The renowned Iranian scholar Ali Bolukbashi is the author of the book entitled “Qalishuyan”, which has been translated into Japanese by Yumiko Honda, an Iranian studies scholar, the Iranian Cultural Center in Tokyo announced in a press release published on Saturday.
PAO Compound, a Tokyo-based nomadic culture center established by Takuji Yasunaka, has published the book in collaboration with the center.
The Qalishuyan ritual symbolizes a funeral held for Imamzadeh Soltan Ali (AS), a descendant of Imam Muhammad Baqir (AS), whose shrine is located in the town of Mashhad Ardehal near the central Iranian city of Kashan.
The ritual is held annually on the second Friday of fall by the young men of the town of Fin and the village of Khaveh, located near the shrine of the imamzadeh.
Some heralds are sent to Fin, Khaveh and several other nearby villages a week before to call on people to attend the Qalishuyan ritual.
A large carpet, which is kept at the shrine, is wrapped in green textile and delivered to the young men whirling sticks in the air. The sticks symbolize the clubs the people of the region used as weapons centuries ago.
Reciting religious poems, they take the carpet to wash it in the Shazdeh Hossein Spring near the shrine. Afterwards, it is delivered back to the guardians of the shrine.
Thousands of people annually travel to Mashhad Ardehal to watch the ceremony, which has been inscribed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list.
Hossein Divsalar, the Iranian cultural attaché in Tokyo, said that based on an agreement signed with the PAO Compound, the book “Immigrant from the Land of the Sun” containing memories of Koniko Yamamura, the mother of soldier Mohammad Babai who was martyred in the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war, will be published in Japanese in the near future.
The Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia at the University of Tokyo has also recently published a book on Iranian bazaars, stores and caravanserais dating back to the Qajar period (1789-1925).
The book entitled “Bazaars, Stores and Caravanserais in the Documents from Qajar Iran” has been authored by Tokyo-based Iranian scholar Hashem Rajabzadeh with contributions from the Japanese expert of Iranian studies, Kinji Eura.