Sarah Jabbari

Documentary Photographer
Substitution of Grieving
Location: India
Nationality: Iranian
Biography: Sarah Jabbari, born on December 1989, Tehran, is an Iranian freelance documentary photographer concerned by social and cultural issues, gender and identity; with interest in working on long-term projects to get deeper into the story.
Public Story
Substitution of Grieving
Copyright Sarah Jabbari 2022
Date of Work Oct 2017 - Oct 2017
Updated Jun 2018

Muslims mark the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (AS), the grandson of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), on Ashura, which is the 10th day of the lunar month of Muharram.

The forces of the tyrant caliph Yazid also killed the 72 relatives and companions of Imam Hussein (AH) in Karbala, Iraq, for not giving their oath of allegiance. 
In recent decades, people in different regions of Iran enact various events on Ashura. 
The mourning ceremonies and rituals take many different forms and vary widely across the country and have become more elaborate over the years. 

Ashura Ceremonies in Lorestan 

Lorestan's people hold ceremonies such as performing sad music with Chamari (a traditional musical instrument) and Gel-Mali (covering oneself with mud as a sign of mourning) during the first decade of Muharram. 

As Muharram approaches, they set up tents and cover the mosques with black banners and clothes to commemorate the event. 
Mourners beat their chests as a sign of grief and mourning. They wear black clothes and headbands bearing "Ya Hussein". 
Lorestan's people cook Nazri (votive) with rice, cooking oil, flour, sugar, rosewater, and saffron, and distribute it among mourners. 


The people of Khorramabad city mix clay with water and place it in major squares for people to apply it on their faces and clothes as a sign of mourning. 
Some people collect dry wood and light fire so as to warm mourners who cover themselves with mud. 
On the night of Ashura, they perform Sham-e Ghariban ceremony. They cover their heads, necks, and shoulders with special black turbans, and light candles to commemorate the event.

Source: Iran Daily


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