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Yezidis Across the World Celebrate New Year: Interview With Hasan Tamoyan, Representative of the Armenian Yezidi Community (Exclusive)


The Yezidi community in Armenia, the biggest ethnic minority, celebrate their new year on Wednesday following April 13.

”Armedia” IAA talked to Yezidi community representative Hasan Tamoyan, senior editor of Armenian Public Radio programs.

- Mr Tamoyan, please tell us about Tawûsê Melek. Why specifically that day?

- Every year the Wednesday that follows April 13 marks our New Year. It is the day God completed the creation. The feast is mobile.

The Yezidis do not marry in this month as April is considered the “bride” among the 12 months.

The Yezidis believe that a few thousand years ago this day, Tawûsê Melek came down to earth and gave God's messages to the Yezidis, thus the Wednesday is sacred for us. We should not work on Wednesday and that Wednesday specifically, as Muslims don’t on Friday, Jews on Saturday, Christians on Sunday. This day we must commit ourselves to the spiritual.

The Tuesday before Tawûsê Melek the housewife makes 1 big and 7 smaller gateaus. 7 is the number of the 7 angels or 7 days of the week. A black bid is inserted in the gateau. Whoever gets the piece with the bid will be lucky. The gateau is placed in the sanctuary and left there till morning. In the morning the elder of the family cuts the gateau and gives to the members on the name of a few saints. The smaller members who do not discern good and evil yet are given the 7 smaller gateaus (we think that 13-14 year old persons discern good from evil). Then we go to cemeteries and congratulate the perished ones first as we believe that the soul is eternal, only after that do we congratulate the alive.

On Wednesday the girls go to the fields and pick up flowers and decorate the doors and windows with flowers, something that marks the start of spring.

On that day people who hold grudge against each other must reconcile. That day we also visit people who lost their relatives recently.

We make gatherings at homes and congratulate each other. This way we celebrate Tawûsê Melek which unites us and ties us to our spiritual values.

- What is your wish to you community?

- In the first place I wish that the blessing of Tawûsê Melek be with our community. Our traditional saying goes “May Tawûsê Melek bless the 72 nations of the world (we believe the world originated from 72 nations, with the Yezidis being the 73rd ), the dead, the needy, the travelers, the prisoners, the sick and lastly – us.”    

Thanks to RA prime minister, president, NA president and Yerevan mayor as well as our representative in the NA Rustam Bakoyan for congratulating Tawûsê Melek. May we be loyal to our ancestors’ irreversible commandments.

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