Category Archives: Middle Ages

ABU HAMID MUHAMMAD AL-GHAZALI
(1056-1111)

from Revival of the Religious Sciences

  A native of Khorasan, of Persian origin, the Muslim theologian, sufi mystic, and philosopher Abu-Hamid Muhammad al-Ghazali is one of the great figures of Islamic religious thought, as well as a critical figure in the debates over the preservation … Continue reading

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JETSUN MILAREPA
(c. 1052-c. 1135)

from Songs of Milarepa

  Milarepa was a major figure in Tibetan Buddhism and one of Tibet’s most famous yogis and poets. His writings, often referred to as the Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa, are canonical Mahayana Buddhist texts. Milarepa was born Mila Thöpaga … Continue reading

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(c. 1052-c. 1135)

from Songs of Milarepa

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ABU HAYYAN AL-TAWHIDI
(c. 923-1023)

from Borrowed Lights: On Suicide

  Abu Hayyan al-Tawhidi, probably of Persian origin, was born in or around Baghdad sometime between 922 and 932. He was a man of letters and a scholar, influenced by Sufism and the neo-Platonic philosopher Abu Sulayman. Although said to … Continue reading

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YA’QUB AL-QIRQISANI
(c. 890-c. 960)

from The Book of Lighthouses and Watchtowers

  Ya’qub al-Qirqisani was a biblical scholar and a recorder of religious and secular law, writing during a period in which Jewish life had been heavily influenced by the rise of Islam and the centralization of Muslim rule in the … Continue reading

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HADITH: THE SAYINGS OF MUHAMMAD
(7th-9th centuries)

  The hadith, speech or tradition, record the Sunnah (“practice”), the Prophet Muhammad’s sayings and actions, which Muslims believe were memorized and recorded by his companions and handed down from generation to generation. Many hadith are found in the biography … Continue reading

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THE QURAN
(traditional date c. 632-c. 650)

Surahs 2.54, 2.154, 2.195, 2.207, 3.145, 3.169-70, 4.29-30, 4.66, 4.74-80, 9.111, 18.6

  The Quran (meaning “recital” in Arabic) is the sacred scripture of Islam, and Muslims believe that it is the direct word of God given through the archangel Gabriel to the prophet Muhammad over a period of about 23 years, … Continue reading

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BANA
(c. 595-c. 655)

from Harsha-Carita, The Death of the    Great King: On Sati
from Kadambari

  Bana, also known as Banabhatta, a Sanskrit author and poet, was born in the latter part of the 6th century in Brahmanadhivasa, or Pritikuta, northern India, into a Brahmin family. Bana’s mother died when he was a child, and … Continue reading

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(c. 595-c. 655)

from Harsha-Carita, The Death of the    Great King: On Sati
from Kadambari

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THE BABYLONIAN TALMUD
(3rd-6th century)

Bava Kamma 91b
Avodah Zarah 18a
Gittin 57b
Semahot 2:1-2

  The Babylonian Talmud, the most comprehensive body of rabbinic literature and a central text of Jewish civil and religious law, dates from the 2nd century b.c. to its final redaction during the 5th and 6th centuries A.D.. Talmudic literature, … Continue reading

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