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07 Dec

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07 Dec 2016
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Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, and the month in which Muslims believe the Quran was revealed.

Fasting during the month of Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars of Islam. The month is spent by Muslims fasting during

the daylight hours from dawn to sunset.  Muslims believe that the Quran was sent down to the lowest heaven during

this month, thus being prepared for gradual revelation by Jibraeel (Gabriel) to the Islamic prophet Muhammad.

Furthermore, Muhammad told his followers that the gates of Heaven would be open all the month and the gates of Hell

(Jahannam) would be closed. The first day of the next month, Shawwal, is spent in celebration and is observed as the

"Festival of Breaking Fast" or Eid al-Fitr.

ramadan-1

Since the new moon is not in the same state at the same time globally, the beginning and ending dates of Ramadan

depend on what lunar sightings are received in each respective location. As a result, Ramadan dates vary in different

countries, but usually only by a day. This is due to the cycle of the moon. The moon travels the same path all year round

and when the moon is seen in the east, it is then seen traveling towards the west. All the countries around the world see

the moon within a 24 hour period once spotted by one country in the east.

Each year, Ramadan begins about eleven days earlier than in the previous year. Astronomical projections that approximate

the start of Ramadan are available. It takes about 33 years and five days for Ramadan to complete a twelve month move across

the yearly calendar.

The breaking of the fast at the end of the day is started with many traditional dishes and may last with the family until 

the early hours of the morning.

 

 

   2. Muharram,  the month of mourning

Iranians like millions of Muslims around the world mark the beginning of the lunar month of Muharram known as

the month of sorrow, grief, love, patience and resistance. The month of Muharram starts with ten days of mourning

rituals: the mourning rituals reach their peak on Ashura, the tenth day which marks the day, when the forces of

the Umayyad caliph martyred Imam Hussein (PBUH), the third Imam of Shias and 72 of his companions in the plain of Karbala

more than almost 14 centuries ago.

The biggest mourning ceremonies are held on the tenth day of the month Ashura. For the whole night, people gather

at mosques and revive the whole episode of the battle of Karbala. Religious experts say in this way they take forward

the mission of Islam and Imam Hussein that “good always wins over evil”.
 
Banners and hoardings have been placed all across the region revealing the strength of the Islam. Muharram as

one of the four sacred months of Islam is a month of remembrance. It has great significance because of its historical

background. It carries a message of awakening for the entire humanity for the times to come. During this period especially

Shia Muslims in prefer to wear black clothes as a mark of mourning. They also distribute foods among the poor.

Muslims believe Imam Hossein stood up against the tyrant of the time to safeguard and protect Islam and guide fellow Muslims.

 

 

                            

3. Pir-e shaliar ritual: The Darwish Dance


The ancient ritual of Pir-e Shaliar is held annually at Uramantakht Village, Kurdestan province,

during Jan. 21-Feb. 19. The region's people call this ritual "Wedding of Pir-e Shaliar".


Although this ritual is referred to as a wedding, in essence it is a traditional ceremony during which

people pray to God. In this village, the roof of a house is a courtyard for the house built above it.

The unique architecture of this village catches the attention of any visitor. Some historians

believe the term 'Uraman' or 'Houraman' consists of two parts:' Houra' meaning 'Ahura' and

'Man' meaning house. Hence, Uraman actually means the land of Ahura Mazda. The Pir-e Shaliar

ritual marks the wedding anniversary of a mythical old man (Pir) called Shaliar, which is

rooted in mythology and ancient ceremonies of the villagers.


The ritual starts on Tuesday night with the distribution of walnuts from Pir-e Shaliar Garden among

the villagers. Then cow, sheep and goat are sacrificed and slaughtered to cook special food.

The villagers play the tambourine, perform mystic dances, recite prayers, pass the leather

shoes of Pir-e Shaliar to each other and cook a special bread called 'Kalireh Mozhgeh'

(made of flour, walnuts and onions) for three days.

 

 


Every year, a large number of sheep are slaughtered on Wednesday morning. The livestock are

sent to the custodian in late autumn by some residents of the village who keeps them until winter

and then sacrifices them on the day of the ritual.


At times 70 to 80 sheep are sacrificed. After the lamb is distributed among the residents of the village

, people make a special soup called 'Veloshin'. This special soup is divided among the local people

and other people who have come to the region on Wednesday after 4 p.m.


On Thursday evening, people perform mystical dances in groups and play the tambourine.

The people in charge of the religious ritual belong to the region's tribes. These people divide

the task of holding the ritual among themselves and each tribe does its own job during the festivities.

The ritual continues until Friday and before Friday prayers. On Friday morning, people gather in

Pir-e Shaliar Mausoleum and after reciting group prayers, go to the mosque. In this day they

eat bread with yoghurt because they believe it is Consecration and useful for Diseases.