ORIGINS OF THE DERVISH WAY

“The spiritualism of the Dervishes, differing in many respects from Islam, and having its origin in the religious conceptions of India and Greece, perhaps the information I have been able to collect together on the subject may not be without interest to the reader. Much of this is original, and having been extracted from Oriental works and from Turkish, Arabic and Persian manuscripts, may be relied upon as strictly accurate.”

“Two things must be distinguished among the dervishes – doctrine and institution. The first is nothing else than the Sufism which existed in the East long previous to the coming of Muhammad. Perhaps, if we wish to trace it to its origin, we must go back even to the most remote theocracies of Egypt and India, through the secret schools of the Pythagoreans, and the Neo-Platonism of Alexandria.”

(The Dervishes - J. Porter Brown - London 1868)