|Pages/Publication Date:||231 / 2008|
Few books in history have been as poorly understood as the Qur'an. Sent down in a series of revelations to the Prophet Muhammad, the Qur'an is the unmediated word of Allah, a ritual, political, and legal authority, an ethical and spiritual guide, and a literary masterpiece. The Qur'an is Islam, stresses Bruce Lawrence, and here he describes the origins of the faith and assesses its tremendous influence on today's societies and politics. Above all, Lawrence emphasizes that the Qur'an is a sacred book of signs that has no single message; it demands interpretation and can be properly understood only through its history.