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Son of Karbala

Shaykh Fadhlalla Haeri was born in the Iranian holy city of Karbala, sacred to Shi'a Muslims around the world as the place where Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, was martyred in CE 680, leading to the split between the Shia and Sunni. It is better known in the West today as both a centre of resistance to the American occupation and the home of many who have supported the overthrow of Saddam Hussein. Educated in Europe, working for much of his life in the USA and then around the world in the oil business, he has a unique perspective to offer on the political history of the region. Interwoven with episodes from his own life he traces the collapse of the old consensus as dictators supported by the West destroyed the social ties that held the country together for centuries. Mixing with government ministers and meetings with Ayatollah Khomeini shaped his view of a people betrayed by higher interests. In this autobiography the colours, smells, sounds and political realities on the ground in Iraq come to life. But Shaykh's concern has always been spiritual rather than political, the struggle in each one of us for truth against the winds of expediency and greed that drive the world today rather than the particular shaping of a nation state. An acknowledged Shaykh of several Sufi orders, his main aim is to make accessible to younger generations the Islamic transactional way of life (Din), through the discovery of the root and foundation of the Divine message; a message which transcends political, national, even religious realities. For anyone interested in how Iraq got to where it is now, in how Muslims regard their own history, and in how the message of Islam meets both individual needs and that of the world today, this is a timely and thought-provoking book.
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About the Author

Shaykh Fadhlalla has recently established the Academy of Self Knowledge in South Africa, which offers an online course aimed at the committed seeker of self knowledge and spiritual development. He is the author of The Thoughtful Guide to Sufism and The Thoughtful Guide to Islam and continues to travel and lecture widely.

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