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  • Date :
  • 7/9/2003

1-Quest for the Red Sulphur


Life of Ibn ‘Arabi

Claude Addas

The Islamic Text Society (1993)

Red Sulphur is undoubtedly a landmark inIbn ‘Arabi studies, and its author’s gift of narrative allied to a consummate understanding of the subject should make this volume compulsory reading for anyone interested in Islamic mysticism. This major study is based on a detailed analysis of the whole range of Ibn ‘Arabi’s writings as well as a vast amount.

2-Motherhood in Islam

Dr. Aliah Schleifer
American University in Cairo

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Fons Vitae (1996); paperback Index 95

This exceptional and thorough study is of interest to everyone, as it deals with a primal and universal relationship. It is also an important work for Muslim women, their children and for scholars with a particular interest in the status of women in Islam. Dr. Aliah Schleifer relies on the basic sources of Islam -- the Qur'an, Hadith, and Fiqh, as well as numerous original Arabic sources.

Use is made of tafseer, or commentary, of Al Tabari, Al Qurtubi, and Ibn Kathir, thus providing an overview of classical exegeses which include fiqh representing the schools of opinion existing at that time and juridical rulings. Hadith concerning motherhood in Islam are central to the book and emphasis is given to the Sahihain of al-Bukhari and Muslim. Great care was taken with checking the authenticity and accuracy of all the hadith. Generally, more has been written about the contemporary Muslim woman and society, often contrasting her life with that of Western women, rather than investigation made of the formal Islamic bases of her status. This work is recommended by Al-Azhar University in Cairo.

3- Towards the Heart of Islam: A Woman's Approach

Eva de Vitray-Meyerovitch
Translated by Cathryn Goddard

As the French title indicates, L'Islam: L'Autre Visage (Editions Albin Michel, Paris 1995), this book describes a face of Islam you don't usually read about in the newspapers. Author of over forty books and the greatest French scholar and translator of Jelaluddin Rumi's works, Eva de Vitray-Meyerovitch leads us to the heart of Islam through her own love of its most celebrated poets, philosophers, and practitioners. What led this brilliant multilingual twentieth-century French woman, a scholar trained in law and philosophy, to turn to Islam? This book reaches the core of all true religion, the personal internal reflection and the universal connection, imbued with the love that mysticism represents.
Eva de Vitray describes her own voyage, beginning with a very proper education in Roman Catholic schools appropriate to her aristocratic family. She speaks with warmth of the total sincerity of her Protestant Scottish grandmother. And she describes her growing discomfort with dogmatic religion.
After her marriage to a Frenchman of Russian-Jewish origin, she tells of her exciting escape from Nazi-occupied Paris with the son of Pierre and Marie Curie. After the war, her life as a director of research is changed abruptly by the gift from a former classmate of a book by Mohammad Iqbal, the dazzling twentieth-century Islamic philosopher and poet.
Suddenly the external form of religion pales before the internal quest. She goes on to learn Persian and translates into French the works of Iqbal and those of the thirteenth-century mystic, Jelaluddin Rumi, who becomes her spiritual guide. Dr. de Vitray fills us with the love of this affirming internal connection in anecdotes from her pilgrimage to Mecca, to teaching at Al Azhar in Cairo, to praying with a group of men in Algeria who fought to win their independence from her country, to the relevant lines of Rumi, "I did not write these lines for people to wear them or repeat them, but for people to put them under their feet and fly with them."
Her most recent book, Prayer in Islam (Albin Michel, Paris: 1998) was chosen as the French Book of the Month.

4-Ancient Beliefs and Modern Superstitions

Martin Lings

Archetype books (2001); Paperback, 96pp. Size: 216 x 138 mm

Drawing upon his wide knowledge of world religions the author in this book strikes at the root of everything that makes it difficult for people today to believe wholeheartedly in religion and in doing so, it shows modern man to be, in his own peculiar twenty-first century way, the embodiment of superstition in its most dangerous form. We are faced in the modern world with a situation similar to that in the fable of the Emperor’s new clothes. This book aims to speak the truth about the modern outlook especially concerning science and metaphysics, in order to dispel the illusion that prevents the intellect from seeing things as they really are.

5-The Modern World in the Light of Tradition

n xstyle="font-size: 10.0pt; font-family: tahoma">Edited by Seyyed Hossein Nasr and Katherine O’Brien
Foundation for Traditional Studies

A compelling collection of essays by many of the leading voices in the field of traditional studies, this book examines the major aspects of religion and modern society. Contributors include Seyyed Hossein Nasr, Huston Smith, Martin Lings, Joseph Epes Brown, Gai Eaton and Rama Coomaraswamy, among others, on such topics as modernism, science, liberation theology, Native American art, psychology and astrology. Much more than the usual academic anthology, this excellent collection is proof of the contemporary, therapeutic importance of the Perennial Wisdom and is essential reading for those in quest of the rediscovery of the sacred in human life.

6-Religion of the Heart

Edited by Seyyed Hossein Nasr and William Stoddart

Foundation for Traditional Studies (1991); 329 pp.

This work gathers together essays by eighteen internationally known scholars, including Huston Smith, James Cutsinger, Philip Sherrard and Martin Lings. Schuon’s considerable influence on the thinking of contemporary philosophers and specialists in comparative religion is reflected in the wide range of contributions which make up this fascinating volume.

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