By: Hamid Raza
DEDICATION

I hereby dedicate this small effort of mine to my great grandmother FATIMA BINTE IMAM MOOSA-E-KAZIM POPULARLY KNOWN AS KARIMA=E-AHLE-BAIT MASOOMA-E-QOM

PREFACE

I belong to a religious family of Subzevar, Iran, who are descendants of Imam Ali Naqi our tenth Imam My forefather Syed Najmuddin Subzevari migrated from Subzevar in 557 (AH) with thousands of army men to North of India, a place later called Nasirabad near Lucknow.. Once they decided to remain in India, they did a splendid job of preaching and practicing the religion known as Shia .Although it was never an easy job, for from the day, the Prophet breathed his last on earth, they were marked men, and to lose their lives because of what they practiced was written on the wall.

The impedance they faced was not only from within the Islamic Ummah but from outside as well Our way of mourning for Ahle Bait who were martyred because of the only reason that they were off springs of Hazrat Ali (AS) or they would not stop preaching the word of God, and practicing what they believed cost them their dear lives. Matam or beating of chests is the best propagation of our religion. We may not realize but the world knows what effect it has, and that is why they try to stop it by hook and crook.

From matam to ziarat which we perform facing difficulties and hardships goes a long way to support the cause of Ahle-Bait. We lack one thing only that our zairin and people who take caravans for pilgrimage do the stereotype ziarat and visit only the popular ones, and forget the less known .This book is written for the sole purpose of introducing those burial sites which are not well known so that those members of Ahle-Bait who are little known are highlighted and proper respect is paid to their graves for it was because of their sacrifices that this complete religion came to us and we have to safeguard it.

This is our gratitude to the more than 13,000 members of Ahle-Bait who lost their lives in the deserts of Iran at the hands of evil forces of Umayyad and Abbasid rulers who never wanted that our religion should remain .

When we start on our pilgrimage we not only should do it for our Imams but try to visit thousands of unsung heroes buried in every nook and corner of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Arabia I have tried my best to advise the locations assisted by Imam Reza Foundation. Now it is for you to find them pray for yourself and your loved ones, and also for me for I provided you the knowledge to you to find their resting place., in each of the shrine that you visit .Please also put some money for the Kafsh-bardars for they take care of your shoes while you are inside and some money in the zarih for the administration of these shrines.

All Naqvis that lived in Nasirabad or Jais a village belonging to my ancestors were offspring of Najmuddin or Najamul Muluk, as he was later known .Shah Wilayat one of his sons was the popular name of Syed Hasan Sharafuddin whose shrine is in Amroha where the scorpions even if placed in the hands cannot bite ,the moment you step out of his shrine the scorpion bites you. One of the great grandsons of Shah Wilayat was Syed Ghairat Ali a real brother of Syed Dildar Ali ,who was later known as Hadrat Ghufranmab founder of an Imambargah in Lucknow and these two imambargahs were constructed similar to each other,

But the imambargah of Lucknow was known internationally as Shame-Gharban was transmitted live from All India Radio Lucknow. My Grandfather was Shamsul-Ulama Syed Sibte Hasan Qibla of Lucknow,( A great Grandson of Syed Ghairat Ali,) who started reciting the present form of majlis before this only Marsia was recited. The title of Shams ul-Ulama was confirmed by the British Government to him , through Viceroy of India in June 1925.He had complete command on the three religious languages Arabic, Persian and Urdu.

Most of his poetry is in Persian. Once in Kerbala Iraq he was asked to address a majlis, and Allama Ardebeli of Iraq said ‘It seems that he is himself not speaking but revelation is coming to him from God’ .Even my uncles and mother have served our cause. My mother Begum Hadi Raza used to recite ladies Majlis and she was the Secretary for Rizvia Imambargah Ladies Wing. A very popular verse of my Grandfather Shamsul-Ulama Syed Sibte Hasan clearly describes the deeds of my family all faithful servants of Aimma-Masoomeen.

Baray shouq se sun raha tha zamana, Ham soo gaye dastaan kehtay kehtay.
HAMID RAZA Karachi, Pakistan

The Holy Shrines in Iran

The B777 was flying from Karachi to Manchester .It was a very clear day and the visibility was more than ten kilometers in Tehran FIR and we were over Damavand mountains in the valley was the sprawling city of Tehran ,its high rise buildings and smog could be easily seen. On the starboard side you could make out the city of Qom with the Gold tomb in the centre, and further right the city of Kashan .

The road to Delijan and the Dam vanishing in the line of sight. Kashan about a hundred kilometers west of Qom has in store many places of religious and historic importance for the would be visitor. For a pilgrim to these places there are two very important gateways i.e. Tehran and Mashhad. We will first discuss entry via Teheran. Before we discuss the important places we should be aware of the mode of available transport in Iran.

Currency

The currency of Iran is Rials. Ten Rials make a Tooman. Normally the prices are quoted in Toomans but the currency notes are printed in Rials. The money changers are locally known as Sarafs and the shops are known as Sarafi. The exchange rates of Banks are much below the existing rate of change and involve more time.

Taxis

Like in every city of the world Iranian Taxi drivers try to fleece the visitor, sometimes to the extent of doubling the price .For instance you hired one to go to Qom from Teheran and come back .He will say Thirty thousand Toomans ,But when you will be back in Tehran he will ask you for sixty thousand ,arguing that you did not understand his language and he was telling you the one way price so it is a good idea to involve some one local who knows the language and bargaining because you need a lot of these skills.

Buses

The Islamic republic of Iran has catered to the Urban needs of population in a big way .Most modern buses with automatic doors ply on most routes and their fare is dirt cheap .For a normal one way journey the fare being charged is 200 Rials or 20 Toomans.

These tickets are not sold inside the bus but on every bus stop there is a cubicle selling these tickets, these tickets are to be handed over to the driver before boarding the bus. .Ladies first give the ticket to the driver then board at the rear. To stop the bus there are electric bells accessible from every where in the bus you press one of these electric bell buttons and the bus stops. For longer journeys like Tehran-Qom Tehran-Mashhad Tehran-Kashan, Qom Kashan Buses are advisable, because their fare is uniform and normally they do not over charge. Taxis have a strong tendency to overcharge and fleece the stranger. The moment he realizes that you are a stranger the charge is at least doubled.

