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ARVASİ, Seyyid Ahmed

Writer and thinker (b. 15 February 1932, Doğubeyazıt / Ağrı - d. 31 December 1988). He attended primary school in Van and continued in Doğubeyazıt and attended secondary school in Erzurum. He graduated from Erzurum Teacher Training School for Boys and began to work as a teacher (1952). After working as a primary school teacher for three years, he received his diploma from Ankara Gazi Institute of Education, Department of Pedagogy (1958). He worked at Van Alparslan and Savaştepe Primary Teacher Training School and at the Institutes of Education in Balıkesir, Necatibey, Bursa and İstanbul as a teacher of pedagogy. In 1979, he officially retired. He heard on the radio that he had been elected as a member of the Council of General Administration at the Grand Congress of the Nationalist Movement Party, the meeting of which he had not attended, and resigned from his job as “it would not be appropriate to reject this manifestation which had been realized out of ones own control”. In the aftermath of the military coup on 12 September 1980, he was kept in prison with some other leaders of the Nationalist Action Party. He had his first heart attack at Mamak Prison. Although his health condition deteriorated, he continued writing his column for the newspaper Türkiye until his death. He was still writing on his typewriter when he passed away at his house in Erenköy in İstanbul.

Before writing daily anecdotes for newspapers, his articles were published in the newspaper Yeni Düşünce. He was known as Seyyid, a descendant of the Esteemed Prophet Muhammed. He summarized the ideas he defended in an article as: “I am the possessor of the consciousness of the Turkish nation, one who lives by the rules of Islamic belief and values, who desires the great Turkish nation to be pleased and noble in both worlds and who regards Islam as his aim. My understanding of nationalism has nothing to do with racism, sectionalism and a narrow approach of tribalism. I am against any kind of racism, either of minorities or majorities.” (Abdulkadir Sezgin’s article of commemoration, Turkey Culture and Arts Almanac, p. 632-635, 1989). He gained fame and attracted the public attention with his first and second books, Kendini Arayan İnsan (Man Searching for Himself) and İnsan ve İnsan Ötesi (Man and Beyond Man).

WORKS:

ESSAY-RESEARCH: Kendini Arayan İnsan (Man Searching for Himself, 1988), İnsan ve İnsan Ötesi (Man and Beyond Man, second edition, 1988), Diyalektiğimiz ve Estetiğimiz (Our Dialectic and Aesthetic, 1988), Türk-İslâm Ülküsü (Ideal of Turkish-Islam, 3 volumes, 1988), İlm-i Hal (The Endless Bliss), Doğu Anadolu Gerçeği (Reality of Eastern Anatolia), Size Sesleniyorum (I Am Calling Out to You, his articles in the newspaper Türkiye, 1989), Eğitim Sosyolojisi (Sociology of Education, 1996).

POETRY: Sır (Secret), Şiirlerim (My Poems, 1989), Hasbihal (A Friendly Chat, 1991).