Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: NBA player converted to Islam

The National Basket Association (NBA) player Lew Alcindor converted to Islam and became Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Lew Alcindor was an American former professional basketball player who played 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Why did he convert to Islam?

Lew Alcindor was enjoying fame, good performance, and the spotlight; still, he was not contented with his life. Meanwhile, in 1971, riots among African-Americans broke out which caused 43 deaths and thousands of injuries.

Out of discomfort, he started attending Catholic schools in the quest for peace and light. Then he read his autobiography of Malcolm which attracted him to Islam. Finally, he converted to Islam when he was just 24. 

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar about Islam

“Islam seemed the only way to complete my journey to spiritual fulfillment. Though it seemed a path full of obstacles and hurdles, still I felt so motivated to adopt Islam as my soul and heart. The journey was not easy.”

“I had to pay for my decision and I did but the spiritual content I always missed, I only got with my closeness with my Lord,” said Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. 

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Wife

He married a Muslim woman despite his strong feelings for a Christian woman. He annoyed his parents with his decision still he feels so contented and complete being a Muslim.

He wanted to transform in a more private way than making public announcements still he has not to regret what he faced for becoming a Muslim. A true Muslim indeed has the same spirit as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar filled with Islam is all about peace and contentment.

Being a celebrity he had to face a lot of criticism, objections, and questions. “Religion is a matter of personal choice still I’m explaining my reason for conversion since the day I declared Islam as my official religion,” said Abdul-Jabbar.

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.