The Road to Mecca Read ð PDF DOC TXT eBook or Kindle ePUB free

Read The Road to Mecca

The Road to Mecca Read ð PDF, DOC, TXT, eBook or Kindle ePUB free å مما جاء فى المقدمة ما أرويه في هذا الكتاب لا يُعد سيرة ذاتية لامرئ يشعر بالفخر لدور قام به في الحياة العامة كما لا يعد رواية لمغامرات خضتهان عميق أو عقيدة بذاتها ـ فذلك الإيمان حل على عبر رحلة السنين دون أن أسعى إليه حكايتي ببساطة هي حكاية اكتشاف رجل أوروبي للإسلام كدين متكامل في أي مجتمع إسلامي. This is a fascinating book—half travelogue and half conversion memoir Muhammad Asad was born a Jew Leopold Weiss in the Austro Hungarian empire in what is now Ukraine the city of Lvov He was prominent both in interactions with the West in the 20th Century for example as Pakistani ambassador to the UN and in theological work including translation and exegesis of the ’uran Asad is regarded and should be even regarded in these days of Al aeda and ISIS as a voice for a revitalized mainstream he would accurately reject the term “moderate” Islam But long before that he was just a Westerner adrift and looking for spiritual answersAsad found those answers in Arabia In many ways The Road To Mecca is of the same genre as other travel books of Western men fascinated by Arabia in the first third of the 20th Century such as Lawrence of Arabia or lesser known figures such as Wilfred Thesiger Arabian Sands A certain type of Western man a woman could not have had the opportunity fell in love with the people and landscape of pre petroleum Arabia believing that the people had uniue virtues though they admitted the people were not composed only of virtues and the land brought out the best in men Some of this smacks of naïve love of the idealized noble savage of course and you see the same thing commonly with Westerners and East Asian cultures like Tibet hello Richard Gere Conversion to Islam was not the norm though for Westerners entranced by Arabia and the Arabs But Asad was simultaneously on a spiritual uest and like others before and since after rejecting much else found what he was looking for in IslamAsad’s memoir is told in the form of flashbacks during a desert trip in 1927 with a traveling companion ultimately to Mecca not for his first time—at the time he lived in Medina so he had made the hajj pilgrimage several times already In his book he alternates descriptions of Arabian geography as well as Syria Ira and Iran and a little of the Maghreb with descriptions of key Arabs and their personal and political doings he knew Ibn Saud well along with a host of lesser players although not apparently the Hashemite kings of the Hejaz deposed by Ibn Saud but later kings of Jordan to this day and briefly Ira And all along in his book Asad is narrating his own life and his own religious development with apparently great honesty and clarityAsad rejected Judaism and became agnostic early although he came from a rabbinical family His main objection to Judaism is that he could not believe in a God that was focused nearly to exclusion on one people—he repeatedly and accurately contrasts Islam’s ability to embrace all kinds of people and form a new community from them with the exclusive aspects of Judaism But Asad does not fall into the kind of crude anti Judaic attitudes so common among modern Muslims even though such an attitude is well supported in the ’uran and the Sunnah and is the historical norm in Islam ’uranic verses such as 262 freuently uoted to make Islam seem universalist “Surely those who believe those of Jewry the Christians and the Sabaeans whoever has faith in Allah and the Last Day and works righteousness their wage awaits them with their Lord and no fear shall be upon them and neither shall they sorrow” are not to the contrary—their exclusive interpretation in Islam has always been that those verses only apply to Jews before Jesus and then to Christians before Muhammad and have zero application today after Muhammad See The Reliance of the Traveler the main Shafi’i “catechism” at w44 He was however very opposed to Zionism and the founding of Israel and friendly with Jews such as Jacob de Haan a Dutch Jew assassinate by the Haganah in 1924 for favoring negotiations with Arab leadersAsad also seems to have considered Christianity or so he asserts If I had an objection to this book although to object to someone else’s reasons for his personal conversion is obviously pretty silly it is that he does not seem to understand Christianity at all in that he ascribes to Christianity critical doctrines not actually found there and ascribes his rejection of Christianity to his aversion to those bogus doctrines The core “doctrine” to which he returns repeatedly is that Christianity supposedly believes matter and the body evil and the spirit good He contrasts this to Islam’s holistic approach in which nothing Allah has made can be bad and each human’s physical body and spirit are both key concerns of IslamBut of course this is a false view of Christianity More precisely it is a heretical view It is the view of the early Gnostics the Manichees and the Albigensians all rejected by mainstream Christianity They posited dualism—that as Asad says the body is bad and the spirit good But mainstream Christianity holds the opposite—like Islam it holds that all what God has created is good though of course Islam and Christianity both hold it can be mis used Asad appears to have missed the key doctrine of Christianity of the resurrection of the body found in both the Nicene Creed and the Apostles’ Creed There is a difference between Christianity and Islam in that Islam does not recognize original sin and Christianity does have non heretical strains that emphasize spiritual precedence such as the eremitic monks but it is just not correct to posit the dualism that Asad appears to be believe to be central to Christianity Asad also falls into silly historical errors such as supposing Islam’s view of the West is dictated by the Crusades and that the Crusades were the formative moment of Western civilization whereas in reality the Crusades were forgotten by Muslims who won after all until their memory was resurrected for political purposes in the 19th Century and were and are of minor importance in the West as well except as a modern day tool for ignorant Americans to traduce Christianity and the West He in passing also follows the common Muslim habit of erroneously ascribing important scientific inventions to Muslims from algebra and trigonometry to “Arabic numerals” and the compass in the usual effort to compensate for Muslim lack of scientific contributions in modern times or really since the 11th Century and even then mostly by non Muslims under Muslim domination and nearly all second order scientific contributions But these flaws are understandable and not at all germane to Asad’s basic narrativeHe also points out what are today interesting historical nuggets such as that until the 19th Century Wahhabi “revival” the Arabs of the Arabian Peninsula were seen as the laxest Muslims at all and are now the most religious not always to everyone’s benefit then or now—Asad while recognizing certain virtues notes that it made them “proud haughty men who regard themselves as the only true representatives of Islam and all other Muslim peoples as heretics” Finally he inadvertently confirms a variety of Western views of Islamic cultures as retrograde in certain areas as entirely correct as when he notes how a family desperately tried and succeeded in hoodwinking him into marrying an 11 year old virgin He divorced her when he discovered her age on their wedding night and did not consummate the marriage “Her mother was stupefied by his demand to immediately divorce the girl She had never heard of a man who refused so choice a morsel—an eleven year old virgin—and must have thought that there was something radically wrong with me”Presumably this doesn’t really matter for Asad’s personal conversion He was attracted to the community of believers in Islam; the fact that Islam provides answers to nearly every uestion in life particularly those not directly related to spiritual matters but to all matters of life in this Islam is not dissimilar to such Christian groups as Opus Dei or Third Order Franciscans though the comparison probably shouldn’t be stretched; the harmony of Muslim belief; and the peace Islam brought to the people he knew He says himself that what he had was “a longing to find my own restful place in the world” and he found it in Islam One thing to keep in mind of course was that the 1920s were a time when many in the West after the First World War despaired of any future for the west As Asad says “A world in upheaval and convulsion that was our Western world” Islam offered a world united in itself without any upheaval and convulsion if properly ordered according to its own principlesAsad is broad minded tolerant and fascinating Those are not characteristics in good odor among many strains of modern Islam which tends in many cases to be anything but modern His translationexegesis of the ’uran The Message of the Koran is banned in Saudi Arabia for supposed Mu’tazili tendencies perceived as undermining the alleged divine nature of the ’uran and a willingness to strongly endorse ijtihad or continued analysis and reasoning in exegesis of the ’uran But whatever your theological predilection these characteristics are what make Asad’s memoir very much worth reading

