THE JOY OF RAMADAN IN OTTOMAN TIMES
The Ottoman Empire founded in the wake of the Seljuks ruled a wide expanse of territory for some 600 years and was one of the main shapers of global politics. For six centuries, it ruled over millions of members of the three faiths and of various schools and sects, with all their different languages, cultures, races, worldviews and beliefs. In addition, Ottoman rule was based not on oppression and compulsion, but on tolerance and social compromise. One of the main reasons for this behavior on the part of the Empire was the conception of justice and the ideal known as I’la al-Qalimatullah (Spreading the Word of Allah) adopted by the state’s rulers and administrators. One element of the culture and civilization of this great state, the protector of Muslims and standard-bearer of Islam down the centuries, that has survived down to the present is the joy of Ramadan.
Ramadan is a month of blessings and contains the Night of Power, described as “... better than a thousand months” in the Qur’an (Surat al-Qadr, 3)
, itself sent down as a guide for all mankind. Throughout this month, all the Muslims of the world fulfill their fasting obligations and give thanks to our Lord for all His blessings. In Surat al-Baqara, Allah tells us this about Ramadan:
The month of Ramadan is the one in which the Qur’an was sent down as guidance for mankind, with Clear Signs containing guidance and discrimination. Any of you who are resident for the month should fast it. But any of you who are ill or on a journey should fast a number of other days. Allah desires ease for you; He does not desire difficulty for you. You should complete the number of days and proclaim Allah’s greatness for the guidance He has given you so that hopefully you will be thankful. (Surat al-Baqara, 185)
The holy month of Ramadan is one of great joy and excitement in Turkey, just as it is in the rest of the Muslim world. Many customs and traditions inherited from the Ottomans still persist in Turkey today; these include the practice of stringing up lights between the minarets of mosques and spelling out messages, offering food for iftar and suhur to the poor and arranging large public banquets and social activities in which the public come together to reinforce the feelings of friendship among them.
Islamic Moral Values Formed the Basis of Ottoman Civilization
One of the small principalities that emerged following the collapse of the authority of the Seljuk Empire was that of the Ottomans. That Ottoman principality soon became one of the most highly developed and important states of the time. And it quickly grew into a world power harboring many nations with different faiths, languages, races and sects under its umbrella. The Ottoman nations represented an area where three continents came together: south-east Europe, North Africa and south-west Asia. At its greatest, it covered an area of 24 million square kilometers. South America covers approximately 21 million square kilometers, which gives an indication of the huge size of the Ottoman Empire at its peak. The Ottoman Empire was the last and longest-lived of the great civilizations founded in these lands over the course of history. The Empire maintained its borders at their fullest extent for 400 years out of its total 600, and even lost relatively little territory during the subsequent 200 years known as the period of Ottoman decline. The Ottomans maintained their power and influence right up until the dissolution in the beginning of the 20th century, and more than deserves the title of “world state.” Military strength alone is obviously insufficient to account for the long life of such a great state. It was mainly spiritual values, in other words the moral values of Islam, from which it drew its strength and which made it worthy of the name of world state.
The Ottoman Empire had no greater ambition than to be the standard-bearer of Islam and to spread Islamic justice and moral values across the world. For that reason, the Ottomans brought Islamic values to the territories they conquered with no compulsion or pressure being applied, just as commanded in the Qur’an itself. For the Ottomans, it was not just the well-being of Muslims and Turks that mattered, but that of all the Empire’s subjects, no matter what their faith or tongue. As Islamic moral values require, the Ottoman sultans largely assisted those who sought their help, whether these were believers or not, and were aware that this was one of their responsibilities before Allah.
The way that major modern states encourage research into Ottoman history and set aside special funds for the purpose indicates something very important. The Ottoman Empire had discovered the secret of being a great state, and maintained that secret over its 600 years of existence. What the West has been utterly unable to understand with regard to the Ottomans is that the Empire had a strategic vision known in modern political literature as “moral politics.” Imperialist powers, on the other hand, have always acted along the policy of realpolitik. For that reason, they had no compunctions about inflicting policies that would lead to long-term chaos and instability on a country for the sake of their own short-term interests. But the Ottomans never permitted any chaos or instability in the lands over which they ruled. They always sought to implement the climate of peace and security, justice and tolerance, commanded in the Qur’an.
