This whirling dance of the dervishes is conducted to produce a trance state where the dancers gain meditation union with the Divine. The word 'dervish' is a 'holy man' of the Islamic faith who follows the mystic path of the Sufis. The dervish, Jalal al Din Rumi, was taught whirling by Shams of Tabriz. He was a Sufi poet from Persia was born in Northern Afghanistan in 1207 and wrote 25000 poems of great wisdom and profound spirituality, often based on love and transporting the reader to mystical states. Rashad Field travelled widely through the Himalayas and also studied Sufism in Turkey where he was initiated into the Mevlevi Order of Dervishes. He is the author of a series of esoteric books which are highly recommended for those interested in mysticism.
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