Highways and Roads

Islamic republic of Iran is equipped with the best possible roads and highways, they may not be as good as Germany but they are definitely better than many parts of the World.

TEHRAN.

It is the capital of modern Iran. Situated in close proximity of the Alborz range and its majestic peak Mount Damavand , being the highest in Iran with a height of 18,550 feet ,it is a mega city of about Thirty Million People. Compared to Iran‘s other provincial capitals Tehran is not considered an old city. Little is known about Tehran before 1220 AD, when it along with Rey the ancient capital of East Media and now the resting place of Shah Abdul Azeem .was razed to ground by the Mongol invaders.
Tehran remained relatively unimportant until the end of the 18th century when it was made the capital by Agha Mohammed Khan, the founder of the Qajar Dynasty, who was crowned here in 1795.

He was succeeded by Fath-Ali Shah who built the Golestan Palace Tehran was located within the mud walls of Arg or citadel and had many gates, the last of which still remains today with the decorative gate of Bagh-e-Melli in the administrative section of the capital. Today ,it is a modern metropolis ,a magnet for tourists and hub of a great culture with its numerous museums including the superb Archaeological Museum, with its prehistoric ,historic and Islamic sections ,the Abguineh Glass and the Reza Abbasi Calligraphy Museums ,and also the several museums housed on the Saadabad Palace grounds plus the State Jewels of Iran which holds one of the most fabulous collections of treasures in the world.

The Iranian still identifies with the bazaar as a place that is traditional, vital and truly Persian, and Tehran boasts one of the richest and longest bazaars in Iran with six miles of covered passages.

Places of religious Interest are:-

Imamzadeh Saleh

This son of Imam Moosae Kazim and brother of Imam Reza (AS) is buried near the bus Terminal of Shimran popularly known as Tajresh. .On the nights of religious importance people come and light candles on the wall facing the shrine, with the belief that if the candles remains perched on the slant section of the wall and continues burning then you can be sure that your wish will be granted.

It is overlooking the peak of Mount Damavand and in winter this place is very cold compared to Tehran itself with the peak covered in snow and cold winds blowing from it .It also has a tree very ancient and sometimes when the shrine is very crowded people just hold the tree and tell it their wish.

Imamzadeh Qasim.

From the shrine of Imamzadeh Saleh taxis take people to the foot of Damavand here is the shrine of Imamzadeh Qasim. As the legend goes,Qasim ibn Imam Hassan’s son severed head was sent to the city of Ray ,in order to terrify the people of Ray and afterwards his head was buried here .In my humble opinion Qasim body was shattered by the hoofs of the horses and whatever was left of his sacred body was buried in Ganj-e-Shaheedan in Kerbala.

Teheran has five bus terminals for local buses, namely

1)Azadi
2)Faiz Bux
3) South
4) West
5)Beihaghi

SHAH ABDUL AZEEM

If you travel to terminal South you can easily arrive at the Bus stop for Shehre Ray. This was the city for whose Governorate Omer-ibn-Saad was promised .This bus will Take you to another bus stop from where you take the bus to Shah-Abdul Azeem .This bus will bring you within walking distance of the shrine.This shrine though known as Abdul Azeem also houses the graves of Imamzadeh Tahir bin Imam Zainul-Abedin it is a known fact that his body was uncovered after a period of 1300 years and was found to be as fresh as buried yesterday ,this is related in his ziarat also, and Imamzadeh Hamza who is buried just adjacent to Shah Abdul Azeem.

He was the son of Imam Moosa-e-Kazim .According to my own research Shah Abdul azeem was the son of Abdullah Shah Ghazi of Karachi. His family tree has Abdullah as his father and he is known to have descended from Imam Hassan. Abdullah Shah Ghazi also is a descendent of Imam Hassan .It has been reported in many books, that if someone offers Ziarat to Shah Abdul Azeem it is as he offered Ziarat to Imam Husain In Kerbala.

Imamzadeh Hamza

Just adjacent to Shah Abdul Azeem is the zarih of Imamzadeh Hamza.He was the son of Imam Moosa-e-Kazim. There is hardly any distance between the two graves.

Imamzadeh Tahir

He is the direct descendant of Imam Zainul-Abedin.His rowza is located in the city of Ray near Shah Abdul Azeem.in the Qajar era Masood Mirza ruler of Isfahan, Qom and Kashan decided to renew the building on his grave.During the renovation work it so happened that the actual grave became visible and the body of Imamzadeh was revealed after hundreds of years but in a condition as if he was buried yesterday.

Astana Bibi Shehr Bano.

About three four kilometers from Shah Abdul Azeem on a high ground Astana Bibi Shehr Bano. On the ground level there is a cave which according to legends was the place where Zuljinah brought Bibi from Kerbala, and she was there until hostile people to Bani Hashim got news of her being there, and they tried to catch her. She climbed the hillock and then vanished in a mountainous wall. Now a zarih has been constructed together with prayer rooms for men and women .

Another Aastana exists in Subzevar, it is very difficult to decide which one is correct .Sometimes the passing place is also attributed and later on considered as burial place.

A very good example is Ras-e-Husain in Cairo Egypt. People told me that the head of Imam Husain is buried here, but after a close check on relevant books it was revealed that the revered head of Imam Husain was for sometime in Baalbek Lebanon. The Fatimids brought some dust from that place to Cairo and buried it here to get spiritual benefits .It was called Turbat-e-Ras-e-Husain. After some years it became Ras-e-Husain.

Imam Zadeh Dawood

Ninety kilometers from Shimran in the valleys of Alborz Mountains stands between the beautiful valleys the shrine of Imamzadeh Dawood. It is located at least 3000 ft above mean sea level and the weather is extremely cold .

