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September 1st, 2011
10:24 AM ET

My Faith: Rep. Keith Ellison, from Catholic to Muslim

By Chris Welch, CNN

Minneapolis, Minnesota (CNN) -Prior to 2006, few people even knew that then-Minnesota state legislator Keith Ellison was a Muslim. Because of his English name, he said, no one thought to ask.

But five years ago, when he ran for a seat in the United States House of Representatives - a race he would go on to win - word of his religious affiliation began to spread.

“When I started running for Congress it actually took me by surprise that so many people were fascinated with me being the first Muslim in Congress,” said Ellison, a Democrat now serving his third term in the House.

“But someone said to me, ‘Look Keith, think of a person of Japanese origin running for Congress six years after Pearl Harbor–this might be a news story.’”

Though Ellison's status as the first Muslim elected to Congress is widely known, fewer are aware that he was born into a Catholic family in Detroit and was brought up attending Catholic schools.

But he said he was never comfortable with that faith.

“I just felt it was ritual and dogma,” Ellison said. “Of course, that’s not the reality of Catholicism, but it’s the reality I lived. So I just kind of lost interest and stopped going to Mass unless I was required to.”

It wasn’t until he was a student at Wayne State University in Detroit when Ellison began, “looking for other things.”

He doesn’t have an elaborate explanation of what led him to convert to Islam in college, though he said he was “drawn to the multi-national congregation.”

“I would really like to hear somebody who is really articulate about the elements of their faith conversion. I'm not,” he said. "I investigated it, it worked for me, and it made me have a sense of inspiration and wonder, and I became a Muslim. It's been working for me ever since.”

Ellison's political opponents have made his faith an issue in his congressional campaigns.

“I would caution [opponents] that it doesn't work. People are not hateful like that," he said. "If you come up saying, ‘Vote for me because Ellison is a Muslim and I’m not,’ nine out of ten voters are going to see that as the silliness that it is.”

“It doesn't hurt my feelings at all," he said. "In fact I actually feel sorry for these people.”

And he said he has never had a second thought about converting.

“My faith and my identity as a Muslim - I never saw it as something that made my job harder," he said. "It’s just an aspect of who I am. It's the time that we live in. We have to respond to the realities of the world we’re in.”

But Ellison acknowledges that his faith has given him something of a national profile, not always in ways that are welcome.

In March, he testified in nationally televised congressional hearings, called by Rep. Peter King, a New York Republican, to explore what King said was radicalization in American Muslim communities.

At the hearing, Ellison choked up as he described the sacrifices of Muslim Americans who tried to save others in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

“Without any of my choosing or desire I became somewhat of a symbolic figure," Ellison said. "And I urge anyone to avoid becoming a symbolic figure if you can. But I ended up in that position, so I just figured why not talk about it? Why not help try to bring people together with it?”

“Faith really should be a bridge, not a wall," Ellison said. "Because at the end of the day we should be focusing on what you believe, not what your religion is.”

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Islam

soundoff (1,073 Responses)
  1. Muneef

    Reality.

    In an authentic Hadith, Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) said: "Man is influenced by the faith of his friends. Therefore, be careful of whom you associate with."

    Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) who has the most noble character and dealings with fellow humans gave us a very clear and simple message and advice in regard to friendship.

    How should we choose our friends? We should choose the friend that believes and abide by our religion (Islam) and gives great respect to what Allah (SWT) and Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) has ordered us. And we should stay away from that who is not well mannered and gives no attention to what Islam is about or what pleases or displeases Allah (SWT), for he will surely affect us negatively. There is no good in the companion drowns us in sins and displeasing Allah (SWT).

    In another Hadith, Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) said: "The example of a good companion and a bad companion is like that of the seller of musk, and the one who blows the blacksmith's bellows. So as for the seller of musk then either he will grant you some, or you buy some from him, or at least you enjoy a pleasant smell from him. As for the one who blows the blacksmith's bellows then either he will burn your clothes or you will get an offensive smell from him."

    When choosing our friends we should ask ourselves first: Are they going to help us achieve the purpose for which we were brought to life? Or will they take us away from it? Will they desire for us Allah (SWT)'s pleasure or is that completely irrelevant to them and not their concern at all? Are they leading us to Paradise or to the Hell?