In addition, unlike other nations, the Ottomans never occupied these lands in a spirit of colonialism, but sought to strengthen the Muslim world and spread their faith without resorting to any pressure or compulsion. Some European powers considered the peoples living in the lands they conquered as inferior, as second-class entities and adopted cruel and repressive policies towards them, but because of the Qur’anic moral values they espoused the Ottomans always treated members of all nations in a just, compassionate and tolerant manner.
Important Lessons for Today from Ottoman Civilization
Even as you read these lines wars are taking place all over the world, and people are dying, being expelled from their homes and generally being oppressed. In a great many parts of the world some people enjoy unjust earnings while others earn far less than they deserve. The cruel seek to use the means at their disposal to oppress the weak, while the needy are waiting for a helping hand to be extended to them. In short, injustice rules in many countries of the world. But why is justice not scrupulously enforced?
In order for there to be real justice, people have to adopt the moral values that will enable them to set aside their own interests for the sake of that justice. Those values are the values of the Qur’an, and apply to all mankind, discriminating between none, insisting that all means be shared on a fair basis, and aiming to create a world in which superiority lies not with the strong but with the honest. Justice can only prevail when people live fully in accordance with the moral values of the Qur’an. Indeed, the time of the Prophet (saas), that of the Four Rightly Guided Caliphs who followed, and then the days of Ottoman rule are all striking examples of that fact.
Great efforts were made to ensure that justice prevailed in the Ottoman Empire. Ottoman sultans issued many edicts against officials who misused their power against the interests of the people, and even constructed a system the public would be content with, even if they did not personally witness its operation. One of the many edicts prohibiting state officials from acting in violation of justice and the law was that sent to the Semendere cadi. In that edict the sultan first issued a reminder that the public were entrusted by Allah to him and then stated that imperial officials’ treating the people unjustly was to be regarded as repression and to be strongly condemned. He ordered that those who ignored or failed to fully implement this provision were to be brought before the courts.
Thanks to this just administration that prevailed in the Empire, millions of people belonging to the three revealed faiths and various denominations thereof, with different languages and cultures, of many different races were able to live in peace, free from any oppression, in an area encompassing all the Balkans, the Caucasus and the Middle East. That is why Western scholars regard the tolerant and understanding administrative system brought about by the Ottomans as the ideal model.
U.S. and European scholars admit they are highly impressed by the Ottoman’s vision of justice, which is in fact an expression of the perfection of the moral values revealed in the Qur’an. That is because the way that the Ottoman system that refused to make any concessions when it came to justice and the truth never changed down the centuries stemmed from the conception imposed by those very values.
The World Will Be Filled with Justice in the Time of the Mahdi (as)
The justice that people are desperate for today will come about in the End Times, as we learn from the hadiths of the Prophet (saas). The situation on Earth at the time will come to an end with the emergence of the Mahdi (as), and a climate of justice the like of which has never been seen before will be established across the planet. The Prophet (saas) described this climate that will emerge in the time of the Mahdi (as):
“The younger ones wish they were grown-ups, while the adults wish they were younger... The good become even better, and even the wicked ones are treated well.” 1
“… He [the Mahdi] will fill the earth will equity and justice as it was filled with oppression and tyranny…” 2
“The earth fills with justice.” 3
“During the time of Mahdi, justice will prevail to such an extent that every possession taken by force will be returned to his owner; furthermore, some other person’s thing, even if it rests within one’s teeth, will be given back to its owner… Security will permeate all over Earth and even a few women will be able to fulfil their hajj without the company of men.” 4
As emphasized in the hadiths, in that time when the moral values of the Qur’an reign supreme, believers will live by true justice. Everyone will be able to make use of all available means, people will be given even more than they ask for, and the needy will be protected and watched over. Nobody will be allowed to suffer injustice, to be denied the rewards of their labor, to live in poverty or to have difficulty making ends meet. By Allah’s will, all injustice and oppression will be completely done away with.
1. Al-Muttaqi al-Hindi, Al-Burhan fi Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir al-zaman, p. 17.
2. Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 36, Number 4272.
