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  • 2/22/2015

Chaharshanbe Suri, Nowruz Welcoming (Part 6)


During Nowruz celebrations different rites and rituals are observed according to the traditions of forefathers. The second rite is the fire festival held on the eve of the last Wednesday of the year.
Ancient Iranians considered light a manifestation of God, thus they honored sun and fire as the sources of light. Chaharshanbe refers to the last Wednesday before the New Year and Suri or “Surik” means red in Persian language. The two together means Red Wednesday and it serves as an introduction to Nowruz celebrations. In the past, Chaharshanbe Suri used to be observed by various rites and rituals all showing the celebration manners of this ancient festival. Today, people on the eve of the last Wednesday of the year people make bonfires and observe certain rituals. However, whatever coming from all these ceremonies suggest that making bonfires meant victory, happiness and celebration for all tribes living on this land.
In the evening and after sunset, people make bonfires of seven or three twigs (representing sacred number of seven or the three good manners), jump over the fire and sing songs that contain their wishes for health, wealth, reproduction and cleanliness. Such ceremonies as breaking the clay jar, burning wild rue for its incense, shawl casting, breaking eggs, fortune trying, walnut breaking, fortunetelling, cooking vow soup, spoon banging, and buying mixture of dried edible nuts are among the symbolic practices during Chaharshanbe Suri.

Translated by: Sadroddin Musawi

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