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Interview about Hizmet Movment at Maxwell School of Syracuse University

Tosca Bruno-Van Vijfeijken, Director of  Transnational NGO Initiative at Maxwell School of Syracuse University inteviewd Dr. Alp Aslandogan, President of the Alliance for Shared Values. This interview took place before Dr. Aslandogan’s lecture at Maxwell School on Hizmet Movement on September 22, 2015.

Mr. Gulen is trying to interpret the broad humanistic principles of the Qur’an for the modern world

Mr. Gulen reminds me of other important figures in the 20th and now early 21st century thinkers like Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. who also translate their religious traditions into an idiom that made sense to people who wanted to live peacefully and in harmony with their neighbors and their wider community.

PII Awards Law Enforcement in New Jersey

Peace Islands Institute director Ercan Tozan welcomed his guests and thanked everyone for their continued service to the community.

Aydan Meydan from Bosna Sema School won the “Inspiring Educator Award”!

The final competition of the Google Science Fair 2015 was held on the 21st of September in Mountain View (California), in the main headquarters of Google Corporation. 20 projects of young scientists from all around the world were presented at this prestigious competition. The finalists represented 10 countries. According to the number of projects, they […]

Hizmet really has expanded my understanding of what it means to be human.

Kenneth Hunter is the Principal of the Prosser Career Academy High School. He studied theology at Chicago Loyola University and taught world religions in high schools. He served as the chairperson of Illinois State Board of Education Language Arts Assessment Advisory Council (2002-2012). He is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Chicago.

Kenneth Hunter on Fethullah Gulen and Hizmet Movement

Kenneth Hunter is the Principal of the Prosser Career Academy High School. He studied theology at Chicago Loyola University and taught world religions in high schools. He served as the chairperson of Illinois State Board of Education Language Arts Assessment Advisory Council (2002-2012). He is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Chicago.

‘Hizmet is a social movement worldwide, that has a heart, and it’s always from the heart.’

Hizmet works around the world to overcome poverty, and they do it in a very unique way, I think. In some ways, in a model way that could be emulated by others.

‘I admire Fethullah Gulen’s vision of a world that’s different from the one we have’

I appreciate that he’s [Fethullah Gulen] an Islamic thinker who spoke out after the attacks on September 11, immediately. In our country, for years after September 11 people kept saying, ‘why aren’t the Muslims speaking up’, and he did speak up but he wasn’t broadcast. He didn’t have the microphone in his mouth, so to speak. And I always regretted that because he was one who did.

‘Hizmet Movement and Fethullah Gulen inspire uniting people around spiritual ideals’

“The Hizmet Movement and what Mr. Gulen is inspiring is uniting people around spiritual ideals. And I like the idea in your schools that you don’t really teach religion directly; you teach ethics. I think that’s another hopeful sign that out of this spiritual movement you’re bringing people together of different religious-cultural backgrounds, but they’re uniting around a certain ethical principle of love and care for humanity and service of humanity.

‘I like the vitality of the participation and the vitality of hospitality within the Hizmet Movement’

I believe, certainly in the United States as I’m experiencing the Hizmet Movement, I’m experiencing extraordinary hospitality, a great warmth of people, a genuine spirit, an openness, a compassionate style.

‘Fethullah Gulen is one of the leading Islamic thinkers in the world’

I think the Gulen, or Hizmet, Movement represents Islam by, on the one hand, maintaining a strong connection to and being rooted in the Islamic primary sources, such as the Qur’an and the Prophetic teachings, but, at the same time, not neglecting the world around it.

‘The work of Hizmet followers is really tackling the fundamentals of what is needed in the society’

Hizmet Movement is represented by the people that I’ve met. I see that there is a common purpose of like-minded people, in a very grass-root way, coming together, pushing for some ideals that they believe in, in the society, and I’m touched by the genuine motivation of the people that I’ve met. I am impressed with the sacrifice that individuals that believe in this contribute to this collective goal that they are trying to reach.

‘Hizmet Movement is teaching “habits of the heart”, without any request for payback’

The individuals in the Hizmet Movement present to Americans a life of Islam which is not frightening, which, where the values and concerns relate primarily to those of family and faith.

‘Hizmet is really something that demonstrates what’s universal about Islam.’

People who identify with the Hizmet Movement really have influenced the way I view it, in that I can see that it’s gonna have a lasting impact, because Hizmet is really something that demonstrates what’s universal about Islam, for the members of the Hizmet Movement, that there are universal values that you find in other faith traditions as well.

‘Mr. Gülen is to me simultaneously both incredibly modest and a visionary’

I’m inspired by the Hizmet Movement. I didn’t realize that until I came in contact with the Movement, but all of my life, education and service and dialog have been transformative to me. … This is the work that all of our hearts should be doing. So it remains a source of inspiration for me in my work.

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