For the past few months, the Mawlawi complex was on top of the list of places I really wanted to visit, but didn’t have the time (or the knowledge) to do it. At last I saw this place with PTP (many thanks to Camel and Timur).
There are some interesting articles on this place, from Touregypt.net, Historical and Architectural aspects of the Cairo Mawlawiya by Giuseppe anfoni (very recommended), I couldn’t find Mai Ziadeh’s article 😦 so if anyone found it plz plz plz share it.
Here is a part I was interested in (copied from the “Historical and Architectural aspects of the Cairo Mawlawiya “):
(p.10) The Cairo sama`khana is one of the last ones built during the ample historic period of the Mawlawi confraternity and the interior space and design are intimately linked with the cosmological symbology represented by the sama` dance. As in other rare examples from this later period, the area assigned to the sama` function is circular. The circle according to the cosmological doctrines of the Islamic philosophers is the expressive synthesis of the cosmos. Over the time the sama` dance has also been defined as a mystic-symbolical interpretation of the movements of the cosmos, according to the speculative elaboration of Mustafa Ya`qub dede and Mehmed Celebi al-Isma`il Rusuhi.
to give you a feeling for what this guy is talking about, here is the design of the sama`khana (also copied from the same article)
I am very fascinated by the Islamic cosmological philosophy (I don’t know if this is how they call it !) It is amazing how the muslim philosophers joined philosophy and geometrical and cosmic sciences to demonstrate their theories.
I really enjoyed this visit, I love PTP for this type of outtings 🙂