Board of Directors, Advisory Board Members and staff of Turquoise Harmony Institute and honorable participants of Ubuntu Lecture and Peace and Dialog Awards, ladies and gentlemen.
All human beings are created equaly by God. The most basic tenets of all religious beliefs are values bestowed upon us by God: such as equality, freedom, dignity, peace and justice.
Although they are most precious to humanity, we have also witnessed a disregard for these values by many throughout our history.
Yet, in such times, we also see people-such as those present in this room-who uphold these values above all and offer hope to our humanity… hope that comes alive when such people engage in positive action… hope that helps us overcome oppression, violence, poverty and diseases that plaque our world.
Such people have the courage to reject discriminations, overcome their adverse environments and through their actions, serve as a role model for thousands of people around the world.
They are often tested by external circumstances, yet they remain in steadfast in their spirit and remain committed to the greater good.
It is people like all of you who promote shared values and mutual respect among fellow human beings and thereby help elevate our society.
I salute your efforts to serving humanity through education, dialogue, tolerance, humanitarian assistance and social justice-and am humbled that you have permitted me to share my thoughts with all of you.
I pray that God the Merciful continue to guide you as you help sow the seeds of love and respect in our world and make it more livable for all.
M. Fethullah Gülen