Millions of pilgrims from across the world traveled to Iraq to commemorate the Arbaeen ceremony, the 40th day of the martyrdom of Imam Hossein.
The Arbaeen Day, the 40th day of the martyrdom of the third Imam of Shia Islam, Husayn ibn Ali, is approaching. To honor the holy event, millions of pilgrims from every corner of the world have arrived to Iraq and many more are also expected to be there by next week. Pilgrim caravans have started moving from outside Iraq to the holy city of Karbala since last week.
In a report this Tuesday, the Al-Alam news website noted that the Iraqis living in the city of Basra are already prepared to serve the pilgrims as their caravans have set off on foot from the southernmost point of Iraq towards the shrine of Imam Hussein.
Likewise, Iraqis from many other cities in the country are moving towards the holy shrine in Karbala to serve the pilgrim during their stay there. In addition to the people of Iraq, Iraqi officials also have announced the government’s readiness to hold the Arbaeen ceremony in the best way possible.
Abd al-Amir al-Shammari, the Iraqi Minister of Interior and head of the High Committee for Arbaeen Travel Security, said in a statement this Thursday that Iraq has prepared itself to welcome millions pilgrims from all over the world.
Stating that Baghdad has prepared a security and service plan to better serve the pilgrims, al-Shammari also explained that “five provinces have been equipped and prepared for the Arbaeen walking ceremony”. like the years before, with the exception of the coronavirus time, it is expected that several million people from Iran will participate in this event.
What is the Arbaeen walk?
Hussein, known as Imam Hussein to Shia Muslims, was killed by soldiers loyal to the Umayyad Caliph Yazid I during the Battle of Karbala in the seventh century AD. The imam’s followers, who came to be known as the Shia, believe that the Umayyads had usurped the leadership of the Muslim community from descendants of the Prophet Muhammad’s family. To honor the martyrdom of Hossein, millions of people from different countries arrive to Iraq every year in Arbaeen ceremony, the 40th day of the martyrdom of the third Imam of Shia Islam.
For Shia Muslims, Arbaeen is a significant religious event that brings millions of the faithful to the streets of the holy city of Karbala in Iraq. But it is not just Muslims who take part in the ceremony as many people from other religions also come to Iraq every year to take the same trip to Karbala.
What is interesting about this religious ceremony is that pilgrims walk all the way to the city of Karbala on foot. Although it seems that the long journey, usually three to five days of walking, is very difficult and somehow impossible to take, there are many Iraqis in the way to give you services and make the trip easier for pilgrims.
Surprisingly, none of the people in Iraq get any money from pilgrims and even different religions for the services they provide to the pilgrims.