TRANS Internet-Zeitschrift für Kulturwissenschaften 17. Nr. September 2010

Sektion 1.6. The Effects of Natural and Cultural Values on Tourism
Sektionsleiter | Section Chair: Turhan Çetin (Gazi University, Ankara, Turkey)

Dokumentation | Documentation | Documentation

The Importance of Mevlana Celalettin Rumi
on the Aspect of Cultural Tourısm

Ufuk Karakuş (Ahi Evran  University, Kırşehir, Turkey) [BIO]




With the industrialization and economical development, the amount of free time people have is also increasing. Daily working hours are shortening, weekly working hours are decreasing and the period of annual holidays are extending. Previously, decreasing working days and hours were being considered as the time of relaxation at home in order to remove exhaustion while in today’s world people want to have holidays in long vacations and to spend the free time of a day in outdoor activities. Tourism has developed sof ast and become an economic sector with the growing wealth with the addition of the quick developments in transportation and communication especially in Western countries.

In parallel with social life’s continuously developing and changing, tourism which improves quickly as a need that can be achieved with the rise of prosperous, besides the economical incomes, improving human relations without discriminating international religion, language, race and country, therefore has important political functions on the aspect of global peace.

Cultural tourism is an important alternative among the actions for diversifying tourism in Turkey. Since the known history of Anatolia, its being on the immigration route on the direction of east and west, many civilizations’ leaving innumerable remainders and every civilization’s influence on the next one have ensured Anatolia to be a very significant location on cultural tourism aspect.

Cultural tourism can be regarded as a new type of tourism including all values that form culture and probably the most important activity that helps people understand each other in the world. On this phase, introduction of the works and doctrines of Mevlana Celalettin Rumi which could provide very important contributions to world common culture and peace is very important. “Come, Come again! Whatever  you are...Whether you are infidel, idolater or fireworshipper. Whether you have broken your vows of repentance a hundred times This is not the gate of despair, This is the gate of hope. Come, come again...” Mevlana who puts forth his philosophy with these words is a philisopher and a reverend serving for common culture. Hundred thousands of native and foreign tourists wondering his doctrines come to Konya and Mevlana sepulcher in order to see  where he lived. And for this thinking style, year 2007 which is his death anniversary has been announced as “World Mevlana Year” by UNSECO.


1. Introduction

Modern life style what we call “urban life” is the leading factor among the most important factors that affect tourism. With the effect of the knowledge we gained through various mass media tools, urban life has accelerated events such as relaxing, entertainment and sightseeing in our short or long free times that ocur in various periods. The crowd in entertainment and relaxing places during the weekdays and the trips from the city centers to rural areas at weekends are apparent proofs (Özgüç, 1994:1)

With the economical developments and industrialization of the countries, spare time of people is also rapidly increasing. According to the results of Dower’s research in 1970 on developed western countries; a person’s annual leave changes according to countries and sectors, but still the average is 3 weeks. If average seven days public holidays and 49 weekends are added, 127 complete days seem to be spare annually. This calculation has been made for a complete day. If half days and evenings are also added to these, the period goes much longer (Dower, 1970). Decreasing work days and hours were primiraly considered as the time for just relaxing at home and getting rid of the fatigue. While most of the daily free time is spent by relaxing in the garden or home, reading, watching television, listening to music and etc, people prefer going to theatres or cinemas, visiting museums and etc. in long free time period. In the longer free time, that is, on holidays, people prefer according to their wish and the season on mountains, coasts, big cities, holiday resorts and etc. Recreation and tourism which include these and many different facilities are described in many different ways.

Several definitions have been made for recreation. M. Clawson who is known with his studies on this topic points that there is no exact difference between recreation and other facilities, and describes it as ‘the concern that differentiates the recreation is not the facility itself but the behaviours accepted to be with it. Recreation might be any facility with no necessity related to itself’ (Clawson, 1972). Highsmith and Northam (1968) put forward the idea that “recreation involves all activities that meet the wish and needs of people in the time that is left after or remaining the work, and so its definition might change according to people”. This opinion is stil acceptable.

