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In the Footsteps of the Prophet: Lessons from the Life of Muhammad

4.43  ·  Rating details ·  3,769 ratings  ·  233 reviews
Named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most important innovators of the century, Tariq Ramadan is a leading Muslim scholar, with a large following especially among young European and American Muslims. Now, in his first book written for a wide audience, he offers a marvelous biography of the Prophet Muhammad, one that highlights the spiritual and ethical teachings of one ...more
Hardcover, 242 pages
Published February 1st 2007 by Oxford University Press, USA
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Rebekka Steg
Apr 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
In the Footsteps of the Prophet: Lessons from the Life of Muhammed by Tariq Ramadan is very well written. It is so easy to dig into, read and understand. It is beautifully written and was honestly a joy to read. In addition to its accessibility and beautiful language, the biography comes with an extensive list of references making it a highly educational and authoritative work.
I greatly enjoyed learning more about the Prophet (pbuh) and his lives, and how his actions and ways of dealing with si
...more
Jennifer
Jan 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jennifer by: TTBOOK
Shelves: 2009
I think reading about any prophet will endear you to the principles and ideas of the spiritual path their teachings laid before us. This is no exception, and I found it insightful into the life of the Prophet and the Muslim faith, especially with both being so maligned.

Some of my favorite quotes from the book / Quran:

In the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alteand day; in the sailing of the hsops through the ocean for the profit of humankind; in the rain that God sends down from t
...more
Tim
Oct 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: islam, islam-muhammad
I started reading this book immediately after finishing Martin Lings' excellent biography of the Prophet (pbuh), and I highly recommend reading the two together. Lings told the history of the Prophet in a way that made him human. Ramadan's book tells HOW the Prophet was human, and focuses in on selected incidents from the life of Muhammad to show how we can pragmatically learn from lived experience. As a Muslim, that's invaluable to the deepening of faith as we are required to learn from and fol ...more
Lizzy
Apr 18, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: non-muslims who'd really like to know what the Prophet (pbuh) was really like, muslims
Shelves: history, nonfiction, islam
Tariq Ramadan paints a thoughtful, careful picture of the Prophet (pbuh) in this biography. As stated in the beautiful introduction, this is not intended to contain all of the information about the Prophet (pbuh). Rather, the intent of the author is to highlight certain events in the life of the Prophet (pbuh) that illustrate his character, beliefs and ethics. This biography is timely, reminding both Muslims and non-Muslims of the forbearance, peacefulness and gentleness of the Beloved of God (p ...more
Chris
Mar 27, 2008 rated it liked it
I know a lot of other people loved this book so take my comments with a grain of salt...I just wasn't too impressed, and still greatly prefer to read "Muhammad" by Martin Lings. But I think for non-Muslims this is a very good, clear book that's a great introduction to someone not as familiar with the Prophet Muhammad's life, peace be upon him
Hasham Rasool
The life of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W), to whom the Angel Gabriel revealed the verse of the Quran, has provided inspiration to Muslims for hundreds of years. In The Messenger, leading Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan considers the ways in which the Prophet's actions, words and teachings can guide us in the modern world.

