Rules of Conduct in Mawlawi Order

All visible and invisible creatures sustain their existence according to some visible and invisible rules. Events of life like birth, living and death take place within the framework of these rules.
This series of rules encompassing the universe of creatures as being the work of an all- encompassing mind is nothing but the discipline of a supreme power being the essence and soul of the being. These rules, which we can term as the conduct of Allah, discipline the life like a golden frame, and the life flows toward the eternity by ever unfolding within this channel of order.
As these rules of existence sovereign in each cell of every creature, these rules are also indispensable for individual, family and social life.
Also the religions, which have been the healthiest refuge of human beings, are nothing but a series of rules woven with the thread of orders, prohibitions, and recommendations.
Nothing comes to existence and takes its place in the universe of creatures without rules and cause.
Codes of conduct are an integral part and complementary of the rules of existence.
The Code is to have a good morality, to preserve the modesty, to love the created for the sake of the Creator, and to respect every creature with love
The Code is to know your limits and to behave in conformity with the standards set by the religion, the customs, and the ethics. The moral code should be adopted, assimilated, and diligently applied in every open and hidden action and behavior of us, just like the faith.
Ebu Hafs says, "The beautiful in the outside is manifestation of the beautiful in the inside."
The Prophet Muhammad says, "Allah has endowed me with good morality."
A man with good manners is the one who gathers the most beautiful and divine qualities in himself. The Prophet Muhammad commands, "Adopt the moral code of Allah." In this sense, decency means being enlightened with divine qualifications.
The Great WiSaman Yahya Bin Muaz says, "Whoever adopts the moral code of Allah becomes a loved servant of Allah."
Virtue should be an integral quality of a man that never leaves him until his death, like a nail to a flesh.
Zunnun Misri says, "One who leaves the morality on the path to Allah returns to where he comes from."
Celail-I Basri says, "One who lacks morality cannot have a religion, faith, and monotheism in the real sense."
Ebu Hafs-I Kebir says, "Mysticism is nothing but morality. Every moment, every situation, and every rank has a code of conduct."
Rumi, the non-setting sun of the world of meaning, offers that the meaning of everything, from the harmony in circling of the sky to the religion, the faith, and all the verses of Qur’an hones into the morality.
Let's listen to the Great WiSaman:
"Let's pray Allah to enable us to attain the morality, because the immoral is deprived of Allah's grace."
"Be known that the morality is the soul in the human body."
"Morality is the eye and heart of Allah's men."
"Remember that man is from the high world, not from the low world."
"The beauty in the circulating heavens relies on the morality.
"If you want to overwhelm the Satan, open your eyes and see that the killer of the Satan is morality."
"If a man lacks morality, he is not a human being, because our ancestor Adam said regarding the tiny mistake he made, "My God, we did wrong to our self by eating from the forbidden tree against your order." He found his self-guilty. The difference between the man and the animal is the morality."
"Open your eyes and look at Qur’an, the word of Allan from the beginning till the end! The meaning of all verses of Quran is the morality."
"What is faith, I asked to my mind? The mind whispered to my heart, "The faith is the morality."
"O Shams, you are the divine secret, be silent. The most brilliant of lights that illuminates the night of world is the morality."
"One who lacks morality not only harms himself but also is likely to set fire in the entire world."
"Whatever befell on you from the darkness and grief, it is because of indifference and insolence."
"One is showered with light thanks to the morality. Also the angels are pure and innocent thanks to their morality."
"Those who lack morality are like bulls in the menagerie shop."
"Oh, you Muslim! If you ask what is morality, it is being tolerant to every immorality of every immoral.”
Religions and the sects and orders arising out from the religion are the pathways and carriage that take one to Allah. In order that a path takes you to Allah, it must come from Allah, that is to say it must be of divine origin. The "supreme paths" are the side roads that come from the religion. The paths are many and various. This is because of the diversity in the character of the wise men that paved the paths.
The Mawlawi Order is the leading path. The builder, the guide, and the light of the Mawlawi Order are Rumi who was inspired by the Prophet Muhammad.
Being a school of mysticism, the Mawlawi Order was germinated, blossomed and flowered in the heart of Rumi and offered its fruits to the human beings as moral food, after world food and a recipe of happiness to the human beings in the form of book for mystic teaching.
As everything is bound by a rule, a morality, the Mawlawi Order has its own serious rules and moralities. In the Mawlawi Order, every movement like going to bed, leaving the bed, eating, drinking, entering and leaving a place, talking to someone, swirling, meditating is bound by a rule, a morality, and an act of aesthetic.
The orders are a school of morality and morale. The teaching schools of the orders are the dervish lodges. In the dervish lodges, there are officers at various ranks, led by Sheikh, who perform the assigned duties. They are subject to the asitane, the wise man of the way.
The chief and responsible person of the Mawlawi Order is the Chalabi, the dervish saint.
Before shutting down of the lodges by law, the Chalabi used to reside in Konya City where the mausoleum of Rumi is situated. Having been organized with the discipline of a military division, the Mawlawi Order was managed by the Chalabi jointly with the dervish sheiks, mainly sertarik, appointed by him.
The dervish lodges have been a school of mysticism. Dedicated to the Mawlawi Order, the dervishes learnt Qur’an, the words of the Prophet Muhammad, the Mathnawi (poems of Rumi), and music according to their talent and preference, played reed and swirled, worked on calligraphy, and received training in certain professions like sewing, shoemaking, etc.
