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Muhammad: A Story of the Last Prophet Hardcover – September 21, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperOne; FIRST EDITION edition (September 21, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061782424
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061782428
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #517,552 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Chopra, an iconic figure in American popular culture, proves with this biography of Muhammad that he is more than just a New Age talking head. Varying by chapter the narrative viewpoints and using actual characters from the life of Muhammad, such as Muhammad's first wife, Khadijah, and his daughter Fatima, Chopra tells the story of Muhammad's life in this "teaching novel." Similar volumes by Chopra have already profiled Buddha and Jesus. While technically this is fiction, several historical events--including ones dear to many Muslims' hearts--are related. The result is one of the most imaginative and touching biographies of Muhammad. For instance, in the prelude, inventively narrated by the Angel Gabriel, the angel bringing the revelation of the Qur'an to Muhammad, describes the illiterate caravan trader who had married his wealthy female boss. The next chapter, narrated by Muhammad's grandfather Abdul Muttalib, tells the legend of the Zamzam well, which Muslims visit to this day in their annual hajj pilgrimage. Chopra goes on to describe a people yearning for a message that would liberate them from polytheistic tribalism and the messenger, a trustworthy but frightened man who became a prophet. Chopra's grasp of Muhammad's mission and life is accessible and extends his range in a surprising direction; his popularization is welcome. (Oct.) (c)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Although ostensibly a novel, Chopra bookends his story about the Muslim prophet with an author’s note and an afterword, offering the reader a history lesson while reflecting on the current relationship between Islam and the rest of the world. The novel emphasizes that of all the founders of the great world religions, Muhammad is the most like us. Muhammad, a merchant who marries a rich widow and routinely travels in caravans as part of his trade, lives a regular life until the day the archangel Gabriel appears and orders the reluctant 40-year-old Muhammad to recite. (To recite, Chopra reminds, is the root word of Koran.) Using multiple first-person narrators—slaves and merchants, hermits, and scribes—he portrays life (including its brutality) on the streets of Mecca. Each chapter is self-contained. Muhammad’s wife, Khadijah, laments there have been no warnings that this tumultuous, life-changing event is about to occur; Ali, the first convert, explains how the Prophet approached him. Compellingly told, this is not only good storytelling; it also helps readers, especially non-Muslims, better understand the complexities and contradictions surrounding Islam. --June Sawyers

More About the Author

Deepak Chopra, M.D.
Founder of The Chopra Foundation
Founder of YouTube/TheChopraWell
Founder of The Chopra Center for Wellbeing
Senior Scientist, The Gallup Organization
www.deepakchopra.com
www.facebook.com/DeepakChopraCommunity
www.twitter.com/deepakchopra

As a global leader and pioneer in the field of mind-body medicine, Chopra transforms the way the world views physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and social wellness. Known as a prolific author of over sixty-five books with twenty New York Times best sellers in both the fiction and non fiction categories.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

80 of 95 people found the following review helpful By L. Erickson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I think it's inevitable that many of the reviews of this book will focus on opinions of Islam, and/or an analysis of how orthodox or unorthodox Chopra's portrayal of Muhammad is. And as an ongoing discussion, that is certainly valid and interesting. I give Chopra credit for taking on the tale of Muhammad, as he will certainly open himself up to controversy by doing so (and hopefully the controversies will ultimately lead to constructive discussions and new understanding.)

