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The Muslim-Turkish Identity

by Fethullah Gülen on . Posted in Gülen's Thoughts

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The factor of Islam definitely should be included. But it shouldn't be a Turkish world that's fighting with America and Europe. In line with contemporary realities, it should take Western thought, evaluate it, and respect that which affirms its own spirit and spiritual roots. The Turkish world should be very different, broader, and able to help maintain world peace.

Does the "European Muslim" identity indicated in the Tanzimat edict describe us? Can we say that the Turkish-Muslim identity will be European in the future?

If both Europe and Turkey could come to a mutually acceptable agreement, the future could be promising. But this demands intelligent people with one eye on the larger world and one eye on their own world. It demands evolved people who can observe both worlds, "architects" who can build a brand new world.

More specifically, according to my way of thought, the West and the East each represents an aspect of humanity. The West represents the mind and activism, while the East the heart and spirit. So, giving up their centuries-old clashes, these two worlds should come together for a happier, more peaceful life. July 20-29, 1997