    Islamic Sayings on FriendshipProphet Mohammad (pbuh) stated, "The believer is like a mirror to other believers (in truthfulness)." Like a mirror, your friend gives you an honest image. He forgives your mistakes, but does not hide or exaggerate your strengths and weaknesses.

    Once the Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) was asked, "What person can be the best friend?" "He who helps you remember Allah (SWT), and reminds you when you forget Him," the Prophet Mohammad (pbuh), counseled.

    Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) was further asked, "Who is the best among people?" Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) replied, "He who, when you look at him, you remember Allah (SWT)". Such a friend reflects qualities of love, mercy, honesty, service, patience, optimism, professionalism, and the entire lifestyle taught by Islam.

     

    'Abdullah ibn 'Umar related that Rasulullah (SAW) said:

    Obey your parents and treat them kindly, for if you do so then your own children will be obedient and kind to you.
    (Tabari)

    September 3, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
    • In the name of Allah, the Merciful

      Now we all know why Allah Mohammed prohibit them not taking Jews and Christians as friends.

      Http:\quran\5\51

      Thanks Muunef

      September 4, 2011 at 7:39 am |
    • rmarc

      Islam is just another dangerous and delusional cult like all of organized religions!

      September 4, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • nad

      Islam is an evil religion no doubt at all.

      September 4, 2011 at 10:23 am |
    • Muneef

      Say rather it is those who;
      As for the one who blows the blacksmith's bellows then either he will burn your clothes or you will get an offensive smell from him."
      All these wars you creat are as those blows that we get from you....!

      September 6, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
  2. ChicagoJoe

    The guys at Powerline have done the most comprehensive expose of Ellison. Read this http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2011/08/keith-ellison-for-dummies.php

    September 3, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  3. bob

    Thank you CNN. I see CNN "forgot" to report the Rep. Ellison was a part of Farakan's Nation of Islam. Can CNN explain this omission?

    September 3, 2011 at 10:25 am |
    • paperjihad

      There have been many African-Americans who have found orthodox Islam by way of heterodox sects such as the NOI. I've met a few, and they are good people. Sometimes finding your path means taking a few side paths along the way. I'd rather judge Mr. Ellison by his service to his country and present actions than by a passing moment in his personal history.

      September 3, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
    • Reality

      How we judge Muslims:

      The terror and aggression instigated by your "good book" as measured by a partial and recent body count
      as the koranic/mosque driven acts of terror and horror continue:

      The Muslim Conquest of India – 11th to 18th century

      ■"The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

      and the 19 million killed in the Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C by Muslims.

      and more recently

      1a) 179 killed in Mumbai/Bombay, 290 injured

      1b) Assassination of Benazir Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh

      2) 9/11, 3000 mostly US citizens, 1000’s injured

      3) The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US troops killed in action, 3,483 and 925 in non combat roles. 99,901 – 109,143 Iraqi civilians killed as of 3/3/2011/, mostly due to suicide bombers, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and http://www.defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf

      4) Kenya- In Nairobi, about 212 people were killed and an estimated 4000 injured; in Dar es Salaam, the attack killed at least 11 and wounded 85.[2]

      5) Bali-in 2002-killing 202 people, 164 of whom were foreign nationals, and 38 Indonesian citizens. A further 209 people were injured.

      6) Bali in 2005- Twenty people were killed, and 129 people were injured by three bombers who killed themselves in the attacks.

      7) Spain in 2004- killing 191 people and wounding 2,050.

      8. UK in 2005- The bombings killed 52 commuters and the four radical Islamic suicide bombers, injured 700.

      9) The execution of an eloping couple in Afghanistan on 04/15/2009 by the Taliban.

      10) – Afghanistan: US troops 1,141 killed in action, 242 killed in non-combat situations as of 03/03/2011. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror

      11) The killing of 13 citizen soldiers at Ft. Hood by a follower of the koran.

      12) 38 Russian citizens killed on March 29, 2010 by Muslim women suicide bombers.

      13) The May 28, 2010 attack on a Islamic religious minority in Pakistan, which have left 98 dead,

      14) Lockerbie is known internationally as the site where, on 21 December 1988, the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 crashed as a result of a terrorist bomb. In the United Kingdom the event is referred to as the Lockerbie disaster, the Lockerbie bombing, or simply Lockerbie. Eleven townspeople were killed in Sherwood Crescent, where the plane's wings and fuel tanks plummeted in a fiery explosion, destroying several houses and leaving a huge crater, with debris causing damage to a number of buildings nearby. The 270 fatalities (259 on the plane, 11 in Lockerbie) were citizens of 21 nations.

