A Comparative View of Religions
This book provided information and views not normally available in literature on the subject.
It’s a research tool, in a world filled with works that are either derogatory, or evangelical… though you might recognize touches of both in it. This is a good book to learn and view different religions.
A Critical Exposition of the Popular Jihad
This is a brilliant book. The late Mr. Ali has done a great service to truth and Islam. I respect him. And respect also goes out to the volunteers who brought the 1885 into the modern day and ubiquitous Internet. Mr. Ali goes through all the popular myths surrounding Islam and he debunks them all. He explains through the holy book how Islam treated slaves, what Jihad really meant, and how the wars of the last Prophet were all defensive. I even like how Mr. Ali explained why each of the prisoners of war were executed. Wow. And to think this was written in 1885. Just goes to show how long this debate about Islam has been going.
Correspondence Relating to Executions in Turkey for Apostacy from Islamism
This is a collection of correspondences presented in book form, between various European and Arab diplomats concerning the atrocious behaviour of an uncomfortably large number of followers of “the religion of peace” and it does help to shine some light on the degree of truth to that claim.
It also must be noted that these are not actions by which we ought to judge every Muslim, however, it can’t be ignored that the acts described in this book were committed without fear of punishment by the Turkish governmentt and it isn’t hard to extrapolate from what is written in these correspondences that these acts were not then, as they are not now, isolated and rare occurrences nor were they confined to the point in history during which the correspondences were transmitted. There is more than one reference to the desire of the European nations that the Muslim world not return to it’s old ways of barbarity and murder… and these letters were written in the mid-1800’s.
It’s worth a read, not for the purpose of finding a reason to hold people different from ourselves in contempt but to increase one’s insight into a very relevant modern topic and one that is sure to play a significant part in shaping the world’s future, for better or worse.
Mahomet Founder of Islam
The Prophet Mohamet is at once the glory and bane of his people, the source of their strength and the mainspring of their weakness. He represents more effectively than any other religious teacher the sum of his followersâ€™ spiritual and worldly ideas. His position in religion and philosophy is substantially the position of all his followers; none have progressed beyond the primary thesis he gave to the Arabian world at the close of his career. He is the last great man who imposed enthusiasm for an idea upon countless numbers of his fellow-creatures, so that entire tribes fought and died at his bidding, and at the command of God through him. Upon all matters of belief and upon all other matters dealt with, however cursorily, in the Kuran Mahomet spoke with the power of God Himself; upon matters not within religion or of the Sacred Book he was only a human and fallible counsellor.
I realize this lecture was written in the late 19th century, but for that very reason I felt it would present a more objective view. Christiaan Snouck Hurgronje was a Dutch scholar, and one of the few Westerners allowed a pilgrimage to Mecca at that time. He was fluent in Arabic, and immersed himself in the study of Mohammedanism and Islam while living in Mecca.
This lecture is a comparative study of both the history and myths surrounding Mohammed. Because Hurgronje was a Christian who converted to Islam, I felt he had a broader understanding of the two theologies and how they relate. I wanted information that wasn’t demonizing or romanticizing. I wanted understanding, not propaganda.
This is written in the formal, verbose speech of the time, so it’s definitely not an easy read. But it’s very enlightening and informative. For anyone who wants to get past the fear-mongering being dished out by anti-Islamists, this lecture gives clear insight to the origin and intent Mohammedanism. It explains the social, political, and religious foundations, which lends understanding to the eventual splintering factions.
People fear what they don’t understand. This lecture may not have made me an expert on Islam, but it gave me a deeper, objective understanding. And I dare say, a certain amount of respect.
Mohammed, The Prophet of Islam
As the Apostle of God, Mohammed is the ideal of every true Moslem. His life is the standard by which they test the lives of his followers, although he himself confesses that his life was not holy. In the Koran, and the earlier traditions, they picture him as being no better than his fellows, and as weak and liable to error as the poorest of his contemporaries. Yet later tradition minimises his faults and weakness, and surrounds his person with a halo of glory that makes him appear sinless and almost divine. All the doubtful incidents of his life are eliminated and ignored, or assiduously supported and defended by his pious, misguided followers.
Notes on Islam
Very good book on Islam. It touches major areas, addresses many misconceptions, and provides information in a simple direct way. It was a good read.
