Sohbet by Sheykh Abdul Kerim el-Hakkani el-Kibrisi

Friday 29 Rabi-ul Awwal, 1427 / April 28, 2006
39th Street Dergah, Manhattan, New York

Medet Ya Seyyidi Ya Sultanul Awliya, Medet.

What did Sultan Mehmet do? What did he do before he conquered
Istanbul? He moved the ships over the mountains. He dragged the ships
over the mountains and he brought them to the sea. That’s why the
Greeks at that time, the Byzantines, were shocked next morning when
they saw the ships, because they never expected that the ships will be
on that side. And if the ships couldn’t enter from that side through
the Bosphorus then it was impossible at that time to conquer Istanbul.
It’s because they put a very big link chain from one side to another
side of the Bosphorus and when they were coming there, they had to
enter through the range point of what we call the Greek Fire. They
were throwing it in the air, it was flying and falling on the ships,
like the kind of today’s cannons, and the ships would start burning.
So it was impossible for ships to come near even to that big chain
link and it was impossible to cut it also.

When they said that to Fatih he said to them, “So if we cannot go from
the sea then what about the mountain? We have a mountain. Move the
ships over the mountains and bring them to the other side.” Everyone
was shocked. He said, “Yes, I am giving order. Tonight everything has
to move to the other side.” And (they moved) seventy-three pieces of
ships, like today’s ships, very huge ones. They cut big logs from the
mountains, they put it on the ground, they brought oil, they put it on
the logs, tied the ships to the soldiers and all these things, they
pulled it on top of the mountain, they dropped it on the other side of
the sea and slowly they entered into the sea overnight. And everyone
was sleeping. In the morning when they (Greeks) saw all the ships on
this side they were all shocks. That was the winning part of the
battle because once you see that they have entered then it is
impossible to stop them. They bombarded the castles from this side and
from every side they were entering and they took over the city.

That happened because the Greeks at that time, the Byzantines, were
becoming weak with their religion. They were holding their religion
very tightly before. When the Turks came in front of Istanbul, the
scholars and all priests came in front of the king of the Byzantines
and they warned him. They said to him, “Make preparations because they
came.” He said, “Who?” They said, “The Turks.” He said, “Are you
joking with me? Twenty-three times they (Muslims) came to conquer
Istanbul. It was impossible to conquer. And these handful of Turks are
going to take it?” The scholars then said to him, “These ones are
different. They are different than the Arabs. They are honoring what
their Prophet said and the Prophet said that this city is going to be
conquered. This one who came, he came with preparations. For seven
generations they are preparing for this and this one came to stay. He
is not going back.” The king got so upset that he put everyone in
jail. All the priests were in jail. Now he doesn’t have the support of
the wise men too. So he was alone with his anger.

Then the Sultan entered and he brought everyone out of jail and he
said to them, “Why were you in jail?” They said to him, “This is what
happened. We said to him that you were coming and he was upset. We
said to him that you will conquer if he doesn’t prepare.” So the
Sultan said to them, “Now I am asking you something. Is anyone going
to conquer this city from my hand? You are the scholars. You knew what
was coming. You said to him that I was going to conquer. So is there
anyone conquering it from me?” They said to him, “Give us three days
to circle around where you are, where your army is and in three days
time we will tell you. So they went out and in one day, within
twenty-four hours time they came back. They said, “It is enough for us
what we have seen. As long as you are a just ruler like this and your
soldiers are like that, it is impossible. No one can take over.”

For seven hundred years no one did, because they were ruling correctly
and the army was just. Seven hundred years later they weren’t allowed
to rule correctly. People wanted to bring democracy and the army
weakened. Istanbul is gone now. It’s in the hand of seculars. It’s not
in the hand of Turks. It’s in the hand of unbelievers. So a second
time Istanbul is going to be conquered, Holy Prophet (sws) is saying,
a second time. In that second conquering we are the ones who are going
to conquer it. Don’t forget this. You are going to remember one day in
front of Istanbul. So this is a message.

(Sheykh Efendi recited some verses from the poetry of Sulayman Celebi
Hazratleri and someone translated it for the listeners.)

“You are at the hand, you are at the tongue, you are at the heart, you
are on top of the head

You are the same age that Fatih conquered Istanbul

My young men, when you take the sign from your grandfathers

You are going to move and the whole nation is going to move behind you

I have brought salam from Ulubatli Hasan.”

