Greetings to you from afar
Monday , 04/27/2020 - 20:45
These days, at the same time with the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, when the doors of the holy shrine of Imam Reza (AS) are closed to pilgrims due to the global coronavirus pandemic, a new experience and concept of pilgrimage has been formed.

Today, if you walk on the streets leading to the holy shrine, you will feel the pristine and new experience of love, pilgrimage and neighborhood along together.
It doesn’t matter which door you choose to the shrine; the description of love and affection in all the entrances leading to the closed doors of the shrine is the same. We will see pilgrims and neighbors everywhere who observe the mandatory social distancing and pay tribute, facing the dome.
I meet a pilgrim of the Imam, a neighbor. After all, you can’t find too many pilgrims in Mashhad, because many people still adhere to social distancing and avoid travel. Regarding the experience of living away from the steel window of Imam Reza, this pilgrim says, “For 30 years, I used to begin my day or to end my night with pilgrimage of the holy shrine.”
“Nowadays, we have become like the current Salam statues in Shohada Square; this is the situation every day on the streets around the shrine,” another pilgrim says. Street pilgrimage is the name that this pilgrim gives to this type of pilgrimage.
“Of course, this type of pilgrimage is not strange to the people of Mashhad, because they used to stand outside the house every day when they left the house and greeted the Imam, but today’s greetings are different,” he comments.
I walk toward the famous Imam Reza St; on the way, I still think about whether Mashhad and the shrine and its pilgrims have gone through such an experience so far. At least not that I recall for my age and information.
Yet this street is experiencing different circumstances from what you have heard these days; the shops are scarcely open, but it is full of pilgrims and neighbors who are standing across the shrine and asking for permission to enter.
I talk to a lady who says, “Has Mashhad ever seen so much seclusion and silence? Imam and his shrine have been all the prosperity of the city and the whole country.” This pilgrim has never had such an experience before, and she says that she will remember these days as a memory to later remind herself to appreciate her presence in the holy shrine.
Walking away from Imam Reza St, I tell myself that in all these years, there was not a day that I performed Tawaf so much on the streets around the shrine of Imam; but today not only I experienced street pilgrimage but also met with the pilgrims in the corners of the streets around the shrine, each of whom praying in their hearts for the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (AS).    

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