Ayatollah Marashi has traced his family tree as follows, according to narrations he took refuge here but the forces hostile to him raided the place and martyred him along with his followers .He is also known for his granting of wishes of his visitors, and a wall is famous for holding the coins of those visitors whose wish may be granted. Here one may find rooms to stay and buy things from the local bazaar but since the roads are very dangerous it is not advised to travel at night. Before the construction of road, people used to travel by mules at night .The mules used to know the way so well that they used to carry their passengers by night without any human guidance.

Behesht Zehra Cemetery

About ten kilometers out of Teheran on Tehran –Qom road lies Behesht Zehra Cemetery the burial place of those comrades who embraced martyrdom fighting for the Islamic revolution of Iran. Not very far from this a little further on the Qom highway is the mausoleum of Imam Khomeini the founder of the Islamic revolution. Behesht Zehra Cemetery is well planned .

The record of the graves and their identification is numbered and computerized. The burial place of Ayatollah Khomeini is very well built structure It is constructed in the manner special to masjids and has four minarets care has been taken not to put gold on the dome or minarets as gold is reserved for Imams or Ale-Mohammed. As you drive towards Qom on your right you see the exit for Saveh.It was this place that the party of Masooma Qom was attacked and twenty three of her brothers and cousins were martyred in front of her very eyes.

SAVEH

Saveh is at equal distance from Tehran and Qom like the three vertices of a triangle. As you pass the grave of Ayatollah Khomeini on your right you see signs for Saveh. It houses the following:-

1.Imamzadeh Ismail.
2-Imamzadeh Baqir
3.Imamzadeh Mohammad
4.Imamzadeh Bilqis
5.Imamzadeh Bibi Haleema Khatoon.
6.Imamzadeh Bibi Sharaf Bano
7.Imamzadeh Panj Tan
8.Imamzadeh Panj buzurgvar.
9.Imamzadeh Allaho Akber
10.Imamzadeh Paighambar.
11.Imamzadeh Habib
12.Imamzadeh Jaffer Sadiq
13.Imamzadeh Husain.
14.Imamzadeh Haider
15.Imamzadeh Khalifa
16.Imamzadeh Mukhoraq
17.Imamzadeh Zaid
18.Imamzadeh Zainulabedin
19.Imamzadeh Sulaiman
20 Imamzadeh Syed Ahmed
21.Imamzadeh Syed Bashir
22.Imamzadeh Syed Hamza
23.Imamzadeh Syed Tahir
24.Imamzadeh Syed Lamza
25.Imamzadeh Syed Mahmood
26.Imamzadeh Syed mansoor
27.Imamzadeh Syed Haroon
28.Imamzadeh Syed Sabir.
29.Imamzadeh Syed Muslim
30.Imamzadeh Syed Saleh
31.Imamzadeh Syed Abdullah.
32.Imamzadeh Syed Abdul Muttalib.
33.Imamzadeh Syed Qasim.
34.Imamzadeh Bibi Fakhr Jehan.
35.Imamzadeh Noah.
36.Imamzadeh Mukhtar.
37.Imamzadeh Yunus
38. Prophet Shamail
39. Shahzadeh Taqi
40. Imamzadeh Ibrahim
41. Imamzadeh Abdullah
42. Imamzadeh Tahira Khatoon.
43.Imamzadeh Ishaq.
Imamzadeh Ishaq:-

His shrine is located in the south of city on the road coming from Isfahan. He was the son of Imam Moosa e Kazim. His grave is very near to the Grave of Prophet Ishmaeel. Not very long ago the elite of Saveh Haji Ghulam Husain Jozaqi and Haji Javed Naimati and Haji Mohsin Jozaqi who were making constant efforts to make a suitable shrine for Imamzadeh Ishaq got a zarih made at Isfahan and brought it to Saveh and fixed it on his grave. Imam Ali Raza (AS) had sent a message to his brothers and sisters about 22 of them in Madina to visit him since he was not allowed to leave his post .So Imamzadeh Ishaq ,Shahzadeh Husain and others left Madina to Basra to Shiraz and from Isfahan to Saveh enroute to Qum.

About 23 of these Imamzadehs were part of the party of Masooma-e-Qom and these were slaughtered in front of her very eyes, in such a manner that she could not overcome the sorrow..

I had the honor to visit the following :-
Imamzadeh Abdullah

A very old dome shaped building houses his grave, it is situated on the road from Qom to Saveh .On the right side of the road about forty kilometers before Saveh, you cannot miss it as the dome is very high and the whole structure is made of bricks .Inside a small zarih houses the grave of Imamzadeh Abdullah .The passage around the zarih is hardly four feet wide, and it has no partition segregating the ladies from gents.

Imamzadeh Bashir

A very small structure like a mushroom is found near the entrance to the city of Saveh, inside the city

QOM

Ninety miles south of Tehran is Iran’s second holiest city and a great pilgrimage place for people from all over the world. The core of the magnificent shrine, dominating the Qom skyline was built by the Safavids and Fath-e-Ali Shah Qajar who covered the dome with gold plated tiles.

Masooma Qom /Karima-Ahlul Bayt

Her father was Imam Moosa-bin-Jaffer and her mother was Najma Khatoon the same as Imam Ali Reza they were born to the same mother and father. Masooma was born Ziqaad 173 AH and martyred on 10th of Rabius –Sani 201 AH.At the time of the martyrdom of her father she was only ten years old. Her other names were Tahira, Hamida ,Rashida ,Taqia Naqia Marzia Syeda and Ukt-e-Raza.and of course Karima-e-Ahle-bait., . About hundred kilometers from Tehran lies the city of Qom ,home of Masooma –Qom .

But before you reach Qom if you are vigilant you will see signs on your left the highway announcing Imamzadeh Sakina Khatoon, the sister of Masooma. Her grave is located 50 kilometers from the highway in a house type structure, and it has been recently discovered .Work is in full swing to make this place like other places of Ziarat. Although history is silent and as will follow below most of the information on Bani Hashim has been distorted, their members scattered and they had been running for their lives as Iqbals famous verse goes.

Garib wo saada wa rangeen hai dastaan-e-haram.

Nehayat is ki Husain Ibtida hai Ismail.

