Nowruz is a Persian new year, but why do Shia all around world celebrate it.

Here is how it is celebrated at my place.

We prepare special nazr of Imam Ali.

The contents of which are as below:

  • a bowl of water with rose water and put a rose in it
  • a fan made of palm/dates tree leaf
  • 7 varieties of fruits
  • sweets

After the nazr. The water is put on the fan and the fan is waved in all the four corner of the house for barkat/divine grace.

There is this specific time for the nazr. With minutes precision like 20th March 8:40 PM (IST) this year.

People throw color on each other like Hindus do in their holi festival.

From where does this all came from?

Note: I am looking for its source from Quran or Hadith of Ahlul-bait.

  • 1
    Not all Shi'as celebrate Nowruz. Mostly those who are Persian or idolize Persia. Nowruz is based off the solar calendar and has been celebrated before Islam even came to Persia. – Sayyid Mar 20 '14 at 22:13
  • 1
    and why the narz of imam ali ? – Zia Mar 21 '14 at 6:02
  • 1
    I don't know what narz of imam ali means (?) – Sayyid Mar 21 '14 at 8:33
  • what is narz of imam ali? please provide some reference about it – Battle of Karbala Mar 24 '14 at 6:21
  • 1
    Sayyid is right. I'm Shiite and from Persian origins, but never celebrated Nowruz. Can I ask you from were did you get the idea that all Shia celebrate it? – Cyclone Feb 19 '15 at 12:11

In the name of Allah the merciful the compassionate

Your customs are not familiar to me, although I'm Shia. But it might be said that nawrouz (new day) ceremony is discussed in Islam because Iran and Islam had some mutual effects on each other. Rasul Ja'fariyan writes in his "Four Centuries of Influence of Iraqi Shiism on Pre-Safavid Iran" about this issue as such:

Among the most important effects of this intellectual nourishment was the control of Iranian Shī‘ism by Arab Shī‘ism, with the result that during this period we do not find anything that may be termed as ‘Iranian Shī‘ism’ with characteristics independent of Arab Shī‘ism. Possibly some of the features of Iranian Shī‘ism, such as the festival of Nowruz, became more prominent than they were ever in Iraq, but the foundation and essence of Iranian Shī‘ism is nothing but Arab Shī‘ism.

Also there are other hadiths telling us the actions which should be done in this day. for example, Sheikh Tusi has narrated a hadith in his Misbah Al-Mutehajjid from Mu’alla bin Khanees, from Imam Sadeq (a.s.):

On the day of Nowruz do ghusl and put on your cleanest and purest clothing, use perfume and fast for the day. After praying the nawafil (extra recommended prayer) and dhuhr and asr prayers perform four raka’ts of prayer. In the first raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Al-Qadr ten times, in the second raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Al-Kaferun ten times, in the third raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Attawhid ten times and in the fourth raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Annas and Surah Al-falaq both ten times and after prayer go to sajdah and do shukr (thanks) to Allah and ask Him to forgive the sins of fifty years of your life.

Furthermore, It is said that nowruz coincides with some Islamic occasions and hence Muslims (specially Shia) are advised to value this day. Some of the occasions are mentioned here:

In Muhadhab, the same narrator narrates that Imam Sadeq (as) said: Nowruz is the same day that the Prophet (saw) got baya’t (allegiance) for Amir Al-Mu’mineen (as) on the day of Ghadir and everyone acknowledged his wilayah and those who remained loyal to it are blessed and those who broke it are doomed and it is also the same day the messenger of Allah (saw) sent Ali to the valley of jinn to get their pact and the day of his victory over the people of Nahrawaan and the day he killed Dhu-Thadiyyah. It is the day our Qaa’em (The Awaited One) of our progeny will emerge with his companions and may God defeat the Dajjal with his hands and hang him on the synagogues of Kufah.

References:

www.islamquest.net

www.al-islam.org/

Nowroz isn’t only for Shia, Sunni Muslims celebrate it too. It is the New Year in many Muslim countries such as Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, Kazakistan, Takistan, and Kurdistan...etc. However Sunni Muslims do not get the nazar of Imam Ali.

