With the news that George Clooney is marrying Lebanese-born human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin comes the question: Is she Muslim?
Kind of, writes Omid Safi in a Religion News Service blog.
The bride-to-be is a Druze, which started out as "a medieval offshoot of the Ismaili sect of Shi'ism," Safi writes.
The Druze movement traces its origins to Egypt's Shia realm, which was established in Cairo in the 10th century, he writes. These believers "divided the human community to the select few who are initiated in the mysteries and the uninitiated masses. They prefer to refer to themselves as possessing secret, mystical knowledge ('irfan), in a parallel way to what Sufis and philosophers claim."