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The Tent of Abraham: Stories of Hope and Peace for Jews, Christians, and Muslims Hardcover – May 31, 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press; First Edition edition (June 10, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807077283
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807077283
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.9 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,080,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The three coauthors, representing the three major Western faiths (Judaism, Christianity and Islam), explain each religion's basis for a monotheistic multifaith movement by delving into ancient stories. Waskow, a rabbi, offers intellectual perspective on the Abrahamic story, explaining symbolic themes of Judaism. The Torah, for instance, is said to have been written with "black fire on white fire": The white fire is the blank spaces, where Jews of each generation are meant to read and reread the language contained in the black fire. Catholic sister and popular writer Chittister describes the Middle East conflict with compelling anecdotes from her own firsthand experience in founding an Israeli-Palestinian women's group. Finally, Sufi writer Chishti discusses the spiritual content and opinions related to Islam. The authors explore provocative questions, such as which son Abraham meant to sacrifice (Isaac, ancestor of the Jews, or Ishmael, ancestor of the Muslims) and the nature of the relationship between Sarah and Hagar: were they devoted friends, rivals or simply property of Abraham? Evoking the "open tent" policy of Abraham, who welcomed all visitors to his home despite social mores, the coauthors air out all options. (July)
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Review

The Palestinian/Israeli conflict has elicited many books exhorting political and religious peace in the Middle East, but none has appealed to individual minds and hearts quite like this one. —LibraryJournal, starred review

"The stories of our common ancestors told in this book with such creative imagination inspire all of us to build community across the walls that normally divide us." —Bob Edgar, general secretary, National Council of Churches

"This book will open your eyes to the possibilities for collaborative work between our traditions and is a must-read for those doing interfaith peacework." —Tikkun


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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4 star
9%
3 star
18%
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See all 11 customer reviews
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in comparative religion study.
Joseph A. Scarselletta
The authors present a discussion and model for deeper discourse that offers much hope in our seriously troubled world.
Sharon G. Mijares
An interesting aspect of this recent book is that it reads best from the back to the front.
C. Scanlon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Layod Sivad on November 4, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Tent of Abraham presents a vision of hope: what Jews, Christians and Muslims can do for a mutual understanding of the essence that binds these three great religions in Abraham. This book is especially clutching in showing the reader how women, mothers caught up in the madness of war, can see more clearly than politicians, that our humanity and our compassion should inform us that war can never be a satisfactory solution to any human need. People of all faiths should read this book.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sharon G. Mijares on March 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is a most important book, and I highly recommend it. The combination of a Christian Sister, a Rabbi and a Sufi Murshid discussing their views of Abraham and Sarah's lives/tent from an in-depth perspective offers a model for peace and discussion that can be used in Churches, Mosques and Synagogues around the world.

The authors present a discussion and model for deeper discourse that offers much hope in our seriously troubled world. The following Sura quoted from the Qur'an on page 133 of The Tent of Abraham highlights its message:

"So turn your face and purpose towards the priordial religion of the upright, the hanif, the nature innately formed by the One Reality in which the One created humanity. Let there be no change in this work created by the One. This religion is self-subsisting, the standard, always resurrecting itself. But most among humanity do not understand. Turn to and remain conscious only of the One, remaining constantly in prayer. Don't deify anything else in yor life, not concepts or beliefs. Don't divide yourselves into sects that contratulate themselves on their own ideas (translation of Sura 30:30-32).

We are all part of one human family who simply need to realize our divine Unity. Thank you Sr. Joan Chittister, Rabbi Waskow and Murshid Saadi for such a heartful book.

Sharon G. Mijares, Ph.D.
Primary author of The Root of All Evil: An Exposition of Prejudice, Fundamentalism and Gender Imbalance
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Please notice the reading regarding Abraham receiving the three travellers is this Sunday's First Reading in the Roman Catholic liturgy, followed by the Gospel Reading regarding the complementary hospitality of Mary and Martha.

And if you find that representation as bar joke unappealing, let us read it like Dante: A nun, a rabbi and a Muslim awoke in the midstream of their lives to discover themselves in a dark woods of war and danger, of fear and cruelty, and fled back to the welcoming refuge of Abraham's tent.

Or Biblically: Abram looked out from his tent and saw three strangers approaching: A Rabbi, a Muslim and a nun. Abram ran out to prostrate himself at their feet and beg them to come into his tent to rest and to eat and to pray together. They told him to call himself Abraham and his wife Sarah. And the rest is our history.

An interesting aspect of this recent book is that it reads best from the back to the front. Thus alone do we discover the unmentioned and secret author, the Rabbi Phyllis Berman, sharing her secret story, treasured for ages in secret among Hebrew women, of the profound love, alliance, solidarity and companionship of Hagar and Sarai, and thus of all the peoples engendered by Abraham: The Judeo-christian and Islam, an inheritance more numerous than the grains of sand by the sea and the stars at night.

The leaves high at the top of a mighty oak tree might know only their separation, might feel only their beating one another in the powerful winds that pass. Only by looking way back may they perceive that they in fact spring from the one thick and solid trunk and are in fact children of the one Father.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Merrill on January 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book provides a good historical background of the three major religious movements. As a Christian, I learned a great deal more about the foundations of both the Jewish and Muslim faiths. It was helpful to my understanding of circumstances as they exist today.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bruce W. Felker on January 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The story of Father Abraham is shared by Jews, Christians & Muslims. The fac that the two sons Issac & Ishamel reconcile in order to honor their Father in death provides a basis for Peace if we will make this our story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joseph A. Scarselletta on April 27, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is book that everyone could benefit from reading and that is espically true for Christian, Judaism, and Islam believers. Althought this is a dificult subject, the author writes in an easy to follow style that explains the beliefs of the three religions.
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in comparative religion study.
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