Sezgin called on people to adopt confident stance against Western perspective, says head of Religious Affairs Directorate
Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate on Wednesday hosted the premier of a documentary commemorating one of the country’s most renowned historians, Fuat Sezgin, who passed away on June 30 this year.
“Professor Fuat Sezgin declared the inconsistency of the propaganda that ‘religion is an obstacle to progress’ to the whole world with his magnificent research on the history of Islamic science,” said Ali Erbas, the head of the directorate.
Erbas said Muslims were the guides of humanity for 700 years and knowledge and philosophy were the main concepts, but the world today faces a crisis on a personal, communal and global basis partly due to European scientific understanding.
He stressed that Sezgin in his works called on people to adopt a confident stance against the Western perspective and had worked extensively to prove that it was actually Muslims that introduced many concepts the West today lays claim to.
Sezgin was born in eastern Bitlis province in 1924. He studied at Istanbul University’s Faculty of Letters, where he also earned a PhD in Arabic language and literature.
He continued his studies at Germany’s Frankfurt University in 1960 following a military coup in Turkey.
He devoted a considerable amount of time to studying and listing scientific contributions made by Muslim/Arabic scholars throughout history, writing numerous books and articles.
Sezgin founded the Research Foundation for the History of Science in Islam in 2010 to support the activities of the Istanbul Museum of the History of Science and Technology in Islam.
In 2013, he also founded the History of Science in Islam Institute at Fatih Sultan Mehmet Vakif University in Istanbul.