3. Imam Rabbani, Maktubat al-Rabbani, Vol. 1, No. 251.
4.Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, Al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, p. 23.
SHELTER UNDER THE SEA: CORAL REEFS
Corals are creatures which live in the deep regions of tropical waters. Reefs, where many creatures live together, are formed from the limestone skeletons of dead corals cemented together by the action of coralline algae. Reefs can extend over very broad areas. Scientists compare reefs to tropical rainforests because, like rainforests, they are centers of diversity. The coral reefs are home to more than 2,000 species of fish, 5,000 species of mollusks, 700 species of corals and countless other forms of crabs, sea urchins, brittle stars, sea cucumbers and worms of different groups.
Polyps are small marine animals which live in coral reefs. Many coral polyps have symbiotic algae that live inside them. Algae contain chlorophyll and therefore, they can photosynthesize. Algae are rich in oxygen but poor in nutrients. Like all other plants, algae, too, need nitrates and phosphates. That is why it is so important for these creatures to live together. Unable to live on their own, they survive by making use of one another.
The polyp provides food to the algae with its waste products. The algae store the waste products as ammonia and then break them down into nitrogen phosphorus, which is then used for energy. The polyp also provides shelter for the algae by protecting it against predators. In return, the algae provide food to the polyps through photosynthesis. Thus, polyps obtain the energy they need to construct their limestone skeleton.1
As in all other creatures that lead a symbiotic life, all the needs of both creatures, in the symbiotic life between polyp and algae, are met in the easiest way. It is apparent that Who has joined these two creatures together is a sole Creator Who is aware of the needs of them both. These creatures have been created by Allah in a way in which they complement each other and meet each other's needs.
Allah introduces us to His endless artistry and boundless knowledge through the various creatures He has created under the sea and the matchless designs and amazing characteristics of them all. Allah reminds us of this in the Qur'an:
And also the things of varying colors He has created for you in the earth. There is certainly a Sign in that for people who pay heed. It is He who made the sea subservient to you so that you can eat fresh flesh from it and bring out from it ornaments to wear. And you see the ships cleaving through it so that you can seek His bounty, and so that hopefully you will show thanks. (Surat an-Nahl, 13-14)
THE STRIKING FEATURES OF BUTTERFLIES
Look over the butterflies' wings in the picture on the right as if you were seeing them for the first time. Surely you will be filled with admiration for such an aesthetic display, a symmetry that is without the slightest flaw, the dazzling colors and patterns. Now think of a piece of cloth. Assume that it is a very beautiful piece of cloth of good quality that has been woven with the inspiration of these butterflies' patterns. What would you think if you saw such a piece of cloth in a shop-window? Probably, the existence of an artist, who has drawn the patterns of this cloth, taking the wings of a butterfly as an inspiration while drawing them, springs into your mind, and you appreciate his artistry. In this situation, you should also appreciate this fact: the artistry you admire doesn't belong to the person who draws the cloth pattern, taking butterflies as his example, but to Allah, Who is the originator of the patterns and colors of butterfly wings. The colorful wings of butterflies with their wonderfully varied patterns are magnificent manifestations of Allah's artistry in color. Just as a pattern on a piece of cloth does not come into being by chance, so is the color and pattern symmetry in the wings so perfect that they could not have come into being coincidentally.
Moreover, the splendid wings are not the only striking features of butterflies. The body design of butterflies is also perfect in every respect. The butterflies take in nourishment by sucking up nectar from flowers. Most butterflies have a long organ called a proboscis which they use to reach a liquid that is at some depth. A proboscis is a long tongue used to drink water or to suck up nectar from flowers. The butterfly rolls up its long tongue inwards when it isn't using it. This tongue can be three times the length of a butterfly's body when unrolled.