Before you enter Qom if you have arrived by bus, the bus will disembark you at the terminal Haftad wo do tun. Here you will find local taxies and buses which will take you to the shrine of Masooma Qom. Before that a lot of Hotels and Apartment Hotels can be found the only Five Star Hotel in Qom is Hotel Qom near the shrine of Masooma Qom Near the shrine of Masooma Qom on the road which has an under ground drain one can find a lot of local money changers standing on the pavement. It is always a good idea to check with one or two the prevailing rate of exchange and the selecting the best for transaction.

Since Qom is supposed to be the city of Masooma Bibi Fatima binte Moosa-kazim it is said that to keep this city out of range from pleasure loving strata of society the climate is not befitting of a resort. In the past it was green and a delta of rivers .Allama Majlisi writes in Bihar al-Anwar that Noahs Arc when it reached near the city of Qom it became stable.

As per narration of Imam Jafer-e-Sadiq (AS) Gods Harem is Kaaba on earth, Our Prophets Harem is Madinah, Imam Ali’s Harem is Najaf and my and my Children’s Harem is Qom. Paradise has eight doors and three of its doors at Qom.

Imam Moosaibn Jafer had four daughters:-

1)Fatima Kubra known as Masooma-e-Qom 2)Fatima Sughra as Bibi Haibat .She is buried in Baku Azerbaijan.
3.Fatima Wasti known as Siti Fatima her resting place is Isfahan.
4)Fatima Ukhra known as Khahar-e-Imam, her resting place is Rasht Iran.

The name Masooma-e-Qom is the name given by Imam Reza to his sister In Nasiqul Tawarikh it is stated that Imam has said whoever visited my sister in Qom is like he visited me.

Once a party of faithful came to Madinah to get solutions to some inquires about our religion. Imam Moosa ibn Jaffer was not in Madinah. They waited for days ,and finally when they decided to leave they went to Imams house to take leave. Bibi Fatima Masooma asked them about their problems and once she came to know she wrote the solutions. This party on the way out of Madinah finally met Imam Kazim who advised them that all the answers are correct. This is narrated by Ansari Qomi. At least 400 Imamzadeh are buried in Qom some names are given below.

SANCTITY OF MASOOMA-E-QOM.

Not less than three Imams on different occasions have spoken about her and insisted on visiting her. First our Sixth Imam even before she was born has said, “Pilgrimage to masooma is like going to paradise”. This has been narrated by Qazi Noorullah Shustri popularly known as Shaheed-e- Thalith and buried in Agra.(India)

Imam Reza has reportedly said, that I do not accept Ziarat if my sister is not visited. Imam Mohammed Taqi has said Whoever makes pilgrimage to Masooma will enter Paradise.

When Haroon Rashid died his son Mamoon Rashid called Imam Reza to Khorasan Bibi Masooma could not live without her brother, so she departed for Khorasan with about 45 of her brothers and cousins, and they reached Saveh. But Saveh was full of her enemies so when her entourage reached Saveh they were attached and 23 of her brothers and cousins were martyred. They included five of her brothers namely Fazal, Jaffer, Hadi Qasim and Zaid. Even Bibi Masooma was covered in blood before people from Qom came to their rescue. This made her very sad and she became very sick. Finally friends from Qom arrived in Saveh and took her party to Qom. She arrived in Qum with a notable of Qom Moosa ibn Khazraj. She survived for only 17 days and finally died in the journey away from her home Her praying place is now known as Baitunoor , located a furlong away from her eternal resting place ,and many miracles happen there every day.

Akber Mehdipur in his book Karima Ahlbait writes that Maimoona daughter of Moosa Mubaraq is also resting in the rowza of Masooma ,also Um Mohammed daughter of Moosa Mubaraq Um Qasim daughter of Ali Kokabi Um Ishaq a servant of Mohammed son of Moosa Mubaraq Um Habib servant of Abu Ali a son of Imam Ali Raza all these ladies are resting in the burial chamber of Masooma Qom.As stated in the history of Qom all these graves were scattered. When workers were laying down the marble in the rowza of Masooma Qom they saw a big hole in the floor .When two women of pious nature descended into the floor they saw the dead bodies of Maimoona and other mentioned lady servant fresh as they have died yesterday. They all were buried towards the feet of Masooma.

Ayatollah Syed Mahmood Marashi around 1200 Hijri wanted to know the holy burial place of Bibi Fatima binte Khadija He is considered a great scholar in the field of Ansab. Ansab is the knowledge of the descendents of the Prophet. He performed a Chilla for forty days and after forty days he was advised by Imam Mohammed Baqir that, In the place of Bibi Fatimas Grave God has made the Grave of Masooma Qum if you want to pay respects to Prophets daughter you do so in Qum, so he immediately departed for Qom. Ayatollah Morashi selected Qom as his burial place and he founded a library of about 2,50,000 books. His work on Ansab is unmatched and there is a prayer rug on his grave with a note that he offered Namaz-e-Shab for seventy years on this rug.

Before performing burial of Masooma the then people of Qom had asked one pious citizen Mr Qadir to come and help burying her but two men appeared on horseback and as the custom of Bani Hashim buried her without talking or saying anything to any one. She was hence buried by a Masoom. After performing ziarat at masooma if you want to donate some money you may do so to sandooq e nazrawat located inside the haram One can always request for holy salt and other memorabilia from the person accepting your donation. Other places of ziarat are Chehel Akhteran in Qom and masjid Jamkran which is attributed to our twelfth Imam.

Qom also houses the following:-

Imamzadeh Jamal son of Imam Moosa Kazim.

