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Art of War or Art of Word?

Art of war is a struggle for resources by violent means. Art of word is a struggle for resources by peaceful means. Resources are two kinds: energy and information. Energy is food, fuel, matter, space, time, etc. Information is the methods of use of energy, i.e., technology, science, art, religion, etc. For example, bread, grain, and animals are energy, and pastures, fields, and water needed to grow them are also energy. The technology of growing (agronomy, animal husbandry, veterinary science, irrigation science) is information. For example, iron and plastic are the energy. The knowledge and skills required for constructing a car from iron and plastic are information.

Irregular, unequal, and inequitable distribution of energy and information leads to wars, revolutions, and conflicts of different nature. These conflicts can be resolved in two ways: the art of war and the art of word.

Nursi wrote about it at the beginning of the 25th Word. The polytheistic oligarchy of Mecca had two options to silence and subdue early Muslims: war or word.[i] Polytheists were educated, learned, and cultured individuals of their own age, and they thought themselves to be masters of rhetoric, dialectic, and eloquence. However, polytheists chose war, not word.

Early Muslims, on the other hand, were practicing the art of word during the ten years of the Meccan period. They were persecuted, exiled, boycotted, and killed. Their wealth and possessions were stolen and confiscated. They were forced to emigrate.

During the Madinan period, early Muslims started to practice the art of war. This step was inevitable and unavoidable because the history of humankind shows that large-scale, international, and global warfare lasted without ceasing until the end of the Second World War.

The Second World War was culminated and concluded by the invention and use of the most deadly, dreadful, and devastating weaponry of humanity – nuclear arms.

Nuclear weaponry put world powers into a stalemate and starting from the end of the Second World War, there weren't international and global wars, but only local wars on the territories of undeveloped and backward countries and nations. The invention of nuclear arms, two World Wars, and the Caribbean crisis put end to the art of war. Art of war became too dangerous and too costly. Nuclear war does not have winners. Nowadays, world powers and members of the Nuclear Club prefer to “play the war” on the territories of their vassals and satellites, i.e., undeveloped, underdeveloped, and backward countries and nations.

Art of war was the feature and property of agrarian societies and agrarian empires. An agrarian society is the second stage of development. The first stage is hunter-gatherer or nomadic society. The third stage is industrialized society. The fourth stage is information society. The fifth stage is post-information society.

Art of war was the feature and property of agrarian society because the progress of agrarian society depends on the amount and quantity of land and water, i.e., energy, or the progress of agrarian society depends on the control of energy pathways, i.e., trade routes. That is why the energy-poor societies of mountains, deserts, steppes, and wastelands were invading energy-rich societies of river valleys and seaports. The people of river valleys and seaports did not need to invade energy-poor geographies of mountains, deserts, steppes, and wastelands because they had more energy (wealth), and they could just buy them.

Almost all religions, including Islam, were born and formed in agrarian societies. Almost all religions were started in secluded and isolated mountains, caves, deserts, steppes, and wastelands, and later they spread to river valleys and seaports. That is why the rituals, rules, and routines of religion primarily address people of an agrarian society. That is why people of industrialized societies and information societies reject rituals, rules, and routines of “agrarian” religions. Rituals, rules, and routines of religion must be adapted to industrialized societies and information societies.

Religions consist of theoretical principles and practical applications of those principles.

Theoretical principles are eternal, timeless, unchanging, and global. However, practical applications of those principles are temporary, temporal, ephemeral, changing, and local. For example, the four fundamental principles of Islam are Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge.[ii] The practical applications of those principles are called the Five Pillars of Islam.

Testimony is an application of the principle of Knowledge. Alms are the application of the principle of Justice. Fasting is the application of the principle of Compassion. Pilgrimage is the application of the principle of Freedom. Prayer is an application of all four principles. Besides these five pillars, there are many other rituals, rules, and routines of religion.

People of industrialized and information societies see rituals, but they don't see principles. Rituals of an agrarian society that were devised by agrarian society and for agrarian society seem to be outdated and backward to the eyes of people of non-agrarian societies.

Agrarian society lasted for several ten thousand years. Industrialized society lasted for several hundred years. The information society is in existence for several decades only. The social and historical inertia of practices and rituals of agrarian society is enormous when compared to industrialized and information societies. That is why clerics of religion are so slow, inept, and inert to recognize changes and adapt to them.

Being blind to changes, in essence, type, and structure of society, and blindly adopting practices of agrarian society without adapting them is insult, injury, and infraction to religion itself. We must recognize that society has changed from agrarian to industrialized, then to information, and now to post-information society. Religion, at its core, is the search for purpose and meaning by using guiding principles. Clerics who insist on and cling to rituals, rules, and routines of the agrarian age, rob people of the purpose and meaning that religion can provide to them. Therefore, most clerics are robbers and thieves.

