Navroz meaning New Day in Persian is celebrated on the first day of the first month Farvardin of the Iranian solar calendar ie 21st. March which happens to be vernal equinox bringing back spring season after harsh winter.
So this festival as misconceived by some does not belong to any particular sect. In ancient Persia (now Iran) Navroz was first celebrated 2500 years ago as a Zoroastrian festival during the reign of Shah Jamshid to mark the end of a severe winter that took many lives.
Navroz thus stands for renewed vigor & warmth as does vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere. Here are 6 Fascinating Facts About Parsi New Year.
- The word Navroz means ‘new day’, when it is literally translated. It is the first day of the Persian year. However, the word Navroz is only used in India, it is actually Nowruj or Nooruj in other parts of the word.
- This festival dates back for more than 3000 years old and there are records of it being celebrated way back in 6th century BC. Those days the Iranians were homogeneously Zoroastrians and hence it was celebrated as the Persian new year.
- On this mythical day the great king Jamshedji was crowned as the King of Persia. Among all his achievements, chief was the Persian calendar scientific. He made a code through which community started picking up the exact day to celebrate the Persian new year. He decided that the day, on which sun leaves the constellation of Pisces and enters Aries, will be celebrated as Navroz.
- Another interesting fact about the Parsi new year is that it happens on the vernal equinox – the day on which the length of the day and night are equal. According to the lunar calendar, this festival occurs on the 18th August every year.
- They believe Fire is their main god, and so keep a live fire in a bowl of water for this festival or generally they keep fire surrounded by water and wheat, which signify cleansing by fire and the bountiful wealth of wheat grains.
- On this day, they prepare 7 food delicacies, which all begin with ‘sh’ and ‘sa’ that symbolise the creation of the earth in 7 days.