I think, when it was first presented to me there were a couple basic principles and goals or aims had to do with interfaith activities and then education. And the interfaith activities were really reflective as I begin to understand it of an attempt to live out the faith out in the world. And I was particularly impressed by the title of the video that was done a couple of years ago “Love is a Verb”. Because it seemed to me that very much reflected the Movement and the desire to not just say the right things about the religion but also to live and do the right things. And those two points of focusing on how you live your faith and the emphasis on education resonated with me very much in my background.
Those two elements that were personal of me that then I saw within Hizmet Movement and the values that Gulen put into the people who followed him. So even though our religious differences and how we think about God and his Messengers is different, yet those human values I felt a deep connection and value in the Movement. And that was something I can identify with.
If you begin to live out the faith and you do that in legitimate ways to show concern for other people, you are bound to receive resistance from the world around you. That can be political, it can be from business interest, it can be from all kinds of different directions, because those are not shared values with the institutions and the philosophies of the world around us. So I kind of understand, I think, a little bit of why Fethullah Gulen would come and the Movement would come under the criticism it does. If you are consistent with your values of care for other people, once again that term “Love is a Verb”. It’s living out the faith. If you are consistent with your values and you are consistent with love and care for other people and education, you’re going to come into conflict with forces of the world around us. It’s just a natural consequence of living out our faith.
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