A senior Arab diplomat writes to his sons about freedom, faith, violence, culture and society, the challenges of the modern world and his fear of radicalisation. A clear call for critical thinking, this takes up the challenges facing modern Muslims around the world, especially the young. At the heart of this humane and compassionate set of letters is the author’s concern for his sons in an age when moderate voices can be drowned out by vociferous – and belligerent – claimants of authenticity and legitimacy. Ghobash’s hope is to assist his sons to become “thinking, ethically directed young Muslim[s]” by helping them cut through the noise and strife to reach their own reasoned judgements. “There is much more gray in between the black and white that the ulema and other scholars present us. And the gray is where you develop intellectually and morally. The gray area of uncertainty and doubt as to what is right and what is wrong is where you discover your own right to think for yourself and to participate in the construction of our ethical world in practice. ” Ghobash, whose own father was assassinated in 1977, has produced a book that is as moving as it is powerful, direct and clear.
“I want you to have some idea of the questions you will face, and some of the answers that are out there. I do not want you to learn the most important lessons in life from people who do not love you as I love you… If you think that I worry too much about you, know that I worry only about you.”