Muhammad: A Prophet for Our Time and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $21.95
  • Save: $5.24 (24%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 4 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Used: Like New | Details
Sold by DEAL ROCKET
Condition: Used: Like New
Comment: Qualifies for FREE 2-Day Shipping / Item Shipped Directly From Amazon / Sold by a Family Owned Business
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Muhammad: A Prophet for Our Time (Eminent Lives) Hardcover – Deckle Edge, October 17, 2006


See all 20 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover, Deckle Edge
"Please retry"
$16.71
$7.99 $1.61


Frequently Bought Together

Muhammad: A Prophet for Our Time (Eminent Lives) + Islam: A Short History (Modern Library Chronicles) + A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam
Price for all three: $39.70

Buy the selected items together

If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $2.99 (Save 69%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.


Product Details

  • Series: Eminent Lives
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (October 17, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060598972
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060598976
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 5.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #484,958 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Muhammad was born in 570 CE, and over the following sixty years built a thriving spiritual community, laying the foundations of a religion that changed the course of world history. There is more historical data on his life than on that of the founder of any other major faith, and yet his story is little known.

Karen Armstrong's immaculately researched new biography of Muhammad will enable readers to understand the true origins and spirituality of a faith that is all too often misrepresented as cruel, intolerant, and inherently violent. An acclaimed authority on religious and spiritual issues, Armstrong offers a balanced, in-depth portrait, revealing the man at the heart of Islam by dismantling centuries of misconceptions. Armstrong demonstrates that Muhammad's life—a pivot point in history—has genuine relevance to the global crises we face today.

Discover More Eminent Lives


Francis Crick: Discoverer of the Genetic Code
by Matt Ridley

Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind
by Peter Kramer

Machiavelli: Philosopher of Power
by Ross King

Thomas Jefferson: Author of America
by Christopher Hitchens

George Washington: The Founding Father
by Paul Johnson

Alexis de Tocqueville: Democracy's Guide
by Joseph Epstein

From Booklist

Armstrong's second biography of Islam's prophet is lucid and stylish, never condescending. It puts the best face possible on its subject. The Muhammad it projects gave his followers "a mission: to create a just and decent society, in which all members were treated with respect." Moreover, Armstrong's Muhammad behaved justly and decently while he lived, though perhaps a bit according to the stringent standards of Arab culture at the time. He taught tolerance toward Jews and Christians. Never mind--Armstrong doesn't--about denials of civil equality to non-Muslims and fulminations about them as "infidels." The Jewish clan whose men were exterminated after a particular battle? It wasn't that they were Jews but that they were traitors, and it wasn't Muhammad who decided they should be executed. The fact that, after declaring that Muslim men could have no more than four wives, Muhammad himself exceeded the limit? Hey, a leader has to make alliances with other groups. A nicely written book, but don't let it be the only biography of Muhammad you read. Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Karen Armstrong is the author of numerous other books on religious affairs-including A History of God, The Battle for God, Holy War, Islam, Buddha, and The Great Transformation-and two memoirs, Through the Narrow Gate and The Spiral Staircase. Her work has been translated into forty-five languages. She has addressed members of the U.S. Congress on three occasions; lectured to policy makers at the U.S. State Department; participated in the World Economic Forum in New York, Jordan, and Davos; addressed the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington and New York; is increasingly invited to speak in Muslim countries; and is now an ambassador for the UN Alliance of Civilizations. In February 2008 she was awarded the TED Prize and is currently working with TED on a major international project to launch and propagate a Charter for Compassion, created online by the general public and crafted by leading thinkers in Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism, to be signed in the fall of 2009 by a thousand religious and secular leaders. She lives in London.

Customer Reviews

This book was a pleasure to read.
Bob
Karen Armstrong's book provides maps, a useful glossary, ample references and, of course her usual clear, crisp prose in very readable form.
Filiz
She says nothing of the passages in the Koran which tell Muslims not to help unbelievers and not to be their friends.
J. Hall

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

232 of 278 people found the following review helpful By Ed Lewis on November 13, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Karen Armstrong's book provides a brief introduction to the life of Mohammed. At the end she offers her motivation: "If we are to avoid catastrophe, Muslim and Christian worlds must learn not merely to tolerate but to appreciate one another."

I picked up this book as a lifelong atheist who has never had much sympathy for any religion, although I respect the rights of others to their beliefs. I was looking for information because I am disturbed at the prevalence in the media and elsewhere of hate propaganda against Muslims. If I'm being told I should hate something, I want to know why.

Armstrong traces the rise of Islam to an economic revolution that occurred in Arabia in the seventh century, largely due to the growing importance of trade in a nomadic grazing economy.

She looks briefly at the rise of monotheism in the newly emerging cities, particularly Mecca, and the emergence of Islam from that as Mohammed's revelations provided a body of scripture for Arab monotheism.

Mohammed and others considered his revelations divine, the word of god. In that, he's not alone, as many religions consider the thoughts of brilliant people among their founders to have been divinely inspired. The poetic nature of Mohammed's revelations and their relevance to the social situation of their time led to their survival, and later followers of Islam used them to understand their own social situations, down to the present time. In this Islam is no different to any other religion.

Armstrong describes the decade-long struggle between Mecca and Medina, which was an economic and political struggle that took religious form, and the eventual triumph of the Muslims of Medina.
Read more ›
18 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
73 of 93 people found the following review helpful By Wayne Beckham on July 5, 2008
Format: Paperback
Karen Armstrong's Muhammad: A Prophet for Our Time directly addresses the central conflict of our times, "Some Muslim thinkers regard the jihad against Mecca as the climax of Muhammad's career and fail to note that he eventually abjured warfare and adopted a nonviolent policy. Western critics also persist in seeing the Prophet of Islam as a man of war, and fail to see that from the very first he was opposed to the jahili arrogance and egotism that not only fueled the aggression of his time but is much in evidence in some leaders, Western and Muslim alike, today."

Karen goes out of her way to present a balanced and fair perspective on the life of Muhammad. She does this by basing her biography on the Prophet's response to al-Jahiliyah: commonly translated as "an Islamic concept of 'ignorance of divine guidance.'" Karen examinees more than Jahiliyah's theological significance, going into its practical impact on the culture of the Arabian peninsula. The dominant jahili spirit of the time was arrogant, quick to take a offense, warlike and vengeful. Islam, as practiced and taught by the Prophet, Karen makes clear, was a rejection of all of these traits - usually to the great consternation of his followers:

"And the servants of Allah, Most Gracious are those who walk on the earth in humility, and when the ignorant (jahilun) address them, they say, `Peace!' " (Sura The Criterion 25:63 - translation from The Qur'an: Text, Translation & Commentary.
Read more ›
6 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
49 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Cecilia Cordeiro Engels on August 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This biography provides a fascinating account of Muhammad's life and the origins of Islam, the religion he founded. The author allows us to picture life and society in Arabia during the Prophet's lifetime, and the tremendous achievements that he was able to develop in a very short time. It is the story of a brilliant leader, both religious and political. Armstrong's most significant contribution through this biography in my opinion is to reveal Muhammad in a very human light, devoid of both mythological allure and untainted by historical prejudices. It is an extremely useful reading for our current times, since it provides the opportunity for a better understanding of Islam.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
15 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Ramy Waly on April 25, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Karen in this book, as far as I read, states many views and explanations of the history of Islam and Prophet Muhammad (peace and prayer be upon him).

Some of these views I , as a Muslim, agree with and some I do not.

With a western, material view of the religion, she see the situations in a more human psychology related events than a Muslim religious view, which believes that psychology and material events are overwhelmed by the supreme power of the creator.

These historical debates are clearly stated as an erratum in the Holy Quran. Erratum as regard the history, the actual reaction of the prophet and others and also the proposed reactions of both. So, as a Muslim , with many historical scripts, the Quran for me acts as the final guidance in explaining the whole situation , with some range of explanations accepted. Karen, in some explanations, became out of this range.

Also, there is some translation problems from Arabic, like in page 89 , line 7, it was not sheep uterus, it was placenta, remnants of birth of a sheep.

Page 68, line 16 onwards, this is completely a vague assumption by the author, as it is well known that monotheism was the 1st issue raised in Islam, without any debate from any historian as far as I know. I totally disagree with this assumption from line 16 till the page end !!

Page 48, translation of Al-Qadr= high value, not Al-Qadar= destiny ( Surat- Al-Qadr) in the middle of the page.

Page 38: conservative about the word (adored his daughters), which carries a meaning of holiness , done only to God in Islam.

Page 33 line 4, circumambulations around Kaaba is counter-clockwise not the reverse.I do not see any relation between this ritual and trade movement at all!

Page 37, Also, as a reader of the Islamic history, , line 12,I do not know who is (Fakhitah)?!!
my email : ramywaly@yahoo.com
thanks
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?