Central Asia's Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane
Author: S. Frederick Starr
Publisher: Princeton University Press
In this sweeping and richly illustrated history, S. Frederick Starr tells the fascinating but largely unknown story of Central Asia's medieval enlightenment through the eventful lives and astonishing accomplishments of its greatest minds--remarkable figures who built a bridge to the modern world. Because nearly all of these figures wrote in Arabic, they were long assumed to have been Arabs. In fact, they were from Central Asia--drawn from the Persianate and Turkic peoples of a region that today extends from Kazakhstan southward through Afghanistan, and from the easternmost province of Iran through Xinjiang, China. Lost Enlightenment recounts how, between the years 800 and 1200, Central Asia led the world in trade and economic development, the size and sophistication of its cities, the refinement of its arts, and, above all, in the advancement of knowledge in many fields. Central Asians achieved signal breakthroughs in astronomy, mathematics, geology, medicine, chemistry, music, social science, philosophy, and theology, among other subjects. They gave algebra its name, calculated the earth's diameter with unprecedented precision, wrote the books that later defined European medicine, and penned some of the world's greatest poetry. One scholar, working in Afghanistan, even predicted the existence of North and South America--five centuries before Columbus. Rarely in history has a more impressive group of polymaths appeared at one place and time. No wonder that their writings influenced European culture from the time of St. Thomas Aquinas down to the scientific revolution, and had a similarly deep impact in India and much of Asia. Lost Enlightenment chronicles this forgotten age of achievement, seeks to explain its rise, and explores the competing theories about the cause of its eventual demise. Informed by the latest scholarship yet written in a lively and accessible style, this is a book that will surprise general readers and specialists alike.
This is the story of remarkable people, astonishing achievements and eventful lives, of a culture that lay the foundations for the modern world - a rich, exciting and largely forgotten history In this sweeping and richly illustrated history, S. Frederick Starr tells the fascinating but largely unknown story of Central Asia's medieval enlightenment through the eventful lives and astonishing accomplishments of its greatest minds and remarkable figures who built a bridge to the modern world. Lost Enlightenment recounts how, between 800 and 1200, Central Asia led the world in trade and economic development, the size and sophistication of its cities, the refinement of its arts and, above all, in the advancement of knowledge in many fields. It chronicles this forgotten age of achievement, seeks to explain its rise, and explores the competing theories about the cause of its eventual demise. Informed by the latest scholarship, yet written in a lively and accessible style, this is a book that will surprise general readers and specialists alike.
A combined and fully revised edition of Jeff Foster's first two books Life Without a Centre and Beyond Awakening. What if life is infinitely simpler than you ever imagined? We spend our lives seeking wealth, success, love, fulfilment, and even "spiritual enlightenment" in the future. Yet right at the heart of life there is an intimacy, a simplicity, a wholeness that is totally beyond words—and which cannot be reached through any kind of effort. In our attempts to change, to improve ourselves, or become "enlightened," we end up ignoring this wordless intimacy which is our birthright and our true home. The Wonder of Being points to the eternal freedom which exists beyond the seeker and the sought, and shows us the hidden assumptions that underlie our seeking activities. With great humour, compassion and clarity, Jeff Foster reminds us of something we have always known—that life, as it is, is a miracle... and beyond our thoughts, we are already free.
Sumarah is a philosophy, a form of meditation, and a way of life originating from Java. It is a path of the heart, of no effort, of no form - a path of surrender. Sumarah guides the practitioner towards deep relaxation of body, feeling, and mind. This is the first step in the process of personal transformation and awakening the inner teacher. In her book, Laura Romano draws on her own extensive personal experience - nourished by the meditation practice that she was introduced to and trained in from her first years in Java - in describing her frequent meetings with the many Javanese masters then still alive. To better illustrate the principles of the Sumarah tradition, she relates stories from her own journey, vividly recreating the relaxed and warm atmosphere of meditation meetings in the homes of various meditation teachers.
Beneath the orthodox religions that lay claim to the soul of Western man runs an esoteric current that has preserved the lore and hermetic traditions of our ancestors. Walkers Between the Worlds explores the ancient earth wisdom of the shaman, and the Gnostic and Egyptian mysteries of the East. Practical exercises drawn from these traditions are included.
This book tackles an obvious yet profound problem of modern political life: the disorientation of intellectuals and activists on the left. As the study of political history and theory has been usurped by cultural criticism, a confusion over the origins
Canadian Social Welfare through the Life of Jane B. Wisdom, 1884-1975
Author: Suzanne Morton
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
Category: Social Science
One of Canada’s first social workers, Jane B. Wisdom had an active career in social welfare that spanned almost the first half of the twentieth century. Competent, thoughtful, and trusted, she had a knack for being in important places at pivotal moments. Wisdom’s transnational career took her from Saint John to Montreal, New York City, Halifax, and Glace Bay, as well as into almost every field of social work. Her story offers a remarkable opportunity to uncover what life was like for front-line social workers in the profession’s early years. In Wisdom, Justice, and Charity, historian Suzanne Morton uses Wisdom’s professional life to explore how the welfare state was built from the ground up by thousands of pragmatic and action-oriented social workers. Wisdom’s career illustrates the impact of professionalization, gender, and changing notions of the state – not just on those in the emergent profession of social work but also on those in need. Her life and career stand as a potent allegory for the limits and possibilities of individual action.