Nowruz, 3000-Year-Old Spring Festival of Persian Origin (Part 4)
The United Nations in its Feb. 23, 2010 General Assembly recognized March 21 as International Day of Nowruz to let the New Year festivity of over 300 million people across the globe become officially international.
According to the preamble of the resolution on the International Day of Nowruz, which means new day, member states were asked to register March 21 as the International Day of Nowruz in their official calendars. The UN resolution has described Nowruz as the day of the vernal equinox, which is celebrated for over 3,000 years by more than 300 million people worldwide as the beginning of the new year.
Nowruz marks the beginning of the New Year in Iran and Afghanistan. In addition to Iran, with official and unofficial holidays during Nowruz, it is celebrated as an official holiday in many other countries although Nowruz is not the beginning of the new year in some countries.
Like Turkmenistan, Nowruz holidays in Tajikistan last for four days, i.e. from March 20 to March 23. The people of Tajikistan, specially those with Tajik origin living in Badakhshan, clean their houses prior to the advent of the New Year. Nowruz Festival to the people of Tajikistan means code of friendship and resurrection of the entire creatures. It is called “Khidir Ayyam” or great days referring to the great festival. One of the most welcome Nowruz cuisines in Tajikistan is “Baaj”, which is a food made of wheat boiled with sheep head and legs.
People in Kazakhstan observe Nowruz holidays for four days (March 21-24). On the eve of the New Year, people light up two candles on the roofs of their houses that they clean properly. They believe cleaning their houses before the advent of the New Year keeps the family immune against misfortunes and diseases. One major tradition during Nowruz is cooking a special soup, locally called Nowruz Goujeh with seven ingredients in its recipe as a sign of bidding farewell to winter and winter foods.
Translated by: Sadroddin Musawi