عنوان مقاله [English]
Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardebili’s collection is one of the most prominent masterpieces of Iranian-Islamic architecture. The foundation stone of this complex after the death of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardebili in 735 AH / 1335 AD was placed by Sheikh Sadr al-Din Musa - his son and his successor in the Safavid leadership, and was completed in the following periods. This collection should be considered as a treasure trove of dozens of valuable Islamic inscriptions which have been presented in the form of various arts such as tiles, carvings, metal lattice, mosaic, lattice and fuel wood. The Islamic inscriptions can be classified into three groups of verses, hadiths, and allegations. The mention of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” is the most frequent one. But the question is, why is the reason for repeated use of this mention in the collection of Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardebili? Due to the origin and application of the abovementioned collection, the words, including the decree of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali”, can be based on Sufi traditions. Especially since these words were mentioned throughout the period of the Safavid sheikhs and sultans and later on in the language of the disciples mostly Qizilbash, and still in Jutem Alawi-Bektashi Anatolia, Roman Ilya and the Balkans as the heroes of the Safavid Sufism and the last survivors Tahrath Qizilbash is used. Also, the mention of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” is evident in the inscriptions existing in many buildings and Sufi objects from the Mongol era to the contemporary period. This research seeks to rely on historical sources and historiography, archival documents, field observations, and archaeological studies in a descriptive-analytical way, while studying the reflection of the mention of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” as a Sophia’s notion in architecture Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardebili’s collection examines the use of it in the past and present with the disciples of the Safavid tradition.
Keywords: Collection of Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardebili, Sophie’s Words, Qezelbashi, Allah, Muhammad, Ali.
Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili’s collection is one of the outstanding masterpieces of Iranian-Islamic art. This collection is a manifestation of Iranian-Islamic arts from the time of the Sheikh until the end of the Safavid era and even afterwards. Part of these Islamic fine arts have been molded in the form of dozens of inscriptions painted in tiles, stones, metals, woods, and etc. The contents of the inscriptions can be divided into three groups of verses, hadiths and Dhikrs. Meanwhile, the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” in terms of repetition, attracts more attention than other inscriptions in this collection. The question raised in this research is whether the repetition of the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” in the collection of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili is rooted in Sufi traditions? In answer to this question, it is assumed that: Yes, the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” is one of the most famous Sufi’s Dhikrs from the Mongol to the Contemporary era among the Safavid Disciples, and the collection of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili is based on the traditions of Sufi. This research is descriptive-analytic in nature and is based on library resources, archival documents, field observations and archaeological studies. Previously, there has not been an independent research in this regard, and only in some of the research works related to Sheikh Safi al-Din’s collection, such as “ Shia’s arts in the historical and cultural collection of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili” (Yousefi & Golmaghanizadeh Asl, 2010: 186-183), “homily of vahid Afagh “ (Yousefi & Golmaghanizadeh Asl, 2011: 88), “Ardabil: Sheikh Safi’s Tomb”(Zare, 2006: 50, 61), some reports of the inscriptions have been presented. In the works mentioned above, the writers did not emphasize the Sufi nature of the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali”, and they only called it “sacred names”.
“Allah, Mohammad, Ali” in the Safavid Doctrine
The Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” has a special place in Safavid Sufism. This Dhikr has been repeated very frequently in the works of poets related to this Sufism, such as Shah Isma’il Safavi, Pir Sultan Abdal, Ashiq Abbas Tofarqanli, and Khaste Qasem. In one of the sources related to the administrative organization of the Safavid during the era of the Shah Sultan Hussein Safavid, the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” was used in the ceremony of “Ishik Aghassian”. A similar form of such Sufi ceremony is evident in the religious tradition of the “companion” of the communities of Alavi, Bektashi Anatolia, Roman Ili and Balkan. The roots of this fraternity doctrine go back to Safavid era. It is also evident in the monuments of the Ilkhanate era till the Safavid era, such as the Soltanieh dome in Zanjan, Tomb of Zainel Beyg, the son of Ozan Hasan Aq Quiunlu, which was located in Hasankeyf, and Sheikh Amin al-Din Gabriel’s collection located in Kalkhoran village of Ardabil, and Sheikh Shahab al-Din Ahari’s collection. This period is renowned as the period of rising of Sufism in Iran.
