Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf converts to Judaism


In 1993, LSU basketball star Chris Jackson legally changed his name to Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf after converting to Islam. Along the way he became famous for fasting during Ramadan, even when it occurred during an NBA playoff season. He also refused to stand for the National Anthem, stating America’s “history of tyranny”.

Now, Abdul-Rauf will soon be changing the name on his driver’s license again.

On July 4, Abdul-Rauf announced he is converting from Islam to Judaism. He will be legally changing his name from Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf to Chaim Shalowitz.

In Hebrew, his name will be written as:

חיים שלויץ

“This is a long, hard decision, but one I’m at peace with,” the soon-to-be Shalowitz told Ponderings from Pluto. “I’ve come to see Islam as a religion of oppression and tyranny, and I feel close to the God of the Jews.”

To mark his conversion, the Basketball Star Formerly Known as Chris Jackson and Abdul-Rauf will spend this fall in Israel on a tour of the Holy Land, where he’ll also play in charity basketball games. He also plans to donate money to build basketball courts on some of the more than 260 kibbutzes in Israel.

Or, as the basketball player will call them while learning Hebrew, kibbutzim.


4 Responses to Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf converts to Judaism

  1. Cantor Howard Shalowitz, Esq. says:

    Where can I get in touch with Chaim? We would like to invite him to our Shalowitz family reunion! There are only 2 Shalowitz families in the country — we are the ones from Chicago. The other is from Baltimore,
    Howard Shalowitz
    St. Louis, MO

  2. […] Chris Jackson aka Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf aka Chaim Shalowitz?  Just kidding, he’s not converting to Judaism, but this little fake story is pretty funny. [Ponderings from Pluto] […]

  3. Cantor Howard Shalowitz, Esq. says:

    I kind of thought it was not real — it is very, very funny!!! How did you select the name “Shalowitz” — it was the last name of the ice cream brothers in City Slickers — Ira and Barry Shalowitz (my brother’s and cousin’s middle names).

  4. Thomas A. says:

    Very good insights. I like to look over your article content. Normally interesting subjects, as well as superb research. It is best to be putting a lot of time into your blogs.

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