Photographer's Note

The minarets of the Mausoleum of Khomeini near Tehran.
The mausoleum of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini is one the grandest architectural endeavours of the Islamic Republic. Built on an enormous scale – which necessitated the moving of many existing graves at the giant Behesht-e Zahra cemetery – the Holy Shrine also contains the tombs of Khomeini's wife, second son and several other important political figures; in 2017, former president Akbar Rafsanjani was buried here.

The shrine is flanked by four 91m-high towers symbolising Khomeini’s age when he died. The huge gold central dome is adorned with 72 tulips, which symbolise the 72 martyrs who fought and died with Imam Hossein in Karbala.

Inside the vast main hall, covered with 12,000 carpets each 12 sq metres, Khomeini's tomb itself is enclosed in a stainless steel zarih, a cage-like casing through which pilgrims pay their respects and no small number of bank notes. Men and women approach respectfully from different sides.

The scene was very different in 1989 at Khomeini's chaotic funeral, attended by a crush of 10 million inconsolable mourners. As the hearse tried to move towards the cemetery it was stopped repeatedly before the crowd eventually took the coffin and started passing it over their heads. By the time a helicopter was summoned it was too late and even the armed Komiteh guards couldn’t stop the body falling out of the coffin, and the crowd trying to tear pieces off the shroud to keep as holy relics.

I liked this view on the sunset. But the interior is very ugly.
Another picture of the minarets and the view of this ugly interior in Workshop.

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Additional Photos by Malgorzata Kopczynska (emka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 12634 W: 133 N: 32628] (150057)
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