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My Experience in Iraq during Arbaeen

Every country has its own special events, and places to go to. Some can be iconic places, or even iconic events that are world wide yet are held in that specific country. Iraq is one of these interesting places, it has both world wide events and beautiful places. But we will be covering my experience there during Arbaeen.

Arbaeen, an Arabic title meaning the number forty. It’s a world wide event where all people around the world gather in one place known as Karbala, the place where Hussain, the grandson of prophet Mohammed was martyred. They gather in this place after forty days of Ashura, the day Hussain was martyred to mourn his martyrdom. It became a habit to walk from najaf to karbala by foot, as a method of mourning. Some people stop further then continue walking to karbala, but everyone walking reaches karbala before Arbaeen.

The path taken from Najaf to Karbala is known as “The way of Mashaya”, meaning the way people walk to Karbala. As I was walking along that path, I saw all kinds of people, old men and women, children, crippled, or even disabled. All with one purpose, and that’s to reach karbala for hussain. Millions take that path, due to their love for hussain. During my time walking, I noticed that the people of Iraq were gathered, opening places to give out food and drinks of all kinds for the people walking along that path. Some even set places to rest, or give massages, and many other ways to serve. They did their best, and gave all they had to serve the guests of Iraq, even if they were poor they gave everything they had. They warmly welcomed everyone, never saw any hate or violence between anyone, the path was filled with love and unity.

Now that I have reached Karbala, the atmosphere has drastically changed. It felt like home, you don’t feel like a stranger there. People who don’t know you will treat you like family. The amount of hospitality is incredible, they will go as far as letting you sleep in their houses and making food for you. Twenty Two Million guests all in one place yet united, everyone giving each other the family treatment. Wherever I walk, there is a place to give out food, drinks, tea, and many other things. You don’t have to worry about spending money at all there, everything is available, including public showers. All of this is done out of pure love for Hussain; after all, that is the reason that united the world to gather in this place.

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