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Famous MMA Fighter Embraces Islam

Famous MMA Fighter Embraces Islam

Jeffrey William Monson, an American-born Russian MMA fighter and former world champion in boxing and submission grappling, has announced his conversion to Islam.

The 53-year-old revealed this in a widely shared video clip, where he recited the Shahadah, the Islamic declaration of faith, on June 20 with the assistance of a scholar at an Islamic center in Moscow.

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“This journey has been one of profound transformation,” said Monson at a press conference following his conversion. “I’ve been searching for meaning and purpose, and Islam aligns with my values and beliefs, giving me a sense of peace and fulfillment.”

Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, Monson is renowned for his jiu-jitsu achievements, having won world championship titles, and for his career in mixed martial arts. He emphasized that his decision to embrace Islam was the result of extensive introspection and exploration of various religious philosophies.

“I deliberately chose Islam. I want to stand alongside my brothers during these challenging times. I’ve thought about it a lot, and this is a decisive step,” Monson stated.

Monson, who renounced his US citizenship in 2018 and now holds Russian citizenship, has achieved 60 victories, 26 defeats, and one draw in his career. Recently, he was elected as a deputy of the State Assembly of Bashkortostan from the United Russia party in September 2023.

For Monson, converting to Islam is not only a personal spiritual journey but also a commitment to a community and a faith that deeply resonates with his principles and aspirations.