However, I'm going to focus my review of this book on how it is as a spiritual novel, because I think it is first and foremost that. I think it is best read along with Chopra's Buddha and Jesus, which are my two favorite of his books. In these three fictional (but well-researched) accounts of the world's most well-known religious leaders, Chopra presents three very different spiritual journeys, but highlights common themes. Each feels himself as different from a young age. Each is a profound and devout seeker, and yet at some point is shocked and frightened by where his seeking leads him. Each grapples with his spiritual calling in a personal way, and then feels compelled - although for different reasons - to share what he has come to understand. And Chopra does a good job of placing each of them within the context of their respective historical times, thereby showing us how and why each of their teachings evolved into the religions that they did.
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24 of 30 people found the following review helpful By RS on November 13, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoyed the book every much. Im a muslim so I already know the stories but wanted to read from a mainstream writer after watching him on CNN. The book served its purpose, Chopra wrote "I didnt write this book to make Muhammed more holy. I wrote it to show that holiness was just as confusing, terrifying, and exalting in the 7th century as it would be today" (location 120 in the book). Chopra accomplished this in the book, he showed all the confusing calamities and crazy wars that happened in the time of Muhammed peace be upon him, yet He had to take difficult actions for survival and not going against what he preached and believed in. He truly believed that God has reached out to him, even though it sounded crazy to him for the longest time. People believed him more than he believed himself. In the book preached things like "Do you want to show how much you love your Creator", the villager replied "with all my heart", Muhammed responded "then love your fellow behings first" (location 2305). There were skeptics in Muhammed's days, where they thought he was crazy, But after being around Muhammed, Muhammed told one non believer friend "I would lose any battle to win a heart of a great soul". These are teachings of islam, compassion and believing in god, yet Islam gets a bad reputation in present day today. I highly recommend this book because its an easy read. Chapter 18 Yasmin the Women at the Well made me cry so much, i was boohoo-ing as I was reading, it was very touching.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By P. J. Swanwick on October 24, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
4.5 stars: I had braced myself to slog through Deepak Chopra's biographical novel "Muhammad: A Story of the Last Prophet." Instead, I was delightfully surprised by the compelling story of Muhammad's journey from affluent trader to reluctant prophet, and the engagingly lyrical music of the suras (verses) he channeled from Allah.

Story: Although ostensibly a novel, Chopra bookends his story about the Muslim prophet with an author's note and an afterword, offering the reader a history lesson while reflecting on the current relationship between Islam and the rest of the world. The novel emphasizes that of all the founders of the great world religions, Muhammad is the most like us. Muhammad, a merchant who marries a rich widow and routinely travels in caravans as part of his trade, lives a regular life until the day the archangel Gabriel appears and orders the reluctant 40-year-old Muhammad to recite. (To recite, Chopra reminds, is the root word of Koran.) Using multiple first-person narrators--slaves and merchants, hermits, and scribes--he portrays life (including its brutality) on the streets of Mecca. Each chapter is self-contained. Muhammad's wife, Khadijah, laments there have been no warnings that this tumultuous, life-changing event is about to occur; Ali, the first convert, explains how the Prophet approached him. Compellingly told, this is not only good storytelling; it also helps readers, especially non-Muslims, better understand the complexities and contradictions surrounding Islam. (From Booklist)

Spiritual/metaphysical content: Medium. The book focused more on the man than his teachings, which I found to be less than satisfying.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By lawliss on June 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I was browsing through the stacks at the library and saw this and was immediately intrigued. Deepak Chopra attempts to tell the life of the prophet of Islam through the eyes of the people that are often closest to him - his wife, his daughters, his followers. And it was amazing, to say the least. I had never read anything by Deepak Chopra before, so I was a little nervous, but it was totally worth it.

This book is one of a trilogy of sorts - Chopra also wrote fictional accounts of Buddha's life and Jesus' life (aptly - Buddha and Jesus) and I intend to read at least the one on Jesus but will probably end up reading the one on Buddha as well. This is a really well researched novel that discusses Muhammad's teachings and how they relate to Christainity and Judaism, both older religions relative to Islam. I was also really impressed by how Deepak Chopra chose to tell the tale - he told each part of the Prophet's life through the viewpoint of an important person in his family. It included everyone from his nursemaid, to his wife and children, to a slave and even his worst enemy. It was a very effective way of conveying the Prophet's life and his belief system and i was absolutely enthralled.

This book was also really good because it provides a very simple explanation of the basic tenets of the Islamic faith. People that have read the Koran or have a much better education in the Muslim faith would probably not get a whole lot of out of this but for everyone else, it would be a pretty good introduction. It has inspired me to learn more about the Muslim faith!
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