William C. Chittick is professor of Religious Studies in the Department of Asian and Asian American Studies at the State University of New York, Stony Brook.
Born and raised in Connecticut, he finished his B.A. at the College of Wooster in 1966. He then studied Persian for a summer at the University of Texas and went to Iran. After receiving his Ph.D. in Persian literature at Tehran University in 1973, he taught comparative religion at a technical university in Tehran and continued to study Islamic thought at the Iranian Academy of Philosophy. He left Iran just before the revolution, served for a time as an editor with the Encyclopedia Iranica at Columbia University, and along with his wife, Sachiko Murata, joined the Religious Studies faculty at Stony Brook in 1983.
He has lectured around the world and published 30 books and numerous articles on Islamic intellectual history, concentrating on the interface between Sufism and philosophy. His books include The Sufi Path of Love (SUNY, 1983), The Sufi Path of Knowledge (SUNY, 1989), The Heart of Islamic Philosophy (Oxford, 2001), Ibn Arabi: Heir to the Prophets (Oneworld, 2005), Science of the Cosmos, Science of the Soul (Oneworld, 2007), and, with Sachiko Murata, The Vision of Islam (Paragon, 1994). For the past ten years, he has worked along with Murata and Tu Weiming investigating the uniquely Chinese form of Islamic philosophy that flourished among the Huiru, the “Muslim Confucians.” The latest result of their research is The Sage Learning of Liu Zhi: Islamic Thought in Confucian Terms (Harvard, 2009).