Wisdom of the Idiots by Idries Shah

‘So significant that it opens up a new world of understanding.’

The Inquirer

Available worldwide in all formats – including ebook and audio – on Amazon. In the USA go to Amazon.com, in the UK Amazon.co.uk, in India Amazon.in. You can also order Wisdom of the Idiots in paperback and hardback from your local bookstore — and in the UK and USA we also recommend bookshop.org; and in Australia and New Zealand Booktopia. ISF also publishes an edition in Spanish, Dari, Farsi.

Because what narrow thinkers imagine to be ‘wisdom’ is often seen by the Sufis to be folly compared with deeper knowledge, the Sufis sometimes refer to themselves as ‘the Idiots’.

Wisdom of the Idiots is a collection of lively and intriguing stories, narratives, and anecdotes, which illustrate the experiential philosophy used in Sufi teaching.

These ancient fables from the Middle East and Central Asia, many going back several hundred years, exemplify the non-linear and intuitive thinking styles of the masters of Sufism. This type of wisdom, which transcends the limits of conventional logic, is also equated with ‘idiots’ because it penetrates to a depth that is inaccessible to the merely intelligent or academically knowledgeable.

Shah’s stories contain several levels of meaning and work like psychological mirrors in which readers may see themselves and Reality reflected, and come to understand these better.

Wisdom of the Idiots was awarded many prizes, including two gold medals, one for ‘Best Book’ in conjunction with UNESCO’s World Book Year.

‘A stimulation of that part of the mind which is still unpolluted.’

Kent Evening Post

‘The book is full of humour, too, not belly laughs but slow, inner smiles.’

Sunderland Echo

‘A stunningly lucid interpretation for the Western reader of profound and ancient Eastern thinking.’

Oldham Evening Chronicle

‘Hilarious… whisking away the rug from under our favourite convictions and thinking habits... the effect is exhilarating.’