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Geography of Pilgrimage with Special Reference to Islam

Ravi S. Singh, Sarah Ahmad
Published: 26 March 2021
Space and Culture, India , Volume 8, pp 7-21; doi:10.20896/saci.v8i4.1102

Abstract: Pilgrimage is a spiritual journey during which pilgrims have a religious experience and feel connected to the faith's spiritual legacy. The sacred sites are the spiritual home for pilgrims which they have read and heard about but never visited or experienced before. With little attention paid to the Islamic pilgrimage, especially by geographers, this review paper is an attempt to provide an overview of the subject matter and seek to put forward possible future research directions. This paper provides a systematic description of pilgrimage in Islam by reviewing the literature on the subject, analysing the definitions, characteristics, processes, classification and authorisation of pilgrimage in general followed by an overview of Islamic pilgrimage, that is, Ziyarat by defining key terms, discussing the typology and exploring the neglected dimensions in Islamic pilgrimage studies. The study has brought the relics and saints venerated in the Muslim world into focus, which are the essential causes for the origin and continuation of the Ziyarat tradition. It also points out the different occasions and reasons for performing popular pilgrimage in Islam. And lastly, it discusses the future research dimensions of Islamic pilgrimage.
Keywords: religious experience / future research / Ziyarat / pilgrims / Islamic pilgrimage / dimensions in Islamic / spiritual home

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