Sizdah be-dar ,known as Nature’s day, is an Iranian festival celebrated by people on the 13th day of Farvardin (the first month of the Iranian calendar). Iranian festivals have their origin in ancient mythology and in this sense Sizdah be-dar is not an exception.

Iran (IMNA) - According to Iranian mythology, Sizdah be-dar was devoted to deity of Tishtrya (Tir). In Avestan language, Tishtrya is associated with a benevolent divinity, fertility and life- bringing rainfall. As it is incorporated by Ferdowsi in the Shahnameh, Tishtrya is depicted as a pure white horse in battle with Apaosa, a drough-bringing demon in the form of terrifying black horse.

As mentioned in ancient legends, due to the lack of sufficient prayers and sacrifices from humankind, Apaosa gained power over Tishtrya. But through intervening the Creator Ahura Mazda and offering a sacrifice, Tishtrya infused with power and finally overcome Apaosa. So, according to ancient Iranian mythology and in the Zoroastrian religious calendar, the 13th day of the month and also the 4th month of the year is devoted to the deity Tishtrya(Tir).

In the past, on 13th day of Farvardin, people went outdoors in order to appreciate nature. In Iranian civilization, human beings are free to choose their own destiny. So, that’s the reason they believed that the New Year must begin with outdoors festivities to pray the deity of Tishtrya in hope of rain and fertility. From the past to present, Iranians well know that our life is profoundly depends on Nature’s life. Hence nature is a gift that deserves deep respect and gratitude.

In modern times, people go outdoors and spend a full day out through tradition of gathering their friends and family in the nature. While festivities continue until sunset, they enjoy moments of joy and solidarity. Actually, people celebrate Nature’s day for thousands of years, every year, on the 13th of the first month of the Iranian Calendar. Although every year Iranian people celebrate Sizdah be-dar by spending time in nature, this year, due to the outbreak of Coronavirus we must stay at home and maintain social distancing to keep others and ourselves safe. Mother Nature selflessly provides us unconditional love and also has taught us how to be at peace even during a storm, accordingly, now it’s our turn to care her and all humankind as well.

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