  • 1
    This doesn't answer the question. – Bleeding Fingers Jun 18 '14 at 17:50
  • Aisha you are right. Nowroz is the begin of new year for everybody uses solar calender either shia or sunni, means this is not a religious celebration. – Fatemeh Baqeri Oct 8 '14 at 14:50
  • @Aisha, I agree you. Seemingly many of Muslims (both Sunni & Shia) celebrate it as far as I know. So it could be surveyed as a cultural issue, not as an Islamic issue. – اللهم صل علی محمد و آل محمد Feb 2 '15 at 6:54

There is only one source in Shia Islam that talks about Nowroz, and that source is Imam Jafar, but he doesn't talk about fire worshiping ritual, rather talks about a day of remembering GOD (even so, the narration is Mursal (so is weak and isn't accepted)):

Imam Sadeq (as): On the day of Nowruz do ghusl and put on your cleanest and purest clothing, use perfume and fast for the day. After praying the nawafil (extra recommended prayer) and dhuhr and asr prayers perform four raka’ts of prayer. In the first raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Al-Qadr ten times, in the second raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Al-Kaferun ten times, in the third raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Attawhid ten times and in the fourth raka’t recite Surah Hamd once and Surah Annas and Surah Al-falaq both ten times and after prayer go to sajdah and do shukr (thanks) to Allah and ask Him to forgive the sins of fifty years of your life.

There is another weak narration, also not accepted:

it has been narrated that Mansur Dawaneqi had sent a messenger to Imam Musa bin Ja’far (as) to ask him to be present in a ceremony and sit beside him while the people would bring gifts for the occasion of Nowruz. The Imam replied: I reviewed the ahadith of my forefather, the Messenger of Allah and didn’t find any hadith for this occasion, this is a Persian tradition that Islam has put an end to, and we seek refuge to Allah to revive something that has been diminished by Islam.

Source (Ibn Shahr ashub's book - Manaqeb)

There is no evidence to support the practice of Nowroz, those who try to find something end up with these two narrations, both weak in nature, both contradicting each other.

In the other hand, there are only two Eids in Islam, a Pagan ritual is not one of them.

Nawroz has been celebrated before Islam and has roots in Zoroastrianism. They perform many religious practices during Nawroz celebration. Today it is celebrated by Muslims just as the first day of the year. Nowadays this is more a tradition than a religious event. In Afghanistan people raise flag of Imam Ali (as) in mazar e Sharif city of Balkh province even the majority of those who participate being Sunni. In Kabul the similar flag is raised in Ziyarat Shakhi. It is said that the day of Hadith Ghadir coincided with Nawroz back then hence people raise Imam Ali (as) flag.

It should not be considered as a religious event but rather a traditional and more to do with nature and people should praise Allah (swt) for reviving the nature after the winter. If Imam Ali (as) appointment is proven to have coincided with Nawroz then it can be celebrated like Eid Ghadir.

This is correct that many of Shia celebrate it, but it is not a definite evidence to prove that it is a celebration of Shia school of thought. Regarding to Eid Nowruz which could be counted as one of the holidays that it is celebrated in some Persian speaking countries such as Islamic republic of Iran and other neighboring like Kurdish speaking people in Iraq, Turkey and Syria. Eid-Nowruz is an ancient Eid (celebration), which was celebrated before the emergence of Islam.

Consequently we cannot term it as the Eid of Shia. There is a hadith (tradition) from Imam Jafar al Sadiq (peace be upon him) concerning Eid-Nowruz which the popular vote has verified it to be reliable and therefore they have given the fatwa to the fadhilah (recommendation) of ghusl (ritual washing) on the day of Nowruz, however it seems that some foghaha have objected regarding the authenticity of the mentioned tradition.

Conclusion: we cannot accuse this eid (Nowruz) as an Islamic celebration. Nevertheless we must note that there has been no objection presented against it in the traditions either. Hence this Eid could be categorized under the mubahaat (permissible things).


Reference:

http://islamquest.net/en/archive/question/fa5132

Nawruz has been celebrating since ancient Sumerians. At that time, it was celebrated as the beginning of the spring and has given religious meanings such as the marriage of the god Dumuzi (later Tammuz) and the goddess Inanna.

This tradition has spread over Mesopotamia societies for thousands of years and each of them added something related to their time and belief.

You are basically talking about what it become for the Shi'a today. It has no relation with Islam. Why are they celebrating? It is just a tradition.

It cannot be a true sentence to attribute this matter that Shiite celebrate Nowruz, because it is famous as a cultural practice or celebration more than a religious celebration. On the other hand, as dear Kalahari said, it can be paid attention as an ancient celebration. Because I have heard that even many Sunni people in Iran celebrate it too. Therefore we should not attribute everything to Islam even though a group of Muslim do that. Meanwhile they do not do it as a mandatory practice either.

Your Answer

 

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy, and that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.