Happy Norouz, Happy New Iranian Year 1396

Tehran, March 20, IRNA - The staff and management of the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) wish all Iranians and other nations that celebrate Norouz worldwide a very Happy New Year.

Norouz, literally the “New Day”, marks both the beginning of a new year and the beginning of spring for Iranian families and others across the world.

Norouz is celebrated by more than 300 million people worldwide on the day of the spring Equinox, which marks the sun’s crossing of the Equator and the start of spring in the Northern Hemisphere.

It has its origins in ancient Iran and Zoroastrianism, the ancient pre-Islamic religion but Iranians gave it an Islamic color after they converted to Islam.

Norouz is as one of the oldest and most cherished festivities celebrated for at least 3,000 years.

People in Iran mark the turn of the year by saying a famous prayer, asking God to change their minds and perceptions in the same way He revives the nature.

O Changer of minds and perceptions,
O Director of days and nights,
O Transformer of years and conditions,
Change ours to finest as You wish.

The prayers carry a fundamental message; a message deeply rooted in the history of Iran, traditionally served to be a safe haven for all ethnic and religious groups and all the peace-seeking people of the world.