Ajmer e Sharif Pilgrimage - Dargah Sharif Ajmer e Sharif Rajasthan India
The Dargah Sharif, located at the foot of a barren hill, is the place where the Khawaja Moin-ud-din Chistis' mortal remains lie buried. The Dargah (tomb) with a marble dome is situated in the center of a courtyard and is surrounded by a silver platform. It's believed that the shrine is a place of wish fulfillment for those who pray with devout and pure hearts. People of all religious faiths visit the Dargah and make offerings of rose and jasmine flowers to seek the blessings of the Khawaja. More than a half a million devotees from the subcontinent visit the Dargah to pay homage to Khawaja on Urs, the solemn memory of Khawaja. The revered saint left for heavenly abode after a six-day prayer in seclusion and for this their devotees celebrate 'Urs' every year during the first six days of Rajjab, the 7th month of the Islamic calendar.
One of the main attractions at the Dargah is the qawwali programs organized during the famous annual 'Urs' festival. Professional singers called 'qawwals' sing songs in praise of the saint in a characteristic high-pitched voice. The 'Sufiana kalam' sung by these artists make a spellbound effect on listeners prompting them to clap to the rhythm of musical instruments.
Urs Ajmer Sharif
The urs, acommomerative celebration is held in the solemn memory of Khwaja Muin-nddin Chisti, a prighly respected sufi saint fondly revered as the benefactor of the poor, popularly known as Gareeb Nawaz. The Dargah Sharif in Ajmer, is the place where the Saints mortal remains lie burried and is the site of the largest Muslim Fair in India.
Chadar; Ghilaph & Neema which are votive offerings for the tomb are offered by several hundred thousand devotees. Mehfils & Qawwalis are held and mass prayer calls for the eternal peace of the mankind. An interesting ritual is the looting of Kheer (Milk Pudding) which is cooked in two large cauldrons called Degs and distributed to the devotees as tabarruk (blessed food).
The lakeside city of Ajmer is located in central Rajasthan, and is held in great reverence by devotees of all communities who call it 'Ajmer Sharif' (Holy Ajmer). It is here that the mortal remains of the highly respected Sufi saint Khwaja Moin-ud-din Chishti lie buried.
The Khwaja came from Persia and established the Chishtia order of fakirs in India. He is popularly known as Gharib Nawaz (protector of the poor) because he dedicated his entire life to the service of mankind. His spartan life spanned almost a hundred years and he embraced death in solitude while he had withdrawn to his cell for six days, asking not to be disturbed.
The Dargah Sharif in Ajmer is the place where the Saint's mortal remains lie buried and is the site of the largest Muslim fair in India. More than five lakh devotees belonging to different communities gather from all parts of the subcontinent to pay homage to the Khwaja on his Urs (death anniversary) during the first six days of Rajab (seventh month of the Islamic calendar.)
The pilgrims who come to seek the blessings of the Khwaja make rich offerings called nazrana at the holy spot where the saint has been entombed. The offerings of rose and jasmine flowers, sandalwood paste, perfumes and incense contribute to the fragrance that floats in the air inside the shrine. Also offered by devotees are the chadar, ghilaph and neema, which are votive offerings for the tomb.
These are brought by devotees on their heads and handed over to the khadims inside the sanctum sanctorum. Outside the sanctum sanctorum of the dargah, professional singers called qawwals in groups and sing the praises of the saint in a characteristic high pitched voice. People gather around them and listen attentively, sometimes clapping to the rhythm of their instruments.
The Urs is initiated with the hoisting of a flag on the dargah by the Khadims of the chishti family (successor representatives) of Chishtis. It is done on the 25th of Jamadi-ul-Akhir (sixth lunar month), with the accompaniment of music. On the last day of the sixth month, the Jannati-Darwaza (gateway of heaven) is flung open early in the morning. People cross this gate seven times with the belief that they will be assured a place in heaven. On the 1st of Rajab, the tomb is washed with rose water and sandalwood paste and anointed with perfumes. This ritual is called ghusal. The tomb is then covered with an embroidered silk cloth by the Khadims of the chishti family.
