Spring is a kind of restart for the earth that it gets along with festivity and makes cities, villages and houses renew.
The customs of Nowruz is the religion of reception of this green season; a season that it’s coming gives us a good reason to strive and place the old traditions.
Now it’s the time to know more about Nowruz and its customs and learn more about this old ceremony which is tied to Iranian culture.
We want to tell you about the short history of Nowruz and take a look at the customs of Nowruz in the past and also take a closer look at this big ceremony.
One of the ceremonies of ancient Iran that after passing the years, people still held it more glorious every year is the Holiday.
Nowruz Holiday is along with the start of New Year and people in these days, follow different traditions and congratulate the New Year to each other.
Be with us to have a closer look at this ceremony that has an antecedent which is for 3000 years.
We told you previously about the first steps of this big ceremony and also dealt with the separated subject of the customs before the Nowruz in Iran.
The philosophy of Nowruz Holiday
According to the existing legendary stories, Nowruz has been created in the time of Jamshid, the fourth pristine king of Iran.
In the Avesta, which is one of the oldest books of ancient Iran, it is mentioned to a person, named “Jamshid” that had possessed the power of Farah Izadi.
Jamshid starts to counter the devil (Ahriman) by the command of Ahura Mazda; Because Ahriman had caused lots of damage like famine and drought.
After that Jamshid beats the devil, again the happiness and blessings return to Iran’s land and the drought disappears.
The people later had denominated this day “Nowruz” or “new year” and made this ancient ceremony immortalized by planting grain in a flat wash-tub.
Read more: Chaharshanbe Suri
What is the Nowruz Holiday?
On the solar date, the first day of Farvardin is the start of the Nowruz Holiday. Nowruz starts with the passing of the sun from the earth’s equatorial plate and its movement toward the north of the sky.
This moment of start is the first moment of Ram. In the solar Hijri calendar, Nowruz is equivalent to “Hormoz rouz” or the day of “Ourmazd” in the month of Farvardin.
For understanding how Nowruz was originated, we can examine it from some aspects:
From the mythical and Ferdowsi view
According to what is in the mythical stories of Iran land like Shah Nameh Ferdowsi and Tarikh-e Tabari (history of prophets and kings), the background of Nowruz is returning to the administration of Jamshid, the first king on earth.
According to the historical narrations, he sat on the throne for any occasion and by doing good deeds, was establishing a ceremony.
in one of those ceremonies that were accidentally got symmetrical with the first day of Farvardin, the radiation of sunlight in the crown of this king, established riot among the people, and all of them shouted:
“Jamshid” which means “an adult- age was sparkled” and this name was placed on him.
His name is a combination of “Jam”, which means greatness, and “Shid” which is the synonym of shining.
Jamshid assumed this day as a new and happy day, because of this event and the spontaneous veneration of people from him and thereafter, this day was respected every year as “Nowruz”.
Some others texts know “Keyumars” as the founder of Nowruz and introduced him as the first human on the earth.
From the religious view
In the religion, there is also a story from Nowruz that holding this ceremony is being approved in the so-far years.
In Avesta, Zarathustra, the prophet is being mentioned as a person who introduced the solar calendar to the people. It is being said that he was denominated and also celebrated the first day of the year which means the equality of day and night as the “Equinox of Nowruz”.
Of course, other stories are indicating that the Nowruz Holiday was also held before the Zoroaster in Iran.
From the Scientific and astronomical phenomenon view
From the scientific and astronomical view, the Nowruz is a day that the sun is shining in the Ram (northern hemisphere) and the sun is placed on the Equator orbit.
As a result of this event, the day and night become equal with each other and their length in all of the points of the world in reaches to 12 hours.
These are the sign of the first day of Farvardin; a day that nature is awakening from hibernation and the new life starts on earth.
The things that we do now in Nowruz
Nowruz like many other ceremonies has its own special customs that are being held for 13 days in Iran. This ceremony includes:
- Arranging Haft Seen
Haft Sin is the most prominent sign of Nowruz and the beginning of year is usually celebrated alongside of it. From a long time ago, this colorful tablecloth has placed 7 plants and foods in itself that are starting with the alphabet of “Sin” that includes: Apple, brunet, oleaster, sumac, garlic, vinegar and Samanu (malt).
- Eating Reshteh Polo (String Rice) and Ash-e Reshteh
After New Year, the first meal is Reshteh Polo (String Rice) and Ash-e Reshteh that according to the old belief, eating it causes that the expertise fall into the hands of the family members until the end of the year.
Reshteh Polo (String Rice) is a delicious food that is being ready with Reshteh Poloee and rice, accompanied by date and fried raisins and eat it in the Nowruz ceremony.
- Bonus and presents
One of the old traditions of Nowruz is giving and receiving bonus. The children are full of joy of spring because of the desire to getting crisp bill and are waiting to receive it with a special enthusiasm.
Before the, he elders are giving the bonus bills to the children to sign consecration and also as a bonus. Some people instead of bill, provide some gifts for their beloved ones and give it to them.
Maybe in the past, the people knew that a day comes that we drown in concerns and dailiness that we don’t have any chance to see our relatives. The old tradition of visiting is a good excuse to meet at least once a year and share the happiness of this ancient ceremony with our beloved ones.
- Sizdah Bedar
The 13th day of Nowruz holidays is famous with the title of “Sizdah Bedar” and it is considered as the happy conclusion of Nowruz. An old belief is indicating that that we should exit from the house for removing portent and go to the lap of nature. Today, in the formal calendar of Iran, this day is named under the title of “Nature day” and is celebrated with having picnic by families across countries.
Read more: Isfahan Traditional Desserts
The global registration of Nowruz
In the year 2009, the ancient ceremony of Nowruz took place in the calendar of the United Nations General Assembly with Iranian roots. This ceremony was described in the text of decree in the form of below: link
“Nowruz, in 21th of March, is a ceremony with the Iranian root that has antiquity for more than 3000 years and today, more than 300 million people celebrate it.
For the first time, Nowruz 1391 was celebrated in the public courtyard of United Nations and UNESCO that was hosted by Iran and the inhabitants of the world recognized this valuable, cultural heritage.
Nowruz in other countries
Nowruz is a religion that not only it is being held in Iran, but also it is held in other countries of the world:
- Afghanistan, Kazakhstan
- and several other countries
hold this ceremony with their special customs and get participated in the happiness of earth renewal.
Frequently asked questions:
What day is Nowruz?
On the solar date, the first day of Farvardin is the start of the Nowruz Holiday.
What is the meaning of Nowruz?
In today’s language, this word is being interpreted in two forms: the public Nowruz; the day that the New Year starts in it and it is famous to the vernal equinox (the equivalence of Night and day).
Which kind of customs does Nowruz Holiday have?
The ancient holiday of Nowruz has customs like house cleaning, visiting, colorful eggs, fried fish with herb rice, Haft-Seen and etc.
Which days of Nowruz are public holidays?
The first four days of Farvardin, the days of 12th and 13th of Farvardin are taken into account as public holidays of Nowruz.
How good it be if we try in along of holding this ancient religion, as glorious as possible and don’t let that Nowruz holiday forgets over time, like other ancient ceremonies, and replace with foreign ceremonies.
Nowruz brings good events with itself. If we renew our hearts with the renewing of the year, we feel its sweetness more. We hope that you form your Haft Seen with love on the first day of spring and enjoy your spring days.
How did you hold this big ceremony? What is the mood of your living place? Tell us about the Nowruz mood of your city.