Persian New Year Celebration at Improve Canada! details!

In honour of Persian New Year 2017, Improve Canada is featuring this special blog to share the beautiful spirit of this sacred cultural holiday with our entire community. This upcoming weekend on Saturday, March 18th and Sunday, March 19th from 11am to 7pm everyone is invited to join the celebration of new beginnings in honour of our homes and families at Canada's largest home improvement centre. As a special feature, for the very first time Nowrooz Bazaar will be held at Improve Canada. If you are unfamiliar with way the Persian community honours the new year in their homes, we've provided an overview of all the symbolic items and traditions.

Haft-Seen                                                    

Persian: هفت‌ سین                                                 

Haft-Seen also spelled as Haft Sīn (Persian: هفت‌سین‎‎, the Seven Seen's) is a tabletop (sofreh) arrangement of seven symbolic items traditionally displayed at Nowruz, the Persian New Year.

To celebrate the Persian New Year, families gather around a specially prepared holiday table to make wishes for the coming months. Items on the table refer to new life and renewal, and they are based around the number seven. Although the custom has evolved over the centuries and may have regional variations, at least seven basic items, each beginning with the letter S (Seen in Persian), are traditionally placed on the Haft Seen table. Many of them also refer to the seven Zoroastrian immortals that guarded the sky, waters, earth, fire, plants, animals, and humans in ancient Iran.

The haft-seen table includes seven items all starting with the letter Seen (letter) (fa) (س) in the Persian Alphabet.

The Haft-Seen items are:

  1. Sabzeh (سبزه ) – Wheat, Barley, Mung Bean or Lentil Sprouts growing in a dish - symbolizing Rebirth
  2. Samanu (سمنو) – Sweet Pudding made from Wheat Germ – symbolizing Affluence and Sweetness
  3. Senjed (سنجد) – dried Oleaster Wild Olive fruit – symbolizing Love
  4. Seer (سیر) – Garlic – symbolizing the Medicine and Health
  5. Seeb (سیب) – Apple – symbolizing Beauty & Fertality
  6. Somāq (سماق) – Sumac fruit – symbolizing (the color of) Sunrise and Patience
  7. Serkeh (سرکه) – Vinegar – symbolizing Old-age and Patience and  Eternity

The following items may also appear on the Haft-Seen table as ornaments or for the sake of completeness.

  • The Holy Book (Koran) to signify Prayers
  • Divan-e Hafez, a Persian poetry book by the fourteenth-century writer Hafez, whose poems are believed to predict the future
  • Sonbol (Hyacinth) a Spring Flower symbol of Fragrance   
  • a Mirror a symbol of Reflection to reflect the light of Wisdom and Creation
  • Candlesticks
  • a Goldfish in a Bowl represents Life and the end of astral year-picas (Goldfish is originally a symbol of Chinese new year)  
  • Painted Eggs for each member of family to represent Fertility          
  • Coins as a symbol of Wealth and Prosperity
  • Candles for each member of the family to symbolize Holy Fire and Happiness
  • Pomegranates
  • An Orange Floating in a Bowl of Water, to Represent the Earth Floating in Space
  • Sepand (Peganum Harmala), Nearby is a Brazier for burning wild Rue, a sacred herb whose smoldering fumes ward off evil spirits
  • Wheat or Bread
  • Sweet Pastries (such as baghlava (باقلوا), toot (mulberry) (توت), naan-nokhodchi (chik-peas)(نان نخودچی)) as a symbol of Spreading the Sweetness
  • Rose Water, known for its magical cleansing power to Purify and Sweeten   

For more information and to RSVP to this special event, visit our Facebook page today: https://www.facebook.com/events/422264918108574/

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