true nature of the case, and the overwhelming importance for the country of the Risale-i Nur and its service, for the maintenance of public order and strengthening the bonds of society. This had been established by its positive results everywhere it had spread.
Yes, as readers may see from the remaining ‘Rays’ in this book, that is, the Second to the Seventh, the Ninth, the Eleventh, and the Fifteenth Rays, the Risale-i Nur consists only of brilliant explanations and proofs of the truths of belief. And these are not merely dry, abstract questions, they reveal the true nature of man and the universe, infusing them with life and meaning. The reflective thought that is the basis of the Risale-i Nur’s way found its most complete expression in the Seventh Ray, The Supreme Sign, which in thirty-three ‘degrees,’ describes the testimony offered by all the realms of creation and the universe to God’s necessary existence and unity. In Bediuzzaman’s view, this work puts forward such clear and irrefutable proofs, that “those who want unshakeable belief and seek an unbreakable sword to combat irreligion and anarchy should refer to The Supreme Sign.”
For Bediuzzaman, the true enemies in this age of science, reason, and civilization were materialism and atheism, and their source, materialist philosophy. His aim with the reasoned proofs of the Risale-i Nur, therefore, was to combat these, indeed he claimed to have “utterly defeated them,” and, through strengthening the belief of Muslims and raising it to the level of “certain, verified belief,” to establish through the Risale-i Nur a truly effective barrier against the corruption of society caused by these enemies.
Despite all efforts to stop it, within the twenty-five years of Bediuzzaman’s exile the handful of students grew into many thousands, and the Risale-i Nur movement and its service of religious belief and the Qur’an spread throughout Turkey. After 1950, the period of what Bediuzzaman called ‘the Third Said,’ there was a great increase in the number of students, particularly among the young and those who had been through the secular education system of the Republic. At the same time the number of students outside Turkey increased.
The unique function of the Risale-i Nur in the renewal and strengthening of the faith of Muslims everywhere is now recognized worldwide, foremost by the scholars of al-Azhar and leading scholars throughout the Islamic world. Its importance and originality are also becoming increasingly known by the academics and specialists of the Western world.
More than this, by expounding and explaining the universal Qur’anic message in a way that addresses modern man’s mentality, which is