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29 June 2017 / 4. Shawal 1438

A QUIENTESSENTIAL, UNFORGETTABLE JOURNEY

Posted on Mon, 2017-03-27 11:02

In the name of Allah (SWT), the Beneficent, the Merciful.
Most people in their lives are lucky enough to have gone to ziyaraat, whether it's to Iran or to Iraq, whether it's with a group or not.  But to enhance the experience,  to give you memories that you will look fondly back on years from now,  to have a quintessential, unforgettable journey - there is no better way, than to embark on this sacred trip.  
Looking back on the experience is a surreal yet moving thing in itself.  It leaves me in a state of nothing but disbelief as I realise how much the trip impacted not only my outlook of life, but my goals, my personality and my attitude towards religion as a whole. I remember one of the mentors telling me how much this trip changed her life, and I distinctly remember being very skeptical.  After all, it was only a ziyaraat trip wasn't it? 
Looking back, this journey was far from 'just a ziyaraat trip'.  From praying Salaatul Layl at the hawza to the classes we had in Qum; from the Ali Sadr caves to the walk to the haram in Mashhad; each and every day of this trip brought something new, an unforgettable experience, and an ethereal memory that will be treasured forever. 
And it's just memories I have left of Iran; Memories that stirred a fire within me and a desire to change.  And in this hurricane of my soul I'm trying desperately to put this trip into words,  but I can't,  no matter how hard I try.  It’s a feeling that's impalpable, it's indescribable, and it’s beautiful.  It’s a feeling that no matter how many times I draft this testimonial, I won't be able to convey, and it's a feeling everyone who went on this trip can relate to.  
The lessons that I have learnt and the friendships I have made are incomparable.  The connection I feel I have made with the imam of our time, Imam Mahdi (a.j.t.f.s.) is a blessing in itself. There is sacredness in Iran that transcends everyday concerns, from the streets to the haram, I felt the presence of the Imam and the beauty of the creations of Allah (s.w.t) – how could I not feel at home there? The air there has become an elixir I can't get enough of and I pray from the bottom of my heart that everyone receives the opportunity that I did,  and that one day,  I can return again.  
I can't thank the organizers, the mentors, the teachers and all the participants enough for making this trip possible. You are the ones that made my experience so magical, so unforgettable – elevated it to an entire new level of spirituality. Without the influences and guidance of all of you, it would have been a lackluster imitation of what it was.
Mehr Fatema Karim – Bab participant, COEJ.

Director Dr Hasnain Walji, a past president of The World Federation has been researching into the history of the Khoja community for over 10 years.  In producing this 120 minute long film, he has spent a year travelling around the world.  In the documentary, he meets individuals from different backgrounds who provide an insight into the journey of the Khoja community.

This is the first-ever documentary film exploring the 700-year history of the Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheri Community.  For so long, many of the elders in our community had expressed a wish that the story, of who the Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheris are, must be told for future generations to glean an understanding and appreciation of their ancestors’ struggles, trials, tribulations as well as triumphs as they spread across the globe.  

Hassanbhai Jaffer, the author of the seminal work on KHOJA History "The Endangered Species" says:“  A must see documentary for all family members where elders could sit with their progeny to explain where we started from and where we are today and the sacrifices made by many in the evolution of this community. To the  jet setting Khojas of this age,  the sight of bullock carts in  which their elders used to travel while India, the type of sailing crafts and the hardships of sailors and passengers as they sailed out from western shores of India to settle in East Africa and Madgascar is a reality check of their origins. The  month long journey by sea, firsthand account of early sailors recalling that for the month long sea journey, supply of fresh water would often be restricted to one cup a day come a shock to viewers."

The trailer for the documentary can be viewed below:

Hidirjee Loan Zakutul Fitr

Director Dr Hasnain Walji, a past president of The World Federation has been researching into the history of the Khoja community for over 10 years.  In producing this 120 minute long film, he has spent a year travelling around the world.  In the documentary, he meets individuals from different backgrounds who provide an insight into the journey of the Khoja community.

This is the first-ever documentary film exploring the 700-year history of the Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheri Community.  For so long, many of the elders in our community had expressed a wish that the story, of who the Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheris are, must be told for future generations to glean an understanding and appreciation of their ancestors’ struggles, trials, tribulations as well as triumphs as they spread across the globe.  

Hassanbhai Jaffer, the author of the seminal work on KHOJA History "The Endangered Species" says:“  A must see documentary for all family members where elders could sit with their progeny to explain where we started from and where we are today and the sacrifices made by many in the evolution of this community. To the  jet setting Khojas of this age,  the sight of bullock carts in  which their elders used to travel while India, the type of sailing crafts and the hardships of sailors and passengers as they sailed out from western shores of India to settle in East Africa and Madgascar is a reality check of their origins. The  month long journey by sea, firsthand account of early sailors recalling that for the month long sea journey, supply of fresh water would often be restricted to one cup a day come a shock to viewers."

The trailer for the documentary can be viewed below:


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