Stone, has converted to Islam in a ceremony held in Iran. But, he says, that doesn’t mean he isn’t still a Christian. And a Jew.
A U.S. filmmaker who has a Jewish father and Christian mother today decided to convert to Islam in Iran, where he is making a documentary.
But Sean Stone, 27, son of Oscar-winning director Oliver Stone, insisted the switch did not signal him abandoning the faiths of his parents.
He became a Shiite Muslim on Tuesday and has reportedly chosen to be known by the first name of ‘Ali’, but will not reveal why he converted.
‘The conversion to Islam is not abandoning Christianity or Judaism, which I was born with,’ Mr Stone told news agency Agence France-Presse.
‘It means I have accepted Mohammad and other prophets,’ Mr Stone added from Isfahan, Iran, where the conversion ceremony was carried out.
He is working on a film about Rumi, a mystic poet, and has defended Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the past, reported Foreign Policy.
Notice that “Ali” assumes that Christianity and Judaism are religions one is born with. That can, perhaps, work with Judaism, but Christianity has to involve some kind of personal faith. And yet this is a common perception, I have noticed, that religion is not so much a set of beliefs–which might be in conflict with other religions’ beliefs–but rather something equivalent to ethnic identity or genetic heritage.
Watch for more conversions to Islam from New Age fans of Rumi. Of course, the Americanized New Age version–which allows for holding many other and contradictory beliefs at the same time, as well as, I suspect, a rather more permissive moral code–will be different from orthodox Islam, just as the New Age versions of Eastern religion are far tamer than actual Hinduism and Buddhism.