Book Review: Journey to the Sacred – Guidebook to Historical Sites in the Hijaz
Today I received Deen Intensive‘s Journey to the Sacred – Guidebook to Historical Sites in the Hijaz. Ever since the Saudi government took over the Hijaz there has been a systematic effort to eradicate traces of our history in the fear that people were performing “innovations”. As a result some of the great sites where people remembered the Prophet (SAWS) and his companions are slowly fading away.
Deen Intensive’s book aims to reignite the passion our forefathers had for the places where our Prophet (SAWS) and his companions walked and lived. It is as far as I am aware the only book that acts as a catalogue for historical sites in the Hijaz. The book’s typesetting and design is by Ian Abdel Lateef Whiteman, who as always does a masterful piece of work. The book is relatively short, and surprisingly in paperback form. I was expecting it to be in hardback but I suppose as Hajj season approaches, and the blessed pilgrims are making their preparations, it makes it easier for them to carry this with them if they choose to do so.
Not currently available in the United Kingdom, it can be ordered from Rumi Bookstore. Of course as they’re based in the States you will end up paying a little extra if you are overseas. If you wait for it to be released in your locality it should be much cheaper, but as I was waiting for this for a very a long time I was too impatient to wait.
This is recommended for anyone who has an interest in Islamic history and those who have the initiative to go and seek out the less visited parts of Makkah, Medina and the surrounding areas. It also means you will have to put up with taxi drivers shrieking ‘shirk!’ at you if you want to visit some of these places. (But then again there’s always the unlicensed Pakistani driver who will be more than happy to be obliged). 😉
And to Him is our return.