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Memories of Muhammad: Why the Prophet Matters

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  93 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Who was the historical Muhammad, and how do Muslims remember him—as a holy prophet, a cultural revolutionary, a military leader, or a spiritual mystic? Unending media coverage of extremist fanatics, the controversy over offensive cartoon depictions of Muhammad, and fatwas against journalists and authors are all hard to ignore and have prejudiced our Western perceptions of ...more
Hardcover, 346 pages
Published November 17th 2009 by HarperOne (first published 2009)
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Arabvoicesspeak Jarrah
Yesterday I had Professor Omid Safi (of the Islamic Studies program at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) on our live radio show, True Talk. The conversation was about his latest book, Memoris of Muhammad:why the prophet matters, which I finished reading last night. It’s not your typical biography of the Prophet; in fact it’s anything but a biography. The book is much deeper than that, exploring the philosophical philosophical dimensions of his life and bringing the reader to higher ...more
Jennifer
Very readable, an introduction to Muhammad for non-Muslim readers. In the closing chapter, the author writes:

"for the past few years, the majority of Muslims have had to spend far too much time discussing what Islam is not about: Islam is not about extremism, Islam is not about terrorism, and Islam does not sanction the oppression of women. Somewhere along the way far too many have lost the opportunity to talk about what Islam does stand for, what it should stand for, and, with God's grace, what
...more
Katrina
I really like the author's balanced approach to differing interpretations of Mohamed and other aspects of Islam among Muslims globally, from the time of the Prophet up to today. This book can help Muslims understand one another better and also help non-Muslims understand Islam and Muslims better. Unlike Aslan in No God But God (which seems to be the popular book for non-Muslims to read about Islam), Safi is clearly still a Muslim yet he does not allow his own beliefs to cloud his impartial appro ...more
Andrew Marr
This gracefully-written book on the life of Muhammad and the crucial first four generations of the prophet's family following his life is an ideal introduction to the Islamic tradition. Safi's love of the prophet enlivens every page and it is impossible not respect him and his mission, even if one (such as myself) is of another faith. The peaceful disposition of the Prophet comes through and is a strong an important antidote to some people who make the newspaper headlines these days. A great boo ...more
Mustafa Farhad
words from a lover, about the master of lovers.
Mohammad Ali
absolutely blown away. love this book!
Mohamed Orikat
very good book to read about the story, purpose and the effect of Prophet Muhhamed (PBUH)
specially when it comes from a writer with a Sufism background, which enriched the content of the book with spiritual and sensual prospective and add-ons
the issue with the book comes from the sectarian point of view of the writer, which wasn't recommended in this place.
as Shiia writer, he covered the section of the life after prophet Muhammed's death with his sectarian view.
as he stated in his book, one o
...more
Clementine
I read this book for my Islamic Civilization class. It's not a book I probably would have read otherwise, mainly because I am not huge on non-fiction and will choose trashy novels or anything vaguely dystopian over anything else nine times out of ten. However, I thought that this was an intelligent, compassionate, well-written look at the life of Muhammad and the current state of Islam as it relates to the Prophet.

I am not one of those people who hates Islam and sees the entire, enormously popul
...more
Mariam
An interesting take on the well-known biography of the Prophet (S). Safi highlights critical points in the Seerah and provides some fresh insights for the benefit of muslims and non-muslims alike. Very well researched and presented and a must-read for people wishing to go beyond the staple "Muhammad" by Lings to extend their understanding of the Prophet (S), especially in a spiritual light. Safi is of Shi'ite background and therefore also presents a strong focus on the connection between the Pro ...more
Theodora
Oct 24, 2010 Theodora rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Carolyn
very clear and answers a lot of questions. doesn't shy away from hard stuff and the fact of multiple interpretations. portrayal of the ahl al-bayt and massacre at Karbala is wonderful. the page i opened up to at first, about the role of God in Karbala -- one of the shi'a versions of "why do bad things happen to good people" -- echoes my own thoughts and faith journeys as I go about chaplaincy work.

Becky Gamble
My professor wrote this book. If you are looking to explore Islam and Muhammad's teachings and feel that the exposure you have now (through media, etc.) is biased and clearly not thorough, this is a great place to start. He writes on a simple level yet isn't pedantic. He clearly has a Shi'a bias though, but that's ok. I'm just happy to be reading about it.
Naomi
May 04, 2012 Naomi rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: islam
Wonderfully written - lyrical in places and a text that will shed a lot of light for non-Muslims on the place of and traditions about the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in Islam.
Craig J.
Memories of Muhammad: Why the Prophet Matters by Omid Safi (2009)
Stony Point
One of the first books someone should read about Islam. New stock!
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Omid Safi is Associate Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, where he specializes on Islamic mysticism (Sufism), contemporary Islamic thought, and medieval Islamic history. He received his PhD from Duke University in 2000. Before coming to UNC, he was an Associate Professor of Philosophy and Religion at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York.

Safi is the
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