Imamzadeh Qasim.
Imamzadeh Ali ibn Jaffer-e-Sadiq.
Imamzadeh Mohammed ibn Moosa-e-Kazim.
Imamzadeh Zaid ibn Imam Zainul Abedin.
Imamzadeh Moosa Mobaraq Son of Imam Mohammed Taqi , and his son are buried in one room the other chamber houses forty martyrs buried in one place known as Chehl Akhteran..
Imamzadeh Ismail.
Imamzadeh Moin.
Imamzadeh Haj Asghar
Imamzadeh Fazil
Imamzadeh Shah Abbas
Imamzadeh Ghaib
Imamzadeh Jaffer
Imamzadeh Ali Raza
Imamzadeh Tahir
Imamzadeh Abdul Saleh
Imamzadeh Abdullah
Imamzadeh Pir Dawood
Imamzadeh Hadi Mehdi
Shahzadeh Bilal
Shahzadeh Ahmed
Shahzadeh Sultan Mohammed
Imamzadeh Hasan
Imam zadeh Zakaria
Imamzadi Saria Khatoon
Imamzadeh Syed Ali
Shahzadeh Ibrahim
Imamzadeh Syed Masoom
Imamzadeh Tayyab and Tahir
Shahzadeh Ismail &
Chahar Imamzadeh.
And more than three hundred whose names even are not available to me.
After that you depart for Kashan.

KASHAN

Few Iranian cities generate as much civic pride as Kashan It is the epitome of everything that is typically Persian,from its mosques caravanserais and stately gardens ,to its carpets ,ceramics and delicate Embroideries .Ranking among the finest gardens in Iran ,the Fin garden was first planted during the Safavid period and kept alive with water from Sulaimanieh spring .It was expanded by the Zand and Qajar monarchs with many open pavilions added.

A fine example of an old residence is Kashans Boroujerdi House with its beautiful dome and fine wall paintings and inlaid mirror work with some of the best examples of existing ‘badgirs’{wind catchers} As in every Iranian city the Friday masjid is Kashan’s oldest dating back to the Seljug era and is considered a first-class example of craftsmanship in brick and mortar Another famous Qajar building is Madrassah Agha Bozorg ,a Theological school and masjid complex .

It is a neat and well planned city also known for factories that clean carpets that have been fabricated in other parts of Iran .It is the burial place Imam zadeh Hilal ibn Ali, Shujauddin and Imam zadeh Ebrahim ibn-Moosa-e-Kazim set in a small and charming Garden.

Imamzadeh Sultan Wali.

Before entering the Kashan- Qome Highway in the small city of Rawand the Islamic Government of Iran is in the process of finishing the construction of the shrine of Sultan –Wali ibn Imam Moosa Kazim. When self visited his shrine only glass cover was put on his grave and the zarih etc was non-existing. I heard some one say that this Imamzadeh is most benevolent and caring for his zaireen.

Imamzadeh Hilal ibn-Ali

Imam zadeh Hilal ibn-e-Ali and Imamzadeh Aun-ibn-Ali were living in Madina when Waqai Taf took place they decided to leave Madina and traveled to Khorasan. Here they started preaching Islam for a considerable time and collective a sizeable number of followers, the local ruler became afraid of their presence and attacked them and their followers. A fierce battle resulted which lasted well till midnight and a sizeable number of people from both sides lost their lives including Aun-ibn-Ali.Hilal-ibn-Ali was severely wounded but he managed to pull himself away from the battle ground and traveling towards Qom arrived near a hut on high ground ,here he found an old women and her daughter.

They both tended to his wounds for days and when he was able to travel again he left them although they both insisted that he start living with them. He arrived in Aran where now his shrine stands Here one of the faithfuls to Ahle-bait Yaqoob urged him to stay in his under ground study. Hilal-ibn-Ali stayed for about a year with them and the one day he saw a dream that the Prophet has come to take him. He told Yaqoob the contents of the dream, then Yaqoob and his sons and his followers all prayed and imamzadeh Hilal went in supplication. When for a long time he did not raise his head Yaqoob checked and found him dead .He was buried in this place and Yaqoob who also died of grief the following day was also buried in his feet.

Imam zadeh Hadi and Bibi Zubedah Khatoon.

In the city of Kashan there is a round about known as Shaheed –e-Muntazari at one end of this roundabout Taxis which are known as Dar Baz means they take five paxs to a certain destination for a meager price of 100 Toomans each, are waiting. I took one of them to Aran and Bedgul the area said to be housing over fifty graves of Imam zadehs. One of the shrines in Bedgul houses Imamzadeh Hadi and Bibi Zubeda.This is also constructed by the Government of Iran.

ARAN AND BEDGUL

These two cities the boundary of which lies half a kilometer from Kashan .towards North ,and small villages like Noshabad surrounded by Nasrabad , Aliabad, Mohammedabad and Yazdil.Aran and Bedgul are connected to Kashan by numerous roads Towards the South they are connected to Qom and Tehran. These cities house about a Hundred thousand people and is known to have a desert climate Local population speaks Durri and of course Persian, and is very courteous and hospitable. More than 95 percent are practicing Shia religion.

In these two cities there are more than hundred masjids and fifty Imambargahs locally known as Husainiya exists ,along with 37 shrines which house graves of Imamzadehs. The extreme courtesy of the population was the main cause of burial of so many sons and daughters of Saadat –e-Nabuwwa. In the unnecessary Iran Iraq war which lasted eight painful years ,2500 young men of this area lost their lives most of them are buried near the shrines of Imamzadehs.A list of the Imamzadehs of this area along with their burial place is given below:-

