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Saracen Chivalry: Counsels on Valor, Generosity and the Mystical Quest Paperback – November 1, 2012

4.9 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Readers will find this a surprising and rewarding experience." Carl W. Ernst, author of How to Read the Qur'an

"These pages provide a boon, a resource, a guide and a goal for all who strive to be chivalrous youth, whatever their physical form or actual age." Bruce B. Lawrence, author of The Qur'an: Books That Changed the World

"Written with a light touch, this reworking of classical Sufi chivalric codes subtly compels the reader to admit the contemporary urgency of their moral vision." Tim Winter (Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad), editor of The Cambridge Companion to Classical Islamic Theology

"You can read this remarkable book as ethical/spiritual poetry and it will stimulate and inspire you with its noble beauty. But, if you will permit these words that issue from a higher realm to penetrate your heart, it will change you to become a knight who serves to heal our planet." Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi

"A treasure house of the core teachings of the prophetic world lineages." Shaykha Fariha Fatima al-Jerrahi

"A jewel of a book. Its pages speak to what is most noble within each of us. Treasure them." Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, author of Prayer of the Heart in Sufi and Christian Mysticism

"A wonderful and generous book." Stephen Hirtenstein, author of The Unlimited Mercifier

"A must-read for spiritual seekers of all traditions." Omid Safi, author of Memories of Muhammad

"This book is of such depth and contains such beauty that all one can do is to urge every possible reader to read it, for the sake of bringing reality back into this reality-stripped world." Peter Kingsley, author of A Story Waiting to Pierce You and Reality

"A visionary classic." Spirituality & Practice

From the Back Cover

Queen Belacane is dying. As a last act, she inscribes a book of counsels, or prince's mirror, to guide her newborn son on his life's path. The Queen's counsels illuminate the way of futuwwa, a tradition of mystical chivalry traced to the Prophet Abraham. If the Prince would unite the chivalries of Christendom and Islam and attain the Cup Mixed with Camphor, he must fulfill the pillars of his faith, and uphold the universal virtues of wisdom, courage, temperance, and generosity.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Suluk Press Omega Publications (November 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0930872916
  • ISBN-13: 978-0930872915
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,222,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book should be in every school's curriculum. The Gideons, or whoever, should place it in all hotel rooms, and it should be required reading for children, adults, soldiers, artists, scouts, athletes, doctors, lawyers, teachers, clergy, politicians, CEOs, public servants and the private sector. For this book contains the wisdom that has been passed on through the ages, through all traditions, on how humans are to live ethical, just and righteous lives devoted to the timeless imperative of creating beauty and harmony through our human persons.

When we hear the word "chivalry" we often imagine a bygone era of Don Quixote romantics. Codes of honor, attention to the manner in which we conduct our lives, self-discipline in service to our ideals: in this day and age all seem like relics that have no place in our modern aggressively competitive self-serving culture. Yet these are precisely what humans find sorely lacking in the world and in themselves. Saracen Chivalry sounds the exact right note for our time by touching the deepest parts of our being which hunger for greater authenticity and congruence between our daily lives and the calling of that still, silent presence that lives in our hearts. When this inner congruence and connection forms the basis from which each person meets other beings, the quality of the interactions reflects depth and shared presence. Through a renaissance of training in mystic chivalry (meaning not just adopting an outer form but developing the awareness underlying it), ultimately the whole web of inter-relatedness on the planet will shift toward one of mutual respect and honor.
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Format: Paperback
"Pierce your heart. . . be ready for a gossamer bloom of spectural beauty," wrote Pir Zia Inayat Khan in this romantic Sufi teaching. One need not be following the path of Sufism to be intoxicated by the perfume of this story that starts and ends with a dying mother's love for her son. A prince's mirror, she weaves a tapestry made of tales meant to guide the boy after her passing, which is soon to come. She begins with one of their own family, that she describes as, "of prophets, princes and fairies," setting the tone for the wonder world of the Sufi's that is made up of the mind's eye, the world of matter and all imaginable others.

Poetic phrases regularly bursted my heart wide open . . . "friends of god draw close to the source and return with tidings of love and beauty. If it were not so the world would fall apart." Many times while reading I wished to stop and turn within such as after the sweet simple reminder that, "silence is a mercy." The drama's lead character, the loving mother, mounts her reasons that the son should take a chivalric pledge. None could be argued. The promise? "Lovesickness" that bursts from the heart of the sincere and makes available a portion of, "love that god bore for you."

One of the jewels the mother passes on to son is the notion that, "god is not stingy of the unseen." This lovely book is evidence of her claim.
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This is a very well-crafted book. I love having some of the grail legend from a female perspective. It conveys concepts about noble action in an accessible way that is approachable. Good for the heart.
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This exquisite book is nothing less than a profound guide to living an ethically responsible and spiritually attuned existence. It is a text to be savored and shared, its deeper truths revealed over time and along with the development of one's inner life. It is not insignificant how the voice of the book is that of a very wise queen. Indeed, perhaps the message here is how what is needed for healing on an individual and planetary scale is rooted in the sacred feminine attributes of giving, sharing and nurturing. It must be mentioned how exquisitely rendered is the overall text, certainly closer to a rhapsodic prose poem in feel than anything remotely standard. Over time, this work will be embraced by an increasingly wider audience, bridging all illusory divides. It will become an essential manual for living a divinely inspired life.
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Written for everyone; this work is a testament to the author's deep understanding of the Islamic tradition and the human condition, as well as being a vehicle for the universal message of Sufism which speaks to us all. It penetrates the hearts whilst eloquently imparting counsels on valor, generosity, and the mystical quest. Being written from the perspective of a mother, it gently and lovely reminds us not to despair of God's Infinite Mercy and All-encompassing Grace. It also encourages us to be so much better than we already are! Saracen Chivalry is a gift in itself.
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Very interesting treatise on a profound subject. I am meeting Pir Zia in a few weeks to have it signed and hear more on the subject!
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