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صادفت مغامرات عجيبة ـ فإنها لم تمثل لي أكثر من مجرد أحداث مرافقة ومصاحبة لم كان يدور داخلي وما اصادفة عدا كل ذلك فهو لا يُعد قصة حياة رجل يفتش بقصد ونية عن إيم. The Road to Mecca represents a most interesting exceedingly interior pilgrimage tale of Leopold Weiss born in 1900 in what is today Lvov Ukraine previously Lemberg in Galicia then part of the Austro Hungarian Empire descendent of a long line of rabbis The book is in fact the autobiography of Muhammad Asad and the story of this most radical transformation is uite stunning a conversion of faith enmeshed in a long pattern of travel work as a journalist by the erstwhile Weiss whose rather affluent family moved to Vienna when Leopold was still fairly young Curiously his grandfather wanted Leopold's dad to follow his path as a rabbi though he chose to become a lawyer with a distinctly secular stance Meanwhile it was hoped that Leopold would complete his university degree in Vienna become a lawyer like his own father the source of another familial disappointment as Leonard failed to complete his studies dropping out to become a journalist over time based primarily in the Middle East the Arabian Peninsula working for the Frankfurter Zeitung other newspapers Leopold's many constructive encounters while seeking something meaningful in life include a brief stint in Berlin with early filmmaker FW Murnau Nosferatu based on Bram Stoker's Dracula explorations by camel train across Syria Ira and time with members of the House of Saud including King Abd al Aziz ibn Saud in what became Saudi Arabia Over time the outsider who had once attended Hebrew school though for its cultural content while even developing a fluency in Aramaic experiences a gradual but rather complete transformation There is also a memorable intersection involving a discussion of theology with a Jesuit priest on a ship bound for Egypt Turkey and another with the chairman of the Zionist Committee of Action in Palestine where although of Jewish origin the author feels a strong objection to Zionism taking issue with the Balfour Declaration of 1917 and stating his opposition with Dr Chaim Weismann attempting to point out that long before the Hebrews came to the area as conuerors to Palestine there were many Semitic non Semitic tribes settled there including the Amorites Edomites Philistines Moabites Hittites with the descendants of many of these peoples still resident in the areaGradually the man who began life as Leopold Weiss experiences a metamorphosis converting to Islam becoming in the process Mohammad Asad In time some began to refer to him as a Jewish Lawrence of ArabiaIslam did not seem so much a religion in the popular sense of the word as rather a way of life; not so much a system of theology as a programme of personal social behavior based on the consciousness of God Nowhere in the Koran could I find any reference to a need for salvation or a mention of original or inherited sin; sin meant no than a lapse from the innate positive ualities with which God was said to have endowed every human being There was also no trace of any dualism in the consideration of man's nature body soul seem to be taken as one integral wholeI found Asad's commentary on the Crusades of considerable interest calling this a defining moment for western civilization a wave of intoxication that brought tribes classes together providing a shared cultural awareness a sense of unity but also causing intellectual damage the poisoning of the western mind Reading about the transformation of Leopold Weiss in becoming Mohammad Asad from an author who has such a keen sense of Islamic history and cultures made The Road to Mecca a fascinating book Asad indicates that he decided to become a Muslim not because I lived among them so long; rather I decided to live among them because I had embraced Islam Asad goes on to commentThroughout the years I have spent in the Middle East as a sympathetic outsider from 1922 to 1926 and then as a Muslim sharing the aims hopes of the Islamic community ever since I have witnessed the steady encroachment of Muslim cultural life political independence European public opinion that labels any resistance to this incursion as xenophobia The West's main argument is always that the political disruption Western intervention is not merely aimed at protecting legitimate Western interests but also at securing progress for the indigenous peoples themselvesThis was of course before WWII the discovery of oil further changed the dynamics of that intervention eventually leading to independence for many of the countries where Mohammad Asad lived The author later spent time as a compiler of Muslim history writing books on the nature of the Koran Islam still later serving as Pakistan's Ambassador to the United Nations when that country became independent splitting from the Indian subcontinent in 1947 I can not begin to capture the many roads that Asad traveled in The Road to Mecca but the book is extremely thoughtful uite personally revealing very well written Curiously at some point I thought of the intriguing novel by Kurban Said Ali Nino a novel that featured a Jewish fellow in Azerbaijan who converts to Islam marrying a Georgian Christian woman a book that was first published in Vienna just before the outbreak of WWII And yes Asad does make it to Mecca and speaks candidly about his experiences thereIt may be that someone who was raised a Jew within a Christian landscape prior to WWI perhaps survived WWII the Holocaust because he changed both his residence his identity is particularly empowered to provide insight into Islam a uality that someone who has known no other faith can not The sister father of the former Leopold Weiss among many other Jews living in Vienna at the time of the Anschluss or the German annexation of Austria perished in the Holocaust along with countless others I recommend this book highly to anyone interested in Islamic history or in reading about a uniue search for personal identity Interspersed are many black white photographs which add context to Asad's story The first photo image is of Leopold Weiss as a young man the second after his transformation to Muhammad Asad

