Visit to Khomeini’s grave:
Of course, during my stay in Iran I was also eager to visit the infamous Khomeini shrine (which even then resembled a Sassanian Zoroastrian palace rather than the modest grave of an alleged ascetic Muslim and leader of the oppressed).
Even the Taxi driver was perplexed and asked why an Iranian from abroad wants to see Khomeini’s grave. He told me that most Iranians don’t care about him, and if I was being serious, I told him I absolutely am serious. Later I found out how right the driver was, boy was he right, Khomeini’s grave will be turned into a public toilet if the majority of Iranians had a say, there is no doubt about that.
I arrived at the mausoleum during the scorch of the afternoon heat. The mausoleum is located to the south of Tehran in the Behesht-e Zahra (Paradise of Zahra) cemetery. Construction commenced in 1989 following Khomeini’s death on June 3 of that year. It is still under construction, but when completed will be the centerpiece in a complex spread over 20 square kilometres (4,900 acres).
The evolution of Khomeini’s grave is the typical evolution of all Shia graves, especially that of their saints. It’s starts humble and turns into an anti-Islamic wasteful complex where a grave is located in the middle of a place of worship (something the Prophet of Islam condemned and cursed those who induldge in such practices).
During my visit in 2003 the complex was already huge. Visitors flocked around the huge rectangular tomb (Shia and Sufi shrines always resemble a Ka’bah like structure) in the centre of the mausoleum. People unwrapped green silk threads (dakhil) and tied them around the crosses of the lattice frame (common Shia practices) for the sake of Tabarruk (seeking blessings). They kissed the frame and performed Tawaf-like rituals (circumambulating) around the shrine that is bigger in size than the shrines in Karbala, Najaf, and Mashhad.
I could hear people whispering odes and their wishes to Khomeini. There was I, in the midsts of the evolution of the mother of all Shirk (polytheism) i.e. the excessive veneration of saints, saint worship, conducted in the name of ‘intercession’ just as it is done in the Church (Catholics and Orthodox Christians). To my surprise I realised that the many visitors were actually non-Iranians.
They were visitors were either Arabs from Iraq, the Persian Gulf countries and Lebanon or Asians from the Indian subcontinent (especially Pakistanis). I was reminded by the Taxi driver who told me that most Iranians don’t really come down to Khomeini’s resting place. That’s how humiliated the Iranian regime is. Khomeini and the Shia clergy by large are despised and hatred by a very large portion of the population, this is you why you will mostly find non-Iranian Shias idealising and romanticising the Iranian Revolution and the Shia clergy.
As for what I’ve witnessed there: the typical exaggerated and excessive Shia practices and rituals of grave veneration and worship. Shia clerics from all over the world were roaming that place, people were prostrating towards the shrine and they (clerics) didn’t blink an eye (but Tarawih is bid’ah they say…). Why would they anyway? They are the culprits, they are the cause for the ghuluw (exaggeration) in the name of Ahlul-Bayt, they are the one’s who are lenient with such practices (they verbally claim that prostrating to graves is haram, on the other hand they tell their followers that doing so in the form of ‘thanking Allah’ is permissible).
Keep in mind, I visited Khomeini’s tomb in 2003, even back then it was still in development! Today it is nearly finished and looks like a a giant jewellery box, like a royal Sassanian palace (the tombs of Shahs of Iran look more modest), but certainly not like a modest Islamic grave. Its ceiling is decorated with fine rose-tinged quartz, golden stars embedded in between. Fine rugs cover every inch of the mausoleum. Hundreds of them carpet the polished marble floors. The Iranian regime has reportedly devoted 2 billion US dollars to his mausoleum.
Crusaders and even Hindus have more modest/Islamic graves than compared to Khomeini’s palace. Irony: One day none other but the vast majority of Iranians (cultural Shias who hate the regime/clerics will level this waste to the ground & inshallah distribute the gold to the poor.
Schools in many impoverished Iranian Sunni areas of Iran compared to Khomeini’s mausoleum (rather Zoroastrian Sassandid like palace), one of the largest and most expensive/wasteful mausoleums and shrines in the world.
The irony: Khomeini used to repeatedly attack the lavish lifestyle of the House of Saud, yet compare the modest ISLAMIC grave of a KING (just like Sahaba & Ahlul Bayt graves in Saudi) with that of an alleged ‘modest and humble’ #Ayatollah . You don’t need to be a Saudi loyalist and fan to appreciate whose grave is Islamic and whose is not.
Modest Islamic graves VS Khomeini’s Sasanian-Zoroastrian (Majusi) style super mausoleum and shrine: