The Exalted Ali, the companion and successor of the prophet Mohammed, is the role model for the followers of all spiritual paths. The 21st of March is celebrated as his birthday and this year saw a celebration like never before. In the Cemevi (an Alevi place for gathering/instruction/worship) in Yeni Bosna, on the outskirts of Istanbul, Mevlevi’s and Alevi’s gathered together and shared the joy of celebrating the coming into the world of the gallant, gentle, loyal, courageous Ali. A congregation of over a thousand sat in the ceremonial chamber, waiting expectantly for the things to begin. After a short introduction and explanation of the significance of Ali himself, and of this joint jubilee, by Izzet Dogan, the head of the Alevi group, their spiritual leader, the program began. First, The Contemporary Lovers of Mevlana Association Choir presented a full hour of hymns, most of them composed by our Honorary President Hasan Çıkar and members of the choir. The hymns were all in honor of the Exalted Ali or the Holy Family; they were full of praise of the love and greatness of God shown through these humans who had lived exceptional events. The words of the hymns stressed over and over that the greatness of God is only to be found in the human being; that God is not outside the true human being; that it is only through humans that God surveys and enjoys His creation. After the Hymns a never-before seen Sema/Semah Ceremony took place. The Sema is the turning ceremony of the Mevlevi’s. Turning in ecstatic worship of the Divine has its roots in ancient history, but the Exalted Mevlana took it to himself, and his son Sultan Veled brought it to ceremonial form when he founded the Mevlevi Brotherhood on the thoughts and ideals of his father. The Semah is the turning ceremony of the Alevi’s, those who have maintained the exaltedness of the companion of the prophet, Ali. While the form of these two turning rites are quite different, their essence is the samethe whole universe turns in worship of the Divine, and man can do this too, deliberately. A red-robed Mevlevi Semazen (turning dervish) took his place in the center of the chamber, and five others (three women and two men) in white and colored robes, took their places spaced evenly around him at the edge of the open area. Then about 30 young Alevi’s circled around the Mevlevi’s. Accompanied by the saz (a stringed instrument with a sound similar to a banjo) and a single voice, the Mevlevi Semazens began whirling in place, their right foot propelling them around while they chanted the name of God silently. Around them, the Alevi’s began circling and raising their hands and turning in their Semah. As they moved around the chamber the Alevi’s formed circles around the Mevlevi’s and all turned in joyful celebration. Those outside the circle, sitting , were taken by the purity and rapture of the event, and spiritually they shared in the turning, too. With exuberant cries of Allah Allah’ the ceremony ended. A verse from the Koran was chanted by a Hafiz (one who has memorized the Koran ), and everyone chanted together the Tevhid (a prayer of praise and unity). Then all together prayed the Fatiha (the first chapter of the Koran, the basic prayer), Hasan Çıkar offered a prayer, and the Alevi Dede prayed for the people, the country, and for the unity and brotherhood of all. Ane way of God, all who want to share in the joyful spirit of our path are welcome.