The legends of Sidi Boussghirine

Through various types of people all around the world, not all of them have beliefs in religions or existence of gods. However, most people have faith believe in something, through small rumors such as twiching on the left eye forecasts fortune, to large worships focus on people, objects or places. If one hangs out in Sefrou for a while, and randomly ask people around them about their faith, the most common replys they receive should be a place called The tomb of Sidi Boussghirine.

The tomb of Sidi Boussghirine

The tomb of Sidi Boussghirine is a place about three kilometers from the city, where a mausoleum and its ancillary buildings lie on top of a mountain, overlooking the panorama of Sefrou. The owner of this mausoleum is named Sharif Al-Idrisi, Arab who lived in the 16th century, born outside and finally slept eternally in Sefrou.

The tomb is one of the most famous marabouts of the region, patron saint of Sefrou who is said to be the descendant of Moulay Idriss. Believing visitors gather and pray at the foot of its mausoleum, located at an altitude of nearly 900 m. From there, the panoramic view is splendid, opening onto Sefrou and the Middle Atlas. Nearby, you can reach the ruins of Fort Prioux, built under the protectorate, or the miraculous spring, famous for curing infertility among women.

The tomb shot in another angle

However, unlike the other sanctums in the Arab world – for example Sidi Lahssen El Youssi, one of the most authoritative shrines, Sidi Boussghirine does not appear to have a clear origin, making it hardly possible to occupy a higher status in the Arab world. Though, tourists and local residents pay little attention to it, and The tomb of Sidi Boussghirine is still undoubtedly the most visited Sefrou sanctuary nowadays.

As time comes to now on, The tomb itself has become important more than a religion facility to local residents, and also has developed new rituals corresponding to local customs. Though every year many pilgrims come from far away for pilgrimage, which enriches the religious atmosphere of this place, more people reach this place without religious views and stands. The most attractive place here is not the tomb itself, but a spring laying down nearby. The spring is said magical blessing by Sidi Boussghirine himself, and is well known as curing women’s infertility. Also, many talented painters often gather at the tomb, which by their own account can provide them with full inspirations to new paintings. These rituals do not belong to the Muslim culture, and so does the tomb itself, but were created as brand-new cultures when Muslim culture integrated with the local cultures. This also accurately corresponds to the meaning of multiculturalism — various of different cultures collide and merge slowly, and finally produce life to new cultures harmonious with local – Sefrou.

Producer of this exhibition:

Daijiang Zhang

Grace Ekpe

Janai Bowers

Nouhaila Laaroussi

Yue Luo

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