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Seven Doors to Islam: Spirituality and the Religious Life of Muslims [Paperback]

John Renard

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Book Description

July 17 1996
Seven Doors to Islam reveals the religious worldview and spiritual tradition of the world's one billion Muslims. Spanning the breadth of Islamic civilization from Morocco to Indonesia, this book demonstrates how Muslims have used the literary and visual arts in all their richness and diversity to communicate religious values. Each of the seven chapters opens a "door" that leads progressively closer to the very heart of Islam, from the foundational revelation in the Qur'an to the transcendent experience of the Sufi mystics. However, unlike most studies of Islam, which see spirituality as the concern of a minority of mystical seekers, Seven Doors demonstrates its central role in every aspect of the Islamic tradition.

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From the Inside Flap

"A comprehensive tour of the exuberant landscape of Muslim religious life, past and present. With an impressive array of textual and visual works, Renard's kaleidoscopic survey sounds the death toll to the longstanding misconception that Islam is a dry and mechanistic religion devoid of spirituality. This is the best introductory book on Islam currently available."—Ahmet T. Karamustafa, Washington University

"Comprehensive and accessible, this book is a richly textured and wide-ranging introduction to Islamic spirituality and a refreshing change from the obsession with current politics that characterizes most approaches of Islam."—Carl W. Ernst, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

About the Author

John Renard is the author of In the Footsteps of Muhammed: Understanding Islamic Experience (1992), Islam and the Heroic Image: Themes in Literature and the Visual Arts (1993), and All the King's Falcons: Rumi on Prophets and Revelation (1994). He is Professor of Theological Studies at St. Louis University.

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First Sentence
Islam, the youngest of the three Abrahamic faiths, grew out of a revelation to and through a prophet. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Introduction to the Religious Life of Muslims Jan. 11 2014
By Dalton - Published on
This is a great book. That's almost all I can say. The author deeply understands the ethos of the Islamic world and conveys it lucidly in his writing. I would recommend this book to anyone in the West who is looking for a finely written and accessible introduction to Islamic belief and practice.

Islamic religion and spirituality seems to be the author's specialty. He has also written these wonderful books I've been reading:

Friends of God:
Friends God Islamic Commitment Servanthood

Tales of God's Friends:
Tales Gods Friends Hagiography Translation

Knowledge of God in Classical Sufism:
Knowledge God Classical Sufism Spirituality

Fighting Words:
Fighting Words Religion Violence Interpretation
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars An Unorganized, Tiresome Read June 4 2013
By Kurt - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I came at this book as someone who wanted to learn more about the faith of Islam. This book provides a very in depth view into the spirituality of the Islamic faith. But is unorganized and often the tone of the author turns one away from the book because it is simply haughty. Would not recommend for someone who just wants to learn more about Islam.

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