Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Festival of Life Renewal

Sat 04 May 2024 | 01:01 PM
Elham Aboul Fateh
Elham Aboul Fateh
Elham Aboul Fateh

Happy returns. On Monday, we are going to celebrate Sham El-Nessim, which is one of the oldest, most beloved and most joyful Egyptian festival. Egyptians have been celebrating it for about 2700 years BC, as it is 4700 years old.

The Egyptians celebrate it through eating salted fish. This year we also celebrate the Easter and Holy Week. May God bless the Egyptians.

 Prominent Egyptologist, Dr. Zahi Hawass, explained that the ancient Egyptians celebrated it as a festival of resurrection, the creation of the universe, and spring festival. The ancient Egyptian called it “Shammu,” which is the season of harvest, renewal of life, and continuation of existence, and the word "Nessim"  was added to it in our Arabic language.

Sham El-Nessim is the festival of renewal and continuation of life for the ancient Egyptians, and for us it is a happy occasion when the Egyptian family gathers.

The ancient Egyptians celebrated it by taking flowers filled with the perfume of the gods and placing them on the roads of loved ones and at their doors.

The rituals of celebrating Sham El-Nessim continued and evolved over the time in different eras. We find people dancing, singing songs, and setting dinner tables, and everyone is happy.

Every Egyptian family has memories and stories on celebrating Sham El-Nessim, in which joy is mixed with the arrival of spring and the blooming of flowers welcoming the Nile flood, while the Egyptians are eating salted fish and colored eggs. These customs have reached the present era. Our ancestors had the same food and the same joy and happiness with the arrival of spring.

Despite some claims that these festivals are baseless, our sheikhs and His Eminence the Mufti responded to these claims by saying that they are social festivals in which peoples commemorate their heritage. There is a difference between religious festivals that belong to one group and social ones that are shared by the entire nation, such as Sham El-Nessim, which we all celebrate - Muslims, and Christians - celebrate.

We are a country with a Pharaonic, Greek, Coptic and Islamic civilization. We have a great heritage and many rituals and celebrations. I hope that there will be civil associations and centers to revive these customs and spread them in society to revive our civilization and heritage. Happy returns and Happy Sham El-Nessim.