Like other insects, the butterflies also have a skeleton that covers the outer surface of their bodies. This outer or exoskeleton is composed of hard plates connected by soft tissue, looking like some sort of armor. The hard material is called "chitin." The formation of this layer comes about through a very interesting process. As is commonly known, caterpillars pass through a rather complex process called metamorphosis. The caterpillar first becomes a pupa and then turns into a butterfly. Throughout this process of metamorphosis, slight changes occur in the wings, antennae, legs and other body parts. Also, the cells in different key areas such as the flight muscles and wings re-organize themselves through every phase of metamorphosis. Furthermore, along with these changes, almost all systems in the body -the digestive system, excretory system, respiratory system etc.- go through a process of immense change.2
This diversity in design that butterflies have, as much as their wings, belongs to Allah, the All-Powerful. Allah is the One Who bestows every creature with the characteristics it needs.
1- Mitchell Beazley, Oceans, Mitchell Beazley Pub., 1991, UK, p.68.
2- Florida's Fabulous Butterflies, World Publications, FL, 1999, p.57.
THE MIRACLE OF BLOOD CLOTTING
The process of blood clotting resembles the first aid performed by ambulance crews called out to attend a traffic accident.
When bleeding takes place in any region of the body, blood platelets known as thrombocytes are dispersed throughout the bloodstream. Wherever bleeding may occur, thrombocytes will always be on call nearby.
Just like a traffic officer, a protein known as Von Willebrand indicates the site of the accident, halts the thrombocytes when it detects them and causes them to remain in the site of the incident. The first thrombocyte to arrive attracts others to the site by emitting a special substance, just as if it were summoning assistance.
At this point, 20 enzymes in the body come together to begin producing a protein known as thrombin, which is produced only in the presence of an open wound. This is similar to a first-aid team administering the necessary drugs at a crash site. In addition, the production must be at just the right level, and the production of thrombin must also start and stop right on time. The enzymes that produce this protein seem to decide among themselves when production should begin and cease.
Once a sufficient quantity of thrombin has been manufactured, small fibers known as fibrinogen form, creating a microscopic network in the blood, to which the thrombocytes adhere and accumulate. Once this accumulation has become sufficiently dense, bleeding stops These enzymes and proteins are structures consisting of different arrangements of blind, unconscious, inanimate atoms. Yet each one assumes a function from the moment the incident occurs and they are all "organized" in such a way as to halt the flow of blood in the most speedy manner. The apparent consciousness displayed by these collections of atoms is doubtless a great miracle and cannot, of course, be the product of "evolution," a process totally dependent on chance.
DARWINISTS ARE IN A STATE OF SHOCK IN THE FACE OF THE SCIENTIFIC AND IDEOLOGICAL COLLAPSE OF THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION - 29.04.2008 - BELGIUM/ L'AVENIR /LE JOUR / LE COURRIER
L'Avenir, Le Jour and Le Courrier, newspapers published in French by a Belgian media company, carried a report titled “A Holy Alliance against Creationism” in their 29 April, 2008, editions. The full-page report discussed a meeting held regarding teachers in Belgium who refuse to teach the theory of evolution and are boycotting the education system.
The meeting was held in the Belgian province of Namur and attracted more than 350 professors of biology and philosophy. Darwinists described their unease at the rise in numbers of people supporting creationist belief and their inability to respond to questions from students in evolutionary terms. At the meeting, held with the aim of “teaching” instructors unable to defend the theory of evolution in the face of the fact of creation, teachers were told how to behave towards creationist ideas.
Adnan Oktar’s Atlas of Creation was described as provoking panic among Darwinist teachers and encouraging them to initiate an educational “mobilization:”
"Written by Adnan Oktar [under the pen-name Harun Yahya] the Atlas was sent out to universities in April 2007 and spurred [Education Minister] Marie Arena into action, convincing her of the need for education.”
The report went on to say:
"Is there really a danger in our schools? Florence Hosteau replies: ‘This is an important problem for our society. The Council of Europe has passed a resolution on the subject. Significant funds have been set aside by the University of Ghent for the defense of the theory of evolution.'"
Materialist and Darwinist circles, behaving just like disaster victims, are now seeking to take precautions against the collapse of Darwinism by adopting utterly hopeless methods. They are trying to defend the theory of evolution by setting aside funds and organizing educational activities. However, the collapse of Darwinism has been made a certainty as people come to believe Atlas of Creation. Anyone scanning just 3 or 4 pages of the Atlas will clearly see the invalidity of the theory of evolution and will be convinced by the evidence that Allah created all living things. No-one reading Atlas of Creation without any preconceptions will be able to be deceived by the falsehoods of the theory of evolution.
