Kiz Bibi complex
About thirty minutes drive from the city of Bukhara you will need in order to get to the unique architectural complex Kiz-bibi. The amazing ensemble is located between the oasis and the sands of the desert, which was once the bed of the Zarafshan. By the 16th century permanent changes in the water level and its lack had turned this territory into a zone of sands. It was at that time when many ancient settlements of the Bukhara oasis ceased to exist.
The Sufi cloister Kiz bibi was erected in the 18th century by order of Mir-Arab Sadykhon in memory of Mastura-khanum, also known as Kiz Bibi.
Mastura-khanum was an ordinary Sufi girl, but once she simply disappeared in numerous hujrahs (cells) of the monastery Kiz-bibi. According to some folk legends, her soul still lives in this monastery, protects it and helps all the inhabitants. And other legends say that the girl had to flee into the desert to avoid marriage with an unloved man. For a long time, Kiz Bibi lived as a recluse until a higher power sent her the gift to heal people. The rest of her life on earth she dedicated to treating girls for infertility.
The architectural ensemble, named after Kiz Bibi, consists of three different courtyards. The first one is economic and is intended for the workers of the monastery, who monitor cleanliness and order. The second courtyard belongs exclusively to the novices of the monastery, and the third serves to accommodate pilgrims. Here is the tomb of Kiz Bibi, khanaka, chillya-khana (eremitical room), kitchen, bath and cells. The entrance to the female khanaka (darvazakhana) is located in the southern part of Kiz Bibi complex. There are also special rooms that were designed for mentally ill novices.
The whole set of functionally different rooms of this late, apparently gradually established monastery, corresponds to the complex of rooms that was characteristic of early medieval cloisters with a courtyard, where the life of Sufis proceeded in isolation from the world.
Bukhara Sufi monastery Kiz Bibi was built gradually. Year after year the necessary buildings and premises were added. Finally, the ensemble was formed by the end of the 18th century and managed to survive to our time in its original form.
Today, many pilgrims from various countries of the world come to Kiz bibi Convent in Bukhara to recover from infertility. It is believed that for this it is necessary to spend exactly 3 days in the monastery, strictly observing fasting, solitude in the cell and unceasing prayer. Men are strictly forbidden to enter the women Sufi's khonako Kiz Bibi.
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