Travelling light: Imam al-Ghazali's Revival of the Religious Sciences Books 31-34 (DVD)
With Abdal Hakim Murad
Number of Disc: 4
Release Year: 2011
Publisher: Mishkat Media, Muslim Academic Trust in association with the Cambridge Mosque Project
Run Time: 280 mins
Imam al-Ghazali (d.1111), known as the ‘Proof of Islam’, authored over a hundred books on all the Islamic scholarly disciplines. But he is most celebrated for his Revival of the Religious Sciences (Ihya’ Ulum al-Din), a compendium of spiritual guidance which he wrote to revive the flagging fortunes of the Islamic world in his age. Covering every aspect of the religion, from belief, to worship, to daily life, to vice, virtue, and the final encounter with God, this text is regarded as one of the masterpieces of world sacred literature.
REPENTANCE (al-Tawba). What is wrong action? How can we understand our damaged inner state, and repair it? The Imam explains that repentance consists of knowledge of the act, an emotion of sorrow, and a decisive inner and outward action that will erase the wrong action and help the spiritual wayfarer never to return to it.
PATIENCE AND GRATITUDE (al-Sabr wa’l-Shukr). We are made human by our ability to restrain our egos and cravings. We also experience states of overwhelming gratitude to our Creator. Here the Imam explains how to cultivate these two gifts, and to keep them in a positive relationship which promotes spiritual growth.
FEAR AND HOPE (al-Khawf wa’l-Raja’). Almighty God is to be feared; for His justice is absolute. But we also hope for His mercy, for He is ‘the most merciful of all’. We fear our weakness, and hope for God’s forgiveness; the Imam explains how the balanced soul is one in which both these gifts are alive and active.
POVERTY AND ABSTINENCE (al-Faqr wa’l-Zuhd). Here the Imam celebrates the poverty of the Holy Prophet, and shows how a detached attitude to the things of this world is a precondition for inner calm and a stress-free life.