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Al-Qushayri's Epistle on Sufism: Al-Risala al-qushayriyya fi 'ilm al-tasawwuf (Great Books of Islamic Civilization) Paperback – October 1, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-1859641866 ISBN-10: 1859641865
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

The translator Alexander Knysh is Professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His research interests include Islamic mysticism and Islamic theological thought in historical perspective as well as Islam and Islamic movements in local contexts (especially Yemen and the Northern Caucasus). He has numerous publications on these subjects, including four books. The reviewer Dr Muhammad Eissa is a graduate of Al-Azhar University of Egypt and University of California in Los Angeles. He has had a long teaching career at the American University in Cairo, UCLA, Northwestern University and University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. He has written, translated and edited numerous works in the areas of Arabic and Islamic studies. Currently he is the President of a private educational and consulting institution in the Chicago area, Illinois.
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Product Details

  • Series: Great Books of Islamic Civilization
  • Paperback: 489 pages
  • Publisher: Garnet Publishing (October 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1859641865
  • ISBN-13: 978-1859641866
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #712,218 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Zachary Warren West on December 30, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have sat with shaykhs who have often referenced the original manuscript, who have been authorized to teach such texts. What I have heard from they, who have taken the text from someone who took the text from someone who took... all the way back to the original author, has been very different than that which I found in Knysh's translation. There does not seem to be any evidence suggesting that the translator is a Muslim. An unbeliever translating a book about experiential knowledge of Allah would be quite absurd. For an orientalist writing book reports who doesn't care about what Muslims believe or what the original author (Al-Qushayri) intended, this may be fine. For a Muslim, taking one's deen (religion) from such sources is problematic. Sama should not have been translated as music, but rather audition. I do not know what word the author was translating, but he insinuated that 'longing,' as opposed to having 'hope,' for the mercy of Allah is blameworthy. Tell that to the vast majority of English-speaking sufi shaykhs who use the word longing in a positive connotation when speaking about love, in longing to return to one's Lord. This is just after a few glances through the book. Add it to another long list of failed attempts at translating this classic.
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Al-Qushayri's Epistle on Sufism: Al-Risala al-qushayriyya fi 'ilm al-tasawwuf (Great Books of Islamic Civilization)
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