Photo: Bektashi Dervishes from Macedonia by Lę Ó Anton. The Bektashi Order, is named after the 13th century Alevi Wali (saint) Haji Bektash Veli from Khorasan, but founded by Balim Sultan.The order is mainly found throughout Anatolia and the Balkans, and was particularly strong in Albania, Bulgaria, and among Ottoman era Greek Muslims from the regions of Epirus, Crete and Macedonia. In addition to the spiritual teachings of Haji Bektash Veli, the Bektashi order was later significantly influenced during its formative period by the Hurufis (in the early 15th century), the Qalandariyya stream of Sufism, and to varying degrees the Shia beliefs circulating in Anatolia during the 14th to 16th centuries. The mystical practices and rituals of the Bektashi order were systematized and structured by Balım Sultan in the 16th century after which many of the order's distinct practices and beliefs took shape.
I saw the Friend in my dream and I asked,
'Which path will lead me to You?'
He declared, 'You'll find me when you
(Haji Bektash Wali)
'Quarreling with God: Mystic Rebel Poems of the Dervishes of Turkey'
by Jennifer Ferraro (Author), Latif Bolat (Contributor)
This collection presents, for the first time in English, a compilation of seven centuries of the mystic hymns of Turkey’s rebellious Sufi poets — the popular folk counterparts to Rumi whose poems are characterized by a passionate and unorthodox commitment to Truth. At the time Rumi was writing in ancient Anatolia, many other great mystics in the region were also composing wild, ecstatic, and controversial poems that were circulated among the people as spiritual songs and are still played and sung today in sacred dervish ceremonies and gatherings. The poems present a spiritual tradition from the Islamic world that bravely challenged orthodox religion and emphasized universal mystic love and tolerance.