Within the movement of history we have been carried to the threshold of a new age open to the manifestations of Divine favour. Despite (or in parallel with) the advances in science and technology, the last two or three centuries have witnessed, across the world, a break with traditional values and, in the name of renewal, attachment to different values and speculative fantasies. However, it is our hope, strengthened by promising developments all over the world, that the next century will be the age of belief and moral values, an age that will witness a renaissance' and revival for the believers throughout the world.
Among wavering crowds, lacking in sound thinking and reasoning, a new kind of man will appear, who relies equally on reason and experience, and who gives as much importance to conscience and inspiration as he does to reason and experience. He is a man who unfailingly pursues the perfect in everything, and is able to establish the balance between this world and the next and wed the heart with the intellect.
The coming to be of a man as new as this will not be easy. Every birth is painful, but this blessed birth will certainly take place and the world will have a new, brilliant generation. Just as rain does pour out of long gathering clouds, and water does well up from the depths of earth, so too will the 'flowers' of this new generation sooner or later appear among us.
The new man is a person of integrity who, free from external influences, can manage independently of others. No worldly force can hold him in captivity, no fashionableisms cause him to deviate from his path. Truly independent of any worldly power, he thinks freely and acts freely, and his freedom is in proportion to his servant- hood to God. Rather than imitating others in passing fancies, he relies on his original dynamics, rooted in the depths of history, and tries to equip his faculties of judgement with values authentically his own.
He is one who thinks, investigates, and believes, and overflows with spiritual pleasures. While able to make the fullest use of modern facilities, he does not neglect his traditional and spiritual values in building his own world.
If changes and reforms are linked to and dependent on unchanging universal values, they may be eagerly welcomed. Otherwise, there will be a chaos of speculative fantasies appealing only on account of novelty and modernity. Standing on the firm ground of those unchanging values, the new man always looks to the future to illuminate the darkness enveloping the world. He is truth-loving and trustworthy to the utmost degree and, in order to support the truth everywhere, he will be ready, whenever necessary, to leave his family and home. Having no attachment to worldly things, comforts and luxuries, he will use whatever he was endowed with by God for the benefit of humankind and sow the world with the seeds of a happy future. Then, seeking help from God and in never-ending hope of success from him, he will do his best to protect those seeds from harm, with the same care that a hen protects the eggs it is incubating. He will dedicate his whole life to this way of truth.
In order to stay in touch and communicate with the minds, hearts and feelings of people, the new man will make use of mass media: and try to establish in the world, a new power balance on the foundations of justice, love, respect and equality between human beings. He will put might under the command of right and never discriminate on grounds of colour or race.
The new man will unite in his character profound spirituality, wide knowledge, sound thinking, a scientific temperament, and wise activism. Never content with what he already knows, he will continuously increase in knowledge -knowledge of the self, knowledge of nature, and knowledge of God.
Equipped with good morals and virtues which make a man truly human, the new man is an altruist, who embraces all humanity with his love and is ever ready to sacrifice himself for the good of others. As he shapes himself in the mould of universal virtues, he strives at the same time to illuminate the way of others. He always defends and supports what is good, and commends it to others, while he tries to challenge, combat and eradicate all evils.
The new man believes, and is aware, that the One who has given him existence in this world, has done this so that he should know Him and worship Him. Without discriminating between the book of the universe (which is the place of the manifestation of Divine Names and therefore full of signs to Him and a 'stairway' leading to Him) and the Divine Scripture (which is the translation of the book of the universe), the new man sees religion and science as two kinds of manifestations of the same truth.
The new man is never reactionary. He does not go after events, rather being the motor of history, he initiates and shapes events, and with due perception of his age and the conditions surrounding him and in devotion to his essential values and utmost reliance on God, he is in a state of continuous self-renewal.
The new man is a conqueror and discoverer: conqueror of himself, conqueror of thoughts and conqueror of hearts, and discoverer of what is all unknown in the universe. He regards that time as wasted when he is not taking a new step into the depths of the self and the universe. As he removes, through his faith and knowledge, the veils that cover the face of reality, he feels more eager to advance further with the messages and answers he receives from the heavens, the earth and seas, he continues on his journey which goes on until he returns unto his Creator.
The New Man
- By M. Fethullah Gulen
- Category: Issue 11 (July - September 1995)
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