List of converts to Hinduism


From Abrahamic religions
Christianity
George Harrisonconverted from Christianity to Hinduism
Julia Roberts converted from Christianity to Hinduism
Chantal Boulanger – French anthropologist who wrote widely on Tamil culture.[1]
Claudia Ciesla – German model, actress, and singer embraced Hinduism and believes in Karma.
Job Charnock – British trade agent who has been controversially described as the founder of Calcutta[2]
Ilan Chester – Venezuelan singer, keyboardist, arranger and composer[3]
Alice Coltrane (raised Baptist but became a follower of Satya Sai Baba) – American jazz pianist, organist, harpist, and composer[4][5]
Michael Cremo – American creationist, author, and editor[6]
Bhagavan Das (born Kermit Michael Riggs) – Western Yogi and former born again Christian[7]
Roy Eugene Davis – American Kriya Yoga teacher[8]
Krishna Dharma – British author and convert to Gaudiya Vaishnavism under ISKCON[9]
David Frawley – author on Hinduism, Yoga and Ayurveda[10]
Elizabeth Gilbert – author of Eat Pray Love[11]
George Harrison – popular English musician, best known as a member of The Beatles who died chanting the Hare Krishna Mahamantra in the company of monks from ISKCON.[12] He is also known for donating Bhaktivedanta Manor, a Hindu temple to the Hare Krishna community in Britain.[13]
Lawrence Raghavendra – Tamil & Telugu choreographer,film actor, director, composer and philanthropist.[14]
Christopher Isherwood – Anglo-American novelist[15]
Jomol – Malayali actress[16]
Lizy (actress) – (born Aliyamma Malayalam of Elizabeth adopted the name Lakshmi) Malayalam Actress[17]
Swami Kriyananda (born J. Donald Walters) – direct disciple of the yogi Paramahansa Yogananda
Timothy Leary – Harvard professor and American writer and psychologist[18]
Satsvarupa Dasa Goswami – one of the eleven senior Americans selected to become an initiating guru in ISKCON.[19][20][21][22][23][24]
Savitri Devi Mukherji (born Maximiani Portas) – French woman who became enamoured with Hinduism and Nazism, trying to synthesise Hinduism with Nazi philosophy and racial ideology
Sister Nivedita (born Margaret Elizabeth Noble) – Anglo-Irish social worker, author, and teacher[25]
Leelawathy Ramanathan – Australia-born Hindu writer and activist. Converted upon marrying Ponnambalam Ramanathan[26]
John Levy – British philosopher who translated books on Advaita Vedanta[27]
Annie (actress) – (born Annie Jobbie adopted the name Chitra) Malayalam Actress[28]
Joseph Ritson – English antiquarian and traveller[29]
Julia Roberts – American Actress.[30]
Han Snel – Dutch painter of Bali[31]
Satyananda Stokes – Famous English farmer in Himachal Pradesh[32]
Bhakti Tirtha Swami (born John E. Favors) – American Hindu leader and disciple of Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada[33]
Romapada Swami – Preacher of ISKCON.[34]
Kenneth R. Valpey – Gaudiya Vaishnava Theologian who studied at Oxford University, St. Cross College[35]
Shaunaka Rishi Das (born Timothy Kiernan) – Director of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies
Nayantara (born Diana Mariam Kurian) – South Indian Actress, model[36]

Islam
Harilal Gandhi converted toIslam, adopted the name “Abdullah Gandhi”, but later reverted to Hinduism.[37]

