Happy Nowruz! (March 20th)

Iranian New Year is coming; it will be celebrated on March 20th.

Happy Nowruz to all my friends and family!

Here some information about this ancient Persian tradition for our non-Iranian friends, so we can share the joy and celebration of Nowruz; Saleh Noo Mobarak (Happy New Year).

Nowrūz meaning “The New Day” is the name of the Iranian New Year in the Solar Hijri calendar. Nowruz is also referred to as the Persian New Year.

Nowruz marks the first day of spring and the beginning of the year in the Persian calendar. It is celebrated on the day of the astronomical Northward equinox, which usually occurs on March 21 or the previous/following day depending on where it is observed. The moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator and equalizes night and day is calculated exactly every year and families gather together to observe the rituals.

Nowruz is celebrated by people from diverse ethnic communities and religious backgrounds for thousands of years. It is a secular holiday that is enjoyed by people of several different faiths. It is originated in the geographical area called Greater Persia (modern-day Iran, Western Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan). The distinct culture based on the language, food, music, and leisure activities that developed among the many people and ethnic groups who lived in this area are known as Persian.

Haft-Seen or the seven ‘S’s is a traditional table setting of Nowruz, the traditional Iranian spring celebration. The haft seen table includes seven items all starting with the letter seen (س) in the Persian alphabet. Haft-Seen was originally called Haftchin (Haftĉin) derived from the words Chin (چین), meaning “gather; pile up” and Haft (هفت), the number 7. The Haft Chin table includes the following items:

The main items are:

  1. Somagh (sumac): symbolizes the color of sunrise
  2. Serkeh (vinegar): symbolizes age and patience
  3. Senjed (dried fruit from lotus tree): symbolizes love
  4. Samanoo (sweet pudding): symbolizes affluence
  5. Sabzeh (sprouts): symbolizes rebirth
  6. Sib (apple): symbolizes health and beauty
  7. Sir (garlic): symbolizes medicine

Additional items that begin with the letter “s” that are commonly seen on the Sofreh are:

Sekkeh (coin): symbolizes wealth and prosperity

Sonbol (hyacinth): a spring flower

Other items included are:

Mahi (fish): symbolizes life

Tokhmeh Morgh (egg): symbolizes fertility

Sham (candle): symbolizes enlightenment

Shirini (sweets): symbolizes spreading the sweetness

A book of poetry or prayer



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