Tourism is described in many ways like recreation. The original word “tourism” derived from the French word “tourner” meaning “ to leave willingly the place where somebody resides for a while, and go on a travel and then come back”. While Christaller (1955) describes tourism as “to relax and go on a journey to spend holiday”; Hunziker and Krapf (Özgüç, 1994) have described it as “an entire of relations born out of foreigners’ accommodations and travels which are not connected to the aim of earning money or having a job temporarily or permanently. Today, to make a definition of tourism is quiet difficult. People who were not once considered as a tourist are now seen as a tourist. Namely; organizers, hotel administrators and the tourism sector pick up a sportive group attending to a sports competition as tourists. Furthermore, any kind of scientific activities, business meetings, fair organizations, educational organizations and even the statesmen or politicians formal visits are also considered like this. Like in the concept of tourist, tourism also comes to us with a new different description by improving and changing with any various reason. Cultural tourism is also a tourism type that has improved recently and requires the attention and importance of the countries.  


2. Cultural Tourism

While cultural tourism as primarily described by Blohberger under the headings of “a) cultural meetings, b) visiting historical, cultural and educational centers c) visiting on religious reasons” (Toskay, 1983); today we consider it as a concept that involves more different topics. Cultural tourism is a tourism understanding that serves travellers the natural and historical cultural objects, cultural activities, and up-to-date art works, some socio economic facts in the form of a touristic product. It is a term involving not only historical facts but also up-to-date ones. All kinds of cultural products are under this description such as all urban, rural, natural objects, archaelogical, historical cultural objects, museums, ruins, memorical architectures, civilian architecture examples and any kind of up-to-date art work and activity, (painting, sculpture, movie, photograph, festivals, concerts, exhibitions...) ethnography, botanics, flora and fauna, folklore, kitchen, drinks, some socio economic facts (shanties, non-govermental organizations, religious motives, various study excursion topics...). Therefore alternative sports tours such as insect raising, bird raising, silky way tourism, eco-tourism, direct belief tourism except for the Crusades, private study excursions, geographical excursions, educational tours, congress, fair and exhibition tourism’s pre and post tours are under this content.

We happen to see the word “Cultural Tourism” for the first time in European Commission at the beginning of the 1980’s. That is to say, it is a very new concept; it has been put forward during the studies done to reveal the cultural identity and the cultural heritage of European Union. The researches are still going on. Cultural offer types, positive and negative effects and also the results of marketing types haven’t been searched deeply yet.

As it can be understood from its name, the term culture involves not only the past but also today. Many activities connected to today (concert, exhibition, festival, carnaval, olympic games etc.) are also involved in the concept of cultural tourism. In this case, it will be right to seperate “Cultural Tourism” under the heading of tourism economy into two parts as up-to-date and historical.

Activities play an important role within the up-to-date cultural tourism. We can examine these activities under 5 main parts considering especially the number of viewers:

  1. Local Activities: Performances of various music, theatre groups; painting exhibitions, local activities (water melon, cherry festival, camel wrestling, oily wrestling organizations, funfair etc.;
  2. Small Local Activities: Various trade and industry fairs (International İzmir Exposition etc.), private vocational fairs and exhibitions (bathroom fair, tourism fair, jewellery fair, etc);
  3. Important Local Activities: İstanbul Music Festival, etc;
  4. National Activities: Rio Carnaval, Cannes Film Festival, etc;
  5. International Big Activities: World Cup, Olympic Games, etc.

As we have already explained above, Historical Culture Tourism is based on the principal to show the cultural heritage within the national boarders by the help of a certain touristic organization. And this is closely related to the fact of “possessing the historical cultural heritage” which is formed in the society. The interest of foreigners in this heritage decreases or increases on the extent of society’s possession on this heritage.

In today’s world cultural tourism has become so important that “cultural tourism rules” was prepared in Mexico during the 12th general board meeting of International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) which is a side organization of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the importance of the rules was stressed as:

“Under the general meaning, natural and cultural heritage belong to human beings. To understand, value and protect our universal values is a right and responsibility for each of us.

