Over the centuries, Islam has provided a soruce of inspiration through which Muslims experience, understand, and guide their everyday lives. The readings for this theme can be seen as literary reflections on Muslim piety and communal concepts such as ethics, governance, knowledge, and indentity. Each one reveals the transformation of faith and identity, as Muslims living at different times and in different places have interpreted Islamic traditions to meet their distinctive cultural realities and spiritual needs.
While the large presence of Muslims in the United States dates to the 1960s, Muslims have been a part of the formative history of America since colonial times. American Muslims' stories draw attention to ways in which people of varying religious, cultural, ethnic, and racial backgrounds interact to shape both their communities' identities and our collective past.
Muslim Journeys Bookshelf
The Muslim Journeys Bookshelf is a collection of 25 books, 4 DVDs, and other programming resources selected to help public audiences in the United States become more familiar with the people, places, history, faith, and cultures of Muslims around the world and within the U.S. The Bookshelf is intended to address both the need and the desire of the American public for trustworthy and accessible resources about Muslim beliefs and practices and the cultural heritage associated with Islamic civilizations.
The drama of conflict, chaos, and war come to Western readers in daily newspaper stories, but the news gives us scant details about how people live their lives in Islamabad, Fez, Cairo, or Tehran. Through the titles in "Points of View," readers will experience Islamic culture through memoirs and novels representing a diverse geography and some of the best works in contemporary storytelling.
Following the correct pathway to spiritual fulfillment and success is a key Islamic principle. Readings for this theme explore the basic requirements of learning and obeying the Qur'anic revelation, following the Prophet's teachings, and engaging in specific formal practices. Also introduced are the pathways leading from Judaism and Christianity to Islam, the youngest of the three Abrahamic religions; the divergent pathways followed by the Sunni and Shia communities; and the mystical pathways to spirtitual fulfillment known as Sufism.
Centuries before the dawn of the modern age, the world was already a surprisingly interconnected place. Readings for this theme introduce a way of understanding the past in which Islam and the West are seen as products of a shared, cosmopolitan, and inextricably intertwined past. These books help envision the world of our ancestors, which was every bit as complex and dynamically interconnected as the world we live in today.