Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

By Melina Mehr | Wonders of the World | 17 Mar 2021


Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

Chaharshanbe Suri (Wednesday Fire Feast) is one of the Iranian festivals that is held on the evening of the last Tuesday of the year (Esphand) and Wednesday night, and lighting a fire and jumping over it is its main feature.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaharshanbe_Suri

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

What Does It Mean?

This is the first of a series of Nowruz celebrations, to be held outdoor with lighting fires and some other symbolic behaviors.

 Some scholars consider the word "Chahar"  or “Char” (i.e., four) to referring the fourth universal element meaning  “fire”.

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

On the other hand, “Sur” means celebration since ancient times. However, it may also come from the word Shur (meaning joy and passion). Some also believe that Sur originated from the word “Red” which understandable with its relation with Fire.

 

This religion called Mithraism is an all-encompassing Iranian religion that was the religion of 80% of Iranians until the Sassanid era. After that, Zoroastrianism and then Islam replaced this ancient religion.

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

For them, the fire was a symbol of the movement of a particle into the essence of life with complete and precise mystical roots. Therefore, fire symbolizes the multiple stages of mysticism from man as an element of soil to reach the dynamics (movement). So first, Fire is Red, then goes through changes and finally becomes golden yellow which is the color of the god Mitra.

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

In all cities and villages of Iran, the ceremonies are different but they mostly come into lighting fire outdoor, on the night of the last Wednesday of the year, and all family members must jump over the fire and say “My yellowness is from you, your redness is from me”, they burn the diseases and sorrows and worries of the old year, to start the new year with comfort and happiness.

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

Trick or Treat

They Clean their houses, or visit elders and listen to their pieces of advice. People even go for a “trick or treat” tradition, which is now largely gone.

Children and mostly young girls, putting fabrics over their heads so as not to be recognized. They would take a spoon and a plate and would go to their neighbors' houses, Tap on the plate with a spoon while singing, demanding money or sweets.

Jumping Over Fire | Persian Ceremony | On the Last Wednesday of The Year

 

 

 


Melina Mehr
Melina Mehr

I'm a freelance writer, passionate about, music, books and nature.


Wonders of the World
Wonders of the World

Understandingly, If I start writing about a million times-heard boring stuff, there is always a chance no one reading my materials, so I try not to go down that road, but I feel like costumes, cuisine, and traditions I’m about to unveil are worth reading about. If you think about it, humanity is a very diverse concept wrapped around the same nature, dancing around the same instinctive fire, but oddly enough its exposed face is as varied as the droplets in the ocean, unbelievably diverse.

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