The Duties of Brotherhood in Islam: Translated from the Ihya' of Imam al-Ghazali (Muhtar Holland)
An immensely important portion of Imam al-Ghazali's 'Ihya, this work discusses, at the micro-level, what is needed to instill in each of us the sense of brotherhood that is a necessary fabric for Muslims to be effective as a nation. The eight duties each Muslim has to perform towards the other are each discussed in detail. Al-Ghazali, Abu Hamid Muhammad (450/1058-505/1111), a towering figure in Islam, was born at Tus, near Mashhad in Iran, in the early Seljuq era and studied theology and law at Nishapur. His formidable intellectual abilities soon won him honour and respect at the Court of the famous Seljuqi Prime Minister, Nizam al-Mulk, and, while still in his early thirties, he became Professor at Madrasa Nizamiyya in Baghdad and attained great prominence there. But soon he abandoned his professorship for a decade of contemplation and studies. He returned for a while to lecture at the Nizamiyya in Nishapur before his death. He wrote a large number of works, which include Al-Munqidh min al-Dalal (a biographical account), Tahafut al-Falasifa; but his magnum opus remains the Ihya' Ulum al-Din in four volumes, compiled during his period of retirement and contemplation.
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