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The Ninth Hour By Da'ud ibn Tamam ibn Ibrahim al-Shawni
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A reference to Jesus’ final hour on the cross when he cried out to God in anguish, The Ninth Hour is the story of love’s power over reason and the implications of this power. “I... More > have collected stories of love; anecdotes to entertain the one I love. Here are my stories of love; parables to admonish men that all proofs come to nothing. If wine is forbidden to you, you may drink from this little cup. A sip of love makes drunkards of saints, makes fools of scholars. A droplet of love breaks the cup but quenches thirst, swallows a hundred Jonahs, drowns a thousand Pharaohs. Jesus was told, You have raised Lazarus back to life. Jesus said, This is nothing compared to love.” The Ninth Hour recounts stories of Solomon and the queen of Sheba, of Muhammad and Khadijah, of Majnun and Layli, of Joseph and Zuleika, and of others. These stories illustrate the potency of love and also its mystery. Finally The Ninth Hour explores the possibility that the single proof of love, like the proof of God, is love itself.< Less
The End of Reason By Da'ud ibn Tamam ibn Ibrahim al-Shawni
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The End of Reason in three parts explores the use of rational intellect, primarily in the form of analogical reasoning, to justify the ways of God to man and to address even the possibility of the... More > existence of God. Reliance on “natural” religion is rejected and the work underscores the importance of revealed religion as the source of understanding God, but also demonstrates the limitations of that understanding, whether in literal or figurative (analogical) terms. Using both original stories and drawing others from Jewish, Christian, and Muslim scripture and apocrypha, the author confronts the logical contradictions of monotheism. At times provocative, The End of Reason, like the Book of Job, is a drama with little action and addresses uncomfortable questions for those who believe in God.< Less
The Trial of Paris By Da'ud ibn Tamam ibn Ibrahim al-Shawni
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Divided in two parts, The Trial of Paris examines the manner in which belief in God can be sustained without direct proof of His existence, and describes some of the choices we make in life and the... More > effect of those choices. Together, these two parts attempt to answer the author’s question: If I would be emancipated from this world, should I not at least first recognize the manner and extent to which I am enslaved? This short book relates the myth of the Judgment of Paris, the contest between Hera, Aphrodite, and Athena for possession of the Golden Apple upon which the words For the Fairest are inscribed. Ultimately, Paris awards the Apple to Aphrodite. This outcome ignites the Trojan War and costs Paris his life. In this retelling, during the contest Athena reveals to Paris his future should he accept Hera’s gift, or Aphrodite’s, or her own. Athena explains how it is possible to see the gift that she offers, which is seemingly least appealing, as the gift most worthy of the Apple.< Less