Heritage is a general word including both the natural and the cultural environment. Sceneries, historical places, sites and built circumstances along with biological variety, savings, past and present cultural traditions, knowledge and life experiences are included. It forms the origin of national, regional and local identities which are a vital part of modern life, by determining and declaring the long periods of historical development. It is a positive means and a dynamic reference point for development and change. As each region or society’s own heritage and social memory is unique, it is an important basic for the development for both at present and in the future.

During this period in which the globallization is increasing day by day, the protection, interpretation and exhibition of the heritage and cultural diversity particular to any place of region is a very important issue for any people in any part of the world. But, directing this heraitage under the frame of international and known suitable standart levels is usually under the responsibility of a specific society or a protective group.

The interaction between the torism and culture has been stressed as:

Besides the ones still continuing from the past to today, it also continues to be one of the leading means which gives individual experience in accordance with others’ modern lives and societies that are domestic and international tourism, and enables the cultural connection. It is being considered as a positive effect gradually for natural and cultural protection. Tourism can use these for protection by catching the economical features of heritage, financing, educating the society and affecting the politics. It forms a main part of many national and regional economy and when directed successfully, it can constitute an important factor for development (UNESCO, 1999).


3. Tourism in Turkey and Cultural Tourism

Turkey, with its history, geography, position, humanity characteristic, is a country which has the high potential levels of tourism. In 2006, it was the 11th country with its 19.816 foreigner tourists and 12.553 billion dollars. With the addition of the money earned from the local tourists, the account is 18 billion dollars(TURSAB). In 2006, according to The World Tourism Organization, number of the tourists was 846 million and the tourism account was 733 billion dollars (UNWTO); so Turkey has to work harder to get more from the tourism market.

In fact, the development of tourism in Turkey is a new phenomenon. The development of tourism in Turkey is the result of the applicated politics after 1980s. 1980s are the years that tourism’s fastest time to develop, and invesment and the highest level of the presentation of bed. Once, Turkey was trying to reach the number of beds that Rhodes had; now, Turkey has become the most promising country where mass tourism is carried out in Eastern Mediterranean with both its bed presentation and demand. There are many 5 stared touristic hotels in south coast of Turkey. Turkey made its choice in that period, leaving the culture tourism phonemenon that was used beginnig time of tourism in Turkey; and started to invest the mass tourism. This term’s new presentation slogan supports these investments; Country of Sea and Sun, Turkey. So, actually how real is this approach? The results of marketting a country which has the higher potential like this can be understood better when we search the tourism account of 2005 and 2006. Especially while the number of tourists have been incrasing in Turkey in the last five years(except 2006), ratio expenses per head have been decreasing.

 The Gulf War started at the beginning of 1990s stopped, even caused to go back the tourism of Turkey. In these years, because of the terror occured in Eastern and Souht East Anatolia, tourism was stuck in a single area. Besides, insufficience of investments, which was made wrongly or exaggerated feasibilities in the past appeared. Whereas in the whole Eastern Mediterranean the general demand is 3 stared standarts, almost all of the investment presentation is 5 stared in South Anatolia. In the recent years, with the rising competition in Mediterranean basin by the attendance of all countries in this region, and with all inclusive system, Turkey markets its 5 star facilities for the cost of 3 star facilities. When foreigner tour operators that make mass torism are added to this by forcing  irrationaly classical cultural tourism, because of the tourists who have low levels of money and culture, the tourists having a high level income and culture started to give up coming to Turkey. The understanding hasn’t changed today. You can see it in official gazette published in 02 03 2007 “Turkey tourism strategy 2023” and “The action plan 2007-2013”. There are 2 main headings in these documents, which creates the main idea. These are “shore tourism” and “alternative tourism”. Under alternative tourism heading there are health and termal tourism, winter sports, mountaineering, mountain tourism, plateu tourism, rural and ecological tourism, congress and fair tourism, curvasier and yacht tourism and golf tourism. In the strategy, culture tourism isn’t given much importance. Even Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism ignores the culture tourism which was once Turkish tourism’s most important source of income.

