March 9, 2013

What kind of a change does Fethullah Gulen offer?

Fethullah Gülen offers his followers a Turkish renaissance. The caveat for this renaissance, however, is that it can only happen in a society, which has achieved peace and tranquility. Most people are attracted to the idea of civil law through consensus rather than imposing; ethics and morality based on acceptance, not forcing; and an understanding of solidarity, not based on favor but working hard, producing, and sharing; and the suggestion on top everything that the individual is responsible for the entire society as well as for himself. What is offered is not “a nation of the state,” but the idea of an [social] order and a nation based on the citizens’ partnership. (1)

According to Gülen, the chaos and turmoil has spread on earth because of the lack of morality. High quality education is needed for this reason: to eradicate the seeds of discord spreading in societies and to make the climate of love dominant again; to teach goodness, beauty, and truth, in addition to knowledge. What is needed are “men of ideal.”

Gülen then names the people around him with this title [men of ideal] and adds:
“We have been searching for the ways to form this ideal society [awaited for centuries] and we have been resorting to every possible avenue. We have been struggling desperately in order to realize it. Let us see how long more we will struggle?” (2)
The message and the work of Fethullah Gülen [and the Gülen movement] should be assessed within this framework. And, what is the secret of his success?

The answers may be found in interviews with him, in his writings as well as books and articles by researchers, which are results of sociological and other scientific analyses. This website tries to offer excerpts from such analyses.

(1) Ergil, Doğu. 2012. Fethullah Gülen and The Gülen Movement in 100 Questions. New York: Blue Dome Press. Page 18.
(2) ibid. Pages 186-187

Published on, 05 March 2013, Tuesday