One thing I liked most about the author is that he’s not preaching through the text, but putting facts and his understanding of Islam in a plain objective way.
Observations on the Mussulmans of India
Mrs. Mir Hasan Ali, her opinions on the life of Mussulman ladies is to some extent open to criticism, and must be taken to apply only to the exceptional society in which she moved, her account of the religious feasts and fasts, the description of the marriage ceremonies and that of the surroundings of a native household are trustworthy and valuable. Some errors, not of much importance and probably because of her imperfect knowledge of the language, have been corrected in the notes of the present edition. It must also be understood that her knowledge of native life was confined to that of the Mussulmans, and she displays no accurate acquaintance with the religion, life or customs of the Hindus.
Pan-Islam is an ideology calling for the unity of Muslim peoples worldwide on the basis of their shared Islamic identity. … Some appeal to idealised versions of Islamic history, calling for the ‘reconstituting’ of the caliphate, one that politically unites most Muslims in a single state, a ‘new’ dar al-islam.
Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-Madinah & Meccah — Volume 1
Burton, as revealed by his books, was an intrepid adventurer and explorer. He was highly intelligent, educated and learned, and he was an extraordinary linguist and a keen observer of people and places. His writing is in an archaic, bombastic, and florid style, which is what the British Empire expected of men like him. He was highly judgemental and had numerous conceits, but his writings provide a fascinating look at places where others feared to go in the mid-19th century, and not a few still do.
Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-Madinah & Meccah — Volume 2
Here Burton finds Mecca and the long-sought Ka’abah. Along with descriptions of the Badawin of “Al-Hijaz,” the “Bedouins” to us who “haunt” the normal caravan routes, Burton describes the people of Mecca and the religious observances and practices of the “Haji’s” first appearance (and subsequent appearances) at the Bayt Ullah, the House of God.
While Burton keeps his condescension and moral superiority (if not sublimity) in check, he will occasionally weary the reader and try their patience with such observations as “the pigeons of Mecca resemble those of Venice” — and who is to say that differences exist in those that seasonally appear in downtown Cleveland?
Altogether, along with the first volume, an enjoyable read and an intriguing catalog of relevant observations, historical detail, biblical anecdotes and legends, and at the end of the volume, excerpts from earlier European “Hajis” (a “Gentleman of Rome” in 1503 and a semi-educated English youngster in 1680).
A first-rate travelogue, peppered at times with overbearing detail.
Ten Great Religions
For a book written in 1872 it remains brilliant to this day, while it could use an update to account for knowledge gained in the past century. It still feels fresh. It writes it from a Christian perspective, but that of an enlightened Christian who knows the Lord, and not a religious nut who uses religion as a means of control and division. This book helps even the Christian grow in a deep understanding of what is important to Christianity, where the central themes of the Bible come from, where Christianity is like other Religions, and even how many of the beliefs and devoutness of non-Christians may be superior to what often passes as Christianity. All-in-all, this is a must read for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of the religious roots of all religions. On reading it, the open mind will be expanded and in my case blown wide open.
The Faith of Islam
Edward Sell, the author of “The Faith of Islam,” was not only an Islamic scholar, but he lived for fifteen years among the Muslims of India. His work reveals the in-depth nature of his scholarship and first-hand experience. Despite the age of his work, it remains not only priceless, but timeless. While the spelling of Islamic terms has changed thereby adding at times some minor extra work in reading Mr. Sell’s writings, his analysis and explanations remain as insightfully accurate as the day they were penned. What a treat it was to read an expert explanation of Islam without having to swallow the modern, Edward Said type disinformation, whitewashing and fraudulent descriptions and opinions so prevalent in modern Islamic analysis. Mr. Sell’s work was obviously written long before vast oil revenue allowed wealthy Muslims to influence many presentations of Islam.