The situation, achieved in the last 20 years in Turkish tourismis as: In 1988, 339.472 foreigner tourists visited the Göreme open museum. This number was 259.400 in 2000; 257.500 in 2001; 125.600 in 2002. The numbers between 2003-2006 are the total account of both local and foreigner tourists.

1.347.586 tourists in 1988 and 1.187.283 tourists in 1989 visited the Efes Ören place. The same place was visited by 793.679 foreigner tourists in 2000 and 1.007.538 foreigner tourists in 2001.

The ratio of visit to Antalya museum, which is one of the most beautiful museums in Turkey, among the 6.884.024 foreigner tourists entered Antalya is only 1.18 percent.

We can add more examples. Number of foreigner tourists and documents of the real expenses in 1988 and 1989 when culture tourism get its highest point, show that Turkey gets back in cultural tourism.

In the beginning of 2000s the move for the new millennium was a failure. Because the world tourism sector forgot that Turkey was a cultural destination and now they remember it as a cheap destination of sea and sun. In fact, the mistake was such an easy one: Turkey should have used in its introduction both “cultural tourism” and “sea and sun” phonemenon; not just only either of them.

The variety of Turkey’s culture and the variety of things to be presented to culture tourism gives Turkey a high level of potential economical benefit for long years.

In fact, economical benefit is the one side of cultural tourism. On the other side of the issue there is the chance to serve world culture and peace. Little kind of tourism has such a strong impact. Cultural tourism has more income; allows different nations to understand each other; isn’t stuck in a certain time and place and gives less harm to enviroment.


4. From The Wiev of Cultural Tourism: Mevlana Jalal-Ud-Dın Balkhi-Rumi


" Come, come whatever you are,
it doesn't matter whether you are an
infidel, an idolater or a fire-worshiper,
come, our convent is not a place of despair.
Come, even if you violated your swear a hundred times,
come again”



Mevlana Jalal-Ud-Din Balkhi-Rumi

Photo 1: Mevlana Jalal-Ud-Din Balkhi-Rumi


As one can infer from this saying, Mevlana does not seek for race, religion, colour, belief and makes a call for everyone. He, who is an important merit, accepts all people as they are; and tries to tell brotherhood, love and tolerance. His dicipline passes beyond Turkey’s boarders; especially in Afghanistan, Iran, Arabic countries, and Turkish countries, he has become a famous Islam thinker and scholar who gets people to accept love and tolerance. Because of the fact that Mevlana’s sayings are not commended truely, in most of the places he is known there is a mistake that he is considered as a religious man. People who are able to discover Mevlana’s philosophy will see that he is not only an Islamic reverend, but also a world’s inherit who speaks a mutual language. Unfortunately, the west and the east do not know each other. So Mevlana is not known except the groups who are interested in. Definetely the greatest responsibility is on Turkey. Turkey has done lots of works on Mevlana but these are only in Turkey or in Islamic society. Whereas world nations may understand each other and know each other’s culture for the sake of global peace but to create a new world, there is a necessity for merits like Mevlana. Global merits like this makes people get closer to each other. On this aim, Mevlana is an important issue that can be used to develop the cultural tourism. Although this issue is not unterstood properly in Turkey, there are many examples on this isuue in Europe.

One of the best examples of this is that year of 2006 was celebrated as Mozart year, and the activities were done. Mozart was reminisced firstly in Sazburg, Weimar, Wien in most world countries. Activity calender was presented long ago, from Japan to the USA in many countries there were activities.  In Turkey there were lots of displays of artistic and cultural on the basis of this celebration. A country which makes a cultural calendar and shares it with its people, is one of its most important charesterictics. On the other hand, on his 100th birthday anniversary, Elias Canetti who has a Nobel prize was reminisces with many conferences and his works were commended again. When we have a look at other countries, the situation is the same. UNESCO proclaimed 2005 as the year of Cervantes. The 400th anniversary of publishment of Don Quixote was celebrated mostly in Spain, then in all of the hispanic cities. In fact, these kinds of internatonal celebrations seem to introduce firstly Mozart, Elias Canetti and their countries. But they have more important functions. At first, these kinds of activities get people understand each other. Then they bring tolerance and get people to meet on some values to understand each other. Today neither Austria nor Spain can claim that these merits only belong to them.

