I was challenged by my friend Salman Azhar to list 10 books that have shaped me. Here were the instructions:
“List 10 books that have stayed with you in some way. Don’t take more than a few minutes, and don’t think too hard. It’s not about the ‘right book’ or great works of literature, just ones that have affected you in some way. Doesn’t have to be in order. Then share with 10 friends and me so I can see your list.”
Here’s my list, off the top of my head:
1. Qur’an, translation by Yusuf Ali
2. Rumi’s Masnavi
3. Conference of the Birds by Attar
4. Ideals and Realities of Islam by S.H. Nasr
5. Muhammad, Martin Lings
6. Testament of Hope, Martin Luther King (edited). And endless hours of listening to him.
7. Autobiography of Malcolm X
8. Introducing Liberation Theology (L. Boff)
9. Culture and Imperialism (Edward Said, and just his being)
10. Qur’an and Woman, Amina Wadud
Heck, I’m gonna cheat.
11. Desmond Tutu, God Has a Dream
12. Teachings of the Buddha, edited by Jack Kornfield
13. Cornel West, well, everything. But sure: Hope on a Tightrope.
14. Eyes on the Prize, Clayborne Carson and Vincent Harding.
And my friends:
Farshid Safi, Farnaz Safi, Farzad Safi, Wajahat Ali, Aloosh Hash, Bahar Hashemi, Tania Kazi, Nisreen Fa, Maria O’Connor, Abdullah T. Antepli.
What are your 10 books?