Nowruz: Origins and Celebration in the Persian World Professor Farima S.Mostowfi
Origins <ul><li>“ Nowruz” means “New Day” </li></ul><ul><li>It was the beginning of the new year in the Persian calendar <...
Ancient Persia <ul><li>Around 550 BC, Cyrus began laying the foundations of the Persian Empire </li></ul><ul><li>For thous...
Map of the Ancient Persian Empire
Zoroastrianism <ul><li>The religion of ancient Iran was Zoroastrianism </li></ul><ul><li>Ancient religion in Iran based on...
Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Since ancient times, Iran has celebrated the New Year on the vernal equinox, what we know as the 20...
Persepolis
The Lion Eating the Bull, the new year eating the old year, at Persepolis
Persepolis <ul><li>At Persepolis, representatives from satrapies and governorships (including Ionian Greeks, Egyptians, Ba...
Bearing gifts for the Shah (the King) for Nowruz
Conflict and Tradition <ul><li>As time passed and empires grew and fell, Persia was invaded numerous times by other powers...
Calendar <ul><li>The Persian calendar is solar and begins at the vernal equinox </li></ul><ul><li>Omar Khayyam, an astrono...
 
Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Nowruz is the most important holiday in Iran. It is a 14-day holiday </li></ul><ul><li>Spring clean...
Nowruz in Iran- Chaharshanbe Suri <ul><li>The first celebration is Chaharshanbe Suri </li></ul><ul><li>It is a Zoroastrian...
Nowruz in Iran- Chaharshanbe Suri
Nowruz in Iran- Haji Firuz <ul><li>The Haji Firuz was a person that would come to city to sing and dance as well as alert ...
Nowruz in Iran- Haji Firuz
Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Haft sin (Seven S’s) </li></ul><ul><li>Sumac  (crushed spice of berries): For the sunrise and the s...
Nowruz in Iran
Nowruz in Iran
Nowruz in Iran
Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Sizdah Bedar is a celebration on the 13 th  day of the new year meaning (13 to out) </li></ul><ul><...
Nowruz in other countries <ul><li>Other countries that were formerly part of the ancient Persian Empire also celebrate Now...
Nowruz in Afghanistan <ul><li>The Taliban banned Nowruz when they were in power, but it returned in force after they were ...
Nowruz in Afghanistan
Nowruz in Afghanistan “ Buzkashi” (predecessor to polo, an annual new year tournament)
Nowruz in Afghanistan “ Buzkashi” (predecessor to polo, an annual new year tournament)
Nowruz in Tajikistan <ul><li>Nowruz is a beloved festival that has been celebrated by Tajiks since ancient times </li></ul...
Nowruz in Tajikistan <ul><li>Local communities usually organize musical and dance performances in their town’s parks or sq...
Nowruz in Tajikistan “ Buzkashi”
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz in Tajikistan
Nowruz (Newruz) in Kurdistan (Iran) <ul><li>There is spring cleaning </li></ul><ul><li>There is jumping over fires </li></...
Nowruz in India <ul><li>2,000 families emigrated to India (named Parsi) after the Arab invasion and the arrival of Islam t...
Nowruz in India <ul><li>Five rituals </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Afringan (prayers of love  or praise) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><l...
Thank you! Nowruz mobarak!  Happy New Year (1388)!
 
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Nowruz - Origins and Celebration in the Persian World

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Nowruz - Origins and Celebration in the Persian World