Another aspect is the economical benefit comes from cultural tourism. If we examplify Mozart again we will understand the importance of the issue.

In 2006, the companies who wanted to earn money from Mozart wind made lots of products on Mozart. There was a competition on this area. Advertisement experts announced that the annual potential of Mozart is 4.5 billion dollars. Still, 25 percent of total classical music sales is just Mozart’s.

In the year of Mozart, 12.000 books were published and this number is expected to increase. Music company brillant classics put on the market Mozart’s work which is 170 cds, and its sales got beyond 70.000. Composer’s country Austria spent 100 million Euros for the year of Mozart. For the sake of this, the country gets more from tourism and copyright. In normal years the worlds total account is 4.5 billion dollars. That year Austria’s profit was nearly the worlds normal account. To earn money on Mozart companies present very creative products. Tiny violin, umbrella, ashtray, golf club, chocolate named Mozart, wine, beer, t-shirt, cap, baby’s goods, coffee cup were sold in many countries. In 2006, 2.5 million Mozart slices of waffle were sold. Austria tourism center manager says that Mozart is Austria’s most successful trademark. According to a research made in Austria Mozart is known far more than Mercedes Benz and Volkswagen. During 2005, in America and Japan, Mozart’s hometown Wien and Salzburg were advertised via media. So the fans of Mozart rushed to Wien and Salzburg. In 2006 the number of tourists who visited Salzburg incrased at a 10 percent rate.


2007, 800th Anniversary of The Birth of Rumiís Logo 

Photo 2: 2007, 800th Anniversary of The Birth of Rumi’s Logo


Mevlana is a vital merit for the cultural tourism. Turkey tries harder than it had never done previously with Mevlana. With this aim, Turkey made an application to UNESCO; then they accepted him as a cultural inherit. Afterwards UNESCO announced 2007 as the year of Mevlana’s 800th birthday anniversary. This is important both for Turkey and other countries. Under UNESCO’s patronage, an important conference was made and in some Europian countries there were presentations of Mevlana. Besides, in most countries there were “Mevlevi ceremony of whirling” performances.


Mevlevi ceremony Mevlevi ceremony 

Photos 3+4: Mevlevi ceremony


These are performed by Mevlevi tariqat which was established after Mevlana’s death which tries to tell Mevlana’s teaching. Ministry of Culture and Tourism gives importance to Mevlana and makes local and international activities. There were great activities in the city of Konya where Mevlana lived for a long time and where his tomb is.


Mevlevi ceremony Mevlevi ceremony
Mevlevi ceremony Mevlevi ceremony
Photos 4–8: Mevlevi ceremony


Mevlana jalal-ud-din-balkhi-rumi was born on 30 September 1207 in Belh city which is today in Afghanistan. Mevlana’s father is one of the belh city’s dignitaries and called “sultan of scholars” named Bahaeddin Veled. His mother is daughter of Belh Imperatival Rükneddin. Her name is Mumine.

Bahaeddin Veled moved from Belh to Nişabur with his family and his close friends in 1212 or 1213, because of closing Mongol rush and some political issues. Later they moved from Nişabur to Karaman. In those years, most of the Anatolia was under command of Seljuc Empire. Konya was the capital of this empire. Konya was decorated with work of art and there were lots of scholars. The empire was on its highest point under the command of Alâeddin Keykubad. Alâeddin Keykubad wanted Bahaeddin Veled to move Konya from karaman and live there. Bahaeddin Veled accepted the invitation af Sultan and on 3 may 1228 he settled down in Konya with his family and close friends. Sultan Aleaddin welcomed him with a great ceremony and gave him Altunapa (İplikçi) Madrasah as a home. Sultan of scholar died in Konya on 12 January 1231. Seljuc palace’s rose garden was chosen as his cemetary. This is the place which is used as Mevlana Museum today.

