on 18 December 2009
This is one of those life changing books. Essentially Ghazali seeks to awaken the reader to the reality of the beyond. He exhorts the believer to contemplate death as if it were a friend. To sharpen ones sense of life and time in the space we occupy we must remind ourself with mental exercises, to avoid falling into disavowal of the ultimate reality. It really is a wake up call to all believers to seize the moment and live not for the past or future but to be present in the present. It may be a little disturbing to the reader, as it really will bring home to one, the reality of passing, and the necessity of putting ones life in order, but this is a vital part of life and cannot be avoided in any case, therefore Ghazali exhorts you to wake up. The call from god is a trumpet blast. It is up to us to hear this.
on 11 April 2003
Excellent, excellent book, this is a must have if u want to improve youur islamic knowledge, i would recommend this as a must have for all muslims..... it also is really good at erasing doubts over some sticky points of islam which some sects seem to have... e.g visiting graves and the blessings of visiting graves of the pious predecessors. Imam ghazzali is fantabulous as always and is definately the proof of islam as he proves everything beautifully. So excellent book for increasing ones iman, and excellent reminder of what we muslims should be doing regularly. The book is translated beautifully by Abdul Hakim Murad ( also known as T.J. Winter) though his cambridge university lecturer background seeps through as his english is of high standard and i would recommend having a dictionary at hand for the one or two of the words that might need to be looked up to aid complete understanding, but i would stress the book has no faults as far as i can see.. and finally if only he would translate the whole of the "ihya ulum uddin" that would be of great benefit to the muslims inshallah.
on 21 January 2013
Had been meaning to get round to finding a suitable book that covers the experience of the time in the grave and what happens after death. This is a very simple, easily understandable and well written book. The subject matter is to the point and the structural layout of the text is neat and fluid, making it easy to follow the themes and stages etc. I also really liked the quality of the publication, good quality paper and feel of the book. I really like this book. Re criticisms, well I take the information that sits well with my understanding of my faith but I always bear in mind that alot of sufi doctrines lean to extremes rather than a balanced middle way. With this in mind, one can be a discerning and responsible reader. Also although I appreciate that perhaps the author translated to appeal to a non Arabic, western audience, I found it personally irritating to read the word 'saint' as I am not comfortable with that term and I don't believe there is such a status in Islam but that is just my subjective opinion. I would also prefer avoidance of terms such as 'emissary' to describe the prophet pbuh- just use 'rasool' or 'prophet'. And even though there is no prohibition on using 'God' why not just stick to the name God gave himself, Allah, which is complete and comprehensive. Those terms seem to conjure a very medieval Christian flavour, not that there is anything wrong with that but it just feels strange when the religion is Islam. That said, may the Creator of the heavens and Earth bless the author for his efforts to disseminate knowledge of the faith. It is appreciated. Delivery of this product was superb, the free trial next day service I used, was swift and on time, even though I ordered late in the evening.
on 17 February 2008
What can I say about this book? It really is amazing there is one quote when Abu Sulayman Al-Darani, "I once asked Umm Haroon whether she loved death. "I do not," She replied. Why not," I enquired, and she said, "Were I to disobey a human being I would not wish to to meet him. So how can I wish to meet Him when I have disobeyed Him?"
That should be enough for you to read the book.
on 18 February 2010
Shaykh 'Abd al-Hakim Murad has rendered Imam al-Ghazali's climatic end to the Ihya in spectacular fashion. His translation is, quite simply, fantastic. The opening khutbah is one of the finest pieces in world literature and it is beautifully translated by Murad. I will keep it short and simply say: You have to read this book before you die. No pun intended.
on 8 March 2014
This book changed my life. I love it so much that I've bought three copies and kept one for myself and loaned out the other two to friends and family so they may benefit from it too. It provides a breakdown of all the stages of death and the afterlife according to Islam. The part about the soul being questioned by the angels and its ascension to heaven is particularly interesting. It's the most comprehensive Islamic book on death I've read - so great for the curious mind and those that wonder what happens at the point of death and after. It's also very humbling. My heart has become very attached to this great book, and I wouldn't want to ever give it away.
on 14 June 2006
This is written with an engaging urgency, is full of insight and illuminating analogies. Though not intended, Imam Ghazali's rank is evident, and one is left to wonder at the vast distance between such a person and the reader.
T.J. Winter's translation is beautiful and the thoroughness of his work makes this an item to admire.