The Gülen Movement provides educational opportunities to youth, who otherwise could not attend higher educational institutions. What inspires them to eventually volunteer as educators themselves throughout the world?

Fethullah Gülen

Since they were raised within the movement and since they were educated by the movement members extending their hands to them, many youth internalized Fethullah Gülen’s teachings regarding the human, society, and “right conduct” and shared his ideals. For the sake of their beliefs and nation, by pushing far beyond the borders of time and space, they have become volunteers, in order to share with others what they have learned. They have learned that, in order to do something for one’s nation, country, or ideals, voluntarism does not require having great labels or positions. According to Fethullah Gülen, those who are not seriously involved with faith and the hereafter cannot understand these motives, but they can be excused for not understanding.

These people, without knowing anyone, went to strange countries. They have gone to Malaysia and Indonesia, they have gone to countries the names of which you are unaware of. They went to countries like that in Africa. They have said, “In our religion, migration is a very important factor. Our ancestors took advantage of this dynamic as well.” They went with this thought. One went, another took him as a role model, learned a lesson, he/she also went. Another and another went. But wherever they went, they were able to find only one address or perhaps none at all. At different occasions, I had presented this. One of our friends, who went to Mexico, gave me a call. “I searched through the telephone book,” he said, “I did not come across one Muslim name so that I could I ask him what I could do here.” On the phone I cried sobbing, I could not speak a word, and I dropped the phone. And there are hundreds of people who went like that. I did not know the name Tuva. I did not know its place, either. If you say today, mark its place on the map, I couldn’t. We know the Mongolians a little, we know Mongolia too. We knew the place of the Orhun Monuments, too, but I could not mark its place either.

Those people, who left their homes and went, had gone in the name of the Turkish nation, in the name of Turkish state. They went like an exile. They went in order to reinforce the state they left behind. They went in order to establish lobbies in four corners of the world to favor, support and lift up the Turkish state. They went in order to raise people with your culture. Instead of some artificial lobbies that spend millions of dollars, they went to raise some people who would work voluntarily. They could not receive salaries. When I heard they could not receive it, my eyes were filled with tears, I cried here. They had homes and lives in Turkey. They had left; leaving everything behind, even their brides with their bridal gowns. They were so sacrificial that as you see they did not have any expectation in terms of worldly reward. If they had any expectations, they would have searched for an opportunity to jump into and sat at the sources of corruption. But they didn’t. 80 percent of this nation today says “yes” to this undertaking. If they did not say yes, how could this amount of good deed have been being accomplished?

It is understood from this explanation that the people who come together with the responsibility of citizenship derived lessons in terms of life, society, and humanity. As a result of these lessons, they took advantage of the opportunities that presented themselves to do service. They were convinced that what they do increases the quality of life of others, and they were not stingy in doing everything within their power to help. They convinced Christians, Jews, Buddhists, and others in far away countries that the reason of that they were there was only to develop a common culture of living and contribute to world peace. When they saw that others believed in them and accepted them as one of themselves, they worked with extra diligence and passion. Their passion and their actions have generated an international circle of volunteers involved in the movement. The children that they raised and the youth that they educated and helped expanded that circle and solidified and strengthened it. This resulted in the movement taking roots in many countries.

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