There was once a King, who visited the Sage Bahaudin Naqshband, and sat observing his assembly. Afterwards, when they were eating, the King said:
"Teacher of the Age! Your disciples, when you are in Session, are arranged in semicircles, and in an orderly manner very similar to that of my own Court. Is there any significance in this?"
"King of the World! How are your own courtiers stationed? Tell me, and I shall describe the ordering of the ranks of my students.'
'The first arc' said the King, ' is composed of those who are in especial favour with me, so that they are the nearest. The second array comprises the most important and powerful people in the realm, and the ambassadors. The outer rank is for all the lesser ones.'
'In that case,' said the Sage, ' Our marshalling of the people is far from the intention expressed by you. Those nearest to me are the deaf, so that they shall hear. The middle group is composed of the ignorant, so that they may pay attention to the Teaching. Farthest away are the Enlightened, for whom proximity of this kind is unimportant.'
...Seeker After Truth, Idries Shah