AJMER SHARIF SHRINE
AJMER SHARIF SHRINE
"Be overflowing with peace and joy and scatter them wherever you are and wherever you go""
Ajmer , Rajasthan
Ajmer Sharif is the final resting place of Sufi Saint Moinuddin Chisthi. The saint ; popularly called as Khwaja Moinuddin Chisthi was known for his secular preaching. Located in Ajmer in Rajasthan , it is estimated that 150000 pilgrims visit the Dargah every single day.
For centuries, the shrine has held immense respect and faith . Emperor Akbar visited the site frequently- a total of 14 times in his life span . These visits commenced from Agra and often the last leg of this pilgrimage was completed bare foot by the emperor. The overall architecture of the shrine has pronounced Mughal influence.
Walking through the narrow lanes that lead up to the shrine, and witnessing the hustle bustle one can never fathom the serenity inside. The Dargah is an architectural, structural and spiritual marvel . Shaped like a courtyard , the main Dargah has many buildings around it . To reach the final resting place of the saint, one has to walk through multiple gates . Each gate was built and donated by a Mughal Emperor, marking the respect for the saint. The grand Nizam Gate is followed by Shahjani gate , which then leads to Buland Darwaza. The Buland Darwaza opens in a chamber where Khwaja's final resting place sits within a marble chamber adorned with beautiful gold plating .
The Jama masjid inside has 99 names of Allah inscribed along with 33 Quaranic verses. The Begami Daalaan porch is a beautiful marble porch adorned with colorful gold. The dargah itself was built by Emperor Humayun .
Within the Dargah, there are many mosques, a prayer porch ( Begami daalaan), the Saint's tomb, degs ( cauldrons) & water bodies. Worshippers are required to cover their heads as a sign of respect to the saint and men and women are required to pray separately. Cameras , food, bags and other items cannot be taken inside .
During the second half of the day , one can witness many ceremonies including Dua-e-roshni and Qawwali.
Just about a mile from the Ajmer railway station , the Dargah stands tall and beautiful and an epitome of faith for the last 8 centuries. ( The saint passed away in 1236 AD) The annual 'urs' festival is famous and possibly the busiest time at the Dargah.