The Future of Islam
He has predicted for them great political misfortunes in the immediate future, because he believes that these are a necessary step in the process of their spiritual development
on every side the politics he hears discussed are those of the great world, and the religion professed is that of a wider Islam than he has been accustomed to in Turkey or in India
Sir Thomas Browne, “Truly the (Mussulman) world is greater than that part of it geographers have described.” and it is the school of the virtuous poor rather than of the licentious rich
Indeed, it may safely be affirmed that the course of events in India will determine more than anything else the destiny of Mohammedanism in the immediate future of this and the next generation
The Sherif depends upon the Sultan because he needs a protector, and needs his Wakaf. The Sultan depends upon the Sherif, because recognition by Hejaz as the protector is a chief title to his Caliphate
“If the Arab race falls Islam shall fall.” Islam, if she relies only on the sword, must in the end perish by it, for her forces, vast as they are, are without physical cohesion, being scattered widely over the surface of three continents and divided by insuperable accidents of seas and deserts; and the enemy she would have to face is intelligent as well as strong, and would not let her rest
in all great movements of the human intellect the force of progression or decay should be looked for mainly from within, not from without
their prophet has foretold that Islam shall not outlive two thousand years before the MÃ³hdy shall come, and the thirteen hundredth is just commencing.
The Improvement of Human Reason
In a Chronological order of thought, this is the first book most philosophers should begin with. It is a thought experiment dealing with knowledge and the inclinations of man. After words, On Human Understanding By John Locke. This book influenced far more thinkers then can ever be known. It is a hidden gem.
I am a catholic with an open point of view. I found this book to be a beautiful and important book of peace, knowledge and truth. I’m glad I had the guts to read it and try to understand a different way of life. It explains and relate them to the context of the times, and the differences in culture.
I have read the introduction several times and found it very helpful in understanding the origins of Islam and a little of why there is a discrepancy between those Muslims who speak of peace and toleration over against those who seek world domination on behalf of their understanding of Islam.
The Koran (Al-Qur'an)
Koran acts as the basis of Islam and its teachings are pivotal in understanding Islam. Based on the story, it can be concluded that the major themes of the Koran are God, prophets, main, divine, scriptures and sin. God is merciful, forgiving and is above all what is on earth and in heaven.
The New World of Islam
Lothrop Stoddard wrote “The New World of Islam, mentally and spiritually quiescent for almost a thousand years, is once more astir, once more on the march. Wither? We do not know. Who would be bold enough to prophesy the outcome of this vast ferment-political, economic, social, religious, an much more besides?”
Lothrop Stoddard today is an unknown, un-admired thinker from the Progressive Era, but he is indeed a prophet. In this book he carefully describes the rising organization of Islam, including Wahabbi Islam, the denomination that inspired Osama bin Laden, as well as the Zawia social movement that still influences Libyan politics today.
This book is a critical study in the “Clash of Civilizations” before such a conflict became widely known or understood. Many of the places described by Stoddard, remain Geopolitical hot-spots today.
While this prophet has been stoned, it is a good idea to read and understand his prophesies.
According to the Quran, Muhammad is the last in a chain of prophets sent by God (33:40). Throughout the Quran, Muhammad is referred to as “Messenger”, “Messenger of God”, and “Prophet”. … The Quran disclaims any superhuman characteristics for Muhammad, but describes him in terms of positive human qualities.
Three Translations of The Koran
It is invaluable to the believer and just an interesting read to an interested non-believer. In these times of religious violence perpetrated by a few radical persons, pointing to the Koran as their motive, their justification, their guide, and their belief, it is necessary that everyone familiarize him or herself with the Koran, and this book, giving three different translations makes the study even more interesting. Contrasting the verses dictated in the Medina period with those in Mecca and knowing the conflicts and pressures being experienced by the narrator at each location gives greater meaning to the lessons. I wish the radicals would learn the history of their religion and their prophet, then develop. The world would be better for it.
Travels in Arabia
John Lewis Burckhardt, the man who discovered a lost wonder of the world. He is the first European in modern times to visit the Ancient of Petra and to arrive at the Great Egyptian temple at Sabu Simbel. Burckhardt endured profound hardships, including robbery and abandonment by unscrupulous guides and periodic bouts of dysentery, which ultimately killed him at the age of John Lewis Burckhardt, the man who discovered a lost wonder of the world. He is the first European in modern times to visit the Ancient of Petra and to arrive at the Great Egyptian temple at Sabu Simbel. Burckhardt endured profound hardships, including robbery and abandonment by unscrupulous guides and periodic bouts of dysentery, which ultimately killed him at 32. They buried him as a Muslim and the tombstone bears his assumed name. His enduring achievements made this book more interesting. They buried him as a Muslim and the tombstone bears his assumed name. His enduring achievements made this book more interesting.