Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Documentary on Turkmen Ritual

Documentary on Turkmen Ritual
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Anthropology Research Center has produced a documentary on the ’Aq Qoyoun’ ritual held by the Turkmen people when they reach the age of 63, said a member of the center.
Shahpour Qajaqinejad added that in anthropology literature, this ritual is classified as transient; that is transiting from one phase of life to another.
He noted that Turkmen men and women hold the divine ritual when they attain the age of 63 to stay away from sins and follow the behavioral and personality traits of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). “Of course, some people hold a mini ritual at the age of 60 or 61, but then they celebrate more extensively when they reach the age of 63,“ he added.
The researcher recalled that signs and indications in the ritual are usually white, ISNA reported. “In many cultures, white is the color of purity. For example, a 63-year-old woman wears a white scarf and a 63-year-old man wears a white turban in this ritual praying to be distanced from sins and to adhere to the pious way of life of the holy prophet,“ he pointed out.
The expert further said that the host of the ritual makes himself or herself ready a few days before the ceremony day. “Other people give gifts such as blankets, clothing or food to the host and in return they also receive gifts. If a person cannot hold the ritual for any reason, he or she cooks the special food for the occasion, which is called ’Shir-berenj’ (made of milk, rice, sugar and rosewater), and takes it to the mosque before nocturnal prayers so that worshippers eat the food and pray for him or her,“ said Qajaqinejad.
He underlined that while the ritual has been not abandoned in the present era, it has been enfeebled. “The ritual is held among Turkmen people only, who live in the provinces of Golestan, North Khorasan and Khorasan Razavi.
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