Salaam, one and all! We welcome you with heart-felt prayers for God's peace and mercy and blessings.

This blog is maintained for the readers of In the Light of a Blessed Tree, as well as for all those interested in the wider work of Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti: including the Islamic Institute for Spiritual Formation (IISF, Toronto), which he serves as the Director and Principal Teacher, the Studies in Islam program at Renison University College (University of Waterloo), where he serves as an Associate Professor, and the American Islamic College (Chicago), where he served as the Director of Islamic Studies (2013-2015).

Please stay tuned for new blog entries and announcements for new programs in Toronto and beyond!

Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti Biography

Dr. Timothy J. Gianotti is an asscoiate professor of Arabic & Islamic Studies at Renison University College, University of Waterloo, Canada.  Prior to joining the faculty at Renison, he served as the Director of Islamic Studies at the American Islamic College (AIC) in Chicago, where he oversaw the students and faculty in AIC's three degree programs (BA, MA, and MDIS - Master of Divinity in Islamic Studies), in addition to teaching at all levels and managing the accreditation portfolio as the chief academic officer.  He is also the Founder, Director, and Principal Teacher of the Islamic Institute for Spiritual Formation (IISF) in Toronto. 
Holding a B.A. (1988) from the University of Notre Dame (Great Books, Classics), his M.A. (1990) from the University of Toronto (Islamic Intellectual History, Arabic language & literature), and his Ph.D. (1998) also from the University of Toronto (classical Islamic Philosophy & Theology), his undergraduate and graduate studies included several periods of residence in the West Bank and Jordan, where he studied literary Arabic, Islamic History, the traditional Islamic religious sciences, and various topics in Christian and Jewish thought.
His scholarly research and writing reflect a fascination with the soul, especially as understood by the classical Islamic philosophical, theological, and spiritual traditions. Because this study of the soul naturally leads to the larger “worlds” of the state, the cosmos, and, ultimately, the Hereafter, the arenas of ethics, moral theology, spiritual formation, politics, and eschatology all factor into his preoccupation with human nature.  More generally, Dr. Gianotti's teaching and interests span the fields of Islamic spirituality, Islamic theology, Islamic ethics and political thought, medieval Islamic and Jewish philosophy, mysticism within the Abrahamic traditions, Qur'anic interpretation, and the language and imagery of war within Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
He is the author of Al-Ghazali’s Unspeakable Doctrine of the Soul (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 2001) and In the Light of a Blessed Tree: Illuminations of Islamic Belief, Practice, and History (Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock Publishers, 2011), in addition to an array of articles, book chapters, and theological essays. He is also at work on a new scholarly book with the working title, Walking the Way of the Afterlife: al-Ghazālī on the Jurisprudence of the Heart (fiqh al-qalb). Based largely on al-Ghazālī’s compendium, Reviving Religious Knowledge, this new project explores the inner processes of moral education and character formation within a traditional Islamic framework.

Also a former York-Noor Chair of Islamic Studies, he has served on the Religious Studies faculties of York University (Toronto), the University of Virginia, the University of Oregon, and Penn State University.


Maria said...

The best professor I have ever gotten! I miss our Arabic class! You're a fantastic professor, MashAllah! May Allah always keep you happy! Ameen.

Anonymous said...

Also one of my favorite educators. Thank you so much for your time and sharing your knowledge. Sarah Canale, University of Oregon