Monday, June 27, 2016

Najaf - Iraq

In the world of postcards, a written & stamped card from Iraq is something very rare. I got this one thanks to Mohammed and thanks to Agata too, who let me know about Mohammed's offer on FB. 

The card shows Iman Ali Tomb, sheltered in Iman Ali Mosque in Najaf. Najaf is a city in central Iraq about 160 km (roughly 100 miles) south of Baghdad. It is widely considered the third holiest city of Shi'a Islam, the Shia world’s spiritual capital and the center of Shi'a political power in Iraq. - in: wikipedia

The gold-plated mosque shelters the tomb of Imam Ali, the son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad who is revered as a martyr and a saint by Shi'ites. Najaf has been an important place of pilgrimage for Shi'ites since Ali's death in 661 AD.
In the course of the conflict, the son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad, Imam Ali, was killed at Najaf in 661. Ali was the Prophet's closest relative and the one whom the Shi'ites saw as the Prophet's true successor, and he is regarded as a great saint and martyr.
The tomb of Ali has been honored at Najaf since as early as 750 AD, although it is possible he is actually buried in Afghanistan. Najaf became an important place of pilgrimage and a center of Shi'a religious learning. 
The tomb of Imam Ali is said to have been discovered at Najaf around 750 AD by Dawood Bin Ali Al-Abbas. A shrine was built over the tomb by Azod Eddowleh in 977, but later burned down. It was rebuilt by the Seljuk Malek Shah in 1086, and rebuilt yet again by Ismail Shah, the Safawid, in about 1500. - in:

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