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Haci Bayram Veli was born and grew up near Ankara, central Anatolia, in a small village Zülfadl, nestled on the banks of the Çubuk stream. There is no record of the exact date of his birth. However, the year 1352 as the year of his birth had been decided upon and as widely accepted, hence that was included in his biographies.

That was based on the number of historians who claimed that he was born two years after the death of Dawud al-Qaysari, and it must have been the 753rd Hijri year [1352. AC]. However, some other historians claimed that he lived for 90 years, which meant that he was born in 740 (1339-40).

The original name he was given at his birth was Num’an. The name Bayram-i was given to him by Hz Abu Hamiduddin (Somuncu Baba) because their first meeting took place during the Kurban Bayram (Eid al-Adha). After their first meeting, he became the disciple of Halwati Shaykh Hz. Ebu Hamiduddin Aksarayi (d. 810/1408), from whom he received instruction in Tasawwuf.

Haci Bayram Veli was educated in the fields of religious sciences such as the interpretation of the Qur’an, hadiths and Canon law. as well as in the natural sciences practice in his time. His desire for knowledge took him across the Ottoman lands, from Ankara to Bursa to Damascus, where he attended lectures by various eminent Sheikhs. Eventually he returned to Ankara and settled down in his home village, From then on, he dedicated himself to the education and upbringing of his students at the Black Madrasa in Ankara, which was the legacy (hayr deed) of Adila Melîka Hatun, Princess of Seljucs. In a short time, at the beginning of his career as a young teacher (Khoja) he became known, respected and loved by the people, and highly respected among his colleagues and superiors in the Black Madrasa.

Haji Bayram-i Veli was a great Shaikh and teacher, as well as a writer and poet. He used to write his works in Turkish, thus significantly influencing the usage of Turkish in Anatolia. He is the founder of the Bayramiye tariqa, which quickly spread throughout Turkey and into the Balkans and Egypt.

He founded a school in Ankara, as well as the Dervish Lodge of his Bajram-i Order. Both were widely known and sought after, and with their curriculum they attracted students from far and wide.

In time, he became a personal adviser to the Ottoman Sultan Murat II. By his famous edict, Sultan Murad Khan exempted the disciples of Haci Bayram-ı Veli from taxes and military service so that they could engage only in science. An episode that happened during one of Haci Bayrami’s working visits to Sultan Murat became legendary.

The topic of the consultations was, among other things, the possible conquest of Constantinople, which they failed to conquer during few earlier attempts. Sultan Murat II, who desperately wanted to conquer this famous city from the hands of the Byzantines, asked Haci Bayram for his opinion. Haci Bayram looked in the direction of the Sultan’s younger son Mehmet, still a small baby, who was not far from them.
Then he turned back to the Sultan and told him that he would not conquer Constantinople, but that the conquest is in the destiny of his son Mehmet. Thus, he famously and accurately predicted that the Sultan’s son Mehmet Fatih would conquer Constantinople, after which he received the nickname “Conqueror”.

Hacı Bayram-ı Veli worked to spread Islam until the end of his life. He died in Ankara in 1429 (H. 833). His tomb is adjacent to the Hacı Bayram Mosque, which is named after him.



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“It is He who is revealed in every face, sought in every sign, gazed upon by every eye, worshipped in every object of worship, and pursued in the unseen and the visible. Not a single one of His creatures can fail to find Him in its primordial and original nature.”

*** Ibn ‘Arabi, “Futûhât al-Makkiyya” ***

Ibn al-‘Arabi, was born as Abū `Abd-Allah Muḥammad ibn Ali ibn Muḥammad ibn al-`Arabi al-Ḥātimī al-Ṭā’ī).
He was a Muslim mystic, philosopher, poet, and writer who came to be acknowledged as one of the world’s most important spiritual teachers. He became known as Muhyiddin (the Revivifier of Religion) and the Sheik al-Akbar (the Greatest Master).
His life can be divided into three periods: his time in the Maghrib (Andalusia and North Africa); time in the Hijaz(Mecca and Medina); and his time in the Mashriq (Anatolia and Syria).


