Considered as one of the most important festivals in the Zoroastrian calendar, Khordad Sal is the birth anniversary of the Zoroastrian prophet, Zoroaster. Also known as Zarathustra or Zartosht, Zoroaster is believed to have founded Zoroastrianism. The festival is celebrated on the 6th day of the first Parsi month, Farvardin. Some old Parsi texts also refer this auspicious festival as Navroz-I-Khas which signifies ‘special new year’s day’. Marked with great vigor and enthusiasm, one can witness various customs and rituals being followed to celebrate the religious occasion. To know more about celebrating Khordad Sal, check out the lines that follow.
How Is Khordad Sal Celebrated
Preparations for the festival begin well in advance. People get engrossed in cleaning their homes and decorating one room with rangoli, symbolic decorations painted or chalked on the floor using colored sand. Fragrant flowers are arranged across the homes in decorative and beautiful patterns. Traditional foods are prepared for a lavish dinner, such as kebab, chelo and fish. Seasonal fruits are also served that include melons, nectarines and apples. Tables are specially decorated for this festive occasion. Foods, flowers and dishes of nuts and candies are laid on these tables.
People wear new clothes on this day and bless the children by smearing their foreheads with vermillion spots. On a religious note, the Zoroastrians visit their fire temples or places of worship to honor Ahura Mazda and remember the birth anniversary of the founder of Zoroastrianism, Zoroaster. Another ritual, Jashan, also known as thanksgiving prayers, is performed in the agiaries. This ritual is followed by a rich feast in the temples. Since the Parsi community is known for togetherness, this festival is an excuse for people to meet their loved ones and mingle with one another. Parsis also involve in charity and donations as part of the good deeds that a Parsi should follow.