The IGP Black History Month Bundle

The IGP Black History Month Bundle

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[Bundle] The Spirits of Black Folk: Sages Through the Ages | Blackness and Islam

Books in the bundle:
  • Blackness & Islam
  • The Spirits of Black Folk: Sages Through the Ages (selections from Raf’u Sha’n Al-Ḥubshān)
Blackness & Islam
Muslims speak of Islam in egalitarian terms: the religion of peace, the religion that seeks to elevate man over his base desires, and the religion that does not discriminate based on race and ethnicity. Despite the egalitarian spirit of Islam, the lived reality of many Muslims is very different, and this is most apparent when we observe how Muslims deal with race and ethnicity.

Muslims who are Black in the West, in particular, have found that while Islam may not discriminate based on race, many Muslims do. To make matters worse, some of those Muslims will delve into the Islamic tradition to justify their biases and bigotries, seeing no contradiction between their racism and Islamic ideals.

This work seeks to clarify and debunk some traditions which support their racist positions and presents biographies of early Muslims who were Black. The biographies of these great Muslim personalities show us how Blackness was a normal part of life for early Muslims, in sharp contradistinction to modern prejudices against Black folks found in some Muslim communities.

The Spirits of Black Folk: Sages Through the Ages

These selections from The Excellence of Black People (Raf’u Sha’n Al-Ḥubshān) are intended to connect our hearts, minds, and communities to the healing wisdom of preeminent teachers from amongst the Black luminaries of the past who remain largely unknown or ignored.

Imam al-Suyuti (d. 911 AH / 1505 CE) delivers this message clearly through his insightful text, which includes the names and unique qualities of the Black Companions of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, the Qur’anic verses regarding them, a commentary on African words in the Quran and Hadith, and much more.

Like Ibn al-Jawzi before him, al-Suyuti masterfully curated the narrators and narrations in this work to serve as keys to deeper truths, higher understanding, and more meaningful and equitable spiritual practice. The annotations that have been added are meant to facilitate benefitting from these keys.