Known in English as a Whirling Dervish, this mesmerizing spinning spiritual group is initiated on the Sufi path. They spin as a form of worship, dedication, and discipline. The whirling dance is part is the Sema ceremony and the participants are called Semezans. At the end of the dance, they cross their arms over their chest and bow, this signifies their return to subservience.
Whirling Dervishes and the winds in the southern hemisphere always turn anti-clockwise. A Dervish must take vows of poverty and, similar to Christian monks, live in monastic conditions. Spinning is their way of worshipping God. The four main principles of Sufism are, Repentance, Sincerity, Remembrance, and Love.
Where it all began.
Founded originally in Turkestan (modern-day Kazakstan), the movement moved and grew dramatically throughout India. In the 13th century Persian born Jalaluddin Rumi (1207-1273), a poet and famous Muslim Sufi, started the whirling dervish ceremonies as a form of meditation. At this time, he was living in Konya, the capital of the Selcuk Empire.
Whirling Dervishes are very popular today in Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, and Senegal.
Whilst watching this beautiful spiritual dance many often wonder how a Dervish can continue to spin and not get dizzy. The training takes a long time to perfect. Dervishes slowly increase the number of turns over time the brain becomes less sensitive to the information it receives.
Where can you see the Whirling Dervishes whilst in Turkey?
There are many orders in Konya and this is the most authentic place to see them. They also travel across Turkey from time to time. In Istanbul, there is a famous hall where every Sunday at 17:00 a ceremony can be witnessed. The hall is on Galipdede Caddesi at the end of Istiklal Caddesi.
The richness and diversity that Turkey has to offer are one of the reasons that people visit and ultimately end up living here. If you would like to know more about property in Turkey, we are here to help.
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