President Erdoğan is aiming to leave a legacy to equal and perhaps even supersede the Republic’s founder Atatürk…
Turkey to get new religious class curriculum in line with Euro court rulings
Whatever you know of or however you regard Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, in 1919 he went to Samson on the Black Sea coast and initiated a war of independence against several threatening forces on all sides of the Anatolian peninsular. Against all odds the Turks won at huge expense of loss of life. He not only secured a shrunken yet significant land mass following the demise of a much more extensive Ottoman Empire territory, he took religion out of state affairs, the idea being your belief system was yours to choose.
“The Republic of Turkey has no official religion. In the administration of the state, all laws and regulations are enacted and applied in accordance with the basis, the form and the mundane needs science provides to contemporary civilisations. Since the concept of religion relates to personal conviction, the republic considers the separation of religious ideas from state and world affairs and from politics as the principle factor in the success of the contemporary progress of our nation.”
England is my birth nation. I remember at primary school looking at a charity collection box with a picture of a fair skinned, blond haired, blue eyed Jesus on the side and just knowing this was not for me. It wasn’t complicated; just not for me. My primary school was voluntary controlled which from what I could make out meant influenced by the Christian Protestant Church.
At my upper school during every mass assembly when the head teacher said bow your heads for prayer, I would stand head up looking at bowed heads around me, knowing it was unlikely anyone would challenge me, so there was a freedom to not do as everyone else was doing. To a greater or lesser extent, Christian religious doctrine was always there within the system. For years I could remember, off by heart:
Our Father, which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth,
As it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
For ever and ever.
I always thought we are supposed to have a separation of state and religious doctrine, yet our head of state, the Queen, is the head of the Christian Protestant Church in England. The BBC R4 Today news programme still broadcasts Thought For The Day about 7.45am each morning, They are always purveyors of religious thought. The BBC and establishment do not even recognise a written constitution when apparently there is one, which is relevant when contemplating monarchy and church:
The British Constitution:
Back in the 1960’s I attended nursery school in Thetford, the home town of Thomas Paine, who gave plenty of food for thought:
“My mind is my own church.”
“We ought therefore to suspect that a great mass of information respecting the Bible, and the introduction of it into the world, has been suppressed by the united tyranny of Church and State, for the purpose of keeping people in ignorance, and which ought to be known.”
“All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christians or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.”
I paint. In 2006 I was exhibiting in London just off Trafalgar Square where Mohammed cartoon protesters were gathered because they felt offended at some pictorial images some one I had never herd of had apparently created in another county.
My Turkish business partner said, “Well, you never take the piss out of your Jesus.”
To which I replied, “Have you never seen Monty Python’s Life of Brian?!
On more than one occasion in Turkey Jesus has been referred to as ‘mine’; ‘your Jesus’. Several times I have tried to explain he’s not ‘my’ Jesus’. Jesus is a prophet within the Islamic story, so Muslim colleagues of mine love Jesus.
Among my Muslim friend’s favourite films is Anthony Quinn in:
The Message 1976, Starring Anthony Quinn. Story of Islam
Yep, the camera never shows Mohammed of course, which is kind of bizarre to a Western mind set. It brings to mind the art house film genre; I can imagine a film maker on BC R4 Front Row explaining the aesthetic and philosophical justification for not showing the star of the show.
My schooling was infested with Darwin’s theory of evolution. So, basically my education meandered between the limited parameters of Adam’s Rib and Darwinian theory. UFO’s or ghosts or anything that had no physical explanation or was considered paranormal, was a laugh; a joke; not to be taken too seriously; despite there being a Holy Ghost or the story of Ezekiel. Today I understand the quantum world infers anything goes; the world is not solid, but wave form information.
When I arrived in Turkey I began to discover an incredible nation and the ideas of founder Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. Yes, I know, his detractors refer to various accusations… regardless, I found many of his written thoughts rather attractive. Among my favourites is:
“Freedom consists of man’s ability to do what he thinks and desires without any influence or intervention by others. This is the broadest definition of the concept. Mankind has never attained liberty to this extent and never will because as is known, men are creations of nature and nature itself is not absolutely free either; it is subject to universal laws.”
In Turkey I felt comfortable developing my own sense of conscious awareness regardless of it being a majority Muslim nation.
Now a days, this legacy is being changed. Political leaders and government do like that word ‘change’.
Interestingly, Trump has just said
“Our republic was formed on the basis that freedom is not a gift from government, but that freedom is a gift from God. We are all united by our faith, in our creator, in our firm knowledge that we are all equal in his eyes. We are not just flesh and bone and blood. We are human beings with souls.”
The speech is here:
Some footage is here:
Surely, government may be an attempt to control the mind, but it certainly is not God, is it?!
Government = Mind Control