In the city of Sabzevar in northeastern Iran, an interesting traditional ritual is performed in the last days of the year before the new year (Norouz) arrives. In this ritual known as Sarbedaran, men move in a circle performing various moves with their hands and wooden sticks. This is similar to other rituals performed after harvesting crops when people would pray to God.
Norouz (Nowruz) in Persian means "New day". It is the beginning of the year for the peoples of Iran (Greater Iran, including: Afghanistan, Arran (Republic of Azerbaijan) and Central Asian Republics). It begins precisely with the beginning of spring on vernal equinox (on March 20th this year).
- Nowruz, "New Day", is the holiest and most joyful festival of the Zoroastrian year and the most important national festival for all Iranians. Its celebration is recorded from the Achaemenian period around 500 BCE. Nowruz first appears in Pahlavi texts from the Sasanian period, as nog roz. It is a celebration of spring equinox, when the sun begins to regain strength and there is a renewal of growth in nature. -Massoume Price 03/18/13