The night on Ivan Kupala is the most magical of the year. This holiday was celebrated even in pre-Christian times, because, according to beliefs, it helps to strengthen health, find out the fate and tell fortunes for the betrothed, fulfill a cherished desire and save oneself from troubles and misfortunes. Existing since pre-Christian times, Ivan Kupala is dedicated to the day of the summer solstice, in some regions it is the name day of Vodyanoy. Celebration Day - July 7, new style, June 24, old style.
Previously, people who understand the magic of this night did not go to bed and tried to spend every minute with benefit. On the same day - July 7 - Orthodox Christians celebrate the Nativity of John the Baptist. In Ivan Kupala, everything is mixed - both pagan and Christian. Why "Ivana" is understandable, but what is "Kupala"?
For a long time it was believed that Kupala was a Slavic deity, but this is not so: this myth was generated by a chronicler's mistake made in the 17th century. The name of the holiday is a fusion of Christian and pagan, and as the holiday was called in the old days, information has not reached our days.
How was Ivan Kupala celebrated in Russia?
The main part of the festive action is the night. But our ancestors also emphasized the meaning of the day:
- On July 6, it was necessary to swim before sunset. If this happened in a bath, people used the herbs collected that day, giving health.
- Kupala water was considered curative, it was stored for a year in advance.
- It was believed that on this day the plants talk to each other, and the trees move, changing their location.
- It was not accepted to work. The main pastime is the collection and preparation of medicinal herbs for the year ahead.
- The villagers collected dew for youth and made wards against evil spirits.
Signs and superstitions, fortune-telling
Why do they jump over the fire on Ivan Kupala?
- Fire cleansed of troubles and evil spirits
- A person who dared to jump found happiness and good luck for the year ahead
- A young couple who jumped over a fire holding hands were considered inseparable until the end of their days
- A woman who dared to jump gained youth and beauty
- People suffering from mortal ailments were burned in Kupala bonfires.
Another important element on this day is water. It was credited not only with healing properties, but also the ability to predict the future and help girls in the difficult choice of a life partner. If the wreath, put into the water, floated away, the girl was waiting for a long life with her beloved; drowned - no luck in love. And whose wreath was the fastest, she will be the happiest.