Monday, March 23, 2015

Elderly Woman from Abyaneh, Iran: A Travel Portrait

Abyaneh is one of those destinations in Iran that appealed to me quite a bit. Yes, it does have a scenic setting with flowing mountain ranges and mud houses, but what captivated me the most were the people of Abyaneh and their beautiful culture. These ever-smiling people used to be Zoroastrians earlier before they were forcefully converted to Islam. Today, they follow Islam, but also follow their old culture, dressing style and language. The whole village is like this.

Portrait of Old Lady from Abyaneh, Iran
In this case, this elderly woman has a roosari (scarf) like all Muslim women, but also wears a flowing colourful gown and skirt with flowers (a Zoroastrian culture) and they speak the Pahlavi language. Though, they also speak Farsi (Persian), the language of Iran. I had a great time talking with this elderly lady who helped me understand a lot of the ancient traditions of Zoroastrianism. I had a local Iranian friend to do the translation as this lady did not speak English and communicated either in Pahlavi or Persian. If you ever get the chance to visit Abyaneh, do remember to spend some quality time with the locals and get to understand their ancient culture.

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