Sunday, March 18, 2007

Persian New Year is fast Approaching

In harmony with the rebirth of nature, the Iranian New Year Celebration, or NOROOZ, always begins on the first day of spring (vernal equinox). Norooz ceremonies are symbolic representations of two ancient concepts - the End and the Rebirth; or Good and Evil. This celebration is a non-Islamic tradition and has its roots in the Persain's Zoroastrain heritage before Islam wiped off the Persian Civilization and imposed Islam by the sword on the Iranian plateau.

A few weeks before the New Year, Iranians clean and rearrange their homes. They make new clothes, bake pastries and germinate seeds (either wheat or lentil) as sign of renewal.

There is also Haft-Seeen Table above (Haft=7 and seen= the letter "S"). The table "Haft Seen" is a spread with seven items which each symbolizes a wish or theme.
All seven items in this ceremonial table starts with the Persian letter Seen or the letter "S" in English. The Haft Seen spread is usually put out a week before the New Year, which sets the mood for celebration.

The seven items are:

1. Sabzeh (grown wheat or lentil) for rebirth,

2. Samanu (flour and sugar) for sweetness of life,

3. Sekeh (coin ) for prosperity and wealth,

4. Senjed ( dried fruit of Lotus tree) for love,

5. Seer (garlic) for health,

6. Sumach ( sumac berries) for warmth ,

7. Serkeh ( vinegar) for patience. After the Arabo/Islam Conquest of Iran and the Imposition of Islam, Serkeh (vinegar) was substitued for Syrah (wine) because alcholol is forbideen in Islam.

Also there are other items on the Norooz spread:

1. Painted eggs (hard-boiled eggs), which represent fertility and played a game with,

2. A mirror that represents image and reflection of life,

3. Goldfish in a bowl that represents life,

4. Hyacinth plant (Son-bol in Persian)

5. Candles

6. Hafez book of Poetry

However, this year so far I have not started the wheat grass (sabzeh) which I should normally have started 2 weeks prior to the coming of the New Year. I used to impatiently check up on the sprouting wheat in the plate with a sense of wonder. Not this year...

Do I want to color those eggs?

Do I want to clean the house and put out my decorative plates and vases full of tulips and daffodils ?

Do I want to buy the Hyacinth plant this year?

Do I want to go buy that one item of new clothing I have religiously purchased for myself in March since I have been on my own at 14?

My heart is heavy as stone. I wished the Islamic Republic of Terrorists would release those incarcerated teachers and workers who wanted nothing else but their salaries so they can afford to provide for their families and buy those items they need for the Haft-Seen Table. Are they going to spend the New Years Eve in the gulag of Evin prison?

I have to confess, this is the first year that I've discovered the sheer scale and the deep penetrating devestation and desolation that the Islamic Republic of terrorists have inflicted upon the enslaved(mind, body and soul) nation of Iran...How can I be in a celebratory mood having just come to this realization. My soul is aching and something in me has broken and I pray...


GardunehMehr said...

Norooz'at Pirooz

Frieda said...

Happy New Year to you and your family. I think Persian Norooz is the most meaningful "New Year: , compare to all other "New Year" traditions.
It's too bad that the Mullahs' regime have ruined all Persian traditions and the world can not see the beauty that Persian traditions and customs can offer to the world.

Here is an Irish blessing for your New Year:

May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
and all your heart might desire.

Jungle Mom said...

So now I know where the colored easter egg tradition came from! Fascinating. I always learn something here.

Anonymous said...

I found you from Frieda's blog, thanks for letting us know about Norooz. I had no idea !