Shia Islam is one of the two major sects of Islam and approximately fifteen percent of Muslims are Shia. The split between Sunnis and Shias occurred following the Prophet Muhammad’s death. Sunnis believe Muhammad chose his close friend Abu Bakr to succeed him, whereas Shias believe the prophet chose his son-in-law Ali. Although there is a division within Islam, converting to Shia Islam involves the same process as Sunni Islam. Converting to Islam is easy than the conversion process for other religions.

Recite the Shahadah and mean it in your heart. The Shahadah is the Islamic profession of faith: “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger.” Upon reciting the Shahadah, you officially become a Muslim.

Follow the Five Pillars of Islam. The Five Pillars are Shahadah, Salat (ritual prayer), Zakat (almsgiving), Sawm (fasting) and Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca). These are the basic tenets of Islam and the religious rules by which Muslims live their lives. Salat is done five times daily, Zakat once per year, Sawm once per year during the lunar month of Ramadan, and the Hajj at least once in a Muslim’s lifetime.

Obtain a Quran, the Islamic holy book. Muslims believe the Quran is the word of God spoken directly to Muhammad. Read passages of the Quran for a better understanding of Shia Islam.