  1. 1. Nowruz: Origins and Celebration in the Persian World Professor Farima S.Mostowfi
  2. 2. Origins <ul><li>“ Nowruz” means “New Day” </li></ul><ul><li>It was the beginning of the new year in the Persian calendar </li></ul><ul><li>The holiday is said to have started 15,000 years ago, beyond the last ice age </li></ul><ul><li>It marked the transition of seasons from hunting animals to raising animals and a more settled life </li></ul><ul><li>Adapting to the seasons was very important for these ancient people to survive </li></ul>
  3. 3. Ancient Persia <ul><li>Around 550 BC, Cyrus began laying the foundations of the Persian Empire </li></ul><ul><li>For thousands of years, this land was tribal, dating back to Zoroaster </li></ul><ul><li>He united tribes from around modern-day Iran and had many military victories as he expanded his power </li></ul><ul><li>He founded the Achaemenid Empire </li></ul>
  4. 4. Map of the Ancient Persian Empire
  5. 5. Zoroastrianism <ul><li>The religion of ancient Iran was Zoroastrianism </li></ul><ul><li>Ancient religion in Iran based on the teachings of Zoroaster, an ancient prophet </li></ul><ul><li>Falsely called “Fire-worshippers” </li></ul><ul><li>Good thoughts, good words, good deeds </li></ul>
  6. 6. Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Since ancient times, Iran has celebrated the New Year on the vernal equinox, what we know as the 20 th or 21 st of March </li></ul><ul><li>There is a record of these celebrations on the walls of Persepolis, the capital of the ancient Persian Empire </li></ul>
  7. 7. Persepolis
  8. 8. The Lion Eating the Bull, the new year eating the old year, at Persepolis
  9. 9. Persepolis <ul><li>At Persepolis, representatives from satrapies and governorships (including Ionian Greeks, Egyptians, Babylonians, and Indians) personally brought Darius the Great gifts and explanations of them </li></ul><ul><li>This ceremony was in Apadana, a building that served as a treasury </li></ul><ul><li>Darius the Great would also give gifts </li></ul><ul><li>There would then be a celebration </li></ul>
  10. 10. Bearing gifts for the Shah (the King) for Nowruz
  11. 11. Conflict and Tradition <ul><li>As time passed and empires grew and fell, Persia was invaded numerous times by other powers </li></ul><ul><li>Persia always tried to maintain its customs including its language, its calendar, and the Nowruz celebration </li></ul><ul><li>Nowruz has survived to today in many countries </li></ul>
  12. 12. Calendar <ul><li>The Persian calendar is solar and begins at the vernal equinox </li></ul><ul><li>Omar Khayyam, an astronomer who was also a famous poet, organized the calendar in 1079 AD and placed the beginning of the year at Nowruz </li></ul><ul><li>The Persian calendar has the year 0 set at the time when Muhammad went from Mecca to Medina </li></ul><ul><li>It is now the year 1388 in the Persian calendar </li></ul>
  13. 14. Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Nowruz is the most important holiday in Iran. It is a 14-day holiday </li></ul><ul><li>Spring cleaning- an ancient tradition marking a rebirth for the new year </li></ul><ul><li>New clothes are purchased and gifts are exchanged with family </li></ul>
  14. 15. Nowruz in Iran- Chaharshanbe Suri <ul><li>The first celebration is Chaharshanbe Suri </li></ul><ul><li>It is a Zoroastrian holiday on the last Wednesday of the year </li></ul><ul><li>People jump over fires as an act of purification </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;My yellowness is yours, your redness is mine“ meaning &quot;My paleness (pain, sickness) for you (the fire), your strength (health) for me&quot; </li></ul>
  15. 16. Nowruz in Iran- Chaharshanbe Suri
  16. 17. Nowruz in Iran- Haji Firuz <ul><li>The Haji Firuz was a person that would come to city to sing and dance as well as alert people to the time of Nowruz (tahvil- the exact moment) </li></ul><ul><li>They were entertainers who received donations </li></ul><ul><li>Typically dressed in a red satin outfit with a painted face as a disguise </li></ul><ul><li>He symbolizes the rebirth of the Sumerian god of sacrifice who was killed at the end of each year and reborn at the beginning of the New Year </li></ul>
  17. 18. Nowruz in Iran- Haji Firuz
  18. 19. Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Haft sin (Seven S’s) </li></ul><ul><li>Sumac (crushed spice of berries): For the sunrise and the spice of life </li></ul><ul><li>Senjed (sweet dry fruit of the lotus tree): For love and affection </li></ul><ul><li>Serkeh (vinegar): For patience and age </li></ul><ul><li>Seeb (apples): For health and beauty </li></ul><ul><li>Sir (garlic): For good health </li></ul><ul><li>Samanu (wheat pudding): For fertility and the sweetness of life </li></ul><ul><li>Sabzeh (sprouted wheat grass): For rebirth and renewal of nature </li></ul>
