Gülen on Turkish Foreign Relations and the Current World Situation
Fethullah Gülen has been interviewed by: Time, The Wall Street Journal, Le Monde, Eleftheropitia, Rilindia Demokritika, Albania, Rilindia Kosova newspapers; by journalists from newspapers in Ukraine and Bulgaria; and by NMO, Azerbaijani, Russian, and Kazakhstani television. As an example, we offer the answers to the Bulgarian journalist's questions.
What can be done to establish peace, especially in the Balkans?
Non-human creatures, like plants and animals, have common characteristics, whereas every individual person is like a species. Consequently, educators say we must deal with individuals separately and according to their own characters, natures, peculiarities, and abilities. Given this, we can say that men and women are the most difficult creatures to educate and control.
On the other hand, human beings are the most honorable and perfect of creatures. In addition to our individual characteristics, our own civilized and social nature forces us to live in harmony with other people and the natural environment. Consequently, we can bring our individual characteristics into line with our society's common values and mores, and conform to such social rules as human rights, justice, and mutual respect.
Nations and countries sharing a common geography, history, and even destiny can be considered a large society. I see the Balkans as such a society. Within each country and as a Balkan society, there are many things in common. By giving sufficient importance to neighborly, friendly, and even brotherly relationships on the basis of such a shared consciousness, they can establish compatibility, peace, and harmony. In an increasingly civilized world that is growing ever-smaller, every type of hostility should be discarded, and respect should be felt for every individual's and nation's freedom to exist. Non-interference in each other's internal affairs, assistance, and cooperation should be the norm. Existing and future problems should be solved diplomatically based on mutual goodwill. In addition, internal political matters and anxiety regarding elections should not be tied to international problems, as so often happens today.
Two of the most important factors here are education and religion. Religion's unifying and common aspects should replace all the old and new misunderstandings and conflicts that exploit religion and let it be used by others for their own purposes. Education will enlighten people's minds; religion will adorn their hearts with moral values, love of humanity and nature, respect for others, and observance of basic human rights. Artificial factors that separate people and nations should be removed, and aspects unbecoming to our human honor should be eliminated. Success in these areas will leave today's generation and our children a much more livable and happy world, one in which human relationships are more brotherly."""
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