Colorful Iran: Marzavan ritual in Kordestan

November 21, 2017 - 11:52

Marzavan is a healing ritual, which is still being held in Havar village, near Kamyaran city in western Kordestan province.

According to folktales, the origin of Marzavan ritual dates back to a long time ago when a young man in the village was suffering from an unknown and incurable illness. Then women in the village performed the Marzavan ritual and he regained his health.  

The ritual should be observed by the opposite sex of the patient, i.e. if the patient is male, women of the village will hold the Marzavan ritual for him.

In the morning, a group of women and girls play daf (a large Middle Eastern frame drum used in popular and classical music) and some others hold dishes or jugs in their hands to gather all women in the village. 

The women head to a mountainous pond, which is believed to contain healing water. The daf players encourage women with energetic musical rhymes.

They fill their dishes with water and return to the village while a group of young men welcome them on their way back.

They pour the water in a big pot, which is later used for bathing the patient. At night, all women go on the roofs chanting prayers for the patient while playing daf.

Various tribes and ethnic groups who live in different parts of Iran are just like colors, which make a great painting. Iran is home to about 20 ethnic groups who live in different regions of the country.


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