Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The tower of silence in Yazd.

Yazd has been the main city where the Zoroastrians lived after Islam conquered Iran. Zoroastrians believed in the sacredness of fire, water, wind and soil and they kept their environment so clean to avoid the impurity of the natural elements. Therefore they kept the dead bodies, which were considered impure, away from the soil. They constructed a round walled area covered with rocks on the top of a conical hill out of the city and measured the wind direction to prevent any impurity to the city and the soil. This area was divided into three parts for men, women and children.

Top of the Tower of Silence.

The dead bodies were placed on the top of this tower, exposed to the sunlight and the vulture birds. The attendants of the Silence Tower were named “Salar”. The Salar’s duty was to collect the remaining bones and to throw them into a hollow in the middle of the area, named “Estodan”, which means a place for the bones. There are two adobe mansions near the silent tower which are the leftovers of the buildings, where the Salars used to live. Some of these buildings were used as a temporary house for the families of the dead people.

This strange construction is located 15 kilometers from the city of Yazd and the surreal atmosphere invites the visitors to silence for a while!

The Tower of Silence.

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