Mevlana Jelaleddin Rumi
Our transmission and tradition comes to us in an unbroken chain from the Sufi mystic and poet Mevlåna Jelaleddin Rumi. Rumi lived in 13th century Konya, Turkey, which was the capital of the Seljuk Empire. He was recognized as a scholar and a major religious and spiritual leader. He was already a renowned scholar and teacher when his encounters with the mystic, Shems-i-Tabriz, led to the blossoming of his full spiritual light. It was because of Shems that he started writing poetry.
His written legacy is contained in six texts. Three are poetry: the Divan-i Shams-i-Tabrizi – a collection of lyric poems, the Mathnawi Ma’nawi “Spiritual couplets”, and the Rubaliyyat. Three are prose: Fihi ma Fihi “It is what it is” his discourses, Makatib collected letters, and Maialis-i sablah seven sermons or lectures.
Rumi, a Muslim, respected all traditions. At his funeral in 1273, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Arabs, Persians, Turks and Romans honored him. His students and followers have maintained his teachings and practices from that time to the present day. The Mevlevi Order of America is part of that living tradition.
Now, over seven hundred years later, he is America’s best-selling poet, inspiring many with his devotion, love and instruction in human ripening.
Suleyman Hayati Dede
Our Dede was appointed Sheikh of Konya by Celaleddin Bakir Celebi, head of the Order and the 21st lineal descendant of Rumi. Dede visited Europe and America many times, planting the seeds of Mevlana wherever he went. He brought inspiration, compassion, and love to those who met him. In 1978 he sent his son, Jelaleddin Loras, to America to continue the Mevlevi Tradition in the west.
Makam Postneshin Jelaleddin Loras was raised and trained in the Mevlevi community of Konya. Under his father’s instruction he came to America with the tasks of creating centers and training western students. He has spent more than thirty years in this service, exploring and refining how to present the Mevlevi path to the western heart. Today there are Mevlevi Order of America centers across the United States and in Europe.
We are sincere seekers on a perennially modern, and centuries old path into the Divine Mystery. We are concerned with developing ourselves through emotional, intellectual, and physical practices. We respect all traditions which seek to accept the responsibility of humanity to care for each other and our world. We do not condone the use of sacred teachings to justify violence or to further political ends.