Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Houses of Strength
In addition to the physical exercises designed to built strength (slinging about Indian clubs, lifting a heavy plank of wood while lying on your back, using heavy metal bows to build shoulder strength) and balance (whirling about as fast as possible with your arms outstretched), there is a spiritual component as well. The practice originated in pre-Islamic Persia but now incorporates various Islamic virtues as well: strength, courage and respect for Mohammed and the Imams.
Shanameh and Hafez. He also instructs the athletes after the ritualized exercise is over and asks them questions such as “Why were you late to the practice this evening?”