Nowruz (“New Day”) is the Iranian New Year, or Persian New Year, and marks the first day of spring.
The holiday started 3,000 years ago in ancient Persia (modern day Iran), derived from Zoroastrianism, one of the world’s oldest religions. Important themes are reverence for nature, respect for family and community, doing good deeds, and forgiveness.
In the week prior to the new year, rituals take place that symbolize a fresh start and the triumph of good over evil. Families conduct spring cleaning as a symbol of forgiving others. Some participate in a fire-jumping ritual, which was a traditional Zoroastrian rite of purification, singing, “Fire, you give me your redness and energy, and I give you my paleness and sickness.”