This book confirms the use of religion to cover some of the darker aspecrts of basic human nature. Like Fundamentalist Christianity, Fundamentalist Islam is used to promote and support self interests and biases of one group over another. Islam was used to justify invasion and domination just like the medieval Crusades and later invasions. This work addresses this without burying us completely in Western bias on the topic. Very edifying.
I tried. I mean, I REALLY tried to listen to this one. But man this guy nearly put me into a coma! It isn't the length, it is just out of this world mind numbing. This was the first audio book (out of 7) that really put me to sleep.
It is like listening to a monotone history lecture. If you are a history buff that enjoyed the "talking to the blackboard" lectures is college, then this is right up your alley. I just couldn't connect though, although I really wanted to. I heard the author on NPR and was really interested in the topic. I just couldnt handle the guys boring voice.
In a time when we need to understand more about others in the world, I found that this book did not help ... not because of the content but because of the reader. I think I'd rather read the print version because the audio version was boring, boring, boring. I made it only 1/5 of the way through.
Non Fiction Reader
Concise, insightful, informational. It's obvious this man has studied Islam, its people and most importantly its politics. He can explain muslim thinking and how it impacts current events. One of the best books on Islam. The others were also written by Lewis.
As a die hard supporter of secular governments I find myself alarmed at the current interpretations of the Islamic faith based states. It may not matter if the motivation is true faith, greed, anger,jealous, ignorance or a combination - the results will be the same - generations of hate, violence and death. I wonder, would a shift in world fuel from Oil to something else not found in the Holy Lands and Middle East be enough of a catalyst to change the dynamics??? I'd like to read more about the economics involved ... follow the money so to speak.
And I will proudly set aside my religious beliefs in honor of your secular rights and expect the same in return.
I did not rate this book higher because the book/author/narrator were hard to follow sometimes and the book would have benefited from better organization and editing.
This book is amazing, insightful and very, very scary. I sure hope the foreign policy makers in this country have read or listened to this book.
I am not a Muslim, nor do I have a good understanding of Islam. Alas, I feel like I am in roughly the same position even after reading this book.
Yes, the author does identify some striking contrasts between religions in identification of schisms both within the Islamic faith and between Islam and other parts of the world (primarily Western). However, I believe that those who understand the Muslim mind most likely already have a good notion of their struggles, and therefore this book would have done well to foster a greater understanding of the Muslim faith in general before identifying their Crises.
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Lewis admits he is an orientalist, viewing the world from that particular angle. The information is not balance but bias.