1)Imamzadeh Fazal Ali (Aran)
2)Imamzadeh Ishaq and Ismail (Aran)
3)Imamzadeh Hasan and Suleiman (Aran)
4)Panj Imamzadeh (Ali, Abdullah ,Ibrahim, Zainab, Um Salma) (Aran)
5)Imamzadeh Mohsin Yahya, Maimona (Aran)
6)Imamzadeh Qasim (Aran)
7) Imamzadeh Hadi and Zainab Bibi. (Bedgul)
8) Imamzadeh Ibrahim (Bedgul)
9) Imamzadeh Ismail and Abdullah. (Bedgul)
10)Imamzadeh Husain (Bedgul)
11)Imamzadeh Hashim (Bedgul)
12) Imamzadeh Yahya (Bedgul)
13) Imamzadeh Sulaiman (Bedgul)
14) Imamzadeh Mohammed (Bedgul)
15) Imamzadeh Ali Akber (Bedgul)
16)Imamzadeh Mohsin (Bedgul)
17) Imamzadeh Raza (Bedgul)
18) Imamzadeh Ibrahim (Noshabad)
19) Imamzadeh Ishaq (Noshabad)
20) Imamzadeh Qasim (Noshabad )
21)Imamzadeh Mohammed (Noshabad)
22)Imamzadeh Abdullah (Noshabad)
23)Imamzadeh Syed Ali and Syed Mahmood (Noshabad)
24) Imamzadeh Ruqiya Khatoon. (Noshabad)
25) Imamzadeh Husain (Noshabad)
26) Imamzadeh Gazran (Noshabad)
27) Imamzadeh Bibi Shah Zainab (Yazdil)
28) Imamzadeh Sahal and Ahal (Yazdil)
29) Imamzadeh Sakina Khatoon (Nasrabad)
30) Imamzadeh Abdullah (Abuzaidabad)
31) Imamzadeh Ishaq (Abuzaidabad)
32) Imamzadeh Sultan Khizr (Yazdil)
33) Imamzadeh Sultan Saleh (Kagzi).
In the shrine of Mohammed Hilal Ali there is a library .It was started by Agha Ali Tashkani with about two thousand books it now has about 20,000 books on religious and allied subjects and is used by students of Aran and Bedgul ,Noshabad and neighboring villages. It also houses a Howza Ilmiyah Amirul Momeneen which was established in 1351 AH by Hujjat-ul-Islam Agha Nasiryan.
This all goes to prove that Saadat-e-Al-Mohammed in their lives and after death have worked for the propagation of the religion of their forefathers. Their graves not only provide spiritual satisfaction but also becomes a seat of learning .The most important is Najaf, Qom and finally Damascus. Because of these centers of Islamic learning our religion is prospering and the great Satan, USA calls them axis of Evil, as they neutralize its teaching of vice to the whole World. Wherever Americans go they preach sodomy, alcoholism and illicit relations. Morally it is the most corrupt nation and its President does not know where his unmarried daughter is sleeping that particular night.
Here we give a list of the Childrens of Hazrat Ali and their burial places.
Sons of Ali.
1) Imam Hasan. Madinah
2) Imam Husain Kerbala.
3) Mohammed Hanafia Yemen or Saudia
4) Abul-Fazl al-Abbas Kerbala.
5) Omar ibn Ali Kerbala.
6) Osman ibn Ali Kerbala.
7) Aun ibn Ali Khorasan.
8) Hilal-ibn-Ali Aran
9) Sahal bin Ali Qom
10.Ahal bin Ali Qom
11)Zaid bin Ali Yemen
12)Abdullah bin Ali Rey
13)Abu Talib bin Ali Rey
14)Salen bin Ali Yeman
15) Ibrahim bin Ali Dezful
16)Aqeel bin Ali Dezful
17)Jaffer bin Ali Unknown
18)Yahya bin Ali Unknown
19) Obaidullah bin Ali Unknown
20)Mohsin bin Ali Aborted by falling door
Daughters of Ali
1)Bibi Zainab Damascus.
2) Ume-Kulsoom Damascus
3) Um Sughra Aleppo
4) Um Kubra Aleppo
5) Fatima Qazaul Kufa
6) Mamoona Aleppo
7) Safia Aleppo
8) Ruqia Kubra Rey
9) Ruqia Sugra —–
10 Sodha —–
11)Um Salma Rey
12) Rabia Kofa
13) Aisha Kofa
14)Um Hani Rey
15) Um Hasan ——
16) Um Jaffer (Hamana,Jamana) ——
17) Rumla Kubra ——
18) Rumla Sughra ——
19) Khadija ——
20) Amana ——
21) Umul Karan —–
22 )Nafeesa —–
23 )Naqiya —–

Mashhad –e-Ardhaal

Ardahal or Mashhad-e-Ardahal is the name of a rural district in Naragh, a town located in Delijan People of Ardahal considers it as a holy land and this holiness is originated from the pure and auspicious mountains which are surrounding it. Because of mountains Ardahal is very cold in winters and relatively cool in summers in comparison to its neighborhood. Therfore it has been the summer resort of the people of Kashan. This place is located within the mountains on Delijan-Kashan Road and it is 49 kilometers from Kashan, although the Government has made provision of buses operating between Kashan and Mashad Ardhaal, but it is advisable to hire a taxi because there are about five places of religious interest and the distance between them is more than walking distance..

Taxi drivers normally charge about ten thousand Toomans for the return journey Kashan –Mashad Ardaal –Kashan.. This is also known as Mashad -e- Ghali because the body of Imam zadeh Sultan Ali was wrapped in the carpet and it was washed in the carpet, before burial .This carpet is washed every year on a Friday on a nation wide basis. The day is known as Ghali Shuyan .

Normally it is the first week of Autumn and it is advised all over Iran that Ghali Shuyan will be held on that day .It is a saying in Persian that Ardhaal carpet the more you wash it the more better it becomes .People from all over Iran come and wash the carpet in which the body of imam zadeh was wrapped and they mourn for him, One week before the ceremony of Ghali shuyan which usually happens in the first Friday of autumn ,the ceremony of Jar is held in Fin of Kashan .

In Ardahal this Friday is the day of inviting people to the ceremony of Ghali Shuyan. Jomeye Jar, the Friday for proclamation, is the messenger of the arrival of the important and holy anniversary of the martyr of Ardahal that is, Sultan Ali. It is a promised day for the gathering of the people of Iran.In case that the ceremony interferes with religious mourning such as Tasua, Ashura, or 21st Ramazan the ceremony of Ghali Shuyan is postponed to another week or held one week earlier. On Jomeye Ghali people from all over Iran gather to mourn the martyerdom of Sultan Ali.

By beating their chests in the traditional way chanting “Husain” The ceremony extends to many days and as it is a very big congregation, even bazaars spring up in the village. On Friday morning Jomeye Ghali young men of Fin-e Sofia accompanied with their families who have settled in chambers of Sultan Ali go to the side of the stream inside the yard while they are holding some cut canes they stand in a line .At this moment men of Fin-e Olia .All of the men then shout ya Husain and beat their chests..

