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The Wisdom of the Prophet: The Sayings of Muhammad Paperback – October 16, 2001

3.8 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In his lifetime, the prophet Muhammad was viewed more as a wise sage (favored in the eyes of God, albeit) than as a saintly figure beyond worldly concern. The reason is evident in the pages of Wisdom of the Prophet, a selection of passages from the Hadith that record Muhammad's sayings and actions. Anyone wishing to understand Islamic spirituality or seeking a holy path of one's own can turn to passages such as "God is kind and loves kindness, and grants to kindness what is not granted to harshness," or "There are five kinds of martyrs: One who dies of plague; one who dies of a disease of the stomach or intestines; one who drowns; one who is crushed in a collapsing building; and one who is martyred in the way of God." Some passages are not exactly crystal clear, however, and one is not sure if something has been lost in translation or if they are simply in need of a little cross-cultural commentary. For instance: "[T]he Hour will not take place until two parties fight each other with one and the same aim." Nonetheless, the themes of charity, faith in God, service, and fairness stand out, and make The Wisdom of the Prophet a good entry into the richness of Islam. --Brian Bruya

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Arabic
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Product Details

  • Series: Shambhala Classics
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Shambhala (October 16, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570628254
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570628252
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.5 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #396,198 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


Thomas Cleary is the preeminent translator of classic Eastern texts, including The Essential Tao, The Essential Confucius, The Secret of the Golden Flower, and the bestselling The Art of War.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Munir on August 23, 2002
Format: Paperback
This short book of prophetic sayings conveys more of the spirit of Islam than many scholarly books of much greater length. In particular, it shows Islam's integrative, balanced nature, through the author's diverse selection of hadiths- such as those of companions extolling the Prophet's bravery and skill in battle, his advice to repeat "Glory to God," 33 times after prayers, and his encouragement of smiling as an act of worship. I give it 4 stars because some selections seem to be abridged without indication.
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By A Customer on May 29, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this book was incredible and made me a reborn Muslim. It talks about the most simplest ideas in a very organized and everyday laguage. The sayings were translated in a profound and clear manner. I would suggest this book especially for those folks who are avid readers of western books and are used to sort everyday books. Even non-Muslims can learn a great deal from this piece and see how parallel any spiritual belonging can bring out of a person.
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Dr. Cleary has done a marvelous job of compiling the wisdom of the greatest man to walk on earth. Indeed, the Prophet of Allah (PBUH) was sent as a mercy to mankind and this book illustrates that so beautifully! A must read!
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The Prophet Mohammed is the founder and central human figure of a religion that has ~1.6 billion adherents (23.4% of the world's population). The revelations received by Prophet Mohammed are the basis for almost all aspects of Muslim culture. To understand the Prophet Mohammed is to understand Islam. This work is easier on the reader than attempting the Qur'an and serves as a tantalizing glimpse into the richness of the Muslim world.
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