      15 The daily suicide and/or roadside and/or mosque bombings in the terror world of Islam.

      16) Bombs sent from Yemen by followers of the koran which fortunately were discovered before the bombs were detonated.

      17) The killing of 58 Christians in a Catholic church in one of the latest acts of horror and terror in Iraq.

      18) Moscow airport suicide bombing: 35 dead, 130 injured. January 25, 2011.

      19) A Pakistani minister, who had said he was getting death threats because of his stance against the country's controversial blasphemy law, was shot and killed Wednesday, 3/2/2011

      20) two American troops killed in Germany by a recently radicalized Muslim, 3/3/2011

      21) the kidnapping and apparent killing of a follower of Zoraster in the dark world of Islamic Pakistan.

      22) Shariatpur, Bangladesh (CNN 3/30/2011) – Hena Akhter's last words to her mother proclaimed her innocence. But it was too late to save the 14-year-old girl. Her fellow villagers in Bangladesh's Shariatpur district had already passed harsh judgment on her. Guilty, they said, of having an affair with a married man. The imam from the local mosque ordered the fatwa, or religious ruling, and the punishment: 101 lashes delivered swiftly, deliberately in public. Hena dropped after 70 and died a week later.

      September 3, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • The Real Reality

      @Reality,
      Wow, its soooo painfully obvious that you suffer from a personal bias against Islam. While you have every instance where Muslims( or so called Muslims) have killed, now go back and do the same for every other religion. Because if you point is that religion has caused the deaths of people, then congrats on solving what the entire world already knows. That dosnt make Islam an evil relgion. So congrats on finding petty ways to demean a religion.

      September 3, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
    • Reality

      The Twenty (or so) Worst Things People Have Done to Each Other:
      From: http://necrometrics.com/warstatz.htm#u (required reading)

      The Muslim Conquest of India

      "The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

      Rank <<<Death Toll <Cause <<Centuries<<<Religions/Groups involved*

      1. 63 million Second World War 20C (Christians et al and Communists/atheists vs. Christians et al, Nazi-Pagan and "Shintoists")

      2. 40 million Mao Zedong (mostly famine) 20C (Communism)

      3. 40 million Genghis Khan 13C (Shamanism or Tengriism)

      4. 27 million British India (mostly famine) 19C (Anglican)

      5. 25 million Fall of the Ming Dynasty 17C (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Chinese folk religion)

      6. 20 million Taiping Rebellion 19C ( Confucianism, Buddhism and Chinese folk religion vs. a form of Christianity)

      7. 20 million Joseph Stalin 20C (Communism)

      8. 19 million Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C (Islam)

      9. 17 million Timur Lenk 14C-15C

      10. 16 million Atlantic Slave Trade 15C-19C (Christianity)

      11. 15 million First World War 20C (Christians vs. Christians)

      12. 15 million Conquest of the Americas 15C-19C (Christians vs. Pagans)

      13. 13 million Muslim Conquest of India 11C-18C

      14. 10 million An Lushan Revolt 8C

      15. 10 million Xin Dynasty 1C

      16. 9 million Russian Civil War 20C (Christians vs Communists)

      17. 8 million Fall of Rome 5C (Pagans vs. Pagans)

      18. 8 million Congo Free State 19C-20C (Christians)

      19. 7½ million Thirty Years War 17C (Christians vs Christians)

      20. 7½ million Fall of the Yuan Dynasty 14C

      *:" Is religion responsible for more violent deaths than any other cause?

      A: No, of course not – unless you define religion so broadly as to be meaningless. Just take the four deadliest events of the 20th Century – Two World Wars, Red China and the Soviet Union – no religious motivation there, unless you consider every belief system to be a religion."

      Q: So, what you're saying is that religion has never killed anyone.