“Allah, Muhammad, Ali” in the Tomb of Sheikh Safi Al-Din Ardabili
The Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” is one of the most frequently engraved Dhikrs of the collection of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili. This Dhikr can be seen in the tile works of the dome of the tomb of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili, the Tugh of dome and the tombstone of Shah Isma’il I Safavid, the lattices of the Khānegāh called the Chinese House, the tile works of Janet Sara and Dar al-Hadith, wood carvings of the wooden doors of the library located in the Chinese house, the tombstones of the cemetery of martyrs, and so on. The Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” has also been commonly used in the Tughs and flags of the Safavid period. This Dhikr has also been used in the documents of this era.
“Allah, Muhammad, Ali” in Safavid’s Sunni and Shia
The continuation of the use of this Dhikr is apparent in Shia and Sunni Sharia’s works and objects. However, this Dhikr was most often used in Shi’a Sharia’s societies. In fact, the Sufi Shia in the early Safavid Iran slowly turned into Shia Shi’ism, and the Sufi rituals shifted to rituals of Sharia. This evolution is evident in the form of inscriptions in Safavid and Qajar mosquito carpets (prayer rugs). In these prayer rugs that have had Sharia’s functions, the Dhikr of ““Allah, Muhammad, Ali” was accompanied by Sharia rituals of “there is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the prophet of Allah, Ali is a friend of God, the Truth, the Truth”, or it completely gave its place to other rituals and was removed.
The socio-political conditions that have emerged in Iran after the Mongol invasion have led the Iranian community to Sufism. Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili is one of the most prominent Sufi people of the Ilkhanate era. During the lifetime of the Sheikh and after his death, the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” was popular among Safavid people and was also apparent in the works of the Sufi sect. The most prominent use of this Dhikr in the Safavid Sufi works is the collection of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili. This collection was created after the death of Sheikh by his son, Sheikh Sadr al-Din Musa, which was located beside the Khānegāh and the tomb of Sheikh, and was expanded in the subsequent periods. The Dhikr of “Allah Mohammad Ali” was frequently used in various forms of art such as tile work, masonry, wood lattice, metal lattice, carving, and wood carving, and was also evident in various parts of this complex such as in dome of Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili’s Tomb, the Tugh of dome and the tombstone of Shah Isma’il I Safavid, the Khānegāh called the Chinese House, the Janet Sara, and Dar al-Hadith. In addition to this collection, this Dhikr is evident in other works related to Safavid Sufism architecture such as Soltanieh Dome, Sheikh Amin al-Din Gabriel’s collection, and Sheikh Shahab al-Din Ahari’s collection. Traditions of the Safavid doctrine such as the tradition of confirmation of “Ishik Aghassian” have been accompanied by the recitation of the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” and the communities of Alavi, Bektashi Anatolia, Roman Ili and Balkan, as the keepers of the Safavid Sufi heritage in contemporary times, have continued to use this Dhikr in various doctrines, such as the doctrine of heavenly fraternity, which is called “companion”. This Dhikr is also apparent in the poems of the poets related to the Safavid Sufism, at the forefront of whom are Shah Isma’il I Safavid and Pir Sultan Abdal, and also in the Safavid dynasty system and in their praises, the family tree and the seal of the documents, and the Safavid flags and Tughs. Although the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali” was used in the Sufi sects of Sunni and Shia, the continuation of its use was more apparent in the Shia’s Sufi sect. The Sufi Shia in Iran, in the early Safavid period, gradually turned to Sharia Shi’ism, and its Sufi rituals, including the Dhikr of “Allah, Muhammad, Ali”, were transformed into Sharia rituals.