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Tolerance and liberality

by Fethullah Gülen on . Posted in Forgiveness, Tolerance, and Dialogue

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Tolerance and liberality

Be as vast as the oceans and take every soul to your bosom! Let faith keep you alert, cherish a neverending affection for humanity, and leave no broken heart forgotten or ignored!

Applaud the good for their goodness, appreciate those who have believing hearts, and be kind to them. Approach unbelievers so gently that their envy and hatred melt away. Like a Messiah, revive people with your breath.

Remember that you travel the best road and follow the Prophet, an exalted guide. Be mindful that you have his guidance through the most perfect and expressive revelation. Be fairminded and balanced in your judgment, for many people do not enjoy these blessings.

Fend off evil with goodness and ignore rudeness! The attitude of a person reveals their character. Favor tolerance and be magnanimous toward those who do not know better.

The most distinctive feature of a soul overflowing with faith is to love all love that is expressed in deeds and to feel enmity for all deeds in which enmity is expressed. To hate everything is a sign of insanity or of infatuation with Satan.

Accept how God treats you. Make it the measure by which you treat others, so that you may represent the truth among them and be free of the fear of loneliness in either world.

Only those who do not use their reason or who have succumbed to plain stupidity and desires of the flesh are convinced that believers might harm them. Apply to a spiritual master to stir up your heart, and fill your eyes with tears.

Judge your worth in the Creator's sight by how much space He occupies in your heart and your worth in people's eyes by how you treat them. Do not neglect the Truth even for a moment. And yet still "be a human among other humans."

Take note of and be attentive to any behavior that causes you to love others. Then remind yourself that behaving in the same way will cause them to love you. Always behave decently and be alert.

Do not allow your carnal self to be a referee in any contest, for it will rule that everyone but you is sinful and unfortunate. Such a judgment, according to the word of the Prophet, the most truthful, signifies your destruction. Be strict and implacable with your carnal self, and be relenting and lenient toward others.

To preserve your credit, honor, and love, love for the sake of the Truth, hate for the sake of the Truth, and be openhearted toward the Truth.

This collection of aphorisms was written in 1984 and recently appeared in one volume Ölçü veya Yoldaki Işiklar, Kaynak, Izmir, 2000; English edition Pearls of Wisdom, The Fountain, New Jersey, 2000, pp. 61.