      A: Arrgh... You all-or-nothing people drive me crazy. There are many doc-umented examples where members of one religion try to exterminate the members of another religion. Causation is always complex, but if the only difference between two warring groups is religion, then that certainly sounds like a religious conflict to me. Is it the number one cause of mass homicide in human history? No. Of the 22 worst episodes of mass killing, maybe four were primarily religious. Is that a lot? Well, it's more than the number of wars fought over soccer, or s-ex (The Trojan and Sabine Wars don't even make the list.), but less than the number fought over land, money, glory or prestige.

      In my Index, I list 41 religious conflicts compared with 27 oppressions under "Communism", 24 under Colonialism, 2 under "Railroads" and 2 under "Scapegoats". Make of that what you will."

      September 3, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  4. Facts Is Facts

    I find the non-mention of Mr. Ellison's past association with the racist, anti-Semitic Nation of Islam disturbing and disingenuous.

    September 3, 2011 at 9:54 am |
    • Fact

      Islams is also the fastest growing religion. FACT

      September 3, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
    • Facts Is Facts

      You're not making me feel any better.

      September 3, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
  5. 04052011

    It's all fairytales and unicorns

    September 3, 2011 at 6:27 am |
    • herbert juarez

      Aren't you so special.You got the word unicorn squeezed into a Muslim story.
      If you refer to unicorns in your post,you might be an atheist.(or in bad need of a therapist)

      September 3, 2011 at 10:03 am |
    • 4307123

      Ignore herbert. He posts a lot of cra-p here and he's really stupid.

      September 3, 2011 at 10:34 am |
    • herbert juarez

      He's bright enough not to bring unicorns into the mix.

      September 3, 2011 at 10:47 am |
  6. Emrul

    All praise is due to Allah who guided Rep. Keith Ellison to Islam. After reading so many comments in this post, my only response is still the same: Educate yourself about ISLAM, do not take the misconceptions created by the media. Take a minute to step outside the "anti-islam" box, and just be open minded and reasonable. Do not judge Islam by "what" you hear people say, rather consider reading the "Qur'an" to directly hear the word of God. It is so "unfortunate" when someone accuses something without truly even knowing what it is.
    ------------------------------
    Qur'an, Chapter 2, Verse 23-24: "And if you are in doubt about what We have sent down upon Our Servant [Muhammad], then produce a surah the like thereof and call upon your witnesses other than Allah, if you should be truthful. (23) But if you do not – and you will never be able to – then fear the Fire, whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the disbelievers. (24)"
    ------------------------------
    It is your right to know about Islam, because Islam is for all Humanity. So why not learn more and order a free Qur'an from http://www.whyislam.org/ ?

    September 3, 2011 at 3:05 am |
    • Jesusismyidol

      We just judge ISLAM bu the MUSLIM actions and Behaviors. As to with Christianity. Get your people straight and maybe we wouldn't feel this way.

      September 3, 2011 at 10:33 am |
    • Hmmmm

      Ever taken a trip outside of America? The whole world feels the complete opposite of what you do, @Jesusismyidol. They think that you are the ones that need to change the way you act. and if you dont understand, then it only furthers my point. So the cycle of hatred continues

      September 3, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  7. NewsAnalyzer

    My fellow Americans,

    1. In the Islamic faith, Jesus Christ is a Muslim.

    2. A Muslim does two things:

    .....a. Believe in the existence of The Creator of everything = God [English] or Allah [Arabic] or Dieu [French], etc...

    .....b. Make a lot of good deeds = Help the poor, the sick, the hungry, donate money to charity, promote justice and peace, etc...

    3. The following Prophets are therefore Muslims: Jesus, Moses, Mohammed, and Abraham.

    4. In fact, Prophet Abraham is the one who named everyone a Muslim. Here's the verse in the Holy Koran:

    Chapter 22, Verse 78:

    "...the faith of your father ABRAHAM; He named you MUSLIMS before and in this, that the Messenger may be a bearer of witness to you....."

    5. So, to the three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), Grandpa Abraham was a Muslim (see item 2 above). So stop fighting amongst yourselves and start being an example to the ideals of Jesus, Mohammed, Moses, and of course Grandpa Abraham

    Peace, Love, and Freedom to ALL!

    September 3, 2011 at 2:40 am |
    • dennywells

      Consider the possibility that all religions believing the supernatural are false.
      Then Abraham, Jesus, Mohammed, and Moses were all HUMANS.
      They each made up religious ideology in order to control people.

