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Buta on the Sanskrit means “fire” (bute-pute-buta). As it is known, Zoroastrianism is prospered in Azerbaijan. And our favorite buta is one of the symbols in difficult symbolic of Zoroastrianism, that is the symbol of Fire.
Ancient fire worshipper heathen temple and items of life of those times are marked by Buta. Buta is everywhere. And it is no coincidence that its image meets in a term of India, in a decor of metal products and in drawings of textile of Iran, in design of carpets of Azerbaijan. In products of arts and crafts and jewelers arts of the countries of the Near East and Central Asia, in art of all those countries, the territories of which for a long time predominated by Zoroastrianism religion.
Times changed, but, even with arrival of other religions and views on the earth of Azerbaijan (earlier it was manihey Christianity, the Buddhism, ellinizm, and later – Islam – strongly took there roots here), the trembling relation to the main symbol of Zoroastrianism – buta – did not change. It remained both in a life and in a culture of fire worshippers as an original totem and for a long time on the arms of some states (as still now, on the arms of Baku), on the seals, which was stamped with official mail of those times.
The images of Buta served as original distinctions of militaries. "Jig-buta" and "Mann-buta" decorated the crowns of shahs, headdresses of the big military leaders. Probably, initially such variety in images of buta carried also a magic sense. "Jig-buta" symbolized courage, bravery, glory and valour. "Man-buta" symbolized honor, advantage, beauty.
Buta, according to the tradition, the property of talisman, protecting from evil ghosts and an evil eye was attributed. And consequently dwellings of former Zoroastrians were decorated by carpets and every possible items of a life with the images of buta. Well, and the existence of Buta at a wedding attire of brides and grooms was simply obligatory (not to be knock on wood!).
Throughout long time, buta remained in a consciousness of the former followers of that forgotten religion, an element of magic symbolic, because magic was the foundation of that ancient religion.
Well, and later, when from the memory of generations all knowledge of symbolic of Zoroastrianism was almost erased, all these images, having lost the initial semantic importance, became simply decor elements.
Quite often, many of Azerbaijani without realizing bring on an altar of Ahura Mazda their gifts in a kind of lightning of “uzarlik”, "atyl-batyl" or salt. And original ritual “childag”, in which many of us do not see anything, except alternative medicine, is actually ancient ignicolist magic.
Coming from ancient times of Zoroastrianism as an expression of essence of that religion and become subsequently a decor element, buta has made its fiery impact on all east cultures, becoming a certain model, a standard for creation of original – “buta” east forms in architecture and art. Domes of east buildings remind the form - buta, items of east life - vessels - pitchers for pink water (gulaba), headdresses - turban, footwear – charixi, and many other things.
Buta was represented differently in Baku and in its vicinities, giving rise to such art forms as Mugan- buta, Baku-buta, Hila-buta, Shirvan-buta. And thanks to it, art critics and culturologists can precisely define today the region where this or that carpet has been weaved and made. Since the most ancient times, all the beautiful in the east identify with the idea of “buta”. Such expressions as “Beautiful buta is on it”; “Golden or almond-shaped buta beautify her” are spread among the people. The reference about buta in the veiled form tells us about spirituality and chastity, and so, about those who is dressed in it.