About The Book
This book contains al-Ghazali’s views on the Qur’an, the sacred Scripture of Islam. Al-Ghazali is acclaimed in both East and West as the greatest religious authority of Islam after the prophet Muhammad. At an advanced age when he had already composed numerous works on various Islamic intellectual disciplines and had already completed traversing the Sufi path, he freely expressed his own understanding of the Qur’an which took the form of a clear-cut and complete theory.
The nineteen chapters which constitute the first part of this book present us with al-Ghazali’s views on several broad problems relating to the Qur’an as a whole, e.g. the method of its understanding, its principal aims, the process by which all diverse branches of Islamic learning have stemmed from it, the reasons why similitudes and allegories are employed in it, variance in the excellence of its surahs and verses, and the relationship between the perceptible world and the world of the unseen. Various parts of the Qur’an are compared to various types of valuables, such as jewels, pearls, rubies, red brimstones, corundums, strongest musk and aloe-wood.
The two chapters which form the second part of this book contain, in translated form, more than 1500 verses which al-Ghazali calls the jewels and the pearls of the Qur’an – verses which concern the two greatest of the six major aims of the Scripture. Such a sifting out of the most important verses from the entire Qur’an is unprecedented in the history of Qur’anic studies. These verses are translated in free-flowing, modern English in order to make the book not only scholarly but also interesting and enjoyable.
About The Author
Imam Abu Hamid Muhammad Al-Ghazali was born in 450 AH (1058 A.D) in the Iranian town of Tus, studied Islamic law and theology at the Seljuq College in Nishapur, and became a distinguished professor at the famous Nizamiyya University in Baghdad.
Despite his glittering success, he was inwardly dissatisfied, so he abandoned his career for the life of hardship, abstinence and devotion to worship. During ten years of wandering, he experienced a spiritual transformation, in which the Truth came to him at last, as something received rather than acquired.
Blessed with an inner certainty, he then applied his outstanding faculties and vast learning to the task of revitalizing the whole Islamic tradition. Through his direct personal contacts, and through his many writings, he showed how every element in that tradition could and should be turned to its true purpose.
Imam al-Ghazzali was fondly referred to as the “Hujjat-ul-lslam”, Proof of Islam, he is honoured as a scholar and a saint by learned men all over the world and is generally acclaimed as the most influential thinker of the Classical period of Islam.
He passed away in 505 AH (1111 A.D).