Whirling Dervishes, The

Being an Account of the Sufi Order known as the Mevlevis and its founder the poet and mystic Mevlana Jalalu'ddin Rumi

By Shems Friedlander

Series: SUNY series in Islam
Paperback : 9780791411568, 160 pages, January 1992
Hardcover : 9780791411551, 160 pages, January 1992

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Table of contents

Foreword by Annemarie Schimmel

Introduction: Dust on the Path of Muhammad

The Sufi

Neutralizing The Earth's Glue

Mevlana (Our Master) Jalalu'ddin Rumi

The Whirling Dervish Ceremony

The Tekke
The Divine Factory of the Whirling Dervishes

by Nezih Uzel

The Honey of His Counsel

The Phoenix




Sufism is the esoteric aspect of Islam. Its purpose is to convey direct knowledge of the eternal. The Sufis impart knowledge through lineages that go back to the Prophet Muhammud. In these various Sufi orders, the zikr, the repetition of "la illaha illa'llah" (There is no God but God), is part of initiation ceremonies. In fact, the method of the Sufis is zikr, and the manner in which zikr is performed is the essential difference among the various orders. The Dervishes repeat their zikr as they turn. They empty their hearts of all but the thought of God and whirl in the ecstatic movements of His breath.