The problem facing evolutionists is not one of being unable to get the theory of evolution across or to set aside sufficient funds. Evolutionary propaganda was imposed upon huge swaths of the population as an indisputable scientific fact for decades. What people were unaware of was “the fact that science supports creation.” Once these facts had been set out in the Atlas, in such a clear and honest way that even a primary school student could grasp them, all Darwinist strategies and ruses collapsed.
The discussions held by professors regarding their unease at the loud proclamation of the invalidity of the theory of evolution reveal them to be in a state of psychological collapse. The circles in question are literally in a state of mourning for Darwinism.
FRANCIS COLLINS, THE SCIENTIST WHO DECODED DNA, HAS ANNOUNCED THAT HE NOW BELIEVES IN GOD - DAILY VATAN - 08.04.2008
Francis Collins, one of the two scientist who deviphered the DNA code, has announced that he had been an atheist until 30 years ago, but that he now believes in God.
The relevant report in the Turkish daily Vatan read:
"... Speaking to the Times about his book "The Language of God," 56-year-old Francis Collins said that he now believes in God and that ‘There is a rational basis for belief in God, and scientific advances draw man closer to God.’ The American scientist went on to state that he believes in miracles and angels; ‘I felt the presence of God while working in the laboratory. There is definitely a force greater than ourselves, and I believe in that. Deciphering DNA drew me a little clo0ser to God. I saw people wracked by disease. But I saw them miraculously restored to health. That is the work of God.’ Collins says that deciphering the human genome gave him the opportunity to see that it was the work of God. He went on to say: ‘When you make a major discovery you experience a moment of scientific rapture, because you have researched and discovered it. What I discovered was something that no human being had ever known before. But God has always known it….
Age: 354 to 290 million years
Location: Edwardsville Formation, Indiana, USA
The earliest known specimens of crinoids, members of the order Echinodermata, lived during the Paleozoic era (543 to 251 million years ago). These animals, some 80 genera of which have survived down to the present, are one of those life forms that invalidate evolutionist claims. The fossil record shows that these organisms emerged suddenly, together with all their exceedingly complex structures.
There is not one single fossil specimen to show that crinoids descended gradually from any other life form. All the fossils unearthed have proved that crinoids have always existed as crinoids. This, in turn, invalidates evolutionists’ claims and shows that the origin of life lies not in evolution, but in Creation.
AL-AKHIR, (The Last; The One Who Exists After Everything Else Perishes)
He is the First and the Last , the Outward and the Inward. He has knowledge of all things. ( Surat al-Hadid, 3)
Allah created the universe from nothing and, ultimately, will return it to its initial state and destroy it. Nothing is immortal, for all living beings come into existence for a predetermined period of time and then die—everything, that is, except Allah, Who is the First and the Last and therefore without beginning or end.
Allah, the Creator of life and time, is not affected by any of matter's characteristics. Given that He is infinite, He will exist for all eternity, existed in the infinite past, and is unaffected by time and space. This fact is stressed in the Qur'an, as follows:
Everyone on it will pass away; but the Face of your Lord will remain, Master of Majesty and Generosity. ( Surat ar-Rahman, 26-27)
AN INTERVIEW WITH MR.ADNAN OKTAR BY TURKMENELI TV (Istanbul - April, 2008)
- Some authors in Turkey are on the side of anarchy and chaos. They insist on their side being in the right at all costs. They want the other side to be given no rights and to be silenced, which is very wrong. For example, I am a nationalist and supporter of religion and spiritual matters, but I also want atheists to be able to live as first class citizens. I want them to enjoy complete freedom, too.
- In my opinion, every nationalist, everyone who espouses religious views, every rational, devout person who wishes to see a Great Turkey must be very careful over being led by the nose of the press. They need to put a question mark after any report that comes their way.
- The ideal thing is the formation of the Turkish-Islamic Union. That means all Islamic countries adopting a single leader, all Turkic countries having a single leader, because their populations are generally Muslim.
For brave and honest explanations about the Turkish-Islamic Union and the future of Turkey, watch the whole interview with Mr.Adnan Oktar by Turkmeneli TV.