After Mevlana’s father’s death, his students and followers came to Mevlana and accepted him as their father’s unique inheritor. Mevlana became a great scientist and religious scholar and started to give sermons in İplikçi Madrasah.

Mevlana who summarizes his life as  “I was raw, cooked and burnt" died on 17 December 1273.

Mevlana accepted his death day as his rebirth. When he died he would meet his lover, his god. Because of this call of Mevlana his death day as “wedding day” or "Şeb-i Arûs"which means brides night and he told his friends not to cry after his death.

"Don’t look for our graves on the ground!
Our graves are in the hearts (souls) of wise men…"

After the death of Mevlana who accepts his death day as his wedding day, his son Sultan Veled and his friends established Mevlevî Tariqat; and whoever follows this way is called Mevlevi.


5. Mevlana’s Philosophy and Works

Mevlana does not only talk about religion in his works; he also teaches people around him to become more intelligent and how to be a true and a wise human. His value will be understood much better when his point of view for different events.

Mevlana’s mysticism: Mevlana’s mysticism is never a imaginary idealism. His mysticism is the maturation of human in enlightment, good ethics and love universe. Mevlana always saw the reality of life and accepted all realities of life. He refused sloth and getting rid of life totally and he lived the life inside the life. Hid description of the world gives us his point of view of mysticism. “What is the world? To be afraid of the creator. To earn money, possessions, properties and to do trade are not the world. Water’s existence in the ship is the destruction of the ship. The water under the ship is the hepler of the ship and its sailing.

Love in Mevlana’s mysticism: The meaning of genesis and life is love. The reason of genesis, pursuit of all diseases, remedy of egoism is godly love. “Love is such a thing that when it shines, it burns all except the lover.”

Mevlana’s point of view on human: It must be known that as a believing person, Mevlana’s spiritual duty is to be able to be a handle the people’s forever happiness. With the realization of godly force and spiritual duty: he says “We are like a pair of compasses. One of our feet stand strongly with the belief of Islam, the other walks around seventy two nations.” He has got an unbelieavable tolerance. Let’s give an example on this matter. In a sema meeting Mevlana is performing sema.  Suddenly a Christian drunk man enters the sema. Under an excitement and nervous mood, the man crashes Mevlana. So, Mevlana’s friend hurts the drunk man. Adressing his friends who hurt the drunk man, Mevlana says: “He drank the wine, and you are behaving like a drunk man”. With the aim of introducing the drunk man, Mevlana’s friends reply “He is a Tersa (Christian)”. Implying the second meaning of tersa which is “someone who is afraid of God”, Mevlana says "If he is a tersa, why are not you a tersa?". And friends apoliogise because of their fault. Mevlana has always considered human with a deep view and with an eye full of mercy even if he is sinful or kaffir. Because, as he explained also in his Mesnevi, Allah is with all human beings even if they are sinful or pagan, when they ask for repentance. That’s why, he calls all human beings with joy;

 "Don’t go district of hopelessness, there are hopes
 Don’t go to the dark sides, there are suns".

His point of view on the people: In the sight of Mevlana, whoever he or she is, human being was the first and only thing before everything. It didn’t matter for him whether he or she was from people class or a higher class. On the contrary, he was very merciful to the people. He was behaving conciliatively to the poor. One day, Mevlana went to hamam (Turkish bath). Emir Alim Çelebi, went to the hamam before him and in order to enable Mevlana’s being and staying with his friends in the hamam, he took everyone in the hamam out, then he filled the pool with red and white apples. When Mevlana entered the hamam, he saw that people were hurrying to get dressed in the dressing room, and he also realized that the pool was full of apples. Addressing Emir Alim Çelebi, Mevlana said: "Hey Emir Alim! Are these people less valuable than apples that you took them out and filled the pool with apples? Each of them worths thirty times more than an apple. Aren’t all things in the world and the world itself for humans, but not only the apples? If you love me, tell them to enter hamam back. Let poor or rich, strong or weak people not be outside so that I can enter the pool as their uninvited guest, and relax with the help of them." Although the people around him were sultans, commanders, the rich and the best known people, he always would rather have stayed with poor people and also with the people who needed help. Most of his chelas were those who were looked down. Mevlana’s reply to the people who reproach his chelas is striking. "If my chelas were good men, I would be their chela. I accepted them as chelas because they were bad men, and to change their ethics and to maket hem join the good men”.