Muhammad Asad Î 2 Characters

The Road to Meccaمما جاء فى المقدمة ما أرويه في هذا الكتاب لا يُعد سيرة ذاتية لامرئ يشعر بالفخر لدور قام به في الحياة العامة كما لا يعد رواية لمغامرات خضتها ـ على الرغم من أنني. The I try to make sense of my path so far as a Muslim the the experiences seem to expand themselves in front of me and escape words I cannot pin down what I'm living seeing realizing into language I can only approximate and at times try to make sense of it through the writings of others The idea of Islam being a consummation of all primordial divine truth and therefore not a late religion but ONE religion is the concept that has spoken to me most as of late In this light the particular message of this book is one of return through new beginnings Or as we in Islam describe our conversion process it is a RE version to the primordial Religion through submission Islam to the ultimate Muhammad Asad narrates his story through a method of weaving in and out of past and present events related to his journey to the Arab and Persian worlds Immersed in this back and forth narrative is his spiritual progression and viewpoints on Islam derived from his esoteric experience of the divine as related to his outer experience of brotherhood In this way Asad's style is a beautiful metaphor for Islam as a faith and for the way that The ur'an itself is written What we know as existence or creation intersects at all points of the physical spiritual and mental and with this life altering paradigm of unity in all areas we can see where the many strains of reality constantly cross one another and in Islam are inseparable parts of a totality Asad describes a restlessness in this book that I've felt since my teens and that compelled him as a European to travel to the Arab world and ultimately embrace Islam It was a cultural shift an acceptance of a new way of life that was exemplified through physical emigration This resonated profoundly when I first looked at this book Asad's conception of this restlessness is not a need for adventure per se but of a desire to get to the root of things and therefore the need to experience It's also not a sensual addiction it's just a drive to get to the authentic I'm there and looking back I've always been there Islam to me offers an opportunity of full immersion into not only a faith and faith has meant dualism in my past but a complete life Tawhid Unity Sociological and cultural acceptance Discovering through a journey physical mental and spiritual Asad describes it best on p 374 Longing need no longer remain small and hidden; it has found its awakening a blinding sunrise of fulfillment