Interspersed with spiritual and philosophical meditations, this profound and stimulating biography shows how Muhammad's message can be used to address some of today's most controversia
...more
ShriDurga
For Christians the story of Jesus amounts to more than just the facts. The same is true for Buddhists of the Buddha, and Muslims of Mohammed. Believers affirm the uniqueness of the lives of their founders as proof that his way is divine, or in the case of Buddhists enlightened. But in their ardor to be worthy followers, they burnish the founder's image to such a degree that he is no longer interesting. There is no drama in his life because the founder is incapable of error. If he does err he doe ...more
asra
Jun 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
While based on traditional sources, this isn't your typical biography of Muhammad. It differs in that Ramadan often comments on the prophet's spiritual motivations. This is an absolutely refreshing angle. For example, the way Ramadan speaks of the prophet's proximity to nature (eg: the cave, the desert, trees, animals, etc.) reveals the absolute necessity of observing, understanding, respecting, and appreciating nature as an avenue towards knowing God and drawing closer to Him -- before the reve ...more
Jennifer
Mar 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This simply told tale of the Prophet of Islam is beautiful to read and easy to understand. Instructive and educational, and evocative in its ability to penetrate the motivations and personality of Mohammed, it takes the reader on an emotional journey, if not a spiritual one, in which we can feel we begin to understand an outstanding person, and the lessons of humility and wisdom which made him such an example that his message spread to the world. No need to be a moslem to feel you can gain somet ...more
Naomi
Jan 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
My second reading of this book brought me even more joy and insight than the first. I deeply appreciate Ramadan's attention to equality, freedom, reason, and love throughout the life of the Prophet (PBUH). I recommend this book for personal and small group use and especially for multifaith/interfaith groups that seek greater understanding and appreciation of each other's faith traditions. Ramadan treats many of the "difficult" texts and hadith (traditions passed down of the life of the Prophet [ ...more
Shaimaa Ali
Jul 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This work is a real Masterpiece!!
Not only Ramadan managed to illustrate Prophet Muhammad's life in a page-turning book, but he also did commented on certain events with words of wisdom that reflected his deep understanding. For me reading lots of books in Arabic & by lots of famous writers & learning 'Sirah" through my whole life, I was thinking what new this book will bring? ..but it did brought me sincerity, spirtualit and even more .. His writing was amazing, it really reflects his love & his
...more
susan
Apr 15, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone looking for an approachable introduction to Islam in its beginnings
Shelves: islamichistory
This is a beautifully written biography of the Prophet (PBUH) of Islam.

I don't know quite how to describe the tone of the author - sad, reflective, pensive - but it is one of the most beautiful biographies I have ever read. I've been told that when the Quran is read in Arabic it has a tone that is of this nature.

The most useful aspect of the narrative is in how he links various revelations in the Quran to the events in the Prophet's life. I certainly have a new appreciation for certain passages
...more
Ayesha
Feb 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
An easy read compared to most books like these, but as you study the seerah in depth, you're left feeling unsatisfied by this book. Perhaps my error was to read it at the same time as studying. It serves well as an introduction and I love the way Ramadan writes, but if your intention is to learn seerah, then would recommend additional sources. I will try his other works. There are some very beautiful passages in this book and I have been brought to tears many times. The conclusions Ramadan draws ...more
Lubna
Aug 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I know I have been giving an awful lot of 5 stars out lately but really, I have been reading such great stuff. This is a great analysis of the life of the Prophet - its not a traditional biography but rather it goes over the events in the Prophet's life and derives various ethical and moral lessons from his experiences. Its a great introduction to the life of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) for both non-Muslims seeking to learn more about Islam and Muslim's seeking greater understanding ...more
Ade Bailey
I like it so far. It is written in short chapters. The history is from classical sources, orthodox, and a space is given for reflection in each section. Ramadan writes well, and his expressive form carries the sense (I mean sense in the sense of sense, bodily incorporation) of what I find has often been expressed in a castrated form, such as, for instance, the idea of submission.
Muhamed
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This must be one of the better books on the history of early years of Islam and the life of the Prophet. What makes it unique is that it includes many teachings and saying of him too and it's not merely a narration of life events. This adds life to the book and gives a taste of prophet's character too. I truly like this book for this reason. Like many other books it did disappoint me with regards to neglect of the role of Ali especially in the event of prophet's speech in their farewell hajj pil ...more
Nabilah M.
Jul 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bahan2-tarbiah
This is the first Ramadan’s book that I ever read and considering his background as the grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, I have preconceived high expectation on his writing and I am not disappointed a tad at all.

One of the striking differences that this book has offered is that instead of writing narratives or listing down all the important events that had occurred throughout the beloved Prophet Muhammad’s life, he chooses to write dissections of those events. In another word,
...more
Serene
Apr 22, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: religion
Perhaps me giving this book 3 stars has more to do with my expectations than with the book itself. I prefer writers on the life of the Prophet to take one of two approaches: either relate his life simply and directly, with only enough analysis to explain the background and significance of events to a modern audience (my favorite in this field is still Martin Lings _Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources_), or to make the analysis the focus of the book and not try to stick to a chronolo ...more
Mehwish Mughal
“In the hours of dawn when the book was written, there was silence, meditative solitude, and the experience of a journey, beyond time and space, toward the heart, the essence of spiritual quest, and initiation into meaning, Moments of plenitude, and often of tears; of contemplation and vulnerability. I needed this.” – Tariq Ramadan