His behaviour towards attendants: Mevlana, has also got good ethics in behaving concubines and attendants. One day, his daughter Melike Hatun, behaved badly to the attendant and gave the stick to her. Seeing his daughter’s behaviour, Mevlana asks her "Why are you hurting her? What would you do, if she were the lady and you were the concunine? Do you need to be told that “Nobody except Allah, has not any slaves in the world.” “They are actually all our siblings.”

His treatment towards the guilty people: Mevlana has always had good ethics and forgiver, and he brought the guilty in to society and humanity with his nice understanding and treatment. One day, Mevlana, was praying in his room. Someone came in and said “I am poor and I have nothing”. Realizing that Mevlana was praying and unaware of him, the poor man stole the carpet under Mevlana and went out. One of the people around Mevlana learned about this matter and started to search for this man and found him selling the carpet in the flea market place. Hurting the poor man, he brought him in front of Mevlana. Mevlana told the man who caught the thief: "He must have done this because he needed, this is not something shameful. It is necessary to regard him as excusable and to buy the carpet from him."

Hazret-i Mevlana is the symbol of love and peace: Mevlana is always the consolidative, peacemaker. Two important people were being enemies to themselves and telling bad words to each other. One of them to to the other said: "If you are telling lies, may god kill you", and the other said: "If YOU are telling lies, may god kill you". Mevlana, interrupted them and said "No, no, may god not take any of your’s life. May god kill me. Because we are worth to be taken his life and to be killed." Then two men made peace.

As it can be seen, Mevlana is a man of heart. People in every religion and each nation can find something to take from him. That’s why he is global.

Mevlana’s teaching can be found in these works.

Mesnevi:  Mesnevi is a kind of poem’s name in classical eastern literature. When the same rhythm and in each couplet are in different ryhtme, then it is called Mesnevi. Long issues and stories are told by this way because of easiness in ryhtm. Altough Mesnevi is a kind of a Eastern poem; Mevlana’s Mesnevi is the first thing to remember. Mevlana wrote the Mesnevi for wish of Prince Hüsamettin. As writer of Mesnevi, Hüsamettin said, “Mevlana wrote the Mesnevi while he was walking around sitting even he was performing sema.” Mesnevi’s writing language is Persian language. In the oldest Mesnevi’s copy which was written in 1278 and displayed in Konya Mevlana Museum, the total number of couplets are 25.618.

Divan-ı Kebir:  It is a notebook in which divan poets collects their poems. Divan- kebir means big notebook or great divan. All of the poems that Mevlana said is in the divan. The main language used in Divan-ı Kebir is Persian but there are some poems written in Arabic, Turkish and Greek languages.

Mektubat: Mektubat is a combination of 147 letters written to sultans of Seljuc Empire and the dignitaries of the time. They advise goodness and explain both religious and science issues.

Fihi ma fih: Fihi ma fih means “whatever out there is in” this work is composition of sermons that Mevlana made in different places.

Mecâlis-i Seb'a (seven council): As you can understand from its name it includes the seven sermons of Mevlana to his seven council.