On the other hand, there are political Islamists whose mindsets are stuck in the agrarian age and who still think that jihad is the art of war. Hey, dumb, deaf, and blind political Islamists (2:18)! Open your eyes, ears, and minds. Look around. It is not an agrarian society. The agrarian age ended one century ago during the First World War. Therefore, jihad, in this age and time, is not the art of war. Jihad is not the art of war, but jihad is the art of word. Jihad is writing literature. Jihad is producing visual art. Jihad is composing music. Jihad is constructing architecture. Jihad is advancing science. Jihad is inventing technology. Jihad is not your narrow, outdated, and antiquated worldview of continuous warfare and military grandiose. Jihad is building a philosophy of living together peacefully and sustainably. Jihad is not a tool of satisfying your egotistic megalomania and an instrument of masking your inferiority complex.

Jihad is living according to the principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge.

Hey, political Islamists! I despise you and I pray to God to separate me and you like He separated east and west.

Art of war was the practice, tradition, and routine of an agrarian society. Now, we are living during the transition from the information society to the post-information society. The level of technological development made the art of war obsolete, ineffective, and unfeasible. Throughout history, energy dominated information. However, now, information dominates energy. For example, several decades ago the largest companies were the companies that traded energy, i.e., oil and gas, but now the largest companies are trading information. This shows that the art of war became outdated and obsolete. Now, the art of word is in priority and precedence.

Previously, countries that had a lot of energy (land, water, forests, pastures, fuels, minerals, metals, etc.) were considered rich and powerful. However, nowadays, countries that have information and sell information are considered rich. For example, there are many countries that have reserves of oil, gas, and coal, i.e., energy. However, these countries are not richer than Switzerland that has no meaningful reserves of oil, gas, and coal. While other countries are selling energy, Switzerland sells information. The name of this information is “safety, security, and honesty.” The banking system of Switzerland is selling their international customers the product named “safety, security, and honesty.” That is it. Oil-rich countries and undeveloped countries have a deficit and deficiency of “safety, security, and honesty,” and that is why their rich people keep their money in the banks of Switzerland. This example proves that information is more important than energy, and that information dominates energy. This is the reason this age is called Information Age. Therefore, the art of war became obsolete, and the art of word became absolute.

Most clerics and politicians, in the Muslim world, are too slow, stupid, inept, and inert to understand that Agrarian Age ended. That is why people must stop listening and following most clerics and politicians. Clerics and politicians operate by a map of Russia on the territory of Switzerland. The mental map and mindset of most Muslim clerics and politicians were designed for an agrarian society, and these mental maps and mindsets are invalid and inapplicable to the territory and the reality of information society.

What should I do when my map does not describe reality? I should chart a new map that describes reality. If I am stupid, crazy, and mad enough, then I can try to change reality so that reality fits the old map. Stupid people will try to move mountains and oceans to fit them to the map of Pangaea.[iii] Smart people will chart a new map by using basic and unchanging principles.

Clerics and politicians are not the solutions. Clerics and politicians are the problems. Clerics and politicians produce nothing by themselves, and they contribute nothing positive to society except parasitizing on other members of society. Clerics and politicians build cults around their personae. Clerics and politicians must be “dogs,” not “gods.”

A person must be able to decide for herself what to do for this life and the afterlife. Being dependent on clerics and politicians for all steps in your own life is slavery, not freedom.

Clerics and politicians desire war because during wars their value skyrockets.[iv] Clerics and politicians feel important and indispensable during the time of wars. That is why clerics and politicians want and teach the art of war.

Art of word is the cure against the scourge of clerics and plague of politicians. What is the art of word? Art of word is the daily habit of reading (96:3) and writing (96:4).

I chose and I am choosing art of word, not the art of war.

2:111 … Say: “Produce your proof if you are truthful!” [v]

25:30. And the Messenger says: “My Lord! Surely my people have made this Qur’an something worthy of no attention.” [vi] [vii]

-İman isteyen münafık


[i] Said Bediuzzaman Nursi, The Words: On the Nature and Purposes of Man, Life, and All

Things, trans. Şükran Vahide, vol. 1, Risale-i Nur Collection, 2008, http://www.sozler.com.tr.

[ii] İman isteyen münafık, “Justice, Freedom, Compassion, Knowledge,” January 29, 2021,


 [iii] Wikipedia, “Pangaea,” in Wikipedia, May 24, 2021,


[iv] Alexander Libman, “A Small Victorious War: Political Institutions and International Conflict,” 2009, 23; Wikipedia, “The Short Victorious War,” in Wikipedia, September 27, 2019, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=The_Short_Victorious_War&oldid=918216346.

[v] Ali Ünal, The Qur’an with Annotated Interpretation in Modern English, n.d.,

www.mquran.org www.theholybook.org.

[vi] Ünal.

[vii] hypocritewhowa1 hypocritewhowa1, Newspaper or Quran? (Turkish Language), 2021,



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