Researcher and writer (b. February 1937, Dindebol / Ermenek / Konya). He attended primary school in the Bolay district of Taşkent; and secondary and high schools in Konya. He graduated from Ankara University, Faculty of Theology (1961). His master thesis was “Türkiye’de Ruhçu-Maddeci Görüşün Mücadelesi” (The Struggle of Spiritualist and Materialist Thought Turkey). His doctorate thesis was “Aristo Metafiziği ile Gazzali Metafiziğinin Karşılaştırılması” (A Comparison of the Metaphysics of Aristotle and the Metaphysics of Gazzali) (1975). His thesis for associate professorship was “Emile Boutroux'da Zorunsuzluk Doktrini” (The Doctrine of Non-obligatoriness in Emile Boutroux). His professorship thesis was “İlmî Nominalizm Karşısında Konvansiyonalizm ve İlmî Değeri” (The Conventionalism against Scientific Nominalism, and Its Scientific Value, 1979). After working as a teacher at the Teacher Training School of Pamukpınar and Perşembe (1967); and in Ankara İmam Hatip High School (1967-69), he went to Baghdad to conduct studies (1969).
He became an
assistant at Ankara University, Faculty of Theology, Department of Philosophy
after completing his military service. He conducted studies at Paris Sorbonne
University for six months (1979-80). He was promoted to assistant professorship
in 1980 and became the vice-dean in
His first essay (titled 15. Ölüm Yılında İsmail Fenni Ertuğrul - İsmail Fenni Ertuğrul on the 15th Anniversary of His Death) was published in the newspaper Kudret on 29 January 1961. His articles, studies and essays on various issues have been published various scientific, philosophical and thought reviews such as Millî Yol, Eğitim Hareketleri, Töre, Devlet, Sözcü, Diyanet, Türk Yurdu, Türk Kültürü, Hacettepe Üniversitesi Edebiyat Fakültesi Dergisi, Ankara Üniversitesi İlâhiyat Fakültesi Dergisi, Akademik Araştırmalar, Tabula Rasa, Felsefe Dünyası, Felsefe Tartışmaları, and in the newspapers such as Kudret, Tercüman and Zaman. He wrote columns in the newspapers Öncü and Ayyıldız. He is a member of the Institute of Turkish Cultural Studies, the Turkish Hearth, the Turkish Philosophy Association, the Mehmet Akif Thought and Arts Foundation and the Foundation of Union of Theologians. He is also a principal member of the Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan.
He gave numerous conferences, attended in forums, congresses and symposiums; and organized many symposium and forums in Turkey and abroad to improve and spread local philosophical thinking. He also wrote dictionaries and textbooks.
Bolay, who puts that the philosophical thoughts should be spread to large masses although they do not attract all people, especially emphasizes the importance of man. He thinks that man has the will and power to choose; so, as a free entity, the man has a great responsibility. He believes that the source of freedom of humankind is in the humankind’s own soul and he believes that this source can be utilized much better with practice and implementation. According to him, freedom is the independence of soul and mind. The man should emancipate himself from his own aspirations and bonds in order to live freely. Man improves himself by passing through the stages of material, life and intellect. However, during this process, he should take spiritual entities that are not available in the nature into account, and moreover, he should take a spiritualist philosophical thought which depends on these spiritual entities as a basis. Since man grows and lives in a cultural environment and since he is the creator of culture, Bolay has also studied on cultural issues. He defines culture as “giving a meaning and construing”. He claims that there is no ‘cultural mosaic’ in Turkey. According to him, the most significant problem for man is the problem of “confidence” and “security”.
İçki (The Beverage, 1963), Türkiye'de Ruhçu-Maddeci Görüşlerin Mücadelesi (The Struggle of Spiritualist and Materialist Thought in Turkey, with the foreword of Hilmi Ziya Ülken, 1967), Garp Mütefekkirleriyle İslâm Mütefekkirlerinin Mukayesesi (A Comparison Between Western Philosophers and Muslim Philosophers, a simplification of the work by İsmail Hakkı, 1973), Ferit Kam'dan Dinî-Felsefî Sohbetler (The Religious and Philosophical Conversations From Ferit Kam, 1974), Aristo Metafiziği ile Gazzali Metafiziğinin Karşılaştırılması (A Comparison Between the Metaphysics of Aristotle and the Metaphysics of Gazzali, 1976), Felsefî Doktrinler Sözlüğü (A Dictionary of Philosophical Doctrines, 1979), İşçilerimizle Maneviyat Sohbetleri (Spiritual Conversations with Our Workers, 1981), Makaleler (The Essays, a simplification of the work by Ziya Gökalp, 1982), Kur'an Davet Ediyor (The Holy Koran Invites Us, 1984), İlmî Nominalizm Karşısında Konvansiyonalizm ve İlmi Değeri (The Conventionalism against Scientific Nominalism, and Its Scientific Value 1986), Ferit Kam (Ferit Kam, 1988), Emile Boutroux'da Zorunsuzluk Doktrini (The Doctrine of Non-obligatoriness in Emile Boutroux, 1989), Osmanlı’da Düşünce Hayatı ve Felsefe (Thought and Philosophy in the Ottomans, 2005).
Moreover, he has some textbooks.
REFERENCE: Hilmi Ziya Ülken (Türkiye’de Ruhçu ve Maddeci Görüşlerin Mücadelesi kitabının Takdim Yazısı, 1967), Kadircan Kaflı / Ruh ve Madde Mücadelesi (Tercüman, 3.10.1967), İbnutayyar Semahaddin Cem / Ruhçu ve Maddeci Mücadele (İslâm Düşüncesi dergisi, Haziran 1967), Sadık Kemal Tural / Felsefî Doktrinler Sözlüğü (Millî Kültür dergisi, Haziran 1980), İhsan Işık / Yazarlar Sözlüğü (1990, 1998) - Türkiye Yazarlar Ansiklopedisi (2001, 2004) – Encyclopedia of Turkish Authors (2005) - Resimli ve Metin Örnekli Türkiye Edebiyatçılar ve Kültür Adamları Ansiklopedisi (2006, gen. 2. bas. 2007) - Ünlü Fikir ve Kültür Adamları (Türkiye Ünlüleri Ansiklopedisi, C. 3, 2013) - Encyclopedia of Turkey’s Famous People (2013), Hakan Poyraz / Süleyman Hayri Bolay ile “Türk düşüncesi” Üzerine (Türk Yurdu dergisi, Nisan 1991), Sadettin Elibol / Sosyoloji Konuşmaları (1991), Küreselleşme ve Millî Kültür (Dinî Araştırmalar dergisi- Küreselleşme Özel Sayısı, Eylül-Aralık 2003), Hilmi Yavuz / Bir Osmanlı Felsefe Metni Üzerine (Zaman, 4.4.2004), Hakan Akpınar / Felsefenin Yalnızlığı (Tercüman, 12.11.2004), Hilmi Yavuz / Bir Kitap ve Bazı Tespitler (Zaman, 21.11.2004), Nuriye Akman / Süleyman Hayri Bolay ile Sorumluluk ve Kader Üzerine (Zaman, 5.9.2004), Türkiye’de Felsefe (Anadolu Gençlik, Temmuz 2004), Ceyhun Cengiz / Felsefenin Bugünkü Durumu (Abdurrahman Güzel’e Armağan içinde, 2004), Alevîlik Üzerine Bir Röportaj (Türk Yurdu, Alevîlik Özel Sayısı, Şubat 2005).