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Fethullah Gülen and the Pope

by fgulen.com on . Posted in Meeting with the Pope John Paul II

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Fethullah Gülen, a distinguished religious scholar, met with the Pope and thereby realized a top-level meeting in his search for dialogue and mutual respect. He started this search by meeting with representatives of the Turkish Orthodox and Jewish communities at a time when Islam was being presented [in the West] as a threat, and Huntington's clash of civilizations theory was being widely discussed. Gülen's visit to the Vatican is of historic significance.

The existence of Fethullah Gülen's group is an opportunity for Turkey to end its internal polarization, secularize fundamental religious questions, and open our country to the outer world. Some of the worries expressed concerning this group are groundless, and the rest are of a secondary nature and quite negligible. The essential points on which we all agree are those on which secularists and devout Muslims and sincere followers of other religions can come together. The use of Maoists, who actually have fascist tendencies, in the detestable attacks on this group shows that Fethullah Gülen and his group are on the right track.

Also, although the Jacobinist intellectuals are reluctant to see the truth, the schools opened by this group in many parts of the world are widening Turkey's horizons. They complain that these schools are under the control of a religious group. Why should anyone feel offended by that? Did not many Western countries extend their influences throughout the world through the missionary schools they opened in the previous century? Like me, did not many of the Turkish elite study in them [namely, the missionary schools]?

Fethullah Gülen, who met with the Pope - whom I do not like in moral terms but regard as a genius with respect to his political vision - and his distinguished group both activate the dialogue of religious people with others, [improve] their mutual love and respect, and open up broad perspectives for Turkey.

Many thanks to Fethullah Gülen and his distinguished group.