An interesting ritual is the looting of kheer (milk-pudding) which is cooked in two large cauldrons called degs and distributed to the devotees as tabarruk (blessed food). On the 6th of Rajab, after the usual mehfil and the sound of cracker-bursts accompanied by music, the Khadims of the chishti family performs the ghusal of the tomb. Fatiha and Salamti are read. A poetic recitation called mushaira is arranged in which poets of all communities arrive to recite compositions dedicated to the Khwaja. The Qul (end-all) on the 6th of Rajab marks the end of the Urs.
At night, religious assemblies called mehfils are held in the mehfil-khana, a large hall meant for this purpose. These are presided over by the Khadims of the chishti family of the dargah.
Qawwalis are sung and the hall is packed to capacity. There are separate places reserved for women who attend the mehfil. The mehfil terminates late in the night with a mass prayer for the eternal peace of the Khwaja in particular and mankind in general.
The Dargah is located at the conjunction of three bazaars. There are a number of restaurants around the Dargah where visitors can choose from a variety of dishes most of which are non-vegetarian preparations. Guest houses on the road leading to the Dargah offer accommodation that ranges from economical to luxurious. Many other guest houses are strewn across the city. The shops in the market around the Dargah sell flowers, prayer mats, rosaries, textiles, and general merchandise as well. Visit the famous Ajmer-e-Sharif Dargah of Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti and be blessed by Khwaja Gharib Nawaz (R.A).
Dargah Bazaar Ajmer
Dargah Bazar Ajmer
The place of the Dargah is a marvel to visit for its intricate architecture and the atmosphere that is truly very alluring. Another fact that attracts the visitors pay a visit to the Dargah is the famed Dargah Bazaar, Ajmer which offers some amazing articles which can be taken back home as a souvenirs of the city. The Dargah Bazaar is one of the most prominent landmarks of Ajmer and is the ideal place to enjoy the charm of life of the city.
The Dargah Bazar in Ajmer in India is one of the major Tourist Attractions in Ajmer while on a Tour to Ajmer for the travelers. The market is located on the entrance of Dargah providing the influx of thousands every day. The Dargah Bazaar leads up to the main inner courtyard of the Dargah which is a splendor to watch. The market is the hot spot for the shoppers to strike a great deal with the articles. At times the customers can get a great bargain on the articles at the market. The market showcases the vigor of the city that has attracted millions over the years from all across the globe.
Dargah Bazaar also serves as a great place to taste the delicious dishes of the city. The travelers can opt for numerous food stalls in the market to have a taste of the slice of Ajmer. The Dargah Bazaar, Ajmer is one of the best ways to enjoy the Bazaars in Ajmer which is always a great experience.
Other major attractions for visitors of Ajmer are Adhai-Din-Ka-Jhonpra (two-and-a-half-day mosque) built by Allauddin Khilji of the Delhi Sultanant, the Ana Sagar Lake, the Taragarh Fort, Daulat Khana, Daulat Bagh, and the Nasiyan Jain Temple. Ajmer is 132 kms. south-west of Jaipur and 198 kms. east of Jodhpur. It is connected by road to Jaipur, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Udaipur and Kota. Ajmer is a railway junction on the Delhi-Ahmedabad section of the Western Railway. During the Urs, special buses are arranged from cities all over India carrying people to Ajmer and back.
| Pilgrims/Devotees passing through Dargah Bazar long way to Nizam Gate which is the main entrance of Dargah Ajmer Sharif. Mir Osman Ali Khan, The Nizam of Hyderabad Deccan, erected the main gate of the Dargah Sharif in 1911. Upstairs small drums beat, during the day and night at an appointed hour. A view of Dargah Bazaar can be seen from the top of the gate.
Mir Osman Ali Khan, The Nizam of Hyderabad Deccan, erected the main gate of the Dargah Sharif in 1911 or 1912. Upstairs small drums beat, during the day and night at an appointed hour. A view of Dargah Bazaar can be seen from the top of the Nizam Gate which is the main entrance of Dargah Ajmer