Nowruz Traditions: Gatherings and Presents
Nowruz as the New Year Eve is the most important festival in Iran. Iranian welcome spring with this festival and its many traditions. In a previous post, we discussed the history of Nowruz and named the traditions that are part of it. You can read more about them in the links. Here, we want to talk a little about one of these traditions. To do so, let’s imagine you are in Iran and its Nowruz, we begin going through what will happen.
Nowruz the Tradition of Families
Naturally, and just like the Christian New Year, this festivity is a time for family. Therefore, the family is at the center. Moreover, the time of New Year changes every year and with that the order of celebration. Nonetheless, before the New Year’s time, you have to get ready and head to your parents’ house, or perhaps the grandparents’ house to be together when the New Year is announced. Now, as you are standing next to the Haft Sin table, with your parents and family the TV shows and a booming sound tells you that the New Year has come.
What is next? You and your whole family begin hugging and congratulating each other. Then, you all go outside the house to throw out the negativity and then return with positive energy. Next, it’s time for the presents. While many today exchange presents, traditionally the present is money. The seniors of the family would give money to their children and grandchildren, or all who are younger than them. The money is usually placed in the Quran, the holy book of Islam. The amount depends on the financial status and how close the relation is. This tradition is called giving or receiving Eidi. At last, it’s time for vegetable rice and fish.
You have already visited your closest family, however, there are still many relatives that you haven’t seen. In the Nowruz holiday, you have enough time to visit all of them, all aunts, uncles, and cousins. This tradition is called Eid Didani in Farsi including two words of Eid meaning festival, celebration, and Didani meaning visiting. For many teenagers, this tradition is pure torture. They have to visit some relatives they see once a year, be on their best behavior, and answer a lot of questions about their life.