Michael Swan says: “He’s [Fethullah Gulen] using the past in order to go forward into the world. Into the future. And that’s important. That’s important. It’s a challenge not just in the Muslim world, it’s a challenge in every part of the world.”
“The attempt to create a positive face for globalization is, I think, the unique contribution of Hizmet.”
“Interfaith dialog, as Hizmet has demonstrated in its Iftar dinners begins with a real social relationship. People have to actually know each other. They have to actually care about each other. And that’s the starting point. …”
“… if Hizmet wasn’t running its social programs, you know, UN organizations and hundreds and thousands of other NGOs would also be there, you know. But every effort, every contribution is another opportunity to say, “we’re all in this together.” And in the sense that it gives a different picture of what Islam is, what Muslims are, that’s important. In the sense that it breaks up the isolation on both sides, it’s important. And in the sense that it’s real, practical help to people who really are suffering, it’s important.”
Michael Swan – Bio
Michael Swan studied the department of English in University of Toronto, and later went to New York University to obtain a higher degree.
Michael Swan later went to China as an English teacher for a brief period of time and he was also an award-winning photographer.
Michael Swan is also the associate-editor for a Catholic newspaper called “The Catholic Register.”
Intercultural Dialogue Institute
Intercultural Dialogue Institute is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to advance social cohesion via(through) personal interaction by promoting respect and mutual understanding among people of all cultures and faiths through dialogue and partnership. Intercultural Dialogue Institute aims to promote enduring interfaith and intercultural cooperation, tolerance and dialogue by sharing our differences and similarities in an effort to enhance civil society, to promote the development of human values, and to advance diversity and multiculturalism in the society. The Institute aims to eliminate or reduce false stereotypes, prejudices and unjustified fears through direct human communication. By this mission IDI aims to contribute to improvement of diversity, pluralism and multiculturalism throughout Canada. In this regard, IDI organizes social, educational and cultural activities such as lectures, seminars, conferences, discussion forums, luncheons, informative dinners, programs for students and youth, intercultural exchange trips, courses, outreach programs.
It was founded by Turkish Canadians inspired by the teachings and example of Fethullah Gulen. The Institute is not a religious or ethnic organization. It aims to facilitate dialogue on a whole range of social issues, regardless of any particular faith or religion. It stands for democracy, human rights, the non-instrumentalisation of religion in politics, equality and freedom of speech.