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Al-Ghazzali On Knowing Yourself and God Paperback – March 21, 2003

4.9 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Al-Ghazâlî (c.1056 1111) was one of the most prominent and influential philosophers, theologians, jurists, and mystics of Sunni Islam. He was active at a time when Sunni theology had just passed through its consolidation and entered a period of intense challenges from Shiite Ismâ îlite theology and the Arabic tradition of Aristotelian philosophy (falsafa). Al-Ghazâlî understood the importance of falsafa and developed a complex response that rejected and condemned some of its teachings, while it also allowed him to accept and apply others. Al-Ghazâlî's critique of twenty positions of falsafa in his Incoherence of the Philosophers (Tahâfut al-falâsifa) is a significant landmark in the history of philosophy as it advances the nominalist critique of Aristotelian science developed later in 14th century Europe. On the Arabic and Muslim side al-Ghazâlî's acceptance of demonstration (apodeixis) led to a much more refined and precise discourse on epistemology and a flowering of Aristotelian logics and metaphysics. With al-Ghazâlî begins the successful introduction of Aristotelianism or rather Avicennism into Muslim theology. After a period of appropriation of the Greek sciences in the translation movement from Greek into Arabic and the writings of the falâsifa up to Avicenna (Ibn Sînâ, c.980 1037), philosophy and the Greek sciences were naturalized into the discourse of kalâm and Muslim theology (Sabra 1987). Al-Ghazâlî's approach to resolving apparent contradictions between reason and revelation was accepted by almost all later Muslim theologians and had, via the works of Averroes (Ibn Rushd, 1126 98) and Jewish authors a significant influence on Latin medieval thinking.
-- Griffel, Frank, "Al-Ghazali", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2013 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Kazi Publications, Inc.; 14 edition (March 21, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1567446817
  • ISBN-13: 978-1567446814
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 5.5 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #103,395 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Laleh Bakhtiar holds a BA in History from Chatham College, Masters degrees in Philosophy and Counseling Psychology and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of New Mexico. Bakhtiar is a Licensed Professional Psychotherapist in the State of Illinois. She also taught courses on Islam at the University of Chicago. She is co-author of A Sense of Unity: The Sufi Tradition in Persian Architecture (University of Chicago Press) and author of SUFI Expressions of the Mystic Quest (Thames and Hudson), as well as a three volume work, God's Will Be Done, on Moral Healing and some 15 other books on various aspects of Islam.

Bakhtiar is the leading authority on spiritual chivalry, most clearly expressed in the Sufi Enneagram, also known as the Greater Struggle. She has also translated over 30 books on Islam and the Islamic movement into English.

Bakhtiar is the first woman to present a critical translation the Quran in any language. In her Sublime Quran translation she interprets the controversial verse that has lead to domestic violence in the Islamic community to the way the Prophet understood it. Instead of husbands being allowed to beat their wives, she translates: "husbands should go away," let the anger subside and then consult with one another.

Her translation has been introduced into evidence in child custody cases in the United States to counteract Muslim husbands saying that their religion allows them to beat their wives and is available for free viewing on www.islamawakened.com as well as having been chosen by HRH Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad of Jordan to appear on his website, www.altafsir.com for the 6 million+ visitors to his website.

Bakhtiar is presently Director of the Institute of Traditional Psychology and Resident Scholar at Kazi Publications.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This short book forced me to reflect upon myself and eventually change my "business as usual" of life. Al-Ghazzali philosophically breaks down the human "self" and formulates an argument of why it makes sense to transcend the body and its five senses and make a connection with God Almighty.
The book's content talks to you so directly and strikingly that it dumbfounds you to imagine someone wrote it a 1000 years ago.
If you are a believer (no matter what religion), you will find this book no less than a hidden treasure. It will help make your connection to God stronger by answering many questions you may have. Even if you don't believe in God, it will still give you insight into your own self from angles that will keep you thinking for a while.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough and wish there were more stars I could give it.
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Al-Ghazzali was one of the most respected muslim and sufi scholar.

He true sees what is inside of the ideas of alquran and gives to the reader a new perspective, a beatiful view of the inner workings of the heart and the creator.

When you read, you are going to recognize his critics about the situation today even when he writes well before this time. He criticizes the "scholars" for narrow view of the alquran and the islam, making the word more important than the heart..

I really recommend this.
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This book can literally change your life if you really try to comprehend it. Its not a very long book yet its as deep as an ocean.
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There is a good reason Al-Ghazali is acknowledged as the first Muslim scholar who laid the foundation of rational thinking in the interpretation of Islamic beliefs and rituals. He is also regarded as one of the founders of Sufism. In this short translation, the topic of introspection to understand universal truths and the very meaning of human existence is masterfully covered. He uses analogies and allegories to explain complex thought processes that many of us use to intuitively understand what we can observe and feel but find it hard to articulate to others. It is amazing that a person who lived a thousand years ago can resonate with believers living today! However, his arguments are wasted if the reader is a die-hard atheist or a non-believer. Such a person would find many holes to poke in Al-Ghazali’s reasoning.
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I will recommend this book, basically for people who wants to get more
knowledge about our Creator......
This book is one section from the Imam Ghazzali's Ihya Ulum al Din.
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This book arrived unasked for when I ordered a book about the Nubian people. What a blessing. This short read is easy to understand and full of insight. Highly recommended.
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Truly a inspired work. This small book demands of you to read it slowly and repeatedly to capture all of the layers required.
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every household should have this to get connect with God ; Imam give a practical approach to core issues in mankind
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