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Our association, The Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana, was invited to particitate in the closing of the 4th annual Buyukcekmece International Cultural and Art Festival. Hundreds of festival participants from 22 nations and an audience of 4500 all were effected by the concert of hymns presented by our choir. Then the Sema Ceremony with its splendid music and the swirling colored robes of the Semazens offered the audience moments of living, divine love. After the ceremony the Mayor Hasan AKGUN presented our association president, Gurcan KAFTAN, a placque in memory of the festival, and insisted that we plan to come back for other festivals and holy days.



The Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana were in the cities of Esslingen and Ludwigsburg 15 and 16 March, 2003. As a result of talks with Seyit Mehmet Sumengen, the president of the Ashure Culture International Essinglen Foundation, 18 members of our association travelled to Germany. During the 2 day trip the Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana were received with closeness and great interest. We were able to be of service to a total of almost 3000 people in the 2 cities where we presented our Sufi music concert and Sema Ceremony. As the present day representative of the Exalted Mevlana, Hasan Çıkar held spiritual talks before and after the programs. Both Germans and Turks who attended where absolutely fascinated by the beauties of God which they encountered h ere. On the evening of Sunday 16bMarch, the Ashure Culture Association Vice President Nami Gul held a dinner for the group. Again Hasan Çıkar talked about the path of love, brotherhood, and peace of the Exalted Mevlana. On Monday 17 March, the group returned to Istanbul.



The Mevlevi Path means service to all humanity. As part of this service, Hasan Çıkar and The Contemporary Lovers of Mevtana are always ready to offer music, the Sema Ceremony , and spiritual talks on the way of our patron saint Mevlana Jelaluddin Rumi.     From February 12 to 17, 2003, twenty-six of our members were in Decatur-Atlanta, Georgia, USA. First of all we were invited by Agnes Scott College to present a Sufi Music Concert and the Sema Ceremony in their 900 seat auditorium (which was full to overflowing) on Thursday, 13, Feb. On Friday Hasan Çıkar and some members also attended a few classes and answered student questions about the Sema, and this path of love. The students were very receptive and their  questions showed their desire and need for more contact with the way and words of love of Mevlana.


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Fifteen members of The Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana were in Sweden from 28 October to 5 November, 2002.  They presented sufi music concerts and the Sema Ceremony first in Stockholm, 2 nights, then down South in Lund.  Returning through Stockholm they went further North to Sundsvall, and then to Umea.  The sun shone most of the trip, making the northern climate more congenial.       The Swedish audiences were greatly impressed by the music and the Sema.  Broadcast and press interviews with Hasan Çıkar touched on Western attitudes towards Islam in regard to the recent terrorism.  Hasan Çıkar's answer included the thought that none of the Prophets would condone terrorism.  Those who use religion for their own aims and twist it for their own benefit are outside the teachings of any religion, any prophet.       Hasan Çıkar also spoke on the peace, love and brotherhood of Mevlana/Rumi and of the unity and Divine Love sought by those following his way.  With the aid of diligent translators Hasan Çıkar also responded to questions from individuals.       It was again a very successful trip.  Afterwards the organizer offerd 1000 thanks in appreciation for the disciplined, professional and understanding manner in which the members of our group handled themselves and presented the program.  There is already discussion of another visit, perhaps to include both Sweden and some neighboring countries this time.



The Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana, a total of 24 choir members and Semazens and Honorary President, Hasan Çıkar, traveled to Bavaria, Germany and participated in The Sacred Music Festival and World Religion Music Festival. Between 17 and 25 May, 2002, the Sema Ceremony and on some occasions also a Sufi Music Concert were presented in 6 venues, most times in churches.       Representative groups from various religions offered their own approaches to God through music and words. The Mevlevi Sema Ceremony was like an oasis of calm and peaceful joy, and the audiences were deeply moved; in place of applause they responded with awed and respectful silence.       Part of the time the Semazens and choir members stayed in the homes of local families who were part of the organization of the festival. Everyone was touched by the hospitality offered; hopefully the families were also impressed by signs of the love and brotherhood of the Exalted Mevlana exhibited by their guests. The group also spent a couple nights in a former monastery, now under the auspices of The Academy of Music.      There was also an opportunity for Hasan Çıkar to give a short conference, describing the Exalted Mevlana's way of love, unity, brotherhood, and peace.

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