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BY-NC-ND 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter 2021

Adaptation of Buyruk Manuscripts to Impart Alevi Teachings: Mehmet Yaman Dede and the Arapgir-Çimen Buyruğu

Janina Karolewski

Abstract

Today, many Alevis believe that the central teachings of their religious tradition are represented in a book called Buyruk, or Command. In the last decades, some twenty books have been published to make the relevant texts, originally written in the Perso-Arabic alphabet of Ottoman Turkish, available for readers familiar only with the Latin-based alphabet of modern Turkish. However, too little is known about the manuscripts that served as exemplars for these printed works. The Arapgir-Cimen Buyruğu is such a manuscript, however, through its last owner Mehmet Yaman Dede, a religious specialist of the tradition, it can now be understood how variously he adapted its contents for presentation in a published version for community members eager to become acquainted with these writings. It is suggested here that his work on both text and manuscript reflects earlier practices, partly rearranged, however, and that his endeavours must be reflected in light of his life story, and his educational history in particular.

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Munich/Boston
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