In the dervish lodges where there were mescit (prayer room), hall for Sama (dervish music and dancing), kitchen, and bedrooms for dedegan (saintly dervishes), the dervishes were trained with strict discipline and morality and made a member of the society with their hearts full of love.
As it is known, Rumi (alias Rumi) is a member of a Turkish family from Belh. According to the Turkish traditions by which Rumi was raised, the number 18 was considered as a lucky number. With this enthusiasm, Rumi wrote his 18 couplets and offered to Chalabi Husameddin who was his favorite dervish.
With the thought that the number 18 was lucky and prosperous, the services in the dervish lodges were divided into 18 branches.
Each service branch was headed by a dervish according to his status. These were tied to the cook dede, who was to the lodge sheikh, who was to the Rank Chalabi.
Above the Rank Chalabi was Sertarik, who was also a sheikh. Sertarik was in charge of ensuring the conformance of the dedes to the codes of the way and the order of the dergah (dervish convent). Being deputy of Chalabi Husameddin, the Sertarik also facilitates the communication between the Chalabi and the sheikhs of the lodge.
The dede representing the Ateş-baz-i Veli, the cook of Rumi, was in charge of the kitchen, which was considered as a sacred chamber in the Mawlawi Order, together with his assistant dede of the cooking vessel, and was tutor of the dervishes. Beside the kitchen services, they taught manners and good conducts.
There were also chief of mutrips and chief of kudumzens in the dervish lodges. They perform the rituals and train reed and kettle-drum players.
Apart from the foregoing, there are 18 service branches in the dervish lodges, ranked according to their own protocol:
1.            Kazanci dede (saintly dervish of cooking vessel): He is the assistant of the cook dede being in charge of the order and harmony of the lodge. Having a post and authority, the kazanci dede was involved with administration of the lodge and moral training of the members of the lodge.
2.            Caliph dede: He guided and trained novices.
3.            Disari meydancisi (outdoor caretaker): He delivered orders of the sertarik or the chief of cooks to the dervishes in the cell.
4.            Camasirci (washer): He washed the laundry of the dedes and the members of the lodge.
5.            Ab-rizci (water pourer): He cleaned ablution areas and attended the cleaning of the ablution fountain and faucets.
6.            Serbetci: He cooked ceremony sherbet of the candidate dede who completed the penitence and earned a cell. He also cooked sherbet for dedes visiting the kitchen.
7.            Bulasikci (dish washer): He washed and got washed the dishes.
8.            Dolapci (closet keeper): He was in charge of keeping the kitchen utensils clean.
9.            Pazarci (shopper): He went to the market with shopping basket in the mornings and bought the necessary items.
10.          Somatci: He set and cleaned the dining tables and swept and got swept the dining area.
The whirling of dervishes recalls the spinning of the planets in the space of the universe.
Marcel Schneider (French Journalist)
11.          Iceri meydancisi (indoor caretaker): He cooked and served coffee for the members, dedes and guests.
12.          Iceri kandilcisi (indoor candle lighter): He cleaned, prepared and polished the candles of the lodge.
13.          Tahmisci: He roasted ground and prepared coffee of the lodge.
14.          Yatakci: He made, fold up and remove the beds of the members.
15.          Disari kandilcisi (outdoor candle lighter): He was in charge of caretaking and cleaning of outdoor candles of the lodge.
16.          Supurgeci (sweeper): He cleaned, swept and got swept the garden and the surrounding areas.
17.          Ceragci: He took care of the candles of the lodge and assisted the mausoleum caretaker.
18.          Ayakci: He was a kind of errand boy, carrying out the minor services. Novices were assigned with this position.
In the Mawlawi lodges, a dervish who intended to perform penitence was allowed to perform if he was found capable after some tests. During the penitence that lasted 1001 nights, the dervish used to perform all the services in the 18 service branches. As mentioned above, he used to gain qualification in a craftsmanship, attain maturity in service, conversation, dancing, meditation and reflection, endowed with love for Allah, the human beings and the nature, and become a dede in the form of a man of heart, a candle of light emitting light and enlightening the surrounding.
As the end of his penitence approached, the dervish was assigned to the cleaning of the toilets, which is a heavy duty for the self. When cleaning the toilets, the dervish who would become a dede was actually cleaning his self. Indeed, the Qur’an commands "Kill yourself!"
Mysticism is actually a profession of killing the self.
Sufi is the one who abandons the masiva (the earthly things) and joins the convoy of the heart with a clean neart by wearing the virtue rob of his spiritual guide, who runs in the front ranks with faith, love and morals, who becomes drunk with ideas and reflections, who supersedes himself, who dies before actually dying, who attains the eternal living, who achieves Allah's consent, who is the happy servant of Allah.
The way of mysticism is the way of morality and good manners. The spiritual guides, whose number is decreasing gradually, are the guides and candles of this way of light. '
Abdullah Bin Mubarek says "After losing the persons who would earn good manners to us, we have begun to look for the good manners."
They asked to the water, "How can we find you if we lose you?" and the water answered: "From my flowing sound." They asked the same question to the fire, and the fire answered: "From my smoke." They asked the same question to the morality, and the morality answered: "Never lose me, or you cannot find me again."
We should have morals, keep morality tightly and never lose it.

H. Huseyin Top