Do you know what is New Year or Parsis? Nowruz, meaning new day or New Year, in popular terms. People celebrate this event across the world mostly on March 21st every year. It is also known as “Jamshed-i- Nowruz”. The name is after legendary Persian king Jamshed and marks the beginning of the Iranian calendar too.
However, in countries like India and Pakistan, people celebrate the New Year of Parsis on August 17. The reason for celebrating this year on 17th August is because they follow the “Shehnshahi calendar” and leap years don’t come in counting.
History of the New Year of Parsis
Parsis follow the religion of Zoroastrians, one of the oldest monotheistic religions in the world. The religion dates back to 3500 years, and they are descents of Zoroastrians who come to the subcontinent from Iran during the 10th century. Do you know about English New Year History?
According to many historians, the founder of the New Year is Zoroaster. Zoroaster is an ancient spiritual leader of Iran. This religion is not a religion that is spiritual and the commandments are from the sky. This religion is basically a man set religion. It has close links to nature and its objects.
Some other researchers attribute the creation of this festival to Persian king Jamshed. Historians praise this leader in the books. Some legends have the point of view that King Jamshed is a person with a strong contribution in saving mankind from killer winter and creatures of the living world. They pay tribute to him and celebrate his grandeur as Nowruz meaning a new day.
It is worth mentioning that Nowruz is not just a New Year of Parsis community but it is largely in celebration. Millions of people in the middle east and central Asia and subcontinent celebrate Parsis new year. This event is so much famous that it is a secular holiday but remains precious for Parsis.
How Parsis celebrate a New Year?
Celebrations of New Year Parsi community is a unique event that promotes love and harmony among the community members. Just like any other occasion traditions of the subcontinent.
The day starts by cleaning the house and following the spirit of the New Year. Parsis remove all useless and unwanted things from their houses. These people give these things to charity. These people are at philosophy in which they believe, cleansing of heart and one’s soul must start from the cleansing of the house.
This beautiful tradition also negates the concept of materialism and reminds us about those who lack these luxuries. This motivates towards austerity to control the human’s desire to get everything he likes.
They then decorate it with beautiful symbols like birds, butterflies or flowers. This decoration shows a relation between nature and its objects into the lives of this community.
Garlands of Flowers like roses and jasmine hang on the doors and windows. These make the view beautiful and to make every guest feel welcome.
People wear new and traditional clothes specially tailor for this occasion and then meet with family members, friends, and relatives.
Special dishes and desserts are prepared to start this New Year with sweetness and affection.
Another beautiful tradition of New Year is the exchange of gifts with one another.
Rituals performed on New Year
New Year of Parsis is not just about celebrations and enjoying with family and friends but also an occasion to purify the body, mind, and soul according to the teachings of their religion.
Rituals start by visiting fire temples and flowers, milk and sandalwood are offered to holy fire and prayers are observed to seek prosperity and happiness.
People repent of their false deeds and sins committed in the past year and promises to start the New Year without indulging into these vices.
Traditional foods prepared on the New Year
New Year’s celebrations are not just meet and greet with family and friends but it is also a day where traditional foods are cooked and large feasts are organized. These feasts are a delicious combination of veg and non-veg varieties with many desserts to satisfy a sweet tooth.
Here are some of the many dishes prepared by Parsis on New Year
Pieces of mutton is cooked in vinegar with tomatoes and onions and served with potatoes. Bold flavors and spices are added into it to make it more delicious.
Chunks of mutton are dipped into a mixture of spices and then are deep-fried in oil. The dish is served with a variety of sauces.
Patra ni machi:
If you are a lover of seafood then this dish is definitely for you. A medium-sized fish is marinated with spices, coconut sauce and is then steamed in banana leaves.
Legan nu custard:
It is a sweet dish and is a must item in every New Year party. Preparing this dish requires experience as it involves baking with eggs, milk and cardamom and lots of ground sugar.
A sweet dish cooked with dry fruits, nuts and jaggery and lots of love this dish is another popular dessert enjoyed by many in New Year of Parsis.
Mawa Nu Kopra Pak:
This dish is a Parsi version of chocolate fudge but with a high amount of crushed coconut and brown sugar.
So if you have made friends with Parsis then New Year is a time for you to head to their homes and enjoy some of these mouth-watering cuisines and enjoy their famous hospitality and don’t forget to bring gifts for them.
How to wish Parsis on New Year?
On this occasion of New Year of Parsis and to keep the tradition of sharing the joy and grief. Here are some one-liners you can share with your Parsi friend and remind them how much you love and care for them by sharing new year wishes.
- “May the glory of King spread all over, May Lord praise us in galore: happy New Year”
- “Happy New Year to you and your family and may lord keep you prosper and healthy”
- “May the spring in your life never turn into autumn: happy New Year”
- “Hope this occasion bring peace and prosperity for you and hope it lasts for eternity”
- “ May you achieve the purity of soul and mind and a New Year brings nothing but happiness for you”
- “May New Year find you in perfect health and happiness and may it last forever”
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