By Roy Mottahedeh

Drawn from the first-hand money owed of eyewitnesses, Roy Mottahedeh's gripping account of Islam and Politics in innovative Iran is broadly considered as the most effective documents of that turbulent time ever written.

The precise tale of a tender mullah, his lifestyles within the sacred shrine urban of Qom, and the dramatic occasions of the 1979 Revolution, this mesmerizing account paints a vibrant photograph of latest Iran, whereas offering a wide ranging survey of Muslim, Shi'ite and Persian tradition from the center a long time to the present day. From the traditional time of Zoroaster to the realm of Khomeini, this sweeping saga interweaves biography with historical past, politics and faith to supply new degrees of realizing into Iran’s previous, current and future.

Written with feeling, sympathy and readability, this revised version features a new chronology detailing occasions in Iran from the revolution correct as much as the current day and Ahmadinejad’s arguable regime.

'Even with information breaking day-by-day in Iran, the 1st publication I ship myself and different readers again to should be Roy Mottahedeh's "The Mantle of the Prophet: faith and Politics in Iran," which was once first released in 1985. A professor at Harvard, Mottahedeh has written an highbrow heritage as stirring and swish as any novel. He units the intimate biography of a tender cleric opposed to the huge epic of Iranian notion from Zoroaster to Avicenna, Kasravi to Khomeini. "The Mantle of the Prophet" is literary, discovered, and deeply felt; the writing is fantastic, and the tale is an schooling for the Western reader ignorant of the robust tides of Shi'ite and Persian inspiration over a interval of centuries.' -- the recent Yorker, June 26, 2009

"A masterpiece....[Mottahedeh exposes], with fabulous erudition, the subterranean Sufi and poetic historical past mendacity slightly under the skin of Khomeini's possible granitelike orthodoxy."--The manhattan assessment of Books

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Scholars got here with the nationwide newspapers that had arrived in mid-afternoon from Tehran, and a few scholars learn those newspapers aloud, with many interruptions through listeners who desired to supply their interpretation of occasions. hearing those scholars was once the start of Ali’s political schooling. No time during this schooling was once extra jam-packed with emotion than the night Ali heard that countless numbers of Muslim freedom combatants have been burned alive in a collapse the Algerian barren region. till this night Ali have been mostly silent within the circles he joined. to invest, as his colleagues did, concerning the hidden factors of Eisenhower and Khrushchev and their mystery designs on Iran appeared to him approximately as dead as staring contests with storks. yet tonight used to be varied. In his category on rhetoric Ali have been interpreting poetry in regards to the Arabian wilderness and the bravery of the traditional Arabs (“like the lions of the thicket”). From the instant his learn associate learn the headline (“Hundreds Die within the Algerian Desert”) the full scene was once alive with the heroism of the fierce yet swiftly beneficiant males of the desolate tract who fourteen centuries in the past had created the Arabic poetry analyzed in his booklet. Ali used to be additionally conscious that this night he was once the scoop via 4 pairs of eyes: Parviz had became up with a primary cousin who used to be learning on the Faiziyeh. whilst Parviz and his cousin had joined their circle, Ali and Parviz with nice shared leisure had made reverential bows to one another as though they'd been revered historical ayatollahs. Even Parviz, who was once being very quiet, grew to become greatly diverse and exchanged his squint for a clean stare because the scholar started to learn the item on Algeria. they'd all the Algerian conflict with shut and anxious consciousness. In Algeria, of their competition to a mass of colonial settlers and the great strength of a ecu kingdom, Muslims had refused to count number the risk, had refused to turn into imitation Frenchmen, and had gambled their lives and the lives in their acquaintances for his or her freedom. Ali’s learn associate started to learn the thing: “The Freedom circulation of the Algerian humans introduced that the previous day French troops working within the Sahara stunned a number of hundred Algerian freedom combatants in a collapse the wasteland. After the liberty opponents unanimously rejected the decision to give up, the French troops poured an inflammable liquid into the cave and stood by means of because the 1000's of Algerians who had taken shelter within the cave, together with ladies and youngsters, have been burned alive. ” Ali couldn’t take heed to the remainder of the item. “For the French a Muslim isn't a individual; they don’t care in the event that they kill one or 1000. The Koran says: ‘Those who oppress will quickly recognize with what sort of returning they'll go back to God. ’ God punish them! The luck of the Algerians would be the instance that may make all Muslims burn with one of those fireplace they are going to always remember. ” Parviz’s cousin positioned his hand on Ali’s sleeve. “Mowlana in a single poem says of God: in case you have identified the rapture of burning you are going to by no means back wait and see even to maintain from the fireplace; whether water from the Fountain of everlasting existence seems, it is going to now not tempt you from the flame.

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