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Bektashi World Headquarters

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The Bektashi Way is a mystical path whose goal is to perfect man’s soul. It is the path which guides the believer and brings him to his ultimate goal: closeness to God. As a doctrine originating from Islamic principles, Bektashism has its own interpretation of the Holy Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad and the Twelve Holy Imams. Bektashism respects all monotheist faiths. The late Baba Rexheb presented clearly the fundaments of Bektashi doctrine and history in his well-known book The Mysticism of Islam and Bektashism (Detroit, 1970). History reveals that Bektashism was founded by the Sufi mystic Hajji Bektash Veli in the 13th century. In his time, he had 320 Missionaries who he sent to various places throughout Anatolia and the Balkans. This path developed through a long line of spiritual successors to Hajji Bektash Veli, such as: Balım Sultan, Kalender Shah, Sersem Ali Dede, Turabi Ali Dede, Mehmet Perishan Dede, Hasan Dede, Ibrahim Dede, Halil Hakkı Dede, Hajji Feyzullah Dede, Salih Niyazi Dede etc. This process of growth and mutual exchange, with experiences and positive learning of the time and its values, kept and made richer the Bektashi tradition and throughout the centuries especially between the various ethnic groups and nations that it touched. Because of this continuous process, Bektashism become recognized in the world for its spirituality. By means of their particular hierarchy, Bektashi tekkes (lodges) played an important role in the religious life of various places of the world. Bektashi babas and the dervishes spread their mystical interpretation of Islam throughout Turkey, the former Yugoslavia, Greece, Albania, and even established a presence in Egypt, Iraq and Hungary. From the documentation we known that Bektashis had a main center for preparing their dervishes in the distinguished tekke near the town of Dimetokia (in Greece; now destroyed), where some 400 dervishes studies every year. That tekke had its own library that was one of the richest in the world. It was there also that Bektashism took on its hierarchical structure with its own individuality, making it an important part of history and a spiritual treasure from all the nations of the world. This value can be recognized in the attitude of Bektashis for being forward-looking in their time, place and culture facing the various problems of the world with calmness and tolerance, aiding in the peaceful interaction with all peoples of faith.

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