Nowruz (The New Day)

Nowruz: An Iranian mythical celebration

The first days of Iranian new year is called Nowruz.

“Oh reformer of hearts and minds/ Director of day and night/ Oh transformer of condition and situation/ Change our condition to the best in accordance with your will”, This verses are spelled when at the moment that the New Year starts.

March 21st and some days after it named Nowruz is traditionally celebrated by the Persians, and Spring is coming. Birds sing again, snows melt, the rivers flood more than anytime. Trees wake up of their long hibernation, and landscapes as well as forests become green again because the Nowruz is around. What a glorious celebration and tradition in the first day of spring.

From days ago the Iranians dominantly prepare themselves for the New Year. They do housecleaning, clean and wash everything in their homes. The Iranians usually buy new clothes for themselves, and leave some of their old clothes out for the poor. The bazaars boom extensively one month before the New Year starts, and the smell of spring reaches everywhere.

Oh what a day. People, including the immediate or extensive family, gather around of a tabletop which is called Haft-Seen at the right moment of changing the year. Haft-seen means seven seen (a Persian Alphabet letter sounds like S). The usual items for Haft-Seen are:

  1. Sabzeh: A symbol of rebirth, water and spirit which usually is wheat, bareley, or mung bean sprouts growing in a suitable dish
  2. Samanu: A symbol of affluence and abundant of product and is produced from fresh wheat germ.
  3. Sib (apple): A symbol of gestation.
  4. Sir (garlic): A symbol of Ormazd (the ancient god of the Persians) and the symbol of fighting with abomination.
  5. Somaq (sumac): A symbol of rain and love.
  6. Senjed (dried oleaster wild olive fruit): A symbol of life.
  7. Serkeh (vinegar): A symbol of immortality and patience.

In addition to these symbols, people usually put other items on Haft-Seen which are closely matted the Iranian’s life. Quran, the holy book of Muslims, Divan of Hafiz, a Persian poetry book, a mirror, the symbol of light and is put on top of the Haft Seen, goldfishes, colored eggs, the symbol of birth and water the symbol purity are dominantly used in Iranian Haft-seen. Candy, sweetness, chocolates, fruits and nuts are used for entertainments.After that people go to their relative’s homes and renew their visits. The Nowruz vacations are also suitable days for traveling, and roads hosts millions of travelers all around the country.

Divan of Hafiz