  19. 20. Nowruz in Iran
  20. 21. Nowruz in Iran
  21. 22. Nowruz in Iran
  22. 23. Nowruz in Iran <ul><li>Sizdah Bedar is a celebration on the 13 th day of the new year meaning (13 to out) </li></ul><ul><li>It is a day where people go outside and have picnics and socialize </li></ul><ul><li>The sabzeh (wheat grass) is thrown into the water to exorcise demons of the household </li></ul><ul><li>Young single women tie the shoots and throw them into the flowing water, wishing to be married within the year </li></ul>
  23. 24. Nowruz in other countries <ul><li>Other countries that were formerly part of the ancient Persian Empire also celebrate Nowruz, having maintained this tradition for thousands of years </li></ul><ul><li>It is the new year in Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, and Tajikistan as well as Kurdistan (including parts of Iran, Iraq and Turkey) </li></ul><ul><li>It is also widely celebrated in Georgia, India, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey, as well as other countries where there is an Iranian diaspora (the U.S., France, Canada, etc.) </li></ul>
  24. 25. Nowruz in Afghanistan <ul><li>The Taliban banned Nowruz when they were in power, but it returned in force after they were overthrown in 2001 </li></ul><ul><li>“ Seven Cooked Fruits” (Haft mive) instead of “Seven S’s” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Raisin, Senjed (of oleaster tree), pistachio, hazelnut, dried apricot, walnut and almond or plum cooked together </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Samanak- a sweet dish made of wheat germ </li></ul><ul><li>Two weeks of celebration </li></ul>
  25. 26. Nowruz in Afghanistan
  26. 27. Nowruz in Afghanistan “ Buzkashi” (predecessor to polo, an annual new year tournament)
  27. 28. Nowruz in Afghanistan “ Buzkashi” (predecessor to polo, an annual new year tournament)
  28. 29. Nowruz in Tajikistan <ul><li>Nowruz is a beloved festival that has been celebrated by Tajiks since ancient times </li></ul><ul><li>Nowruz was outlawed when the Soviets were in control </li></ul><ul><li>It was reintroduced as a national holiday after Tajik independence in 1991 </li></ul><ul><li>In Tajikistan, Nowruz starts on the first day of spring, like in Iran </li></ul>
  29. 30. Nowruz in Tajikistan <ul><li>Local communities usually organize musical and dance performances in their town’s parks or squares </li></ul><ul><li>Food stands and large bazaars </li></ul><ul><li>Families visit and attend the events </li></ul><ul><li>Like in Iran, it is seen as a time of renewal, good will, and good luck. </li></ul><ul><li>People often buy new clothes and give gifts to others </li></ul>
  30. 31. Nowruz in Tajikistan “ Buzkashi”
  31. 32. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  32. 33. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  33. 34. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  34. 35. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  35. 36. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  36. 37. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  37. 38. Nowruz in Tajikistan
  38. 39. Nowruz (Newruz) in Kurdistan (Iran) <ul><li>There is spring cleaning </li></ul><ul><li>There is jumping over fires </li></ul><ul><li>Special foods are prepared </li></ul><ul><li>Families gather and there is dancing as well as poetry reading </li></ul><ul><li>Women wear colorful clothes </li></ul>
  39. 40. Nowruz in India <ul><li>2,000 families emigrated to India (named Parsi) after the Arab invasion and the arrival of Islam to Iran </li></ul><ul><li>They maintain their traditions and are mostly Zoroastrian </li></ul><ul><li>It is also celebrated on the same day as spring </li></ul><ul><li>Good wishes and greetings exchanged </li></ul>
  40. 41. Nowruz in India <ul><li>Five rituals </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Afringan (prayers of love or praise) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Baj (prayers honoring preexistent souls </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Yasna, offering and drinking sacred liquor (haoma) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fravartigan or Farokhshi (prayers commemorating the dead) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Satum (prayers recited at funeral feasts) </li></ul></ul>
  41. 42. Thank you! Nowruz mobarak! Happy New Year (1388)!

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