The daf, instrument of the sacred 

Do you know the daf?

Of Kurdish origin, this large circular drum is a musical instrument generally characterized by rings nailed inside its wooden frame.
Today, it is played mainly in the Middle East.
In Sufism, it embodies themystical love*. Rumi, a XNUMXth century Persian poet, celebrated it in his verses:
"The daf said, 'Hit me on my face,
The more you hit me, the more I'll tell you new stories
I am in love and, like lovers, lovable
If you hit me, if you hurt me, I will talk to you like this”. »

The daf, a metaphor for the human condition

It is said that the spherical shape of this instrument represents the Earth and, its rings, the humans who populate it. The sound generated by these small metallic circles knocking on the skin of the daf symbolizes the men and women who knock in vain at the door of God.

Prisoners of their earthly life, beings can only free themselves from their condition through separation. By analogy, the rings are also prisoners of the daf. When one of them breaks away, a soul is said to have gained eternity.

daf player's divine mission

Traditionally, the daf is associated with Kurdish Sufi ceremonies. Thanks to the heady rhythm produced, the musician takes the dancer to the sought-after ecstatic state and allows the intensity of the Zikr* to be maintained. Its role is therefore essential. The daf player sees himself as an intercessor between the visible and the invisible: he makes heard, through the sounds that pass through him, the beating of the heart of God.

The soul of daf

During the ritual of Sufi dance, there can be dozens of musicians. Furthermore, it happens that a daf's skin tears. He then becomes “shahid”, that is to say he served God and joined him as a martyr. In this case, Sufis will hold a funeral to honor his soul.

If the daf is not buried, it will be hung on the wall. In remembrance of the manifestation of the divine. Today, these traditions tend to disappear, but they remain present in the Kurdish villages of Iran and Iraq.

A therapeutic musical instrument

For the Sufis, the daf has therapeutic virtues. If, according to them, its vibrations purify the body and treat pain, they also improve the condition of people suffering from depression or even melancholy.

To treat the “sick person”, the daf players surround him and cover him with a white sheet to protect his soul. These free practices are always supervised by the Sheikh, a spiritual master.

A mystical sound bath

Playing the daf allows you to enter another dimension: the Sufi rhythms all bear names relating to the divine or to nature.
For example, Hay Allah (“God is alive”) is played at the opening of the ceremony. This slow rhythm, punctuated by evocative silences, marks the eruption of the invisible. He thus invites us to welcome the mystery…
Daem ("continuous") refers to the infinite cycle of life but also to the strength that emerges from galloping horses.
Each rhythm takes us on a journey into a story deeply linked to Sufi spirituality.
So let yourself be tempted. Live the experience!

To take an online Daf course: Register
To buy a daf: Buy now

International School of Sufi Dance method Rana Gorgani

Registration deadline June 06, 2024.

Payment facilities are available according to your possibilities.