Monday, September 27, 2010

Karen Armstrong Returns

The book Mohammed : A Prophet for Our Times returned to uncle. Not the lady author. Neither uncle nor the nephew know her personally.

Uncle is a voracious reader. Nephew knows it for he sometimes helps is gathering books for uncle's insatiable appetite. But uncle will not read books on fiction. That takes some time to sink in. Uncle will not also read books on social movements, earth shaking ideas and mind boggling theories. The worst category of books that uncle will allow to be thrust into his hands are the ones on the topics of the type Islam-and-West. And these too disappear faster than they appear. Of course some of them are returned after reading first few pages.

So what kind of books does uncle read? "Give me the stories of the Elders."

And why did the nephew return Karen Armstrong to uncle? Because nephew has become like uncle, in matters of books. The nephew finds it difficult to read books on Islam by western authors. Even those authors, like Karen Armstrong, who do do not adopt offensive attitude.

And how does the process of changing preferences take place? It looks rather out of ordinary. The short of the long answer is that this happens because of the company of the People of Allah. And here we are talking about Hazrat Shaikh (DB).

All Praise is for Lord Most High.

But then isn't  the Holy Prophet (PBUH)  the Elder after Lord, as is often quoted? This should qualify the present book to be eminently readable. Why was it returned after reading first half of the first chapter?

With no offense intended to the decent author it can be said that when a westerner looks at Muslims, or Islam, or even the Elders then, though she or he might get an enormous amount of truth in their analysis, they miss that crucial element that you will call heart warming for lack of better description. The author indeed eminently qualifies to be among those who have taken a positive attitude towards Islam. This is no mean feat considering the history of calumny hurled at Islam by the west. But even then there is a long distance to be covered by those who want to understand Islam. And that includes Karen Armstrong. Of course there are others too. We shall not speak, at least for the time being, for the other type of authors.

Message to them? Say there is no god but God, you will succeed.

And that is the end of invitation by the Praise to Lord Sustainer of the worlds.