Ibn al-ʿArabī was born in Murcia, southeast Spain, in 1165 AD into the Moorish culture, to the family of a minor official . He was of pure Arab blood whose ancestry went back to the prominent Arabian tribe of Ṭāʾī.
He lived at a time when Andalusian Spain was the centre of an extraordinary cultural flourishing in the West, and at a time of cross-fertilisation of Jewish, Christian and Islamic thoughts.
His contemporaries included Ibn Rushd (Averroes), Abu Madyan, ʿUmar al-Suhrawardi, Ibn al-Farid, Moses Maimonides, and St Francis of Assisi.


Who was Ibn Arabi

There is a recorded story about Ibn Arabi’s birth. The story goes like this:

His father, Shaykh Ali ibn Muhammad ibn Arabi of Spain had no children and he wished to have a son. At the advice of his Wali he approached Hazrat Ghaus E Azam, to ask for his blessings and prayers to be granted a son.
Hazrat Ghaus E Azam said to him: “I have one more son yet unborn, that is written in my destiny. I will give him to you. So, now rub your back against mine and when the child is born name him Muhammad Muhyiddin. He would grow up to be a Qutb (a spiritual leader) of his time.”
The child was eventually born, as Hazrat Ghaus E Azam has predicted, and was named Muhammad Muhyiddin. He became a great philosopher and a great spiritual leader, as well as the greatest and most important Sufi figures in the Islamic tradition. He gained the title of Shaykh al-Akbar and is commonly known as Ibn al-Arabi.

When Ibn Arabi was 8 years old, his family moved to Seville, which was then an outstanding centre of Islamic culture and learning.
He spent 30 years of his youth and early adulthood gaining knowledge in sciences, mathematics, cosmology, linguistics, and theology. He studied the traditional Islamic sciences, Hadith in particular, with a great number of scholars and mystics.
He also travelled a lot, visiting various regions of Spain and North Africa in his quest for knowledge.
During one of these travels, he found himself in Cordoba with his father, who then took him to meet his friend Averroes. The meeting between young Ibn Arabi and the great Aristotelian philosopher Ibn Rushd (Averroës, 1126–98) was quiet dramatic.
It was recorded that after a long discussion in which young Ibn Arabi explained to the philosopher “the limits of rational perception”, the great philosopher was so taken by the mystical depth and a profound visionary capacity as well as a remarkable intellectual insight of the still beardless young lad, that he “became pale and, dumbfounded, began trembling.”


When Ibn Arabi was about 15 yo, he experienced a sudden mystical “unveiling” (kashf) or “opening” (fotuh) of his soul toward the divine realm, by which he was shaken from his carefree existence.
**In the middle of one of these nightly parties in Seville he heard a voice calling to him, “O Muhammed (Ibn Arabi), it was not for this that you were created.” In consternation he fled and went into retreat for several days in a cemetery. It was here that he had his seminal triple vision in which he met, and received instruction from, Jesus, Moses, and Muhammed—an illumination that simultaneously started him upon the spiritual way and established him as a master of it.**

After yet another vision in which he felt he had been ordered to leave Spain Ibn ‘Arabî departed for the Orient in 1200 AD, never to return to his homeland again. He left Spain for good, with the intention of making the hajj. He passed through Tunis and Cairo and made his pilgrimage to Mecca. He settled in Mecca for the next three years, after he “received a divine commandment” to begin work on his monumental book “Al-Fotuhat al-makkiya” (“The Meccan Illuminations”). During that Meccan period he wrote several more books and essays.
But his major work on “The Meccan Illimination” will last for many years, and that enormous book, a personal Encyclopedia, of 560 chapters and several thousand of pages, was finally completed in Damascus, late in his life.
After this period of contemplation in Mecca , Ibn Arabi travelled around Levant and Anatolia for several years, but never went as far as Persia.
Somewhere along his way, he married a widow whose son Sadr-al-Din Qunawi would become his most influential disciple, and to whom he would bequeath his collection of books.
Finally, in 1223. AD he settled down in Damascus, raised his family, educated numerous students, acted as adviser to Sultans and other rulers and wrote a great number of books, till the end of his life.


