“We are the source of world’s many inventions”: Meeting of MHANT in Marmara University

"Muslim Heritage Awareness Network of Turkey's (MHANT) second meeting, which was organized by the Foundation of Science Technology and Civilisation (FSTC) has been held in Marmara University's chancellery building in Istanbul on 20th April 2011.

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Figure 1: Muslim Heritage Awareness Network of Turkey (MHANT)  

by FSTC Research Team*

Muslim Heritage Awareness Network of Turkey's (MHANT) second meeting, which was organized by the Foundation of Science Technology and Civilisation (FSTC) has been held in Marmara University's chancellery building in Istanbul on 18th April 2011.

Addressing the audience at the beginning of the meeting, Professor Salim Al-Hassani, founder of FSTC and 1001 Inventions said: "We do not remember the achievements of the scientist who lived through out the Islamic Civilisation as well as it deserves to be remembered, even though it is very strong in present day civilisation. Many inventions of our world are the result of all the common work produced by the societies that have resided on this ground".

Professor Al-Hassani, who gave a speech during the meeting, specified that FSTC endeavoured to promote history of science and technology within Islamic Civilisation through exhibitions, education, online social networking, books, media, movies, electronic publishing, conferences, meetings and many more projects as a part of the foundation's work in order to abrogate the one thousand year old memory loss called the "Dark Ages" from the public's perception.

Figure 2: Muslim Heritage Awareness Network of Turkey's (MHANT) second meeting, which was organized by the Foundation of Science Technology and Civilisation (FSTC) has been held in Marmara University's chancellery building in Istanbul on 18th April 2011.

He added that "a history of one thousand years is being skipped in school books, on internet or in the thoughts of leaders. In other books, this period of one thousand years is called either the "Dark Ages" or the "Middle Ages". Human civilisation is an accumulation, and it is made up of human experiences added all on top of each other".

Figure 3: (Left to Right) Muhabir Samil Kucur, Muhabir Ebru Baran, Yrd. Doç. Dr. Nazim Intepe, Medya Uzmani Ayla Önder

Salim Al-Hassani highlighted the fact that the civilisational contribution of Islam which corresponds to the lost period of thousand years is well recognised by the world's experts, but their academic works remain hidden in specialised circles and rarely reach the public sphere and the media. He added: "We do not remember the Islamic culture even though its influence is still alive in today's civilisation. Many inventions of our world are the result of all the common work produced by those societies that have resided on this soil. Therefore, it is such a big mistake to ignore this period of one thousand years when defining this process".

Figure 4: (Left to Right) Prof. Dr. Akif Eyler, Pof. Salim Al-Hassani, Salih Tahir, Prof. Dr. Mehmet Niyazi Eruslu, Prof. Dr. Zafer Gül

Professor Al-Hassani also underlined the fact that the aim behind founding the network MHANT was to take lessons from the past in order to build up the future, and continued: "Unfortunately this is the situation, and it does not look very promising. Various races have been killed by executions as if they were lower. The Indians, Inkas, and the Jews witnessed those kind of executions. This has given a feeling of superiority to America or Europe, whereas it caused an inferiority complex to the developing countries. The newly recognised belief (the West is the source of wisdom) has been causing many problems in terms of diplomatic and sociological aspects. The abrogation of a memory loss of one thousand years will increase the communal harmony as well as the harmony of living together, and by this way we can decrease or totally abolish some unwanted concepts such as that of racism."

Figure 5: Muslim Heritage Awareness Network of Turkey's (MHANT) second meeting, which was organized by the Foundation of Science Technology and Civilisation (FSTC) has been held in Marmara University's chancellery building in Istanbul on 18th April 2011.

In addition, Professor Al Hassani mentioned that he had observed a stronger self-confidence in Turkish children in terms of scientific studies thanks to the exhibition "1001 Inventions" held in Istanbul in 2010. "Not only the public showed interest in those events", he added, "but also the leaders supported the project everywhere we went. If a particular thing is appreciated both by the leaders and the children, this proves it to be a successful project".

Figure 6: (Left to Right) Prof. Dr. Talha Gönüllü, Prof. Alparslan Açikgenç, Prof. Dr. Hamit Okur

The exhibition "1001 Inventions", which came to Istanbul after a successful residency in The Science Museum in London, continues currently its global world tour. It just closed its display in New York's Hall of Science, and it was handed over to the California Science Centre in Los Angeles, where it will open in May. Those visiting the exhibition will have the chance to see a Space Shuttle, gift from the NASA to the California Science Centre in Los Angeles.

MHANT in Turkish Media (Turkish - Türkçe)

*The members of FSTC Research Team include Salim Al-Hassani, Mohammed Abattouy, Salim Ayduz, Margaret Morris, Savas Konur, Cem Nizamoglu and Hannah Becker.

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