Today a good friend of mine asked me why I was writing a book about my travels with the Whirling Dervishes. He said, “I remember a woman who joined us on a tour, and was totally not into whirling, taking so many photos, and now you are writing a book, with a website.” At first I thought he was saying that it was pointless. Then he went on to tell me he was proud of me, although he struggled with the words in English. He is the guy on the far right of the back row, Celaleddin Bicer, a famous musician in Turkey.
Because it was there, is the answer I have heard when people were questioned about why they climbed a mountain, crossed a desert, or walked across Antartica. Or I felt called to do it. The desire was so deep I had to do it. To prove I could, and for money and fame. Why indeed?
There needs to be an ending to things, for me anyway. All the photos collected in the six years that I traveled and played with the Mevlevi Order of America, the Whirling Dervishes, had to serve some purpose. Could they just lounge around in my computer, backed up to DVDs, until the day when technology no longer recognized any of these devices? And besides, my teacher David Alan Harvey was famous for telling people, or me anyway, to finish something!
Why I wrote this book is because it was a chronicle of a journey that changed my life. If I had not taken that journey I wouldn’t be here where I am today. So a book was the logical ending of a journey that changed my life. For those that know and care about me it will be a good history of a part of my life that was a milestone. For those in the Order it will be a record of those six years, many of them becoming very close friends to this day. Moments captured by my camera share the ecstatic state achieved by those that practice the turning prayer.
One day the book will disappear from history, a logical consequence of time passing, but for now it is a good thing to do. AND it is almost finished! With the writing anyway, then I have to do the cover, then a color proof, and then…..