Holy Mountains - Inspiring Mountains
Mount Damavand 5.610m
Holy mountain in Iran, Alborz range
Buffeted by the Wind - Shrouded in Smoke
Mount Damāvand (Persian: دماوند [dæmɒːvænd] ), a potentially active volcano, is the highest peak in Iran and the Middle East and has a special place in Persian mythology and folklore. The mountain is located in the middle of the Alborz range just below the southern coast of the Caspian Sea, 66 kilometres NorthEast of the city of Tehran. Mount Damāvand is the 12th most prominent peak in the world, and the second most prominent in Asia after Mount Everest. It is the highest volcanic mountain in Asia, and part of the Volcanic Seven Summits mountaineering challenge.
Damavand is a significant mountain in Persian mythology. It is the symbol of Iranian resistance against despotism and foreign rule in Persian poetry and literature. In Zoroastrian texts and mythology, the three-headed dragon Aži Dahāka was chained within Mount Damāvand, there to remain until the end of the world. In a later version of the same legend, the tyrant Zahhāk was also chained in a cave somewhere in Mount Damāvand after being defeated by Kāveh and Fereydūn. Persian poet Ferdowsi depicts this event in his masterpiece, the Shahnameh:
بیاورد ضحاک را چون نوند
به کوه دماوند کردش ببند
He brings Zahhak, himself a mountain
to the peak of Damavand and binds his neck.
The mountain is said to hold magical powers in the Shahnameh. Damāvand has also been named in the Iranian legend of Arash (as recounted by Bal'ami) as the location from which the hero shot his magical arrow to mark the border of Iran, during the border dispute between Iran and Turan. The poem Damāvand by Mohammad Taqī Bahār is also one fine example of the mountain's significance in Persian literature. The first verse of this poem reads:
ای دیو سپید پای در بند
Ey dīve sepīde pāī dar band,
Oh white giant with feet in chains
ای گنبد گیتی، ای دماوند
Ey gonbade gītī, ay Damāvand
Oh dome of the world, Oh Mount Damāvand
Source: Wikipedia, "Sacred Mountains for the World" Edwin Bernbaum.