From February 25 to March 1, 2023, Bahá’ís in Seychelles and around the worldcelebrated Ayyám-i-Há (also known as the Intercalary Days), a period of celebration devoted to charity, gift-giving and festivities prior to the annual period of fasting.
This period is very special for the Bahá’ís as Ayyám-i-Há is a period dedicated to socialising, being hospitable, giving generously to the poor and needy, and preparing for the upcoming month of fasting. Depending on the year, Ayyám-i-Há will vary in its duration and it is composed of the excess of days that fall outside of the 19 months of 19 days.
Ayyam-i-Ha has been translated into English as ‘Intercalary Days’ which literally means that they are days inserted into the calendar. Unlike the majority of Bahá’í holy days that either celebrate joyous historical events or commemorate sorrowful dates of significance, Ayyám-i-Há is a festival of the attributes of generosity, love, compassion, of praising God and friendship. It stands in contrast to the fast, a time of abstinence and inner contemplation and transformation.
Baha’u’llah, the prophet founder of the Bahá’í faith, has reduced rituals and ceremonies to a minimum in the Baha’i faith and so everyone celebrates Ayyám-i-Há differently. Many communities and families share meals together and some exchange gifts. Ayyám-i-Há celebrations can be elaborate and complex or they can be humble and simple. The beauty of these days is that little is required to make good cheer when you are in the company of friends and surrounded by an atmosphere of love.
On Mahé, Praslin and La Digue the communities conducted several charitable events.
As from March 2-20 sunset, the Bahá’ís will start the special period of fasting.
Source: Seychelles Nation