On to road leading from Kashan to Mashad e Ardhall on the left hand side there is a small signboard which reads Darushifa. Here lies the mortal remains of Noorul Huda a grandson of Imam Ali Naqi .Besides his grave there are two very small graves said to be those of his two infants, who were also killed along with their father by the armies of kafirs.

As it is narrated that after their martyrdom no one buried them and their bodies were left in the wilderness .Travelers at night used to see a green beam of light going towards the sky. When people decided to see what it was they found the bodies and from their papers on the bodies they came to know their identity and so a befitting building was erected and many people who insist on praying at that site, the taxies stop and let them pray We were also misled by our taxi driver who took us to Sultan Ali first.

Sultan Ali

It is stated that people of Mashad-Ardehal and residents of Fen-Chehl Hisaraan came and after presenting their respects to Imam Mohammed Baqir requested him to provide spiritual guidance .Imam very kindly send his eldest son with them who became known as Sultan Ali.

This great son of the Imam very soon became known as Sultan Ali and for three years he remained in this area .Because of his popularity his enemies decided to kill him and after preparing an army attacked him. After the martyrdom of the local people who had not allowed him to fight until they were alive, he like his forefathers came to fight them and after a fierce battle was martyred.

In the burial chamber of Sultan Ali there were three hundred coffins containing his body and the bodies of the people who fought along side him today after a lapse of 1225 years they are still fresh and blood oozes out of them .It is written on his rowza that whoever visits him gets the same sawab as he visited Imam Husain in Kerbala.

BADROOD

About fifty five miles from Kashan towards Isfahan and thirty five miles from Natanz there is the Rowza of Agha Ali Abbas and Shahzada Mohammed. It is stated that these two cousins of Imam Ali Reza set off to meet him from Madina .For many days the ruler of Badrood personally took care of them. They were in Badrood when news of Imam Ali Razas martyrdom reached them .

For forty days they were in grief and mourning his death,and after that they set out to return to Madina .By this time news of their presence reached Kashan and their enemies grouped themselves and attached them in the desert of Badrood ,a fierce battle ensued and these two brothers were not allowed to drink even water and in the end both brothers got killed.

They were not buried for days as the folks were afraid that if they buried them their enemies would kill them it is stated that women and children of Badrood buried them. The Government of the Islamic republic of Iran has constructed a very impressive rowza with a huge complex for housing the visiting pilgrims with a capacity of tens of thousands.

In fact as you leave the highway from Natanz and turn left on a road after about 15 kilometers the city of Badrood is seen. It is not a big city and contains concrete and mud houses. As you pass the city you see a double road with numerous chinar trees in fact they line the road for miles and the Rowza itself with a blue dome and two minarets .The Imam-e-jamaat Agha Javad himself briefed me on all aspects of the shrine after I offered Zuhr Prayers behind him.

GHAZVIN

From geographical point of view Ghazvin Province is acting as a bridge which connects the capital of the country to the western and northern regions .Ghazvin province was separated from Tehran in 1996 and accompanied with Takestan from Zanjan province became one of the independent provinces of the country. It has a cold winter and a moderate summer with a fair amount of rainfall Ghazvin can be easily reached, by traveling to Karaj, by bus and from Karaj which is near Tehran one can find buses to Qazvin. It is an hour and a half journey and before one reaches Qazvin you see the signs for Alamut.

In the village of Zarabad in Ghazvin near the city of Alamut there is the burial place of Shahzada Ali Asghar ,he is a descendent of Imam Moosa-e-Kazim .Not much is known about him but near his tomb there is a tree more than a thousand years old. The specialty of this tree is that on every Ashura the tenth of Muharram actual blood rains from it .There is a book entitled Chinar e Khoonbar still existing in Iran. Other attractions of the province are:-

Avan Lake.

Avan mountain with the height of 3750m is located in the central line of the Alborz Mountain and the North of Rudbar. It is also known as Khesteh Chal.The beautiful Avan river is located at the foot of this mountain and it supplies its water from the springs of the mountain.

Shahrud River:-

This river originates from Southern foothill of the Alborz and the origin of the branches and valleys of this river have very attractive view Alamut Castle:- This is located at the top of a mountain which is surrounded by huge precipices and amazing cracks. The only accessible path to the castle is a narrow path.

Kolah Farangi Museum:-

The building refers to Safavid era and was also known as Chehl Sotun. It has two floors The plinth is made of stone and the rest of the building is made of bricks. It houses different historic and ancient works.

Masjid-al Nabi.

Refers to the Safavid era and was rebuilt in Qajar era. The yard of the masjid is rectangular and there is a big pool in the middle of the yard.

Hussinieh Aminiha:-

This is located in the western end of Ghazvin street and consists of 16 adjoining buildings and was build in 1275 hijri by Haji Mohammed Reza Amini who was a businessman of Ghazvin.

Jameh Kabir Masjid:-

This masjid refers to the Seljuks and the Safavids and is located in Shohada Street .It is more than 4000 sq meters and like masjid e Nabihas a pool in its yard. Two beautiful minarets at the two sides of its balconies.

Panjeh Ali Masjid:-

This also refers to the Safavid era and is located in Peyghambarieh Street,Ghazvin. Inside there is an altar and the names of Imams are patterned on it. The altar has been painted and decorated with the methods of painting and plaster. In the front of alter and its middle wall a piece of stone of polished marble has been used and there is a design of a digitate or claw on it. This pattern is called Panjeh Ali. Ancient houses of Ghazvin include that of Haji Reza,Ghazvin Bazzar Complex which dates back to Sasanid era. Souvenirs of Ghazvin are Pistachio, Hazelnut ,Nan Berenji, and Baghlava .For sometime Ghazvin carpet was considered one of the finest and exquisite carpets of Iran.

Shahzada Husain

He died in his childhood and was a son of Imam Moosa Reza ,he is buried in Ghazvin.in Khayaban Salamgah. A school known as Heydarieh Theological School is part of his shrine. Ghazvin was recently till 16th century was the capital for Safavids before they moved to Isfahan.