      Moral people do these two things
      1 They treat other people with respect.
      2 They refrain from making up stories about supernatural events and then attempting to convince people that they are real.

      September 3, 2011 at 7:36 am |
  8. Xenia

    Islam has no salvation. Muslims need to believe that Jesus the Divine Savior died on the cross for their sins and rose from the dead, defeating death and hell. No human can redeem his own soul because everyone is a sinner. Practically, no human's good deeds over-weighs his bad deeds. Muslims must look up to Jesus to be saved.

    September 3, 2011 at 2:28 am |
    • muslimjesus

      almighty god teaches us in the final testament[the holy quran]when you want to say something about religion bring your proof.you are not showing any proof your just stating what you understand from your bible.
      answer to your reply: i don't recall the exact chapter or verse but i remember the meaning when one of the men cane to jesus peace be upon him and told him what can i do to have eternal life,jesus stated:follow the commandement.
      and we know the 1st commandement is to worship 1 god.
      if jesus was the salvation as you said he could have said explicitly if you want eternal life worship me or worship a trine god which i am part of him.jesus peace be upon him never called people to worship him but to the only one.

      peace

      September 3, 2011 at 3:13 am |
  9. muslimjesus

    some christians say islam is dead religion others say is paganism ...you are wrong because believe we in the same almighty god[allah in arabic] that jesus worshipped in his meditation,in his 40 days fasting like we do in the holy month of ramadan. if jesus was god i don't think it was necessary for him to pray or fast.
    verses from the bible confirming almighty god is one and greater than jesus[allahu akbar].
    john14:28 my father is greater than i.in another verse says the father is greater than all.MATT19:17 why you call me good there is no one good but god alone.MATT24:36;.LUKE6:12;JHON5:19;8:29 ...and in MARK:O children of israel the lord our god is 1 god.not 3. sorry i can write you more but not space ,please read your bible and if you don' understand or you have doubt about something ask a muslim.

    September 3, 2011 at 2:19 am |
    • EGYPTIAN

      My friend you do not understand the Bible at all.

      September 3, 2011 at 2:30 am |
    • arduck

      @Egyptian....meaning no harm to you, I think muslimjesus makes a valid point. He pulls his support from the Bible and in the KJV my mother (msRIP) gave me, almost fifty years ago, those verses are in printed in red ink. So how can you say that muslimjesus does not know the bible? Just asking.

      September 3, 2011 at 9:00 am |
  10. Reality

    Dear Mr. Ellison,

    What instigated the attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon? And what drives today's 24/7 mosque/imam-planned acts of terror and horror? Your koran, Mohammed's book of death for all infidels and Muslim domination of the world by any means. Muslims must clean up this book removing said passages admitting that they are based on the Gabriel myth and therefore obviously the hallucinations and/or lies of Mohammed. Then we can talk about the safety and location of mosques and what is taught therein. Until then, no female or male Muslim can be trusted anytime or anywhere..................................

    September 3, 2011 at 12:24 am |
  11. Denny

    The problem is not that Mr. Ellison converted to Islam, the problem is that he converted to any religion at all. What's worse is that he does not even know why. Is that the way that he makes a decision that he believes effects his eternal soul?
    There are reasonable reality-based alternatives to the supernatural religious beliefs that plague our world. Assume for a moment that there is no god of any kind and think about the problems with all religions that just melt away.

    September 3, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  12. arthurrrrr

    There are THREE kinds of Moslems: 1. Convert or we will KILL you. 2. We agree with number one but we will just watch as YOU kill them. 3. Not sure about the Killing part-i guess i need to read the Koran more since you say its in there (and it is!!!!!)

    September 2, 2011 at 11:42 pm |
  13. Clint

    Guys the intense hatred is so visible,this was the same witth Moses, Jesus and not to mention with Mohammad.

    September 2, 2011 at 11:39 pm |
  14. gotacomment

    I'm not surprised Keith Ellison became a Muslim. I'm not surprised any man with a thing for living in the 16th century and looking forward to the 14th would become a Muslim. Islam is a religion of, by and for men–as any woman raised under Muslim oppression or foolish enough to marry a Muslim or in a moment of being completely delusional, converts, could tell. Of course, the Muslim-from-birth wouldn't dare open her mouth. The convert might, but she'd be risking her life, or at least a severe beating.

