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Dick Osseman | all galleries >> Istanbul >> Museums - Müzeler >> Aya Sofya > Istanbul Aya Sofya magic in action
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Istanbul Aya Sofya magic in action

Istanbul Aya Sofya magic in action

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From the official site:

"There is a column with a hole in the middle covered by bronze plates at the northwest of the building which was also named as the perspiring column or the wishing column. In some references, it is indicated that this column had become blessed in due course among community. Rumors appeared in East-Roman period that it had a healing effect on humans. The legend has it that, Emperor Justinian wandering in the building with a severe headache leaned his head to this column and after a while he realized that the headache was gone. This story had been heard among the public and the rumor regarding the healing effect of the column got around. Hence, people believed that they would get better if they put their fingers into that hole on the column and then rub them to the place where disease is felt. According to another legend, this wetness is described as the tear of Virgin Mary.

As for the Ottoman period, when the Hagia Sophia was transformed into a mosque, Fatih Sultan Mehmed and his retinue prostrated themselves for the first friday prayer by the imamate of Master Akşemseddin, however, they had no matter be able to start the prayer, since the direction of the building was not faced to Kaaba. There is a rumor that, Deus Ex Machina appeared just at that moment and tried to turn the building to face Kaaba, but he was witnessed by a citizen, so he had to disappear without being able to turn the mosque. As for today, people make their wishes by rotating their thumb a complete clockwise tour inside the hole.

If you are smart enough to know what is meant, do inform me. I think leaning one's head against a cold pillar may help cure a slight headache. But why poor Koreans nowadays have to turn their thumbs inside a hole in that column, because once a Deus ex machina had to leave his role in Greek play to turn a newly conquered mosque is beyond me. And how would a citizen recognize a deus ex machina, and make it disappear?

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enas lotfy 19-Feb-2007 09:05
Hi Mr, Dick

Thank you for your beautiful photos which you took in St. Sophia church at Turkey, and I thank you for this special photo which I was trying to reach it since 3 weeks after my returning back home from turkey.

Our Guid in Turkey told us another story bout this place,
Since my visit to St. Sophia church on 28th Jan, 2007 , I was researching to find any photo of Aya Sofia magic in action but , I failed. I believe that this only one photo on the internet for this place !!!

During our visit to St. Sophia church our guide told us another story of this hall that , the early Christianity were believed that the water or ( the liquid ) which is falling from this hall is the tear of Virgin Mary, It is a miracel.

If you look to this hall carefully , you will see a frame of a big eye.

Pleas reply
enas lotfy 19-Feb-2007 06:56
hi all,
this is the photo of the big miracel I have saw in my life, no one knowes it is the eye of Virgin Mary, if you look at your camira and make your camira on foucas you will see her reall eye with light, please do it , i saw her eye during my trip to turkey this year on 28 Jan. 2007 , it is a miracle.

please read the comment which the person tooke this photoe.

it is the only photoe you can see on the internet . No one have the carrage to write about this matter or to send this photoe too.

please belive me and try to go to turkey to see her beutiful eye and make your wish.

Your truthly friend,

Enas Lotfy
Guest 13-May-2006 16:12
I visited Ayasofya in 1994 and I'm pleased to see the amount of visitors has increased so much. I flew to Istanbul for the sole purpose of seeing it and I spent 3 days exploring every nook of the building and basically had the place to myself. I noticed that unlike when I visited, you can't approach the mosaics now. In 1994 you could touch them! I see that the scaffolling has been removed that supported the dome. The scaffolling has been there for years. Your photos are really excellent.
Guest 14-Mar-2006 07:16
It is an old belief that comes from past Byzantine times that this hole in the column produced some kind of liquid believed to heal some ophtalmic deseases. People tried to extract this magical liquid from the column, hence made this hole in early times, later visitors helped to the hole to get deeper and deeper. To protect the marble column against erosion by people, a brass plate was placed around it, so you can see the circular section in lighter color, how much it had been polished by the hands of the visitors over the centuries. This is one of the numerous tales told about this hole.
Doctor 12-Mar-2006 21:24
Dear Dick,
According to Muslim belief God has sent to many prophets and religions, and has renewed religions when they become out-of-date or destroyed. I think Chiristians also belive that Jewism was the right religion before Christ came. (I am sorry If am wrong) So according to Muslim view Gabriel have alwas been on the side of the God. Muslims also beileve that Christianity was the right religion before it has been changed . And you can also be sure that Muslims love Chirist at least as much as Christians do, Muslims always add a word of respect before they speak about him like Hazreti Isa or Isa Aleyhisselam.(It is also true for Gabriel, Cebrail Aleyhisselam)
But I don't have any knowledge about the story concerning Gabriel. I just wanted to avoid a misunderstanding. May be it was wrong to write such things in photograhy web site. But anyway it makes people meet new ideas.
Thanks for your patience.
Murat Tuzlakoglu 27-Feb-2006 11:07
Dear Dick
Gabriel is also very important for muslims.
And We Muslims Believe Hz.Isa(Jesus) is a propheth.
Different is simple.We believes that Hz.Muhammed is the last propheth
karine 27-Jul-2005 11:51
I was told by our tour guide that if you complete the turn with your hand you can make a wish and if your thumb gets wet while doing this, it will come true..I don't know whether this is correct, but this is how it was explained to us.
Dick Osseman02-Mar-2005 07:05

Nice story, I did not know it and just took a gamble that it would be "for luck". There is a "bocca della veritá" in Rome, a circular face with a large mouth from Roman times. You have to put your hand in and, say, tell your beloved you really love him/her. If you lie, your hand is supposed to come off. I did not try, but saw no blood either. And: I thought Gabriel was pretty big in Christianity, has he switched sides? Why did he not put the building half-way, in a sort of neutral position, just to make a point?
Kindest regards,
Dick Osseman 01-Mar-2005 10:43
before fatih sultan mehmet conquerred istanbul, hagia sophia was a church, and after the victory hagia sophia was restored as a mosque, there goes the story, because every mosque face mecca and hagia sophia has a slight difference, gabriel the angel came and put his finger thru the wall and turn the face of the building to mecca. i did that too but i did not know it s for long life or any kind of luck :)