I needed this too. I found that the best time to read the book was when it was written – in the early hours of dawn. The silence and peace helped me contemplate and fa
...more
Bruce
Mar 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
Tariq Ramadan’s “In the Footsteps of the Prophet: Lessons form the Life of Muhammad” is a discussion of events in the life of the Messenger of God. Comparisons can be made to other Prophets in the Abrahamic faiths and those of other cultures. Ramadan points out that Muhammad was kind, gentle and patient. He forgave his enemies and laid down rules to be followed by Muslims. The author does not make any mention the current factions within Islam. However, reading this work with general background k ...more
Emina
Apr 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
If you have never read the seerah of the prophet and are intending to read one to understand what kind of a person he was, this is the book for you. If you have read other seerahs' then you will really appreciate the style of this book due to its beautiful descriptions, essential and analytical notes and comments articulated through the most poetic flow of words, and last but not least; the inevitable feeling and realizations within yourself that this book brings to the table. I thought I knew t ...more
Jehan
Jan 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, religion
Such a refreshing account of the life the Prophet (SAW). I was hoping for a more intimate account of his daily life though, however, there were some lovely anecdotes that inspired so much awe. For example, the way he treated his wives, his love for animals, and his excellent skills as a leader and negotiator.

The last few paragraphs, which details the Prophet's last concerns for the future Ummah, were especially poignant. His primary concern was that people will fall for the riches of this world
...more
Ali
Apr 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
This was a quick read, and while I can't compare it to the other books on the life of the Prophet (peace be upon him), I'd say it's very good. It reads like a novel, and it's not a dry text. On the contrary, it paints a vivid picture of his life, what he faced, the trials he went through, etc, but without going into extreme details. It gives you the highlights, along with the author's own interpretation and present-day application of the trails and lessons learned some 1400 years ago.
Hafsa
Nov 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing
This book does two things in a beautiful historical and spiritual narrative:

1. Increase your love, appreciation,and awe of the Prophet (peace be upon him).
2. Apply the themes from the life of the Prophet (PBUH) to modern-day issues, not so much on a societal level, but more on an individual level, looking into the character of the Prophet (PBUH)and how he truly serves as a model for humankind.

Tariq Ramadan is great--I am looking forward to reading more from him.
Asmaa Kamel
Jan 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely worth reading and I guess I'll read it again! The idea of coming up with reflections on the different aspects of the Prophet's life (peace be upon him) is new and rather interesting compared with the mere narrative of the events of his life found in most other books. I guess this is an open invitation for everyone to write their own reflections on the Prophet's life and use them as a way to converse with the thoughts in the book.
Dominic
May 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you want to understand Islam this is a very good book to explain its origins.
Yorgos
Dec 08, 2015 rated it liked it
The book is very good and written with care and heart. I gave only three stars because i wanted it to be more detailed and analytical. But may be it was not meant to be that way, by its author.
Sadia
May 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
In the footsteps of the Prophet (lessons from the life of Muhammad)
By Tariq Ramadan
Genre: Non-fiction, Biography, Religion.
Rate: 4.8/5 💚💚💚💚💛


This book is written precisely but with vivid details on the learning from the major incidents of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw). Tariq Ramadan has not focuses on the story of the Prophet's life to explain or describe it like a biography, rather his focus was what that story or event taught us and how its relevant and applicable in this days too.

In th
...more
Nausheena
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written. Not just a biography. I drew lessons from his leadership style. Even though you know the Prophet Muhammad S has passed away, I still cried my heart out at the end. It's like being on a journey.
Nayyer Rahman
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books on the life and teachings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
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Tariq Ramadan is the son of Said Ramadan and Wafa Al-Bana, who was the eldest daughter of Hassan al Banna, who in 1928 founded the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Gamal al-Banna, the liberal Muslim reformer is his great-uncle. His father was a prominent figure in the Muslim Brotherhood and was exiled by Gamal Abdul Nasser[3] from Egypt to Switzerland, where Tariq was born.

Tariq Ramadan studied Philo
...more

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“No one must ever let power or social, economic, or political interest turn him or her away from other human beings, from the attention they deserve and the respect they are entitled to. nothing must ever lead to a person to compromise this principle or faith in favor of a political strategy aimed at saving or protecting a community from some peril. The freely offered, sincere heart of a poor, powerless individual is worth a thousand times more in the sight of God than the assiduously courted, self-interested heart of a rich one.” 29 likes
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