Ameen al-Rihani: Eastern and Western Figures
Only a man of the caliber and the stature of Ameen al-Rihani, who commands such international respect and fame and who feels comfortable and at home in the company of great men like himself, can write a book like this. He was a self-made man, who walked in the company of geniuses, prophets, kings, and presidents, and who dined in palaces while still being able to enjoy a piece of dry bread and some olives with peasants and farmers. He climbed the Empire State Building, walked on the hot sands of Arabia, and drank from the cold and natural water gushing from the fountains near the majestic cedars of Lebanon. Al-Rihani was greater than titles, larger than life, and superior to positions and ranks. The characters in this book are select men and women who measure up to al-Rihani’s own standards of integrity, honor, and honesty, and who served their nations as well as humanity selflessly and immensely, and contributed to the advancement of man’s life here and in the hereafter. They served as beacons and guiding lights for their fellow citizens and the citizens of the world. Their lives were open books to be studied, and their deeds were examples to be emulated in our attempt to bring peace and prosperity to humankind across the universe. In Ameen’s words, these are the “diggers” on both sides of the mountain of separation and division, of selfishness, greed, and oppression, who will dig up the tunnel of light and meet each other half-way on the road leading to unity, harmony, and excellence. They are the fountains of hope for all seekers of freedom, brotherhood, and peace.