'Journeys of Faith with Paula Faris': Reza Aslan sets the record straight on Islam

Introducing Journeys of Faith with Paula Faris, a podcast.

In a new episode of "Journeys of Faith with Paula Faris," a podcast featuring conversations on how faith has guided newsmakers and celebrities through their best and worst times, ABC News' Paula Faris sits down with religious scholar and author Reza Aslan.

Listen now -- new episodes available every Wednesday.

Here is Paula, in her own words, about the new episode.

“Muslims believe that Jesus was the Messiah.”

I’ll be honest: I didn’t know that. Until I spoke with my next guest, Reza Aslan, who told me that “our faith has so much more in common with each other than we actually realize.”

Much like last week’s guest -- neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris -- Reza is way out of my league. He’s an author, religious scholar and TV commentator. He also holds a master’s of theological studies from Harvard Divinity School.

And he has a wild faith journey. Reza was raised Shia Muslim, then converted to Christianity -- he even became a church youth leader -- before converting back to Islam at the behest of Jesuit priests. He says his “faith isn’t these things that I believe -- it’s who I am, it’s what I am. And so I can’t see myself without it. I can’t understand myself without it.”

One-quarter of the world’s population identifies as Muslim. Did you know Muslims believe Jesus was a prophet and a messiah? I didn’t. Did you know Muslims actually rank Jesus higher than the Prophet Muhammad? Again, I didn’t.

This podcast has become a personal journey of my own. I’m listening. Learning. My own Christian faith is growing. Reza makes a strong point that continually challenges me: “If your brain isn’t part of your faith experience, then your faith probably isn’t strong enough.”

I hope you enjoy this episode of “Journeys of Faith,” as we explore Islam, discuss raising children in a multifaith household and hear his reaction to getting fired from CNN.

How does he define his faith?

“My faith is in God. My faith is not in any religion. I don’t trust anybody who says ‘I believe in Christianity,’ as though that is something to believe in. Or, ‘I believe in the Quran.’”

How does he differentiate between faith and religion, especially in a multifaith household?

“For us, what matters is faith. Religion is the language you use to express your faith, but our faith has so much more in common with each other than we actually realize.”

How does he feel about CNN canceling his show after he tweeted an inflammatory remark about President Trump?

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