Man's struggle with mortality and his quest for rediscovering God: Finding spirituality in generation Y

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


In the post enlightenment period where God is long considered to be dead and we are the ones claimed to have killed him , mankind is still left unfulfilled in his battle with mortality. The search for meaning and purpose in life continues in Generation Y . Even the killing of death has not resolved the battle with mortality . In an era where his contemporaries were killing God, religion and even death itself, Bediuzzaman Said Nursi (d.1960) emerges inimitably and in an almost solo battle to defend belief, faith, religion and God. This paper examines closely the works of Said Nursi as a case study and also as an example to understand the practical, as well as the philosophical dilemma that faces human kind: Mortality and death. The human patterns of thought and behaviour in the modern world will be examined in comparison with Nursi's understanding of human nature and behaviour as evidenced in his exegetical interpretation called the Risale-I Nur Collection. Nursi's unique methodology is evident in the Risale-I Nur as he utilizes both ontological reasoning, as well as his observances of the world and human life, to solve the dilemma of mortality. Unlike his predecessors, St. Anselm of Canterbury in the 11th century A.D and René Descartes of the 17th century, who sought to prove the existence of God ontologically , for Nursi proving the existence of God was vital, as he believed that God is the answer to mortality. Nursi's ontological explanations of the existence of God are examined in this paper with a particular emphasis on the 11 aspects of Divine Unity from the 20th Letter. This paper will thus attempt to resolve this 'battle with mortality' that faces modern man, with a specific study of Generation Y.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGod, man and mortality
Subtitle of host publicationThe perspective of Bediuzzaman Said Nursi
EditorsHasan Horkuc
Place of PublicationClifton, NJ, USA
PublisherTughra Books
Number of pages21
ISBN (Print)9781597843294
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NamePerspectives of the Risale-i nur in Islamic studies


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