This was consensus among speakers at an international conference on “Ideal human and ideal society in the thoughts of M Fethullah Gulen,” arranged at the Punjab University Law College Auditorium on Wednesday.
Fethullah Gulen is a key figure in Turkey and abroad. He is known as the founder of the Hizmet movement.
Senior faculty members and researchers from universities of Pakistan, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia, Egypt, Turkey, Northern Ireland and USA spoke at the conference and presented their papers.
They included Linkages Director (External) Dr Maria Maldonado, Member of Turkish Parliament Dr Muhammad Cetin, Turkey’s Kaynak Holdings Chairman Nasi Tosun, The Fountain magazine editor Hakan Yesilova, Rumi Forum Pakistan Chairman Haron Koken, Lahore chapter Director Mesut Kacamz and Gallop Survey of Pakistan Chairman Dr Ijaz Shafi Gillani.
PU Acting Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Liaquat Ali said in his inaugural address that all-out efforts had been made for the successful organisation of the conference and it was hoped that the moot would achieve its goals.
Presiding over the first session of the conference, Islamia University Bahawalpur Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Mukhtar said he was personally impressed by the thoughts of Fethullah Gulen whose clear message was globalisation.
“We should try to find out how we can transform our society into an ideal one in the light of Gulen’s thoughts,” he added.
Other speakers said Fethullah Gulen respected all religions and stressed in his teachings that a state that was neutral to religion was an ideal state. They said that Hizmet movement, which started in the late 1960’s, was a social movement and did not challenge or represent any government.
They said Hizmat Movement acted upon core Islamic principles and Gulen emphasised character building of individuals by making them part of the collective. The movement’s democratic component was collective decision making and implementing Islam’s Shoora principle. Fethullah Gulen believed in freedom of faith for all and provision of human rights to all.
In his message for the conference, Mr Gulen said raising a generation of ideal humans was not only a civic duty we had to shoulder; it was an indispensable one-way road for those of us who hold high hopes for the common future of humanity.
In the first session, Prof Dr Abida Ejaz, Dr Ihsan Yilmaz, Dr Alper Dede and Dr Johnston McMaster presented their research papers on different topics covering the theme of “Secularism, Democracy and Faith-based Activism”.
In the second session that was chaired by University of Management and Technology Rector Dr Hasan Sohaib Murad, Dr Maria Isabel Maldonado, Dr Aalia Sohail Khan, Ijaz Shafi Gillani, Dr Seema Arif and Dr Salih Yucel presented research papers on topics covering the theme of “Gulen’s philosophy on life, meaning and language.”
In the third session, chaired by University of Education Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Faizul Hasan, Dr Radhi al-Mabuk, Dr Ali Unsal, Dr Hafeezur Rehman, Dr Raazia Hassan Naqvi and Ibrar Mohmand, Dr Nabi Bux Jumani and Abdul Jabbar Bhatti presented research papers on topics covering the title of “Hizmet perspectives on education”.
Isra University Hyderabad Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Asadullah Qazi presided over the concluding session in which Dr Abdul Basit Mujahid, Dr Umbreen Javed, Muhammad Nawab and Muhammad Osman and Dr Bassem K Khafagy presented papers on “Case studies on Hizmet”.