By Frithjof Schuon
With over 1000000000 believers in the course of the globe, Islam is still some of the most misunderstood of the world's nice Revelations. during this absolutely revised and amended translation of his masterpiece, thinker Frithjof Schuon bargains readers a deeper knowing of Islam, the world's moment biggest faith. that includes an in depth appendix of formerly unpublished fabrics and specified editor's notes to assist readers, this ebook is a needs to for any assortment.
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Additional info for Understanding Islam: A New Translation with Selected Letters
My eyes sleep, but my heart is awake”, said the Prophet. This constant awareness of and participation in the laud of the universe is the duty and privilege of human beings, as the great leaders of the Muslim worlds have never tired to emphasize. Schuon’s book shows the essence of Islam, compares its world-view with that of Christianity and often brings examples from other religious traditions, all of which his vast erudition comprises. The style of the work reminds the reader sometimes of crystalline pure forms, and yet one often finds passages which touch the heart.
Religion, so he holds, ought to be treated as something sui generis, something that cannot be described in scholarly technical terms and whose goal is not to tackle social and political problems but rather to guide humankind to a spiritual level on which all problems are seen, and thus eventually solved, through man’s faith in and reliance upon the eternal wisdom of the Creator—an idea difficult to understand, let alone to appreciate, for many modern people in whose worldview no room is left for transcendence; and for whom—as the author remarks in passing—religion might “become the handmaid of industry”.
The Shahādah is the center of true Islam; it is the statement that “there is no deity save Allāh” (which sacred Name embraces all that is), and that “Muhammad is His messenger”. It is this confession of Absolute Divine Unity that makes a human being a Muslim. As for man’s response to the Divine Presence, it is prayer; for to exist is to praise God. Sum ergo oro, “I am, therefore I pray”, as Schuon changes the cogito ergo sum. Prayer is the activity of all that is created, and as the Koran asserts so beautifully: the birds with their wings and the flowers with their fragrance, the glaciers and the deserts—everything is created to glorify God, and man’s noblest work is to join this chorus of prayer that permeates the Universe, whether we know it or not.
Understanding Islam: A New Translation with Selected Letters by Frithjof Schuon