Asian Geographic - - West Asia -

With its ori­gins in pa­gan times, the now-chris­tian tra­di­tion of Vardavar stems from the wor­ship of Ast­ghik, the god­dess of wa­ter, beauty, love and fer­til­ity. The fes­tiv­i­ties as­so­ci­ated with this reli­gious as­pect of Ast­ghik were dubbed “Var­tavar” ( vart trans­lates to “rose” in Ar­me­nian and var means “rise”), as leg­end has it that Ast­ghik would pour wa­ter from roses to con­vey her love for the Ar­me­nian peo­ple. The cel­e­bra­tion is tra­di­tion­ally held at har­vest time. To­day how­ever, the fes­ti­val is in honour of Je­sus Christ, and his trans­fig­u­ra­tion when he ap­peared be­fore his dis­ci­ples on Mount Ta­bor. How­ever, some also the­o­rise that the tra­di­tion is to re­mem­ber Noah and the flood.

Vardavar sees cel­e­brants throw wa­ter at each other in the streets of Yere­van on the 14th Sun­day af­ter Easter – a wel­come re­prieve from the sum­mer heat. Peo­ple pour buck­ets of wa­ter from their bal­conies, and douse each other in the streets. The fes­ti­val is a won­der­ful ex­pe­ri­ence for chil­dren.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.