Scattered Pictures: Reflections Of An American Muslim
Imam Zaid Shakir is a Muslim American scholar, public speaker, and author who is a co-founder with Hamza Yusuf and Hatem Bazian, chairman of the board, and a senior faculty member of Zaytuna College in Berkeley, California. He teaches courses on Arabic, law, history, and Islamic spirituality.
He is co-founder and chairman of United For Change since 2009. This effort through modern discourse is to create awareness of the broadest and most consuming topics within the Muslim and interfaith community. The aim is to leverage the diversity through cooperation and goodwill and address the obstacles that have proven to be divisive.
The Chronicle of Higher Education stated, “Embodying an American story if ever there was one including proverbial bootstraps, military service, political activism, and deep religious commitment Zaid Shakir’s message of social justice in the face of poverty and racism he has known first-hand makes him endlessly and, it often seems, effortlessly relevant. He is as approachable a man as I’ve ever met.” He is one of the signatories of A Common Word Between Us and You, an open letter by Islamic scholars to Christian leaders, calling for peace and understanding.
“This collection of Zaid Shakir’s essays is long overdue. For some years now he has brought a clarity of mind and feeling to substantive issues challenging Muslims today. It is good to see some of his fire-fly, lightning bolt thinking captured in words and put between covers.”
- Michael Wolfe, author of The Hadj: An American’s Pilgrimage to Mecca
“Imam Zaid Shakir is one of the towering principle voices not only in contemporary Islam, but in American society.”
- Dr. Cornel West, author of Democracy Matters
“On the issue of civilization, one has to remember that Islamic Civilization is a very important episode in our history of mankind, and someone like Imam Zaid Shakir is a student of it and knows the literature and what it has achieved. And many of the big, loud-mouthed voices in modern politics pretend to speak for Islam and don’t speak for that civilization at all. They have lost all contact with the philosophers and the poets.
- British political philosopher Dr. Roger Scruton, author of “Culture Counts: Faith and Feeling in a World Besieged.”
The New York Times describes Imam Zaid Shakir as a leading intellectual light, a gifted scholar, author and lecturer, is fast becoming one of the most influential voices for Islam in the West, as well as a compelling force for the improvement of race relations in America.
“Imam Zaid Shakir has compiled in this volume a number of his articles which address some of the burning issues that challenge all religious men and women in the United States of America and beyond. What is remarkable about this text is its message of hope. Deeply rooted in the Western and Islamic traditions, and bent on reconciling and profiting from both of them, Imam Shakir has written a text that could serve as a useful model for younger Muslims coming from a similar background. His reflections in this text have made it clear to me that the person who wrote this book is a man whose mental furniture has been properly re-arranged by his encounter with the Qur’an and the legacy of Prophet Muhammad. Muslims and non-Muslims will find much inspiration from the messages that are beautifully packaged for those who think seriously and critically.”
- Sulayman S. Nyang, Ph.D., Howard University
“The clarity with which Imam Shakir delves into issues such as the true nature of jihad and the relationship between Islam and the African American struggle leaves the reader with new insights and imparts him or her a satisfying resolution to many unspoken issues and hardened realizations common to man Muslims today.”
- Yahiya Emerick, author of Muhammad (Critical Lives series
“Imam Zaid Shakir is one of the brilliant thinkers of our time. His writings prove to be a source of clarity in a time of confusion for both Muslims and non-Muslims alike. It is quite rare to find an individual who is well versed in both the Islamic and Western traditions. In Scattered Pictures, he has compiled some of his truly thought-provoking essays from the past few years. He has dealt with both traditional issues, such as the true meaning of Jihad to the more contemporary issues, and challenges faced by American Muslims after September 11th. This book will give you a glimpse into Islam, which is rarely seen in today’s world. I highly recommend this book.”- Tariq Subhani, PA
“A friend of mine gave me your book “Scattered Pictures”. On reading the book I was impressed by the volume of effort you have undertaken in searching the True Path. More than that I consider Allah to be most Gracious in granting you the opportunity to seek Light. Those born in Muslim families are fortunate to have Eiman the easy way. But luckier are those who are born of non-Muslim parents yet are blessed to revert to Islam.
I also admire the amount of effort you took in learning Arabic and studying the classic literature of Islam. The study and serious bent of mind which I guess you have, has given you the ability to view things in such a balanced manner.” - Tariq Mahmood, University of Peshawar, Pakistan
Remarkable, Insightful, Intellectually stimulating and uplifting, Policy-making Approach to Literary Brilliance! This book not only covers the whole life of An American African Muslim living in America but also provides the solutions to the ills faced by all western thinking Muslim students of thought and non muslims alike. Nothing makes better reading!
-Yasmin, A reviewer, USA
A brilliant examination of current issues, Scattered Pictures, Reflections of an American Muslim is a collection of fourteen essays powerful in their essence and eloquence, including ‘Jihad is Not Perpetual Warfare’ and ‘We Are All Collateral Damage.’ Each essay is a literary work of utmost importance that addresses critical and controversial issues. Imam Zaid Shakir, a former professor and member of the United States Air Force, as well as a leading intellectual, analyzes and reconciles the convergence of Islam and the West. Written in a direct and candid style, each page delivers vivid, resonating detail and effective information. Imam Shakir provides prescriptive guidance for the betterment of the human community and his book will undoubtedly be difficult for readers to disregard. His messages are relevant to anyone interested in the conscious culmination of a healthy and harmonious understanding of humanity within and across global boundaries.
- Dr. Noreen Kassem, Canada.
The best anthology of Muslim life in America and what Islam says on key issues. Imam Zaid Shakir is among the greatest Western thinkers. Reading Scattered Pictures gave me a clear picture of the life and journey of a Muslim. It also gave me insight on many controversial and important issues in Islam. The author has a political/ international relations background as well as knowledge of Islam. What better credentials to write about the issues that affect each of us today. With fundamentalists, terrorism, war and misinformation we need writers like this one to open the doors to a better future.
-Sana Khan, Canada.
Great Book! I think that Brother Zaid Shakir is a great speaker and the book has a lot of influence on the young generation like me. He is a great outspoken down to earth person. I really think that the youth should really get this book. It’s great.
In his book Scattered Pictures: Reflections of An American Muslim, Imam Zaid Shakir confronts a myriad of provocative issues facing contemporary Muslims. His elegant style in writing his essays convey the insight and clarity sought by Muslims confused on how to define Jihad, or how to define Human Rights within the Islamic tradition. In short, this is a great book that provides the inspiration for religious-minded individuals in America and abroad.
Syed Huda, USA.
Publisher: Zaytuna Institute
Author: Imam Zaid Shakir
Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches