Drifting through the rich mystical land of Iran, the Sufi spiritual tradition of the Safavid Dynasty still flows strongly in the Sheikh Safi al-Din Khanegah and Shrine Ensemble complex. Founded, in northwestern Iran, early 14th century and finished late 18th century this sacred spiritual den was built as a microcosmic city; with a mosque, school, tomb, hospital, kitchens, bakery, shops, squares, homes, public baths, offices and a cistern. The term ‘Khanegah’ is used to describe a place where Sufis and mystics come together. This spiritual complex was designed in such a way that the path leading to the shrine divides into seven segments; mirroring the seven stages of Sufi mysticism, separated by eight doors; representing the eight attitudes of Sufism. As of 2010, it has been an official UNESCO registered World Heritage Site.
It is Sheikh Safi al-Din Ardabili, founder of Safaviyya; a Sufi order, that consequently became the eponym for the Safavid Dynasty. Sufism is the term used to refer to the inner spiritual and mystical dimension of the Islam religion. The Sufi order was very prominent in the 14th and 15th centuries in this region. It was due to the high reputation of Sheikh Safi al-Din and the dominant influence of the Sufi order that so much attention was attracted to this Khanegah complex. All of which, has resulted in numerous beautifully ornamented facades and intricately designed interior space, alongside a huge preserved archive of very rare and ancient artifacts. Even after the passing of Sheikh Safi al-Din, the Safavids continued to decorate the shrine of their ancestors with countless masterful works of art, ornamentation and archaeological artifacts. Even to this day, this complex is being used as a place of worship and pilgrimage. The Khanegah and Shrine ensemble of Sheikh Safi al-Din is a rare combination of elements from medieval Islamic architecture that every traveller seeking to find the truth of today’s world and its mysticism must witness.
Address: Sheikh Safi-Al Din Mosque, Sheikh Safi-Al Din St. Ayatollah Taleghani Blvd.
Operating Days: Every day
Operating Hours: 8 am
Neighbourhood: Safaviyeh Bazaar