The Book of the Book Used for more than seven hundred years as a teaching story, The Book of the Book is one of the most compelling and astonishing texts ever to emerge from the Orient. Its central premise is the simple phrase: 'When you realize the difference between the container and the content, you will have knowledge.' When the book first appeared in English thirty-five years ago, its printers questioned how it could be a book, as did reviewers, scholars, and people who paid money to buy it. The Book of the Book is now in its seventh impression, and is studied at university level, appreciated by all for its simple brilliance.
About the author
Born in 1924 into an aristocratic Afghan family, Idries Shah created a large body of literary work, most of which considered elements of 'Eastern Thought', especially Sufism and Sufi thought. Some of his best known works include The Sufis and several collections of teaching stories featuring Nasrudin. Shah devoted his life to collecting, selecting and translating Sufi books and key works of Sufi classical literature, adapting them to the needs of the West and disseminating them in the Occident. Called by some 'practical philosophy', by others 'templates in straight thinking' these works represent centuries of Sufi thought and Islamic thought aimed at the development of human potential to its fullest extent. They stress virtues such as commonsense, clear-thinking and humour to counter cant and religious dogma. As such they are vital works in the area of Islamic philosophy, and may be viewed as an antidote to radicalism and fanaticism much needed in the world today. Shah's books have been translated into dozens of languages, have sold in their millions, and are regarded as a cultural bridge between West and East. His work and contribution to Sufism are represented by The Idries Shah Foundation.
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