Peace Making Alleys

In today’s modern world, development in technology has made our life a better facilitated one, but wherever we are in this vast great world, we need a moment to get out of this fast time machine in order to seek out our childhood good memories and peaceful traditional moments, remember our old houses and memories that we have missed so long. Walking in old alleys may remind us that golden moments and help us feel better.

Iranian old alleys and houses have their own specific stories reflecting the culture of their ancient residents filled with pleasant memories. When you step out of the old houses designed artistically by the old-style architecture, at the first glance you would be attracted by the flowers that have embellished the walls of these houses’ halfway height and their lovely fragrance fills the whole alleys. No vehicle could pass through the alleys, therefore next to every house, a platform was designed for those who wanted to take a breath. These platforms are also a good place for women to gather around in the evenings for friendly talks. The alleys that were close to shrines and holy places were designed in a way that the domes were clearly seen from most of the doorways. If these alleys were close to Bazaars, they ended at the entrance of a specific corridor of the bazaar. So, sometimes to reach the main street the people were supposed to pass marketplaces and corridors.

 

Ghahr-o Ashti alleys:

You may find this story interesting. In the past, some of the alleys in Iran were built so narrowly that only one person could pass at a time. Therefore, if two people were walking in the opposite directions simultaneously they would inevitably come across and in the cases that they were mad with it became an excuse to say hello and put aside any annoyances.

If you are eager to travel to old Persia and feel the peaceful atmosphere of the old quarters, try visiting “Ghahro Ashti” and other winding alleys, there are still such places in ancient cities like Shiraz, Yazd, and Kashan.

Travel customs in Iran

Travel is always an enjoyable part of our life. Going and visiting the astonishing differences of the world, beauties and having good memories could be another good point of traveling.
Each person has/his own reason for travel such as business, pilgrimage, leisure and etc; but all have a common effect on one’s life and it is decision making to leave our home, family, and friends and step into a way of experiencing the world.
In Persian culture, when someone of dearest goes on a journey have a special traditional and fascinated custom that may be interesting to you. All the ceremonies that are done for a traveler are with the aim of wishing safe travel, Custom such as pouring water behind of traveler( after his/her left home), passing under the Quran before traveling, cooking Ash(kind of stew-like soup that cooked someday maybe about a week after his/her left home) and …

pouring water behind of traveler: Water has always been holy in Iranian culture and pouring water behind loved ones who have decided to travel, is the symbol of wishing safety for the traveler in his/her travel. There is an interesting story dates back to the Sassanid era and one of its governor named Hormozan. He arrested and took to Medina (Saudi Arabia) and Khalifa ordered to kill him. Hormozan asked for a little water before being killed, But he lingered in drinking water, and when was asked the reason; he stated I fear to kill me and Khalifa guaranteed he will be safe until he drinks. Suddenly he poured the water on the ground and Khalifa, who defeated by the intelligence of the Persian governor, kept his promise and let him went. it is the story that led to this custom.

Passing under the Quran: Although the trips are not as difficult as in the past, always we are concern about our dearest having a safe trip. One of the Iranian traditions for passengers is passing under the Quran. When passengers are ready to travel, at the time of goodbye, they pass three times under the Quran(the holy book of Muslims) to be safe during his/her trip.

cooking Ash: About Three days after travel, the traveler’s family or loved ones make Ash( kind of food like soup, ingredients used are reshteh (thin noodles), onion, chickpeas, black eye beans, lentils, herbs such as parsley, spinach, kashk (a whey-like dairy product), oil, salt, and pepper) and share it to their neighbors and relatives to make good wishes for the traveler for having a good and safe trip and to show that they are in the memory of the traveler.

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