Ibn ‘Arabi was and still is one of the most inventive and prolific writers of the Islamic tradition, with as many as 300+ books and treatises attributed to him. However, some 110 works were proved to be genuine works by him. The rest of it still needs further consideration. And the most of all, the small work entitled al-Shajara al-Nu’mâniyya fî al-Dawla al-‘Uthmaniyy, the subject of which is prediction concerning the Ottomans (Uthmans)
His works range from short essays to the long thesis, collection of poetry (Tarjuman al-ashwaq , spanning 5 volumes), collections of Prayers, collection of 101 Hadith Qudsi, … to the Encyclopedic “Al-Fotuhat al-makkiya” ( “The Meccan Illuminations”), and a controversial work that is considered his masterpiece: Fusus al-Hikam (The Seals of Wisdom)
Ibn Arabi was firmly grounded in the mainstream of the Islamic tradition. He cited the Qur’an and Hadith constantly and most of his works are firmly rooted in the Qur’an and represent commentaries on these two sources of the tradition.
He was thoroughly familiar with the Islamic sciences, especially tafsir, feqh, and kalām (Islamic theology) and Greco-Roman philosophy (falsafah)]. And he has profoundly influenced the development of Islam since his time onward.

After his death in 1240, Ibn ‘Arabi’s writings (and teachings) quickly spread throughout the Islamic world within a century, and more slowly throughout Western and Christian world.

Ibn Arabi was buried in Damascus, his resting place can be seen in one of the pictures.


And, one of Ibn Arabi’s poems for the end:

“A garden among the flames”
O Marvel,
a garden among the flames!
My heart can take on
any form:
a meadow for gazelles,
a cloister for monks,
For the idols, sacred ground,
Ka’ba for the circling pilgrim,
the tables of the Torah,
the scrolls of the Qur’án.
I profess the religion of love;
wherever its caravan turns along the way,
that is the belief,
the faith I keep.
[by Ibn Arabi]
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Erlik Khan (Erleg Han) – the second son of “Father Heaven” (Gök or Kök Tengri / Tenger Etseg) and his wife “Mother Earth” (Gazar Eej – Etugan), the core deities in Mongolian shamanism.

According to the Mongolian myth of creation, there were three realms, the “heavenly world” and the “earthly world” (each having 9 levels) and the “underground world” (with 9 rivers “); These realms were connected by the colossal “Worlds’ Tree” (Turge) which they considered the center of the worlds. The World Tree supported the sky and thus connected the heavenly world, the earthly world and, through its roots, the underworld. – [“Altan Tobchi” (Golden Abstract), a 17th century Mongolian chronicle]

Kök / Gök Tangrı is believed to be an eternal blue sky, the supreme being and creator of everything, who assigned power to the Khagans, who created and maintained balance in the universe, the nature, the weather and the seasons. While his wife, Mother Earth (Gazar Eej – Etugan) provided support and nourishment on the grounds below.

They had two sons: Ulgen Khan, Lord of the spirits of the upper world and the creator of the world (land) and Erleg Khan, the Lord of the sprits of the lower world. While Ulgen ruled the Realm of Light, Erleg ruled the Realm of Darkness, and they were associated with the black and white shamans, respectively.

Erlik Khan – the deity of evil, darkness, Lord of the Underworld and judge of the souls of dead people, symbolized a destructive aspect of the Universe, as well as wickedness, greed, ambition and all sorts of evil.

