|Volume 6, No 1, Spring 1996|
Part 1 of this article was published in anadolu vol. 5, no. 4, Winter 1995.
The image of the "acceptable Muslim" presented by the "Muslim media" is the one who dresses with the favorite brands and behaves in a "civilized" manner (re-stylization of Muslim identity). Like television channels of mainstream media, talk-shows started appear on "Islamic" television channels which contributes to the presentation of a mediatic/artistic personality as an ideal type. This ideal type reflects a modern consumer identity whose consciousness is under the influence of the process of production and consumption. According to Yıldırım, a review of the Islamic periodicals, television channels, and radio stations will show how consumerism began to be widespread among the religious segments.  Nilgün T. Küçük, based upon her research which compares the characteristics of advertisements in two woman magazines (one advocates modern urban life-styles, the other loyalty to the religious identity) concludes that both magazines are the carriers of a consumerist ideology associated with the consumer society. 
Yıldırım argues that Muslim media plays the role of an instructor in the process in the formation of consumerist identity and consciousness among religious oriented masses because the colors, designs, symbols, and language used in the commercials and advertisements are, to a great extent, impose the attitudes and habits of the modern world. Various aspirations and emotions of individuals are identified with various consumer products. Thus, the leaning to consumption began to be a widespread phenomenon. 
Another influence of the proliferation of media which contributes to the integration of Islamic segments into the consumer culture is that the reader or the audience began to be perceived as a potential customer for the commodities being marketed. Therefore, as a side business to the media company, they established marketing companies. This furthers the process of transforming the audience who share common values into a consumer block.
In this context, the transformation of the tarikat and cemaat structures into holding companies has to be viewed with caution. Instead of talking about the worthlessness of this world (dünya), the şeyh or hocaefendi will begin to talk about the necessity of producing and making profit under the influence of modern market relations. This is obviously an Islamic version of Puritanism which opens the road for secularism. This process will also change the structure of the tarikat and cemaat and lead to the construction of a new hierarchy determined by successful business management and marketing rather than zühd (ascetism) and takva (God-wariness). 
At a time when everything is under the influence of the market, Muslim intellectuals develop their arguments in accordance with what the market demands. Therefore, as we will discuss in this study later, they generously barrow from postmodernist debates in their discussions with the former intellectual center and their criticism of radical Islamic formations and their celebration of tarikats and cemaats. The market value of what they supply (knowledge) has been increased by their criticism of radical and political Islam and their advocacy of civil society based on pluralist projects and democracy. During the process which transforms values into market commodities, they preferred to be called "Muslim intellectuals" rather than "Islamist intellectuals." While they present radical Islam as a totalitarian project, they try to develop socio-political projects which assure peaceful co-existence of different world views and life-styles and celebrate diversity (as in postmodernists).
At this point, I believe that commercialization and consumption of values have great role in explaining the increased popularity of the tarikat and cemaat establishments in Turkey since 1980s. Religious motives are being consumed to get satisfaction, pleasure, and status out of this consumption. For many, affiliation with these establishments do not go beyond the consumption of values. This is the outcome of an effort to channel potential religio-political opposition into safe harbors by reproduction of images. The opposition to the political system has been reduced to the criticism of Kemalism and Turkish laicism; and political demands of religious masses has been reduced to the occupation of some bureaucratic and political positions by "religious" persons.
Being a part of the tarikat and cemaat (without encouragement of any search to the right method and action toward the right goal) has been presented as the guarantee for the paradise by consumerist logic of religiosity. The followers have been encouraged to believe that the books inherited from their previous ustads (such as Said Nursi) and knowledge of their present leader (alim, hocaefendi, or şeyh) are enough to understand Islam and the world. In order to keep the adherents of the cemaat under control, these establishments have benefitted from a closed ideology which provides explanation for all possible questions of the adherents. For gaining public favor and new adherents, they use very general statements in public discourse that can be interpreted in various ways in various circumstances.
Furthermore, the leader is presented as being endowed with some God-given supra-human attributes. Nevertheless, these supra-human attributes are not explained to the audience directly. The use some religious motive causes the receiver to perceive the message. For example, in one of his preachings, Fethullah Gülen explains that, in his dream, he was standing up in front of gates of hell to prevent the people from rushing into it like a flood. In the end, he could not resist and longer and withdrew from the struggle. But Gülen, confident of himself, swears on God that none of those who listened to him as that moment were rushing into hell in his dream.
In an another preaching session, Gülen talked about the loss of the warrior spirit as the cause of the Islamic decline. But Gülen gave good news to his audience: "I was informed, I know that new conquerors (Fatihler), new Grims (Yavuzlar) will come;  I see them among this community." referring to his audience at the time. Gülen's certainty and confidence about being informed is strengthened by the propaganda that Gülen frequently dreams the Prophet and gets his guidance.
The closed ideology in Gülen's cemaat is strengthened by the image of his writings on Said Nursi, considered as the muctehid of the 20th century (even the last muctehid by some) as a source which has answers to almost every issue. Any criticism of Said Nursi's works is not tolerated at all. The followers are convinces that listening to Fethullah Gülen's preaching tapes and reading of Said Nursi's works will strengthened their faiths.
Such a mind set is constricted by the manipulation of the concept of alim to the extent that the desire for free investigation is killed. If a person is not an alim, his efforts will be fruitless to understand Islam. Therefore, it is necessary for an ordinary Muslim to follow an alim to be rescued form the pitfalls of his efforts in understanding the religion. An ordinary person cannot criticize an alim because his lack of enough capacity and knowledge. Therefore, almost all cemaats and many other tarikats encourage their followers to stick with certain works. Moreover, Nurcu cemaats, such as Fethullah Gülen's, argue that a careful study of Said Nursi's works for a complete year will make a reader an alim. o
If the full integration of religious masses to the modern relations of production is realized, the expected outcome would be the adoption of individualist, consumerist, rationalist, and secular value structure of modernity. In this context, relationship of the Motherland Party governments with the tarikat and cemaat circles were not concessions from secularism. Indeed, it was an attempt to construct the "Turkish secularism" without denying cultural features of society.