In this site you may find very striking topics with articles clear and easy to understand. Some of the titles of the first issue of Insight magazine are: “The Creation of the Universe”, “A System Without Room For Smallest Error: Blood Clotting”, “Plants are Cool, But Why?”, “What Happens If Fear of God Does Not Exist?”, Where did the Companions of the Cave Live?” and “Islam Denounces Terrorism”...
UNAWARENESS: A SLY THREAT
Some individuals, unaware of Allah’s clear commands and prohibitions in the Qur’an, live their lives according to their own whims and desires. But life is short and will one day end, along with everything else. At that moment, they will be confronted with the punishment of Hell that has been prepared for all those who did not seek to please Him while living in this temporary world.
In the Qur’an, Allah defines unawareness as a lack of awareness and careless attitude regarding the clear evidences of His existence and the evidence of His commands and prohibitions. Unawareness is a great danger for those who are heedless and do not submit to Allah sincerely, because those who are being drawn into unawareness, or who are already unaware, do not understand their situation properly. And even if they are aware of this danger, they do not care. Therefore, read this book in the knowledge that some degree of unawareness might exist within you and then do your best to overcome it. As Allah states in the Qur’an: “No indeed! Truly humanity is unbridled, seeing himself as self-sufficient” (Surat al-‘Alaq: 6-7).
This book describes unawareness according to the Qur’an and warns people against its subtle danger.
Mankind’s Reckoning has drawn very close to them, yet they heedlessly turn away. No fresh reminder comes to them from their Lord without their listening to it as if it was a game. (Surat al-Anbiya’, 1-2)
WHAT DARWINISTS NEVER REALIZE
1-Darwinists never realize how a virus or a bacterium, described by them as the “most primitive living structure,” could have learned how to neutralize, in a highly systematic and intelligent manner, those elements of the body’s defense system known as antibodies and leukocytes from among billions of other cells in order to take over the body.
2-Darwinists never realize that there is a system inside the human body, which they maintain came into existence as a result of unconscious evolutionary processes, that prevents the heat emitted by the contraction of a single muscle doing any harm to that muscle, and that with its heat dispersal mechanism the blood distributes that heat to the body, and that such a system could never come into existence by chance.
3-Darwinists never realize how it is that different cells in the blood, which they claim came into being by chance, know their own jobs, how they perform these without making any errors and how they continue discharging their responsibilities uninterruptedly for a whole lifetime.
4-Darwinists never realize that 2.5 million erythrocytes need to be produced every second in the blood, which they maintain came into existence through unconscious coincidences, and that were it not for this the veins would become blocked due to a decrease in the blood’s viscosity, it would be harder for the heart to work, and that this vital equilibrium could never develop as the result of random processes and phenomena.
5-Darwinists never realize that the human eye forms an image on the retina in less than 1/10 second, that the image occupies a space no more than 1 square millimeter in size, and that the human eye possesses a faster and more practical mechanism than 64 computers equipped with the very latest technology.
6-Darwinists never realize that they can never account for the sublimity of the creation in nature, the perfect systems that exist, and the intelligent, scientific and incomparable artistry displayed, in terms of chance.
7-Darwinists never realize that coincidence can never account for the way that poppy flowers release their pollen at the exact time when there are the most pollen-bearing insects around and that their biological clocks ensure their own flowering.
8-Darwinists never realize that it is impossible for the way that maize and bean plants emit a special secretion in their leaves to protect themselves against predators, how with that secretion they are able to attract and use the hornets that live parasitically on them just like mercenaries, and for that defense strategy to have been developed by a plant devoid of any consciousness.
9-Darwinists never realize with every piece of research they perform in order to support the Theory of Evolution ending in disappointment, with every discovery they make revealing proofs refuting evolution, with life remaining unchanged for millions of years in the fossil record, and with the facts shown by science, that Allah (God) has created the universe and all living things.
10-Darwinists never realize how elephants and rhinoceroses take mud baths to remove the parasites on their skin, how they treat wounds with ash-rich soil containing antiseptic properties, that it is impossible for the animals by themselves to know about the antiseptic properties of a substance in the earth, and that all living things in nature act under the inspiration of Allah.