    September 2, 2011 at 11:22 pm |
    • Minnesota Democrat

      But of course...that's why Keith's wife and children remain Catholic; they are unwilling and unable to convert to Islam because "Mom" is the one in family wearing the pants and there is simply no way she is going to walk 10 feet behind Keith, or have her kids disrespect women. Of course, what this story fails to mention is a 10 year association with the Nation of Islam, nor a discussion around the particular sect of Islam he subscribes to that is pro-choice and pro-gay. The Minnesota "old school" Jewish liberals love him..and I think it's because he too is a liberal more than a Muslim; thus they are not fearful of his faith and if he ever does become more conservative, they can simply choose to not re-elect hm. Truth is, if the Middle East had 100,000,000 Keith Ellison's as fellow Muslims...there would be no suicide bombing, and no desire to subscribe to Sharia law. He's as liberalized as a Muslim can be...and that...my friends...is great for America. The only question remaining is how to export this theology to the Middle East?

      September 3, 2011 at 10:38 am |
  15. pseudobliss

    Religious intolerance is everywhere. Ever stop to think why Jewish people do not accept Christians or Muslims into marriage without the "outsider" converting? Why dont Jewish people accept "outsiders" into their grave yards? These are all old tricks from yesteryear designed to overtake one religion and empower another and it is working. Marriages are littered with women (and some men) who were not accepted as Christian or Muslim in marriage by the Jewish community. For all those Christians out there complaining about CNN and Muslims, look right under your nose and stop blaming only Muslims. Youve been discriminated against for decades. Good job to CNN for posting honestly and not censoring respectful posts that point out the obvious...

    September 2, 2011 at 10:48 pm |
  16. a Hughes

    I have many Muslim friends and Catholic friends and respect them equally. Just gotta say, though . . . leaving Catholicism because it's, "all ritual and dogma," and turning instead to Islam is like leaving Wisconsin because it snows too much and moving to Alaska. Nothing like being told how often to pray, when to pray, how to pray, what words to say, which language to say it in, what to wear while praying, how to wash your hands before you pray, which knee to bend first, which direction to face while praying (and I'm just scratching the surface here) to describe "ritual and dogma." That part of this article makes NO sense.

    September 2, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
    • arthurrrrr

      THANK YOU!!!

      September 2, 2011 at 11:38 pm |
    • Reality

      o Even farting is "controlled" in Islam:

      To wit:

      http://www.scribd.com/doc/1503931/Prayer-Recitation-of-Quran-and-Ablution-or-Bath?query2=islam%20fart

      "Farting is problematic in Islam. During prayer, a worshipper must not fart. Sahih Bukhari (1.4.137) writes that Allah will not accept a Muslim's prayer if he/she passes wind during the ritual.

      The exception occurs if the worshipper farts silently, or the fart does not smell. In such a case, he/she may continue with the prayer (ibid, 1.4.139).Sunaan Nasai (1.162) writes that if you fart during a prayer you must redo ablution. Sahih Bukhari (9.86.86) says that for a "farter" Allah will not accept his/her prayer until he/she performs another ablution."

      September 3, 2011 at 12:26 am |
  17. Ed

    God loved you so He became a man and died for your sins and arose from the dead. Please place your faith and trust in The LORD Jesus Christ and not a religion or any other person or thing. God in the person of Christ suffered what would be equal to what it would be like to burn on fire forever so that you will not have to if you will have repentance toward God and faith toward The LORD Jesus Christ. God is love"(I John 4:7,8)KJB. And Jesus is God incarnate. (John 1:1-14)KJB. Think about that.

    September 2, 2011 at 10:37 pm |
    • Ed

      carm dot org . If you have any questions , this site will answer all of them.

      September 2, 2011 at 10:40 pm |
  18. paperjihad

    Bravo, Mr. Ellison, for your service to our country and for your faith.

    September 2, 2011 at 9:32 pm |
  19. George

    Good for him, if it keeps him happy.

    September 2, 2011 at 9:09 pm |
  20. fromchristianitytoislam

    Allahu Akabar

    I to came from a catholic up bringing and found the true light which is Islam.

