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Studies in Muslim Apocalyptic (Studies in Late Antiquity and Early Islam, No. 21)

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0878501427
ISBN-10: 0878501428
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Product Details

  • Series: Studies in Late Antiquity and Early Islam (Book 21)
  • Hardcover: 470 pages
  • Publisher: The Darwin Press (2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0878501428
  • ISBN-13: 978-0878501427
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,904,958 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Near Eastern religions all claimed information delivered by the revelations of their gods to their prophets. Such revelation is termed, in Greek, "apocalyptic"; and it often handles revelations about the end of the world. Islam claims itself, also, as a series of revelations to their Prophets, of whom Muhammad is the latest. One would expect in Islamic literature, also, speculation upon the End.

It turns out that Muslims did retain some - in fact, many - apocalyptic materials. There's some in the Qur'an but, mainly, it's in Hadith. Not many apocalyptic ahaadith entered the canonical Sunnite collections; and since most of those hadiths NOT caught in those collections were Shi`ite, many Sunni, Orientalist and even Shi`a scholars have assumed that apocalyptic was a specifically Shi`ite genre. It turns out that this view is anachronistic, and reflects simply that the Shi`a preserved their books better. Much more has since been recovered and published. In Islam's first centuries, EVERYONE was into the End Of The World - "The Hour", in their own terms. Ibn Abi Shayba, `Abd al-Razzaq and especially Nu`aym b Hammad compiled whole books on the topic.

David Cook has, here, attempted to assign these hadiths to genres. I am not sure that Cook has entirely succeeded - there is overlap, and I see many points where he just quotes mediaeval encyclopaedias like the Kanz al-`Ummal instead of going back to original sources to tease out who said what and when. But when you consider that this book is just an overview, and that (as far as I know) no-one had tried this before him; you really can't take away from his achievement.

The content of apocalyptic is grim by nature, and paranoid, and involves wishes of mass destruction to enemies; it can be draining to read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Scholarly written and superb in content. A very precise and outstanding definition of Islamic apocalyptic thought. This is a must read for anyone desiring to comprehend what Islam believes beyond the typically stated five pillars of faith.
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