My research on the world mythologies confirms Mehrdad Bahar’s assertion that the figure of Amou Pirouz (presently Haji Firouz, its Arabized version) is associated with the Babylonian God, Tammuz, who was originated as the Sumerian Shepherd-God, Dumuzi, the consort of Inanna, the Great Goddess.
Amou Pirouz’s blackened face symbolizes his returning from the world of the dead (winter), his red clothing is the sign the coming to life of the sacrificed deity, while his jolliness is about the idea of rebirth (spring). We are celebrating a 5000 year-old figure, older than Zoroastrianism and Zoroaster himself.
As blackening the face and hands could erroneously be connected to the slavery of the black people, I suggest that we do what the Mesopotamian people did. They wore black masks for their spring festivities. Wearing a black mask and black gloves maintains the 5000 year-old tradition, while preventing all misunderstandings related to racism.
No black person would be offended by a black mask-wearing figure!
Power to imagination, and Happy Nowruz!
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