The Whirling Dervish, emblematic figure of spirituality during the Ottoman era, has fascinated the West for centuries. Many erudite works have been published on the doctrine of the Mevleviyye, the Sufi brotherhood founded by Rumi in the 13th century. The life, customs and daily rituals of the dervishes, however, remain unknown.
This study, founded in the career and works of Rumi's major follower Ankaravî (d. 1631), analyzes Sufism during a time when the Ottoman court searches among the brotherhoods for those responsible for its decline.
Ankaravî, an author famous for brilliant and mystical texts and whose influence lasts to the present day, and sheikh of the Galata convent of Istanbul, wrote the “Minhâc’ül-fukara”, masterwork of the brotherhood. It is both a treaty in defense of the Dervishes and a Manual of initiation. Alberto Fabio Ambrosio presents, translates and examines the corpus of texts that allow an understanding of the forms and structure of the customs of Whirling Dervishes. A shining initiation to the history and symbolism of the Mevleviye way.
The AuthorDominican friar and specialist of Turkish history and Ottoman Sufism, Alberto Fabio Ambrosio, lives and works in Istanbul. Fellow of the DOSTI (Dominican Studies Institute), he is also an associated researcher of the IFEA (Institut Français d’Etudes Anatoliennes) et du CETOBAC (Centre d’Etudes Ottomanes, Balkaniques et Centrasiatiques, Paris).
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