AUDIOBOOK: Book 1 – Ghazali Book of Knowledge for Children
Abu Hamid al-Ghazali, Fons Vitae Books
LAUNCHING GHAZALI CHILDREN’S AUDIOBOOKS
ANNOUNCING A NEW CHAPTERin the Ghazali Children’s Project. Fons Vitae releases it’s first Ghazali Children official audiobook: The Book of Knowledge for Children. Book 1 of the Ihya’ Ulum ud-Din, the Revival of the Religious Sciences. This audiobook contains 42 separate high fidelity Mp3 files including:
1) Publisher’s Introduction written and read by the publisher
2) Introduction written and read by Sheikh Hamza Yusuf
3) Chapters 1-40 of the Book of Knowledge for Children
Narrated by sister Umm Zayd. Many thanks to her and to brother Siraj and their children for all their sincere and persevering efforts. Their family has dedicated this effort in memory of Zayd Muhammad.
Listen to sample recordings from the audiobook:
01-A Word From the Publisher.mp3
02-Introduction by Sheikh Hamza Yusuf Hanson.mp3
03-Chapter 1 “Two Kinds of Learning”.mp3
Ghazali’s teachings distilled for children explain how the outer aspects of Islam can, through their inner spiritually transformative meanings, change every situation into one which strengthens the innate human nobility of character. The Prophet Mohammad said, “I was only sent to perfect good character”.
Fons Vitae has taken on the monumental task of bringing out Imam al-Ghazali’s magnum opus, “The Revival of the Religious Sciences” based on the 2011 Dar al-Minhaj critical Arabic edition, as an educational package re-crafted for families and schools. Each translation of the 40 books is accompanied by an adaptation for children as well as workbooks with activities and a school curriculum, all supported by an interactive parent-children’s website and Pilot School Program.
The aim of the Ghazali Children’s Project materials is to support children:
• in their ability to recognize and maintain their innate human dignity.
• in realizing nobility of character through imitation of the Prophetic qualities realized by understanding, loving, and practicing the inner dimensions of all outward acts – to stop simply just “going through the motions”.
• in becoming aware of their True Selves and in identifying with this pure aspect of their being rather than with the lower, false, egoic and separative nature which is centered on itself [al-nafs alammara].
For the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings be upon him) and his family we humbly dedicate this effort. For Zainab, Maryam, Yusuf, Qasim, Abdullah and Abdal Fattah
A Word from the Publisher (Included in the introduction to the printed edition):
You are about to read the wonderful Book of Knowledge, which offers some of the key ideas of the great Imam al-Ghazali, whose life story is to be found in the accompanying workbook.
In his writings, the Imam uses many stories and wonderful ideas that make his thoughts clear and exciting. If you are not able to read just yet, your parents and teachers will be delighted to tell you these stories in a way that is suited for your age and help you to answer many of the questions in the workbook, as well as enjoy the related activities. There is something for every age!
The many points that Imam al-Ghazali has gathered in the first of the 40 books of his Ihya, which is another name for The Revival of the Religious Sciences, are very important because they are like a summary of what the Imam teaches. Some of these ideas may be difficult to understand, but are made clear by the many stories taken from al-Ghazali. Sometimes, to help make a point clear, we have brought in stories from other cultures or traditions, such as the the American Indians, the Japanese, and Central Asia. The Prophet Muhammadtold us that we should “seek knowledge even if from China.
Originally, this book was illustrated with drawings of imaginary children, but it was decided that this book is so important and serious that it would be better to give you pictures of real children who live throughout the Muslim world. In this way, you can meet your global brothers and sisters from Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and even North America.
As you already know, some words can have two meanings. And you will see what fun it can be learning to look for the secret meanings of words you already know. Let us take gold for example. You know that it is a beautiful metal which people use for money and decoration as well as jewelry. But if we say, “My mother has a heart of gold,” or “That little boy is as good as gold,” what could we also be saying? Perhaps you have learned that gold is the purest of all the metals because it can never tarnish or rust like other metals. It is also very soft and can easily be changed into other forms. It beautifully reflects light. You can see from the qualities of gold why we can use that word to describe a person’s good heart. In the end we all want to keep our “hearts of gold.” Imam al-Ghazali will tell us how.
The good heart must not tarnish or get dirty. It can change its ways to do something more beautifully. Also, this special spiritual heart reflects God’slight. Sometimes when we meet others they seem to be shining. In Arabic, a really good person is spoken of as munawwar—meaning lit up and not gloomy.
And of course the word “heart” has two meanings that you already know about. You have a heart inside you that beats and sends blood throughout your entire body. It is the center of life for humans. You can lose every other part of your body, including your brain, and still be alive if your heart is beating. The heart is the center. Like the sun it sends out life-giving energy. When we speak to each other “from the heart,” we are not talking about the physical heart that pumps blood, but our spiritual hearts. The books of Imam al-Ghazali provide us with a special map which we can all follow in order to become our true, shining selves.
We very much hope you enjoy the Book of Knowledge.
This work is nothing less than a revolution in developing humane, ethical, and committed Muslim youth. Imam al-Ghazali is the "Proof of Islam", and these teachings, presented in a beautiful life-affirming way, will prove to be a major shift in the way Islam is taught to young people, who are in desperate need of guidance in today's confusing times. As a community, we owe much to Fons Vitae for bringing them to fruition. Let the transformation begin!
The Imam Ghazali Children's Series is a gift to our children who deserve a pedagogy of Islam that allows them to develop the innate goodness which God has placed within each human being so they can become moral, kind and happy adults.
SubhanAllah what an inspiring and moving video! May Allah ﷻ bless the tireless efforts of our beloved Gray Henry and the entire Fons Vitae team! The Imam Ghazali children’s series is precisely the type of resource that every Muslim child should have access to to help them learn all of the principle and essential qualities of Prophetic comportment (tarbiya, akhlaq, and adab, i.e., emotional intelligence). Please look into this invaluable project now!
My kids are learning but I'm learning more...(Apr 11, 2019) I absolutely love the concept behind these books and the way they focus on character. I am currently working my way through the Book of Knowledge with my 6 yr old and 4 yr old and I am amazed by how much they grasp about the spiritual heart, good deeds and diseases of the heart. As a parent aimed at instilling good character in my children (and working on my own character in the process), these books are an invaluable tool. I have taken the language and stories from the book and incorporated them into our every day life and I pray that my children will absorb these lessons for life. These books are a must have for any parent or teacher who is looking at teaching their kids the deeper meanings of our religion, matters of the heart and excellent character.
After reading the children storybooks and workbooks, my years of worrying about how to teach my children (without persistently nagging them) to be ethical and socially responsible in their actions and their intentions, has been put to ease, God willing. I must also be truthful and let you in on a secret: Sadly, I believe my soul is in more of a need for The Al-Ghazali Children series books even more so than my own children. It is honestly hard to describe what I do feel since reading the books. If I could, then I would say that my inner conscience is suddenly and constantly talking to me, whether it is reminding me of my responsibilities as a mother or of being more cautious of my thoughts and intentions. Whatever it is, I know I could feel my faith increasing.