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Cultural Beliefs Regarding Persian Gardens with the Emphasis on Water and Trees

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image of African and Asian Studies
For more content, see Journal of Asian and African Studies.

In different cultures people may have different perceptions of and attitudes to some natural phenomena such as wind, water, fire, trees, sun, moon and examples of these sorts. Respect and reverence for water and trees have been institutionalized in many ancient civilizations due to their various socio-cultural traditions, values and beliefs. In Iranian societies respect for water has been a well known cultural value before and after Islam. The important role of water in the various aspects of human life has been emphasized in the holy books particularly in Avesta and Holy Quran. In these books, water has been introduced as the essence of life; without which life is not possible. According to the description of Paradise or Heaven in the Holy Quran, Muslim architects; with special attention on this description, have built gardens in this mortal world with the intention of the goal that the Persian Gardens in the appearance of eternal and futurity will be a metaphor of the Heaven or Paradise Gardens. This article is trying to study about the attitude of Iranian towards myth of water and trees. There will be also a glance on a number of other civilizations such as China, India and Egypt in this regard. Then the important role and status of water and trees in the environmental enhancement and designing of Persian Gardens will be discussed. And so, considerations about water and trees policies and management addressing the broader array of human perceptions, meanings and values related to cultural aspects of water and trees are needed in Asian countries, especially in Iran.

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Architecture and Art, Tarbiat Modares University


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