And a NEW DAY to You, Too

The sun is beaming where I am, and the mercury will rise to stream-swelling temperatures tomorrow. It’s my favourite time of the year, and not only because there is the best of basketball, and days that seem brighter than they’ve ever been. It’s also a New Year in my world, and welcome to it.

The Bahá’í communities of everywhere celebrated Naw-Rúz (“New Day” in Farsí) last night with food and dance and song and holy words. “If we are not happy in this Day, for what time do we wait?” Today is a holy day on the calendar, hours of gratitude and festivity and renewed hope. (And, to be sure, of a certain kind of relief that the fasting period is over! I am, though, a big fan of the Fast.) Naw-Rúz is a Persian festival that has been celebrated for nearly 1400 years, one that is now shared by the Bahá’í Faith, youngest of the world’s religions. Bahá’ís haven’t had it easy in Iran, but last night in Ottawa Naw-Rúz was also a time of mutual respect and shared cultural richness among Muslims and Bahá’ís of Iranian extraction. So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth, said Bahá’u’lláh, and there was a fine little ray of it in Ottawa over dinner last night. (Wish I’d been there, but my Farsí is pretty limited.)

I’ll say it again: what a great time to be celebrating New Year’s! All that green, all that growing, all those immoderate northern symbols of rebirth and regeneration…

Happy Naw-Rúz!! May the spring be a season of joy for you. May your crocuses bloom.

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