6. Mevlana Museum

Once upon a time, Mevlana museum was a rose garden of Seljuc Palace. Than Sultan Alâeddin Keykubad gave it to sultan of the scholars Bâhaeddin Veled, who is Mevlana’s father, as a present. When Bâhaeddin Veled died in 12 january 1231 he was buried in Shirine where he rests now. After the death of Bâhaeddin Veled the lover of him came to Mevlana and said that they wanted to build a Shirine on the tomb of Bâhaeddin Veled. But Mevlana refused it by saying there is no better tomb other then the sky. But when Mevlana died his son accepted to build a shirine on the tomb of Mevlana. "Kubbe-i Harda (the green tomb) was built.after it was build the restoration did not finished until the end of 19. century.


Photos 9+10: Mevlana Museum


 Mevlevî Dergâhı and the tomb opened as a museum under the name of Konya Âsâr-ı Âtîka Museum" in 1926. Museum’s ezposure and arrengement was investigated again the name of museum is changed as Mevlana museum. Mevlana museum is the most visited museum in by local people. Lately there has been an important demand to visit the museum. According to Konya Tourism Management, total number of tourists who entered Konya is:

  Year 2005  
Local: 1.181.719 foreigner: 346.891 total: 1.528.610
  Year 2006  
Local 1.100.206 foreigner: 291.157 total: 1.391.363


The foreigner tourists come from the nations: 1.Japan, 2.South Korea, 3.Germany, 4.The USA, 5.France, 6.Italy, 7.Holland, 8.Australia, 9. England and 10.Austria (Culture and Tourism  Management Center Konya, 2006).


   Mevlana Museum  Mevlana Museum

Photos 10+11: Mevlana Museum


7. Conclusion

Cultural tourism and Mevlana must be considered under these terms, which are vitally important for Turkey. But we can say that Turkey still hasn’t understood the importance of this issue. Thus, when we have a look at the total number of foreigner tourists arrived in Konya, there is a decrease compared to the previous year but this decrace will leave its place to an increase. If you make a good advertisement in cultural tourism and if you do what must be done you do not live such sudden decreases. Under these terms Turkey should return to cultural tourism and give more importance to Mevlana’s introduction. And Turkey also makes a future tourism plans. In fact we can say if Turkey introduce Mevlana, Turkey’s cultural tourist number will increase. So the countries will know Turkey much better. Thus Turkey can see further as a result of higher level of tourists arrival.

Turkey has to understand that tuorism is not just sea and sun as done for 20 years long. We can earn much more from cultural tourism. Morover cultural tourism is not a rival of mass tourism, on the contrary it is the complementary of it. If Turkey does this, it will stop to market its potantiel on a chaep price. Because the aimed tourism politics cannot be continued longer. If the countries in Medeierranean or others market these, the money will definetely decreace. But in cultural tourism, there is no risk like this. Because no country can market your own cultural potantiel.

In mass tourism, accepted logic is “lots of tourists less price” however in culture tourism you can earn more with less number of tourists. The resource remains and environment polluted less. And you will avoid bad impact of low level tourists.

Turkey should chance to localize the tourism in certain places; should use all cultural merits in Anatolia. This situation make a balanced money distribution and and tourist season distribution during a year.

This will not occur easily in a short time. İt is really a hard work. But Turkey has the potential to do this. Firstly all of the sector should make long term plans and do without compensation. Cultural merits should be investigated. Strategies must be developed how to market these merits. Especially presentation must be on the first place. The people who do not know, you can find sea and sun in other countries.

It has a vital importance to present common merits like Mevlana. These activities and presentation must be done continuously. It is really important that year of 2007 was accepted as Mevlana’s 800th birthday anniversary by UNESCO. This brought important oppurtunities for both Turkey and other countries. But there is not enough presentation done on this issue. Now that the presentations must be countinued non-stop.



1.6. The Effects of Natural and Cultural Values on Tourism

Sektionsgruppen | Section Groups| Groupes de sections

TRANS   Inhalt | Table of Contents | Contenu  17 Nr.

For quotation purposes:
Ufuk Karakuş: The Importance of Mevlana Celalettin Rumi on the Aspect of Cultural Tourısm - In: TRANS. Internet-Zeitschrift für Kulturwissenschaften. No. 17/2008. WWW:

Webmeister: Gerald Mach     last change: 2010-09-08