Each year on the first day of spring, millions of people from diverse communities around the world celebrate the Persian New Year, known as Navroz, also spelled “Nowruz”, meaning “new day.” It’s a celebration of new beginnings that has been a cultural tradition for thousands of years.
Rooted in Persian and Zoroastrian culture, the ceremonies surrounding Navroz centre around community and family. For many it is a secular holiday, but it is also celebrated by those from different faiths, including Ismaili Muslims, as a time to release the old and start anew.
Navroz is not only a time for spring cleaning and communal feasting, it’s also a bright light in dark times. With so much fear and uncertainty over the COVID-19 pandemic, Navroz is a chance to encourage hope and optimism and to dispel fear. In this time of respecting and enforcing social distancing, using tools like Skype and FaceTime to reach out to family and friends can warm hearts.
May the freshness of spring and the promise a new year fill our hearts with hope for the future. There is still much beauty in this world.
So, to OPSEU members and all others celebrating today, Navroz Mubarak!
President Warren (Smokey) Thomas
First Vice-President/Treasurer Eduardo (Eddy) Almeida