MEVLânâ celâleddin-i rumi

Amongst the sufi ways, there is one who is recognized globally for its philosophy and prayers, the Mevlevi.

Mevlânâ was not the founder of the Mevlevi tariqa but its essence, its soul and writtings.

Mevlânâ emigrated to Ottoman Empire when he was young with his family. He eventually settled down in Konya. He had influence on Seljuq Sultans to whom he gave religious and scientific advices.

— Kadri Dede, Istanbul, Turkey


Mevlevi tariqa was created by Mevlana’s sons and grandsons during the XIVth century.

The rules to belong to the tariqa are really hard to comply with. 1001 days of daily housework and prayers are required to join the Mevlevi.

With a great influence over the Ottoman Empire’s upper-class, the tariqa has ever been considered elitist.

“Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn’t matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.”

Mevlâna Rumi


Before the sema, dervishes proceed to Asr-I Serif, a lecture of the Quran. They select a naat amongst 400 different musical modes.

During the four salam composing the sema the dervishes are going far above the nirvana. At the end of their spiritual trip, there is only Allah.

— Whirling dervish with one hand up and the other hand down. It signifies that the dervish is just a link and what he receives from Allah, he is forwarding it to the World.


It is complaining about the separations:

I want a heart that is torn, torn from separations,

so that I may explain the pain of this love.

Whoever has been parted from his source;

Seeks to return to the days of origination. »


From the moment we born, we feel this separation. It provokes a sensation of desire and deprivation. In heaven, Mevlevis think that we will be reunited.

— At the third salam, the sheikh (on the right side) and the semazen bashi (on the left hand side) open slightly their dress as a symbol of opening their heart to Allah. The sheikh salutes the center of the circle which represents the center of the universe.


 » Dance when you are broken open.

Dance if you have torn the bandage off.

Dance in the middle of the fighting.

Dance in your blood.

Dance when you are perfectly free. »


— The Semazen bashi is directing the whirling dervishes during their prayer. He keeps his black dress, a symbol of doom, whereas the dervishes wear a white dress, symbol of renaissance.


In Konya, the population is now composed of 99% of Sunni Muslims. Local turuq are rare but tourists and souvenir shops are legion.

« What defines the world? It is about not knowing God. Money, trade and the women are not the world. If you spend everything you earn for religion, this is regarded as « the good » by the Prophet Muhammad. »


“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world.

Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”


DEATH is a wedding day

Mevlevis people believe in travelling souls and refute that man and woman descend from the monkeys.

They attach importance to dreams and

astronomy is one of their preferred sciences.

Mevlana and Mevlevi people consider the day of their death as a renaissance because they are meeting Allah. They think that it should be celebrated as a wedding night, a moment full of happiness and joy.

Mevlana did not want to be buried in a mausoleum. He said « is there a better grave than the heavenly vault? »

« Silence is the language of God,

All else is poor translation. »

– Mevlana Rumi tomb in Konya, Turkey