Visual poetry animated and directed by Pouya Afshar and Will Kim

This film was made at UCLA animation workshop in 2007. Tanbour by Seyyed Amrollah Shahebrahimi.


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by Party Girl on

Dear Maziar 58:

Semaa is the dance of Sufi dervishes in the Molana school.  It is also referred to as whirling, and those who perform this dance are called "whirling dervishes."  Here's a portion of Wikipedia's explanation about the ritual:

The practice of Sufi whirling (or Sufi spinning),  is a twirling meditation that originated among Sufis, which is still practiced by the Dervishes of the Mevlevi order. It is a symbolic ritual through which dervishes (also called semazens) aim to reach the "perfect" (kemal). They try to desert their nafs, egos or personal [bad] desires by listening [to their master and sufi music], thinking [about God] and whirling which resembles the rotation of other beings such as electrons and planets of the micro- and macrocosmos.


 There are literally hundreds of resources available on the subject, which you can search on the web.  Though the dance is performed in many countries, Turkey's town of Konya is the world center for convergences of dervishes who perform this ritual.

I leave you a couple of clips of the actual dance.  I hope you enjoy them.  I once went to Koyna during the December festivities of Konya, marking Molana's passing or Orooj, which is celebrated by hundreds and thousands of visitors worldwide.  I watched some official and at least one "real" semaa dance performed. That experience remains as one of the most profound events of my lifetime.

 Thanks for asking and enjoy!


and here are some whirling dervishes from Turkey, performing with the Keikhosrow Pournazeri's Shams Ensemble in Tehran last year.  I think you will really enjoy this one!




by maziar 58 (not verified) on

what is semaa ? thanks (BESHNOO ?)