This show is also called the festival of whirling dervishes (Sheb-i-Aruz) which includes dance ceremony dedicated to the philosopher and the poet Rumi, founder of the Mevlevi Order, whose followers with Sema dance try to achieve the union with God.
However, Sema is a kind of dance meditation. This ritual often includes singing, playing instruments, dancing, recitation of poetry. The spectacle is impressive.
The festival annually attracts more than a million viewers, it is held in the museum complex “Mevlana”, dedicated to Rumi in Konya, Turkey. Sheb-i-Aruz passes usually in mid-December. Despite the fact that the festival involves a religious ritual of Sema, it is no longer a secular, and admits the presence of tourists.
Your personal experience will likely be full of awe. As these individual men morph into a collective visual symphony, you’ll be struck by the sense of oneness you feel with them and how that transfers to oneness with a higher power. Whether you’re religious or not, you’ll understand what Rumi meant when he said:
“The real work of religion is permanent astonishment. By that I don’t mean in astonishment turning your back on Him. I mean blazing in blind ecstasy, drowned in God and drunk on Love.”
Dates: 10-17 December
Place: Konya, Turkey