Who is Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi?

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Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi / photo credit. karar.com

Poet, wise-man, Sufi Mevlana... Who is Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi?

Mevlana connotes to “our master”, while “Rumi” relates to “the land of Rum (Roman citizen)” or “Anatolia” his actual name is Muhammad Jalaluddin.

They named him as Mevlana during his scholarship mission in Konya. In his period Konya was center of Seljuk Empire.

Born – 30 September 1207 Horasan, Belh, Afganistan.

Parents – Sultanü’l ulema(chief scholar) Bahaaeddin Veled and Mümine Hatun.

From Afghanistan to today’s Turkey, Konya..

Migration Travel Turkey Rose the Guide
photo credit: yenisafak.com

Why Mevlana migrated to Konya ?

7 years migration

His father was not in a position to support the family anymore and Mongols’ middle east invasion in 1215–1220 may be another significant reason. 

1212 – Bahaaeddin Veled, his family and disciples leaves the Belh. 

Nişabur – welcomed by sheikh Feridüttin Attar, one of the greatest scholars of time. 

Mevlana pays immense attention to convos of his father and Attar’s . “A sea is falling behind a stream.” says Attar to Veled about Mevlana and presents his book “Book of Mysteries” to Mevlana. 

Mevlana never, ever leaves this book beside.

After Nişabur, they continue to Baghdad, which was the center of Islamic theology and science. Veled couldn’t find what he was looking for there. He decides to do the pilgrimage and flee to Makkah and Madinah. Later they immigrate to Anatolia by passing thru Damascus, Erzincan, Akşehir, Larende (Karaman) 

1225- marriage with Gevher Banu by his father’s will and 2 sons, Mehmet Bahaaeddin (Sultan Veled) and Alaeddin Mehmet.

1228- invited by Seljuk Sultan(Emperor) Alaeddin Keykubat they move to Konya, capital of Anatolian Seljuks.

Mevlana starts his deeper studies, travels many cities for mystic, spiritual education, he can speak Turkish, Persian, Arabic, Greek. 

Completes 1001 day training period 3 times. 

1244 – meets Şemseddin Muhammed Tebrizi(Şems Tebrizi). Şems 60, Mevlana 38 years old.

Conversations with Sems. 6 months mentioned in some sources. Mevlana stops lecturing, seeing his friends and disciples, even won’t read a page of any book. 

His followers deeply envy Sems. Rumours say some of them may threaten Sems.

1245 – Sems leaves Konya 

Mevlana’s grief pushes his son, Sultan Veled to find him in Baghdad and bring back.

1247 – Şems vanishes.

Probably murdered by a group led by Mevlana’s son, Alaeddin.

1273 – Mevlana dies.

“Find me in the hearts of Arif, not in the tombs”

Mevlana Tomb Museum Travle Turkey Rose the Guide
Mevlana Museum and Tomb in Konya, Turkey / photo credit: yenihaberden.com

His last words:

“I wish you to fear God wherever you are, to eat little, to sleep little, speak little, refrain from committing evil, keep your prayers and fasting, and put up with misbehaviour from people. The best talk is little and concise. And all praise belongs to God.”

Şeb-i Arus (7 - 17 December)

“Out beyond the ideas of right-doing and wrongdoing, there is a field I will meet you there. It’s the world full of things to talk about.”

Death is convergence day when man reunites with his beloved, dear God. Not a funeral, but the wedding day. That’s why his anniversary is celebrated as (Persian) Seb-i (Night) Arus (Wedding) on 17 December in Konya with ceremonies. His legacy of love is still living in millions of people’s hearts after centuries.

His love was greater than one nation or continent. He briefs his life in a sentence “I was raw, I roasted and I burnt”. He wasn’t just theology scholar or bookman, but a philosopher  who could fit thousands of pages of thoughts in a sentence, who was opposed to the figure, showing off, making religion difficult, and discrimination, bigotry.

Hundreds of events, seminars, concerts, whirling dervishes performances are held during these 10 days in Konya.

Mevlevi sect

Mevlevi sect was born from the principles of Mevlana and his interpretation to the Islamic belief. However, Mevlana is not a cult founder. After his death, Mevlevism was founded according to an organization formed by his son Sultan Veled and his caliph Husamettin Celebi. Mevlevis were among the biggest supporters of the War of Turkish Independence. They were awarded with the Green Ribbon Independence Medal.

mevlana Whirling Dervishes Travel Turkey Rose the Guide
photo credit: ustatur.com

Mevlevi Sema Ceremony is in UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Understanding Mevlana

He explains love and tolerance so beautiful that it touches not only human mind but heart and soul. He is still an icon of peace and brotherhood today. Love the created for the sake of creator, deny nothing but connect them all.

Servitude is the greatest stage of Islam, a sense of servitude can only be understood through nonentity.

Seven advice of Mevlana

  • “In generosity and helping others be like a river.”
  • “In compassion and grace be like sun.”
  • “In concealing others’ faults be like night.”
  • “In anger and fury be like dead.”
  • “In modesty and humility be like earth.”
  • “In tolerance be like a sea.”
  • “Either exist as you are or be as you look.”

His Books

Mevlana masnawi Travel Turkey Rose the Guide
photo credit: islamansiklopedisi.org.tr

Masnawi: Masnawi is a book of poems in Classical Eastern Literature. Here Mevlana invites us to understand Quran by his poetry.  25.700 couplets and total VI volumes

Divan-Kebir: Divan is a notebook gathering all poems of poets. Divan-ı Kebir means Big Notebook. Mevlana’s poems in various subjects are gathered here. Mainly Persian but has Arabic, Turkish and Greek poems.

Mektubat: Mevlana’s advice to the governors of his time. Envelope in which he answers the questions in the language of speech.   

Mecalis-i Seb’a (Seven Councils): His 7 speeches

Fihi Ma Fih 

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