Beneil Dariush made his UFC debut in 2014, and after all these years with his fair share of ups and downs, the Iranian fighter is on the cusp of global stardom. Dariush’s UFC journey started with a submission win Charlie Brennemanto suffer the first loss of his professional career in the form of a first-round stoppage loss to Ramsey Nijem.
Dariush would go on to secure a five-game winning streak, picking up victories over the likes of Jim Miller and Michael Johnson, only to find himself on the receiving end of a backhand once again, suffering a submission loss to Michael Chiesa. Back-to-back knockout losses at the hands of Edson Barboza and Alexander Hernandez, and Dariush found himself in a special position.
The Iranian fighter is talented, there’s no denying that. However, consistency eluded the lightweight contender, keeping him clear of the title shot. All these years later, Dariush is exactly where he’s supposed to be; among the elite in his weight class with notable victories over Tony Ferguson, Carlos Diego Ferreira and Thiago Moises, among others.
Is Beneil Dariush a Christian?
Beneil Khobier Dariush is a devout Christian of Assyrian origin. He was born in Urmia, Iran and currently resides in Yorba Linda, California, USA. Dariush has spoken publicly about his religious beliefs and credits God for everything he has achieved over the years.
“You get a glimpse of the goodness of God, the greatness of God, he sees everything and has a plan for everyone. During those five minutes that I was in that octagon, I had a vision that I never actually had. Dariush said after his knockout punch of Scott Holtzman in August 2020.
Dariush recalls the first time he read the Bible and how his belief in God only grew stronger from there. Dariush was only 22 at the time.
“As I was showing up, something was happening and I was hearing about Jesus, the sacrifice and the cross. So I took my Bible. Dariush added.
“I didn’t understand much of it, but there were some very compelling things. As I went through that, I started to see a change in myself, and I finally kind of started to understand the cross. That’s when the change happened. I think it happened at 22-23, I started going to church, I think I finished the Bible at 24-25, then I started reading it again and at the same time I gave my life to the Lord.
Watch this interesting interview where Beneil Dariush talks about his religious beliefs and how it snowballed into making him a prolific MMA fighter.
Beneil Dariush’s faith in God transformed his UFC career
Dariush is a common Persian name and a common name in Iran, meaning “to hold fast to good”. The UFC lightweight has admitted that his Bible beliefs have helped him in his UFC career. It is because of his conviction that he was able to find new motivation each time he enters the Octagon.
“One of the things I realized is that I don’t fight out of hate anymore, I don’t fight out of anger anymore. I focus on my motivation and my goal. The goal is to go out there and glorify God. This is goal number one. And it goes, ‘how do you do that?’ and how much discipline does it require? How do you stay motivated in these things. These are things I took from the Bible and applied to my career. Dariush admits.
It wasn’t always like this for Dariush. He had to change his mindset and his belief in God brought about this change in him. Dariush admits he has been a fighter longer than he has been a Christian.
There was a time in Dariush’s life when he didn’t know what to do with his life. The financial situation at home forced him to get serious about his life and find a way to earn money to make ends meet. “God, if you’re real, if you’re up there, give me something. It must have been a week or two later that I received a call for a professional fight in Brazil. Dariush remembers.
Beneil Dariush is widely regarded as one of the finest mixed martial artists today, and the Iranian fighter continues to cement his legacy with a string of impressive performances to his name.