    Facts speak louder than words... the fact is if people from AMERICA with AMERICAN CHRISTIAN beliefs and upbringings reverts to the best or to some the strictest way of life then Inshallah Muslims will be the reigning religion in the United States.. I know Christians will bash my comment and send me Christian attacks about my religion which is islam, but the fact is AMERICAN CHRISTIANS are reverting to the true light which is Islam and there nothing anyone can do. Accept it or fight it.. the more you fight it and spread lies which leads more people to wanting to look up true facts thus excelling there return to the true worship of the one and only god. with no partners, nor sons.. America is becoming Islam and it will go down into history that neither imperialistic ways or an enforcing army came, but just the book of Allah. The Noble Qur'an.

    The book that changed a nation

    September 2, 2011 at 8:36 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      No one who was ever a TRUE Christian, did ever leave Christ who is the living Word of God for Islam. If they did, they NEVER KNEW Jesus Christ, nor were ever born of His Spirit.

      Maybe you're not aware of it, or don't want to be, but there are many Muslims converting to Christianity. You can search the web and see their testimonies.... instead of their dead religion, they had and encounter with the LIVING God, became born of His Spirit. that's what happens to a person who is seeking to KNOW God, and not to be clothed in a religion...
      If America falls, it's not going to be because she will become "islam" , as you're saying, but because she has become proud, arrogant, materialistic, intoxicated with self glory, and because she has declared her independence from the One who has blest her and raised her up from rags to riches, loving her vile entertainment and worshiping her base idols rather then seeking truth and justice, to preserve those in her midst.
      If she has forsaken the God of Truth whom her forefathers knew and honored, do you really think she will go after a god that offers no more then garment of religion? No chance, friend.... There is a handwriting on the wall for this country, but it won't be CONVERSION to Islam. You can be sure of that!

      September 2, 2011 at 9:52 pm |
    • getreal74

      God I hope not. I hope we dont become Ameristan and those of us who arnt muslims being forced to live as dhimmis.

      September 2, 2011 at 10:29 pm |
    • Real Deal

      You are both sorely mistaken.

      fromchristianitytoislam:

      Do you know why the Quran was written? Mohammad was an Arab warlord looking for a new spiritual inspiration in the ages-old struggle against the Jews. Read some history on sites other than Islam-biased ones. Here's a start: (dang the link won't print here... try Googling "The Origins of the Koran: Classic Essays on Islam's Holy Book" and you might be able to find it. There are other sites also, of course, with unbiased history.

      ----------------------------

      Prism:

      Your no TRUE Christian argument is lame, to start with. It is an old fallacious way of arguing which was even given a name by logicians - The No True Scotsman Error.

      That your alleged "God" ever did a single thing to benefit the United States has not one shred of verified evidence. The South would be very huffy if you declared that "God" smote their side during the Civil War and made the North victorious.

      September 2, 2011 at 10:35 pm |
    • Hmmmm

      Islam is the worlds fastest growing religon of the three major ones. FACT

      September 3, 2011 at 6:42 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      "Real Deal"
      My comment was not an argument.... But since you think you qualify to refute what I said, in a smart alecky way, I will tell you this:

      You do not know what true Christianity is, nor what it means to be a real Christian.

      As for the rest what you said, it only shows that what you've got the most is abundance of hot air!

      September 3, 2011 at 10:29 pm |
    • LinCA

      @PRISM 1234

      You said, "You do not know what true Christianity is, nor what it means to be a real Christian."
      Religion is a choice. Anyone who claims to be a christian, is one. They may not be your particular flavor, or subscribe to exactly the same delusions as you do, but they are most certainly christians.

      You said, "As for the rest what you said, it only shows that what you've got the most is abundance of hot air!"
      Right back at ya!

      September 3, 2011 at 10:50 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      @ LC
      Some people's depth of understanding can be compared to the depth of a shallow mud puddle. And you've got a lots of company joining you!

      September 5, 2011 at 9:01 pm |
    • LinCA

      @PRISM 1234

      You said, "Some people's depth of understanding can be compared to the depth of a shallow mud puddle."
      I agree, and for most it doesn't compare favorably. That's why they're believers.

      You said, "And you've got a lots of company joining you!"
      Yes, more and more people are seeing the light and shedding the insanities of religion. I predict that within a few decades, atheists and agnostics will form a solid majority in the US.

      September 7, 2011 at 1:01 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.