Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Happy NoRuz

NoRuz, meaning "new day," is the Persian New Year, and it is celebrated on the first day of Spring. I've been involved with Persian culture now for almost 20 years. This winged disc symbol with its kingly figure is known as the "Faravahar." It was originally the symbol for the soul and fortune of the Great King of imperial Persia, and also the royal insignia. In the carvings of Persepolis, this heraldic device appears wherever the king is depicted. In much later times, perhaps the late 19th century CE, the Faravahar became the symbol of the monotheistic Zoroastrian faith, both in Iran and in its Parsi form in India. I did this "cosmic" version of the Winged Disc as a NoRuz greeting card to be sent to my Persian friends. The blue Earth is behind the winged king-disc. The seven colored stars symbolize the Seven Attributes of the one God, Ahura Mazda. Have a happy Spring, and an auspicious, fortunate NoRuz!

"Cosmic Faravahar" is watercolor and ink on Fabriano paper, 10" x 17", spring 2002.

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