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TEHRAN – One of the sweetest and most touching rituals performed in the north-central province of Semnan is the Gol hal altan (literally meaning rolling in flowers), which is believed to be a symbol of blessings for the baby’s family.

The custom goes back to an old Iranian myth called “Sm spinning flower”, in which pure and holy people promised the birth of a child.

Residents of this region believe that rolling children in roses gives them joy and freshness, while keeping them immaculate and free from disease. The freshness of the petals saves the baby’s skin, allowing them to stay happy.

In the first spring of their lives, children roll in the petals of a very sweet-smelling flower, better known as Mohammad’s roses, mainly in the town of Amirieh in the Damghan region, where it can be found among the most sacred rites.

In the spring, when pink roses bloom in the area, when gardeners, people և tourists prepare for the rose water distillation festival, commonly known as “Golab-giri”, female family members, mainly the baby’s mother, grandmothers, ույր aunts perform the Gol hal altan ceremony.

Days before the ceremony, women go to the rose gardens early in the morning to pick and collect flowers, reciting uranium poems, and reciting verses. The leaflets are then divided into “white” pieces.

On the day of the ceremony, one of the grandmothers takes the child to the bathroom. In some areas, baby hands are sometimes painted with henna. As soon as the baby is dry, it is placed in the flowers on the cloth, and the petals are placed on the newborns, wishing them health and a long life.

After that, the women take the four sides of the sheet, roll the baby in the petals, while reciting religious songs, shake the sheet back and forth, believing that the soul will be cleansed, the baby will be kept healthy and fresh.

Guests place their gifts next to the cloth after placing the baby on the floor. After the ceremony, sweet tea is served.

At the end of the ceremony, the mothers dry the petals by placing them in the shade to save for the future by placing the dried petals in the mats of their future prayers.

The ceremony was registered in the list of national intangible cultural heritage in 2010.




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