belief, and religious and moral instruction, a national characteristic. In addition, on the pretext of a number of acquaintances sending letters of a friendly or scholarly nature to my address, it is alleged that I am a partner in the crime of the above-mentioned. I object as follows to these matters with which I have been charged:
1. I did not read the Risale-i Nur, which has previously been tried and acquitted and returned to its author, and has been praised and recommended by the country’s religious scholars, with any idea of causing trouble in the way insisted on by the prosecution. I saw every part of it to be nothing but an important Qur’anic commentary which effectively teaches Islam and gives religious instruction, the way to make people virtuous and advance morally, and to save nations from falling into the abyss. Since this is the case, I do not suppose that to read these with the intention of study or maintaining my religion and belief, and to give them to others, and to obtain them for others, constitutes a crime. For nowhere at all has any incident harmful to the country and nation in which Risale-i Nur students have taken part been witnessed or recorded by the police. In addition, it is totally false to say: “they study and read them secretly” and to arouse doubts about a secret society. Because, whether scholarly or political, the Risale-i Nur students have no connection with any society, secret or open. In fact, several years ago the same charges were made against Bediuzzaman and many others, and they were sent for trial in Denizli Criminal Court, and although all the parts of the Risale-i Nur were scrutinized in the closest detail, they were all acquitted. I do not know the extent to which the imperatives of justice demand putting forward as evidence for a serious crime such as breaching state security and betrayal of the regime, reading a work which itself and whose author have been acquitted, and giving it to others to read; so I refer it to your consciences!
2. Among the charges was my being sent, while under arrest, a treatise by someone I do not know from Bayezid. I have not seen this treatise. I am uninformed about what it contains. If it is the Risale-i Nur, I accept it. You ask, and I shall reply. Only, I learnt that the prosecutor mentions the Mahdi in the indictment, and my Master is innocent of all such accusations. Just as I have never heard him mention such a thing, so I have not seen it in any of his works. Moreover, at every opportunity he has forbidden his students to venerate him, exalt him, or accord him any rank, and he has rebuked those who have written him such letters. We have always known him to be an important scholar who seeks no rank or position, and to be a precise and exacting hoja.
Prisoner, Hıfzı Bayram