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Message from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts on the Occasion of Nowrouz

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts of the Philippines congratulates the Islamic Republic of Iran on the occasion of its celebration of the International Day of Nowrouz, the Iranian New Year. The consumerism that prevails in many countries today effectively undermines communal creativity and togetherness for it fosters narcissism and social isolation. Many values, especially sacred values, that cannot be reckoned in monetary terms are ignored or undermined. In general, there is a devaluing of intangible and spiritual qualities such as character, sense of honor and dignity, integrity, sincerity, moral excellence, inner virtues, spiritual love, wisdom and creative imagination in favor of wealth, consumerism, possessions, power, an industrial work ethic, conformity, efficiency, mass production, and mass entertainment. It is imperative that we counter these dehumanizing trends in contemporary life. An effective way to re-enchant our world and enable people to become in touch again with the profound creative depths within the human community is Nowrouz, an affirmation of harmony and understanding among peoples who celebrate together an ancient ritual of renewal and rebirth on the first day of spring. The NCCA happily shares the joys and hopes of the Islamic Republic of Iran in its observance of Nowrouz, which is in the official list of UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity! Felipe M. de Leon, Jr. Chairman, NCCA

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