Son of Karbala
The Spiritual Journey of an Iraqi Muslim
Shaykh Fadhlalla Haeri was born in the Iraqi holy city of Karbala, sacred to the whole Muslim world. Educated in Europe, living in the USA, working for many years in the oil industry, he has developed a unique perspective on the social and political history of the region. Interwoven with episodes from his own life, and meetings with prominent politicians, theologians and Sufi masters, he traces the collapse of the old way of life as dictators, often propped up by western commercial interests, destroyed the social fabric that had held the people and their traditional Islamic culture together for centuries.
In this autobiography the atmosphere of an Iraq in transition is brought to life with all its sights, sounds and political realities. But the author's personal concern and quest has always been spiritual rather than political, so the national and cultural upheavals are used as a backdrop for his own journey of self discovery and search for truth. For everyone interested in the events that created modern Iraq, in how Muslims view their own history and in how the message of Islam meets both individual needs and that of the world today, this is a timely and thought-provoking book.
Shaykh Fadhlalla Haeri is a master of several Sufi orders, and has recently established The Academy of Self Knowledge (http://www.askonline.co.za) in South Africa, which offers teachings on self knowledge and the Prophetic revealed path. He numbers among his many works in English and Arabic "The Thoughtful Guide to Sufism" (previously published as "The Elements of Sufism") and "The Thoughtful Guide to Islam" (previously published as "The Elements of Islam"), and continues to write, travel and lecture widely.
A new dawn has also appeared in spiritual travelogues with the publication of Son of Karbala. It deserves a place among the great spiritual odysseys of our time, right next to Gurdjieff's Meetings with Remarkable Men, which is at once resembles and exceeds in its honesty and clarity.
Professor Bruce B. Lawrence
- Zahra Publications, April 2006
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