He was also the ruler of the Red Hell (Kizil Tamu), the place where the souls of sinful people go to be punished after they die, and where the enemies were sent to dwell in there eternally. According to the Mongolian belief, some of those souls would be reborn again after a time, some would be elevated to the 3rd level of Heaven (Sky) after enduring their punishment, but extremely evil ones would be extinguished forever.

According to Mongolian Tengrism, Erlik Khan does all kinds of malicious things to people, infects humans and animals with epidemics, and sends grasshoppers to destroy crops. Camel, pig, insects, snake, lizard and some evil spirits are his creations, according to the “Myth of the Creation”. He catches spirits of the people killed or the souls of those still wandering the world of the living, and takes them underground to make them his own servants.

By doing these, he forces people to make ritual sacrifices for him. It is believed that if sacrifices were made and if he is satisfied, he will leave people alone for a while.

While sacrifices are made, the head of the animals being sacrificed to Erlik must be turned to the west, because the Gate to the Underworld has the appearance of a crack in the Earth and is situated to the west. He prefers a black bull, or infirm, weak and sick animals to be sacrificed. A horse is never sacrificed to him, but occasionally the Black Shamans (Kara Kam) would sacrifice a black horse to please him.
In addition, if a person is sick and is at the death door, a Shaman performing shamanic ritual will descend into the underworld traveling along the World River (named Dolbor or Engdekit) or by some other mean, to negotiate with Erlik Khan to bring the person back to life. If negotiations fail, the person will die.

Erlik Khan had nine sons, called Karaoğlanlar (“black boys”), and each of them was a deity of some aspect of the Underworld:
1. Karash Han: The god of darkness.
2. Matır Han: The god of courage and bravery.
3. Shingay Han: The god of chaos.
4. Komur Han: The god of evil.
5. Badysh Han: The god of disaster.
6. Yabash Han: The god of defeat.
7. Temir Han: The god of iron and mining.
8. Uchar Han: The god of informants.
9. Kerey Han: The god of discord.
[Türk Söylence Sözlüğü, Deniz Karakurt]


How Erlik Khan ended up being the Lord of the Underworld is explained in the work “Mongol Creation Myth”, as per Ewenki people:

“Long ago Father Heaven had two sons, Ulgen Tenger and Erleg Khan. Ulgen became the lord of the upper world and Erleg Khan became the lord of the lower world.

At that time the earth was covered with water, there was no land. Ulgen Tenger asked the loon to bring up mud from below the water to create land. But, the loon was not able to do so, and he was punished by having his legs broken so he could not walk.

Then, the goldeneye duck was called next to bring up mud for the land. The duck created a small piece of land that Ulgen was able to lay on. Erleg Khan seeing that his brother had fallen asleep on the new land, tried to pull the land out from under him, but instead the land stretched out in all directions as he pulled it.

Next, Ulgen Tenger created animals and humans out of mud and he spread them out to dry. He created the dog to keep watch over the bodies of the new humans while he was gone.

Erleg Khan, unhappy to see that his brother was creating humans, came to see the new bodies. But, the dog would not let him come close.
At that time the dog could talk but had no fur. It was cold, and snowing, so Erleg Khan tempted him, saying that if the dog allowed him to see the humans’ bodies he would give him a beautiful fur coat. The dog agreed, and was given a shiny beautiful coat. Erleg Khan then spat on the bodies so that humans would have diseases and not be immortal.

When Ulgen returned he saw that the dog had fur and that the humans had been damaged, so he punished the dog by making his coat smelly, taking away his voice, and by making the dog follow humans in order to get its food.

However, Erlik Khan has been forgiven, but because of his jealousy and evil ambition, was sent to the underworld to rule there”

References used and for further readings:

• “The Secret History of the Mongols: A Mongolian Epic Chronicle of the 13th Century”
• “Türk Söylence Sözlüğ”, Deniz Karakurt:
• “Altan Tobchi” (Golden Abstract), a 17th century Mongolian chronicle

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