The Meaning of Life
FURKAN: Let’s begin with the most significant question of existence. What is the meaning of life? And related to this question, what should the purpose of living be?
EDIP: The meaning of limited human life is zero since a century is zero compared to infinity. Death is inevitable. Even if we could copy our minds (falsely known as metaphysical souls), that is our genetic code, with all the idiosyncratic neural connections of our brains (memories) through digital transformation, and could download it to a googel shmoogel byte-size hard disk, still it would be zero since all scientific evidences indicate an end to the universe. However, if there is an eternal Creator who possesses the master record of every conscious being, then the meaning of this life becomes infinitely important.
I will refrain from prescribing people their purpose of living. But if you wonder my purpose in life, I would say: submit myself to the Creator of Singularity like every atom and subatomic particle in the universe. We all came from singularity 10 or 15 billions years ago with a Big Bang and we will all turn back to the same singularity with a Big Collapse.
FURKAN: According to your observations, why do people live?
EDIP: Most people live without thinking about their spatial (not special!) and temporal position in the physical universe. Most people continue imitating their parents and neighbors without questioning their culture, religion, tradition, etc. Most people live just to live while every second after their conception is a race towards the end of their lives. Trying to satisfy their unsatisfying animalistic desires, majority of human population does not find peace of mind to reflect beyond their tiny world.
FURKAN: Let’s turn to the subject of 19. Can you mention briefly the theory of 19?
EDIP: All units, that is, letters, words, sentences and chapters of the Quran are mathematically designed on a prime number which was prophesied in a Chapter called “The Hidden One” for more than 14 centuries. The simple to understand but impossible to imitate mathematical harmony, in my opinion, is beyond human capacity to construct. Integration of arbitrary human language with the precise and universal rules of mathematics in the Quran and in the original Bible is a marvel that can be appreciated only by those who study it with critical and truth-seeking mind. The examples of this mathematical design are demonstrated in several books, including my Turkish book “Uzerinde 19 Var” (published by Milliyet Yayinlari) and its forthcoming English version “Code 19″.
FURKAN: Why do you think most people ignore or disagree with this thesis?
EDIP: Because most people follow religious or anti-religious ideas with their hormones, rather than their intellect.
FURKAN: Contrary to traditional acceptance of the Islamic world, you concluded that two parts that are regarded as verses at the end of Surat al-Tawba do not actually belong to the Quran. I wonder what you experienced psychologically in the process of this important decision.
EDIP: In addition to the mathematical evidence indicating that those two “verses” do not belong to the mathematically designed book (Kitabul Marqum), God blessed me with a personal experience that made me certain about my decision. I begged my Creator for a sign to save me from confusion and guide me the truth. My sincere and persistent search for truth was responded by my Lord. He fulfilled his promise of 41:53 by supporting my faith through BOTH objective and subjective evidences. I believe that every person who seeks the truth and is ready to acknowledge it regardless the cost of such an admission, that person will witness objective and subjective divine signs.
FURKAN: After you came to the conclusion that 9:128-129 are not from God, what were your environment’s reactions to the decision?
EDIP: It was not a surprise. I expected excommunication, loss of family connection, popularity, job (best-selling author), political future and friends, threat and even death. All happened except for the last one. Thank God, for each loss God blessed me with better ones.
Turkey vs. US
FURKAN: What about your impressions of Turkey and the United States of America? When you compare Turkey with the US, what do you want to say about the similarities and differences between living in Turkey and living in the US?
EDIP: This question begs a lengthy answer. In short, the most important difference is that individual freedom and creativity is respected and encouraged in the US. In Turkey, individual freedom and creativity is suppressed to protect religious and political dogmas and a corrupt system alive. In brief, the panacea of many problems that have plagued Turkey and other so-called Muslim countries is observance of the Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
FURKAN: Finally, would you like to give some information about your daily life? How do you spend your time? What do you do during weekdays and at weekends?
EDIP: Here is my winter schedule, in brief.
Wake up for morning prayer. Breakfast with my family. Leave home at 7:30 for the full time legal job. Return home around 5:30. Watch the news. Observe evening prayer with the family. Eat dinner with the family. Spend some time with my two sons, Yahya (9 years old) and Matine (5 years old). (You can see their pictures on my web site, www.yuksel.org). Put them in bed around 8:30 pm Afterwards, either read a book/magazine or watch an informational TV program with my wife for half or an hour. Go on Internet and answer the e-mails. Go to bed around 12 pm.
Tuesday and Thursday evenings I teach a philosophy class at the local college, from 7 pm to 8:15 pm. Soon I am expected to allocate one or two hours of evenings to teach logical reasoning section of LSAT (Law School Assessment Test) on Internet. Then, I have to reduce my time on answering e-mails.
Saturday and Sundays I spend time with my family. Once a while we all go bicycling. Sometimes we play soccer on the grass of the nearby park. We rarely go skating. In summer, both Yahya and Matine are on soccer teams (Yahya’s team’s name was Blue Galaxies, Matine’s was Bumble Bees!); taking them to training and matches keeps us pretty busy. Some nights or weekends, I try to write articles and finish books. Once a month we go to theaters, museums, art exhibitions, fairs, etc. Several days ago we participated in an activity in Yahya’s school. Yahya played violin and sang songs in the chorus. Tonight we were invited to two parties. One was casual and Western, the other was an art exhibit. Occasionally, we go to homeless shelters to cook and serve food to the needy. Once every five or six months we go for several days of trip to California. Last summer we visited Grand Canyon. Once every two or three years I go to Turkey. My wife prefers her home country, Iran.
Friday noon we meet with a small group of believers in a house and pray the congregation prayer. Leading the prayer is by turn. When their turn comes every participant, including women, gives a short speech and leads the Friday prayer. Sunday evenings we usually participate in Quranic studies. Again, with active participation of every person.
FURKAN: Thank you very much for this interview.
EDIP: Thank you.