Seeker After Truth has in it twelve traditional tales – ‘teaching stories’ – as beguiling as our familiar fairy tales, and I believe until now unknown in the West… tales of Sufi Ancients, chosen to illustrate problems of now as much as of then… exchanges from the supper-table talk of a modern Sufi teacher and his pupils… difficulties of contemporary Sufi teaching in the West… samples from a letter bag that must be unique in our time, set out in question-and-answer form… anecdotes and narratives designed to show Sufi thought in action… results of current sociological and psychological research that throw light on defects in our thinking. This book which describes itself as a handbook, is food for many different kinds of stud – a book unlike anything our own society has produced until recently, in its richness, its unexpectedness, its capacity to shock us into seeing ourselves as others see us, both personally and as a society.
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I have just spent a wonderful few minutes re-reading the best book review of the year in my opinion. It's by Piers Brendon in September's issue of @Lit_Review. Beautifully captioned as 'Jack the Lad', Brendon takes Fredrik Logevall's JFK: Vol.I apart! It's a laugh a minute. Ouch!
'Perhaps the real modern polymaths are the hidden ones who do not themselves grab the limelight but have the expertise to bring together different fields of knowledge: librarians, teachers, editors of literary journals…'
Jan Morris, who died last week, was a much-loved contributor to our pages. In 2017, she wrote a characteristically witty article about the different winds, their various personalities and how they had touched her life: https://literaryreview.co.uk/let-it-blow.