We end our week of music from Turkey, this nation that historically has held public secaularism so dear, with a religious twist. The Melevia Order of Muslims was founded in Turkey by folloers of 13th century Perisan poet Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī, also known as “Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi.” The Mevlevi are “Sufis” — those who practice a “mystical” Islam. They are more publicly known for their spinning dances, as we see in this video, which they do while engaged in the devotional “dhikr.” The term “dervish” can be used to refer to a member of the Sufi movement, or, more broadly, those who have chosen to devote themselves to spiritual service. In this video we meet the “whirling dervishes” of the Galata Mevlevi House in Istanbul.
We hope you had a great, mostly secular, Turkish week. Next week we go further east.