LONDON, April 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Many people may not know that the tradition of spring cleaning is adapted primarily from aspects of Iranian and Jewish cultures. Ironically, these feuding populations have one very essential characteristic in common: the celebration of new beginnings and a new year. Here's how centuries-old traditions of clearing away clutter at this time of year took root.
The vernal equinox (which falls on March 21), marks the beginning of Spring. In Iranian culture, this date also coincides with the New Year -- known as 'Now Rouz'--and a subsequent two-week celebration marked with traditions that date back to before Islamic rule. Now Rouz is the perfect time to plant new vegetation and burn away the old. In preparation for the celebration, Iranians also view it as the perfect time for a deep, vigorous household cleaning, known as "shaking the house".
The Jewish origins of spring cleaning also hit close to home. Their reflection on renewal comes just before Passover, when they clean their homes to sweep away any leavened bread in preparation for the holiday. Passover marks the journey of slaves from Egypt, and because these slaves were only given unleavened bread, known as "matzah" in Hebrew, it is a show of gratefulness and respect to rid homes of leavened bread before the holiday.
Many people will feel inspired by the origins of spring cleaning to give their clear out this year more meaning. And in the midst of these activities, now they have the option of making the seasonal renewal of their households a profitable one, too. By selling CDs, DVDs, old electronics and video games on musicMagpie, they can make money from these items instead of throwing them away.
The one aspect all spring cleaning traditions have in common is the anticipation of a new year and the desire to entire it with a clear space and a clear mind. No matter which origins hold the most credence, this is a positive place to begin.