Ulubatli Hasan was a soldier. When they first came in front of
Istanbul and Fatih put the first battalion who was going to go, they
didn’t choose Ulubatli Hasan. He was one of the soldiers who wanted to
be the first one to be going, fighting and becoming a martyr. But they
didn’t choose him from the first ones who were going to attack. He was
from the second ones. That night everyone was preparing because next
morning everyone has to go to war. This is not a war like now. They
were going with their lives, running in front of the arrows and
everything. So there is a ninety percent possibility that you are
going to die the next day. So all night long the soldiers were sitting
and reciting the Quran.

The Sultan changed his clothes and he was going from tent to tent to
see how the army was doing, what was their hope and how were they
feeling about the first hitting to the city. He entered into the tent
of Hasan and he was reciting the Quran. As soon as he finished, the
Sultan said, “MashaAllah, you are reciting very good Quran. You must
be very beloved to Allah.” He said, “No, I am not. I know that I am
not because He didn’t choose me from the first ones to go to war.” The
Sultan said, “Well, the Generals must know something and you must
submit.” He said, “Yes, I submit but I am very sad that I am not from
the first ones.” And he (Sultan) said to him, “Who are you?” He said,
“I am a person from this village called Ulubat.” It is not too far
from Istanbul. And he said, “My name is Hasan.” He said, “Who are
you?” The Sultan said, “My name is Mehmet and I am from Edirne.”
Sultan is not saying that he is the Sultan. He said, “I wish to see
you after the war.” Hasan looked at him and he said, “How are you
talking like this? I didn’t come here to live after the war. I came
here to become martyred in the war.” So the Sultan realized it. He
said (to himself), “With these soldiers I am going to conquer this city.”

When the second time they were hitting, he (Hasan) was from them and
he was carrying the flag. The flagmen were going first. They have to
go bringing the Prophet’s (sws) flag to the highest point and put it
high. Once it is up, new electricity generates in the whole army, they
attack and nothing can stop them then. So the one that is carrying the
flag must go first. So all those were running. If a person is carrying
the flag, they have a battalion of army around them too. So when one
is dying, the flag should not fall on the floor. The other one has to
grab it.

Look, (Sheykh Efendi recites another verse in Turkish). Understand
what the meaning is? The poet is saying that just because of one
crescent so many suns are disappearing, they are dying. Ulubatli Hasan
carried it and he went up to the castle and he was holding it. When he
was holding it, hundreds or arrows were coming towards his body. He
was holding but he was falling. He was dying but he was holding the
flag. Then other soldiers were coming and holding and they calculated
that more than fifty people died on top of each other just to hold the
flag up like that. After it stood up, the whole army entered from
every side and the city was conquered.

It was impossible to conquer Istanbul then because it was the biggest
city and it had the most powerful army, with everything they had and
everything they built it was impossible to penetrate through. And they
did it. That’s why when you check the encyclopedia about the conquest
of Istanbul, what does it say? Check 1453 in the encyclopedia in
English and see what it says there. What does it say?

(A murid replied: “The end of Roman rule.”)

It says the end of Roman rule but it’s not saying anything else there
after that. Sultan Mehmet finished the Middle Ages and he opened the
New Age. The beginning of the New Age is 1453. The end of Roman rule,
the Greco-Roman, the Byzantine rule is finished. So everything
changed. The whole world changed turning from the Middle Ages to a new

So that’s Ulubatli Hasan. The poet is saying, “I am bringing you salam
from Ulubatli Hasan”, meaning, get ready to become martyred. (Sheykh
Efendi smiles). That’s what it means.

(Sheykh Efendi then continues translating the poem for the listeners.)

“You also can get rid of the mother’s love, father’s love and all
those you love.” (Meaning, you also can sacrifice these also for the
sake of Allah.)

“So let’s read your legend through the hearts.”
(Show your legend to us. That’s what it means there.)

“It looks like you are not even realizing the value that you are

This history is of Fatih and Selim and Sulayman.

This mihrab is of Cinaneddin and this minaret is of Sinan.”
(Meaning, those people of old who built these are speaking to you.)

“Let’s go and wake up your sleeping legend.”

Hmm. The sleeping legend. Wake up your sleeping legend or they will
wake you up and send you to the other side. Be careful. Everyone
should wake up. This is not a circus. This is reality. (Sheykh Efendi
smiles and everyone smiles with him). Anyone who is with me should
prepare themselves for that. This much is enough for you and for me.