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Parsi New Year (Jamshed Roz)

Parsi New Year (Jamshed Roz)

Parsi New Year (Jamshed Roz)

The Parsi New Year also known as Jamshed-e-Navroz is a festival celebrate with great enthusiasm and festivities by the Parsi community across the globe. The day, which falls on the first day of the first month of the Zoroastrian calendar, coincides with the vernal equinox, i.e. the day on which the day and night are of equal duration.

In 2013, Jamshed-e-Navroz will be celebrated on 18th August.

The Legend of Parsi New Year

The “Persian Book of Kings” or Shah Nemeh, written by Firdausi, contains the reference to Jamshed-e- Navroz. It is believed that the festival was first celebrated by King Jamshed, which is why it is named after him. According to legend the King celebrated the day to mark his rise to the throne and named it Navroz, which in Parsi means new day.

Significance of Jamshed-e-Navroz

The festival of Parsi New Year is a day for celebrating the spirit of harmony, happiness and friendship. It is customary for the community to weigh their king in gold and silver on this day and then distribute the riches among the poor. People also visit the “Agiary” or the Fire Temple where they offer special prayers which are called “Jashan”.

Celebrating Jamshed-e-Navroz

Parsi's are known for celebrating their festivals in a grand and traditional manner, and hence the festivities of Jamshed-e-Navroz are conducted in a similar manner. On this day the Parsi people wear new clothes along with gold and silver Kustis and caps. The houses are decorated beautifully with symbols of stars, butterflies, birds and fishes, which are considered auspicious by the community.

It is quite common for the people of the community to organize group lunches on this day. This signifies the concept of unity and harmony among the community members irrespective of their class and social status. People usually welcome their guests by sprinkling a combination of fresh rose water and rice on them and applying Tilak on their foreheads.

Food forms one of the most important aspects of any Parsi celebration, including New Year Day. The breakfast usually consists of Ravo, which is dish prepared from sugar, milk and semolina. The lunch generally includes pulao along with a minimum of seven other dishes whose names begin with “sh” or “s” which is considered to be a symbol of creation. In addition, the traditional Parsi drink called Falooda, which is made from milk and rose water is also served on this day.

 

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