Ali bin Shazan:

In the courtyard of Shahzadeh Husain the body of Ali bin Shazan a slave of Imam Reza was revealed after twelve hundred years, his body was fresh as buried recently and people stated that from old times it was believed that wishes were granted from that grave. Following Imamzadehs are buried in Ghazvin About Eleven kilometers driving through green fields you arrive at the mausoleum of this Imamzadeh. A chinar also exists in this courtyard and it is stated that blood rains from this chinar also, in Moharram.

NEISHABUR:-

About 500 Miles from Tehran after Semnan and Subzavar lies the Seljuk capital of Neishabur the burial place of the great poet Omer Khayyam.It is also the burial place of Imamzadeh Mahrroq and Imamzadeh Ibrahim. One of the local pious lady Bibi Shatita is also buried here and the legend goes that Imam himself came there and led the Namaz-e-janaza prayers for her. Also the mausoleum of Ghadamgah is a beautiful monument which was built in 11th century .It is an octagonal building with high terraces and two- storey arches and is decorated with multi colored tiles and plaster and is located at the center of a big garden in the village. The building was completed by Shah Soleyman in 1091 Hijri. This houses a big stone with two footsteps on it which are attributed to Imam Reza.(AS). The big tiled dome of Ghadamgah is decorated with figures of lozenge with white and turquoise colors and there is an epigraph written in Thulth calligraphy by Mohammed Husain.

RAZAVI KHORASSAN

The Greater Khorassan with an area of 313,335 square kilometers takes up more than one-fifth of Iran. According to the latest laws the Greater Khorasan was divided into two small provinces of North Khorasan and South Khorasan and a big province called Razavi Khorasan. Holy Mashad is the center of Razavi Khorasan.The cities are Mashad , Ghuchan , Chenaran ,Sarakhs Fariman ,Torbet-e-Jam ,Taybad ,Torbat-e-Heydarieh Ferdows, Ghayan, Khaf, Rashtkar Kashmar, Bardeskan,Neyshabur Sabzevar and Gonabad.

In fact my forefathers like my Great Grandfathers belonged to Subzevar my Grandfather Shams-al-Ulama Syed Sibte-Hassan shifted to Lucknow India and first started reciting Majlis in the subcontinent .Few of his students migrated to Pakistan including Allama Raseed Turabi, Hafiz Kifayat Hussain,Moulana Bashir Fateh Taxila,and Allama Zulfiqar Ali Shah of Lahore.

SUBZEVAR:-

Sabzevar is made of two parts, the plain region and mountainous area, the climate of the plain is warm and in mountainous region it has a temperate weather. The city was ruined completely during the invasion of Mongols .In 737 (AH) Sabzevar was chosen as the place of refuge and shelter and was known as Darul Momenin. The places of religious interest are as follows.1.Astana Bibi Shehr Bano.

HOLY MASHAD

Holy Mashad is located 909 kilometers from Tehran and in a plain between the Binalood Mountains and Hezar Masjed and the climate is temperate and mountainous .In 202 AH after the martyrdom of Imam Reza (AS) in one of the districts of Toos called Sanabad the central core of the present Mashhad shaped and Sanabad changed to Mashhad-e-Raza. Sultan Mahmood Ghaznavi made a mausoleum in the place .Toos also houses the tomb of Ferdowsi a great Persian poet but because of the auspicious presence of Imam Reza’s Shrine it is being considered as one of the pilgrimage poles for Shiites all over the world.

IMAM RAZA’SHRINE.

Astaneye Ghods Razavi complex Mashhad is located in the centre of Holy Mashhad and is one of the largest and most magnificent mausoleums of Islamic world. The complex has been shaped during many years around the shrine of Ali-ebn-Musa-al Raza (A.S) and is made of different precious historical and artistic monuments of different centuries.

In 202 or 203 (A.H. Lunar)after the martyrdom of Imam Reza (A.S) His holy body was buried in a shrine above the tomb of Harun-ul Rashid. At the moment only two meters of the walls are left and the rest of the shrine has been placed above it. It seems that Moghadasi was the first one who called it Mashhad. Saboktagin who was a biased king ruined the holy shrine and forbade its pilgrimage .Later Obeyduleh Faegh tried to reestablish and develop Mashhad .Sultan Mahmood Ghaznavi rebuilt the mausoleum and its clayish walls by bricks and added a minaret to it.

According to the epigraph of Astana Museum it seems that the rebuilding and renovation of the shrine was completed in 516 (A.H Lunar) during the invasion of Ghaz in 543 Hijra the structure of building damaged a lot. During Sultan Sanjar of Seljuk era a dome was built by Sharafuddin Abu Taher –ebn Saad-ebn Ali Ghomi after repairing the building .The daughter of Mahmood of Seljuk ornamented the walls of the shrine by some hexahedron or octahedron exquisite tiles and the name of her and the date has been engraved on the tiles. During the period of Shahrokh and his wife Gohar Shad Astaneh Ghods made a lot of important progress Gohar Shad Masjid was established from this entrance the shrine looks very beautiful,

since a decade self is visiting the shrine entering from this entrance, and many times I have stood and watched the spectacle with tears flowing in my eyes. Dar-ul Hefaz ,Darul Siadeh buildings Tahvil Khanah and Treasury were built Three schools of Parizad Bala Sar, and Do Dar were built .Due to the efforts of Amir Ali Shir Navai the old yard and the basis of golden terrace were made and at the time of Shah Abbas I they were developed .Shah Tehmasb Safavi ,repaired and applied Gold to the minaret close to the dome .Abduk monem khan Uzbeck plundered the golden bricks .

Shah Abbas ordered for the repairs of the complex in 1010 AH and this is elaborated in enamel epigraph of the dome which was written by Ali Reza Abbasi. Tohid Khana porch is attributed to Mola Mohsen Feiz located in the north side of the shrine Allah Verdi Khan Porch and Hatam Khani porch were made respectively by Allah Verdi Khan and Hatam Beik-e-Ordu Badi. Shah Abbas II repaired and tiled Atiqh courtyard .Soleyman Shah repaired The dome which was damaged because of the earthquake and made some schools.

Source: alhassanain.com


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