We are in close pursuit of our lost civilization for which we are filled with a deep longing. We are vigorously seeking for our lost treasure.
We are well aware that our ancestors sowed the seeds of great values in humanity.
For centuries the world revolved around these values and darkness was enlightened with these values, thus humanity found its path in the light of these values. Our sun of civilization was born and rose up from the East and then illuminated the whole world from the East. We are seeking this lost light of ours.
Astronomy, medicine, mathematics, chemistry, physics, philosophy, law, sociology, architecture, art, culture, literature, music, calligraphy... What makes a nation establish a civilization and brings it to the forefront of humanity, is to achieve the best and strive to attain excellence in all these fields.
You can build a strong civilization only when you have the best scholars, scientists, thinkers, intellectuals, physicians, artists and persons of spirit.
We must discover these people of spirit who illuminate the world as the moon does revolving around the earth.
The "One Thousand and One Nights Tales" our grandparents told us were actually true. The world used to live around the cities of our civilization in those times. The lives of the sultans, statesmen, scientists, artists and people of spirit who lived in those cities, turned into the tales.
While the works of Ibn-i Sina were taught at all the European universities for over 700 years his city and life were told as a tale.
The astronomy of Al-Farabi, the mathematics of Câbir, the architecture of Sinan, the sociology of Ibn-i Haldun, the music of Itrî, the calligraphy of Seyh Hamdullah as well as their lives featured in tales as legendary heroes circulated worldwide. The tales that fascinated whoever listens were actually the real lives of these heroes.
And we are pursuing the footsteps of these heroes.
Our cities were so beautiful and so impressive that you could only see and imagine them through tales.
That is why Baghdad, Cairo and Isfahan are the cities of the One Thousand and One Nights.
This is why Samarkand, Bukhara and Tashkent are the cities of lore, reason and wisdom.
This is why Cordoba, Granada and Seville are cities of the Ilm-al Kalam, science, wisdom and architecture.
This is why Istanbul is the prince of cities, the capital city and the common city of all tales.
Each and every one of these cities was so beautiful, so prosperous and so colorful and deep as if they were only a city of tale.
And we are in search of these lost cities.
Those tales, those stories no longer take place or come true in our cities. They are like sunken cities. Nothing but the stories of pain, suffering and tears are told in the cities of that glorious civilization any more.
We have an oath for finding these lost cities, for the rediscovery and re-understanding of this lost civilization.
Even though we cannot establish the same civilization again, live the same epic life or find the same heroes, we have to tell our children that we had a proud past.
We are not rootless, we are not pathless, we are not orphans, we are not ignorant and we are not deprived of good manners.
We are the children of a grand civilization that illuminated the humanity for centuries. This is our civilization. We are the children of this civilization. Therefore, we bear the duty for finding, cherishing and keeping alive what we lost.
Above all, we aspire to shoulder this burden and fulfill the obligation.
Both our science and art from mathematics to architecture, from music to astronomy, from calligraphy to literature got lost like our cities.
We have dedicated ourselves to finding, uncovering and sustaining our lost arts, which are as beautiful as a city and as large as a city, with the accuracy, sensitivity and methods of an archaeologist. We are determined to understand, learn and teach our decorative arts such as calligraphy, ornamentation, miniature, marbling, naht, tile, hand-drawing.
We are endeavoring to revive the richness of our Ottoman Turkish, Islamic Art History and art philosophy.
We wish to find divine love, good manners, insight and wisdom in these art forms.
We strive to seek, find and bring to humanity what we lost.
We are inviting you to participate in this effort.
Chairman of BİKSAD