Bukka I – King of Vijayanagara empire who converted to Islam, then reconverted. The early life of Bukka as well as his brother Hakka (also known as Harihara I) are relatively unknown and most accounts of their early life are based on theories.[38][39]
Nargis – noted Bollywood actress, politician, and social worker. Mother of actor Sanjay Dutt she converted to Hinduism and took the name of Nirmala Dutt on her marriage to actor Sunil Dutt
Annapurna Devi (born Roshanara Khan) – surbahar (bass sitar) player and music teacher in the North Indian classical tradition. She converted to Hinduism upon marriage.[40]
Harilal Mohandas Gandhi – son of Mahatma Gandhi. Upon converting to Islam he adopted the name Abdullah Gandhi, but later again reverted back to Hinduism.[37]
Asha Gawli – (born Ayesha) Wife of Arun Gawli, notorious gangster turned politician from Mumbai, India. She converted to Hinduism upon marriage.[41]
Harihara I – King of Vijayanagara Empire who converted to Islam, then reconverted[39]
Aashish Khan (born Ustad Aashish Khan Debsharma) – Indian musician[42]
Hassan Palakkode – Malayali writer on Islam[43]
Netaji Palkar – Maratha noble and commander-in-chief of the army of Shivaji, 19 June 1676.[44][45][46]
Sarmad – 17th century mystical poet and sufi saint, arrived from Persia to India, beheaded for assumed heresy by the Mughal emperor, Aurungzebe. Sarmad renounced Judaism, briefly converting to Islam and then Hinduism. He later denounced all religions and rejected belief in god.[47][48]
Anwar Shaikh – British author.[49]
Ifa Sudewi – Chief judge for the 2002 Bali bombing trials[50][51]
Khushboo Sundar – Tamil movie actress. She converted to Hinduism upon marriage.[52]
Haridas Thakura – Prominent Vaishnavite saint, instrumental in the early appearance and spread of Hare Krishna movement.[53]
Zubeida – Hindi film actress, on whose life story the film Zubeidaa was based. She converted to Hinduism upon marriage.[54]
Nalini Patel (born Nayyara Mirza) – Miss India finalist of 1967, was the first Muslim to participate in the pageant. She converted to Hinduism after marriage. She is settled in the USA.[55]
Sonam (born Bakhtawar Murad) – Wife of Bollywood director Rajiv Rai. She converted to Hinduism upon marriage. She is the niece of character actor Raza Murad and granddaughter of veteran character actor Murad. She is the cousin of actress Sanober Kabir.[citation needed]

Judaism

Ram Dass (born Richard Alpert) – syncretist, and follower of the Hindu deity Hanuman. Professor of psychology at Harvard University[56]
Tamal Krishna Goswami (born Thomas G. Herzig) – governing body commissioner of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness[citation needed]

From other Dharmic religions
Buddhism

Mihirakula – Huna ruler.[57]
Rajasinghe I – Sri Lankan king who conquered Kandy[58]
Rishabhadatta – Satrap viceroy[59]
Rudradaman I – Satrap ruler and conqueror of the Satavahanas[60]
Vasudeva I – Kushan king and numismatist[61]

Jainism

Mahendravarman I – Pallava King and patron of the arts.[62]
Vishnuvardhana – King of Hoysala empire and prominent temple-builder[63]
Tirunavukkarasar – Saivite saint and one of the most prominent of the sixty-three Nayanars[64]

Other faiths and religions

Charairongba – Manipuri ruler.
Heliodorus – Greek minister to King Bhagabhadra[65]
Pamheiba – Manipuri King[66]
Suhungmung – Ahom kingdom ruler who extended Assam up to the Kamarupa Kingdom[67]
Supangmung – Ahom kingdom ruler who recaptured Guwahati. Converted to Vaishnavism after a killing to make amends[68]
Susenghphaa – Ahom king, during his rule the Ahom-Mughal conflicts began[69]

From non-religious backgrounds

Annie Besant (former atheist) – Theosophist, orator and feminist[70]
John Dobson (former atheist who became a believer in Vedanta) – astronomer and telescope designer[71][72]
Sita Ram Goel (former atheist) – Indian commentator, writer and Hindu activist[73]

Undetermined former religion

Russell Brand-Actor, ex-husband of Katy Perry and British comedian
Agehananda Bharati (born Leopold Fischer) – academic Sanskritist, a prolific author about religious subjects, and a Hindu monk in the Dasanami Sannyasi order[74]
Alain Daniélou (convert to Shaivism) – French historian, intellectual, musicologist, and Indologist[75]
Ambarish Das (born Alfred Ford) – American businessman, great-grandson of Henry Ford, and a follower of Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada (the founder of ISKCON)[76][77]
Urmila Devi Dasi (born Edith E. Best) – female ISKCON educator[78][79]
Geoffrey Giuliano – American biographer[80]
Nina Hagen (follower of Haidakhan Babaji) – German singer[81]
Aldous Huxley (disciple of Swami Prabhavananda) – English writer who emigrated to the United States, author of Brave New World[82]
Aaron Joy (devotee of Adi Da and Ramakrishna) – American music critic, author, historian[83]
Joe Don Looney (follower of Swami Muktananda) – football player[84]
J. Mascis – Lead vocalist, guitarist, and drummer for Dinosaur Jr.[85]
John McLaughlin (became a disciple of Sri Chinmoy) – jazz fusion guitar player[86]
Lex Hixon (syncretist and disciple of Swami Nikhilananda) – poet, philosopher, spiritual practitioner and teacher[87]
Mathias Rust – German daredevil pilot[88]
J. D. Salinger – American author best known for The Catcher in the Rye[89]
Kelli Williams – American actress who played Lindsay Dole Donnell on the ABC legal drama The Practice.

Source – Wikipedea



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