“BAD-I BASMALA” OR “AMEN PARADE” TRADITION IN KUTAHYA
KÜTAHYA’DA “ BEDİ· BESMELE” YA DA “ÂMİN ALAYI’’ GELENEĞİ

Author : Münire BAYSAN
Number of pages : 183-193

Abstract

Beginning primary school, which is the first serious step in educational life, is one of the significant turning points in children's life. There are some pre-school practices for the child to start a new life with joy and energy and to achieve a steady success in this life. One of these is “Bad-i Basmala” or “Amen Parade” tradition. This ceremony, which has been practiced since the time of the Ottoman Empire, was carried out for children aged four to five years at that time. Children who are at the age of starting school were introduced to the education life with ceremony and prayer in the presence of a crowded group. Nowadays, this ceremony is practiced at least one week before schools are opened, when children reach the age of official education. Children who are dressed in clean and ornamented clothes and riding a phaeton with prayers in the old period are now dressed in school uniforms and taken out of their homes again with prayers. Saints entombed in the city are visited with vehicle convoys formed by the family members and they pray for them. The purpose of this practice, which has deep roots in culture, is to make it fun to start the school, to help the children to start their education life with joy, to overcome school fear and to feel the value of education. To bring family elders, relatives and friends together for the children who will start school, to present gifts to them and to provide spiritual support for their success in education are also among the purposes of this practice. These ceremonies, which were practiced in the past and are tried to be performed today, are extremely important in that the society shows the importance of studying and education.

Keywords

Kütahya, Tradition, Children, Education, Ceremony

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