Udvada Muktad Scheme
UDVADA MUKTAD SCHEME
During the ten holy days of MUKTAD, Afargan, Farokshi & Satum prayers will be performed in Iranshah Atash Behram.
The names of Asho Farohar will be recited in all of the above prayers.
Amount per Name Rs. 100/-
KHURSHED DASTOOR KAIKOBAD DASTOOR
* OPP. IRANSHAH ATASH BEHRAM, UDVADA – 396180
* P – 7 CUSROW BAUG, COLABA, MUMBAI – 400001
Tel No. 66334371
NOTE: Names for the above will be accepted upto 03.08.09 – Roj 20, Mah 12.
Q 29. A friend of mine is in a fix. After years of having the Muktad ceremonies performed for 18 days in a Bombay Agiary, he has now been informed by the trustees and the Panthaki of that Agiary, that the next Shahenshahi Muktad will be only for 10 days and not 18! Will you let me know in detail, if the Muktad days are 10 or 18, and if so, why?
A. We shall try and give a detailed answer as suggested. Incidentally, some years ago, a suit was filed against the trustees of a Bombay Atash Behram on this very issue. A thousand pities that some of the Dasturs wrongly testified that the Fravardegan days, as they should be called, because they are the special days for the Asho Farohars, are 10 and not 18. Why they were wrong and how, by reducing the Fravardegan days to 10, our trustees and priests bring about Karmic retribution for the entire community, is what we shall presently consider.
The main plank of all those who argue that Muktad days are only 10, is the three Avesta words, Dasa Pairi Khshafano occurring in Karda 13 in the Fravardin Yasht, where it is stated that, during the Hamaspathmaedem Gahambar, which comes towards the end of the year, the Fravashis come to the Veesa, desiring help and they move about here for 10 nights. This is the literal translation of part of paragraph 49 of the Fravardin Yasht, done by some scholars.
For our purpose, the operative words are dasa and Khshafan. Now the latter has not been interpreted in the right context by our Parsee scholars. Khshafan or Khshapan means either “darkness” or “night”. In the Fravardin Yasht, the word Khshapano can be taken as Genitive singular of Khshapan, meaning, “of, or belonging to darkness”, i.e., “evil”; or if it is taken as Accusative plural, it could mean “nights”. Here, the “darkness” or “evil” alluded to, means the darkness that descends on earth, because of the sins committed by mankind.
The word dasa = 10. But, according to Numerology, it also indicates, “completion” or “perfection”. The word ‘pairi’ = surrounding, i.e. to surround. At the end of every year, because of the unmitigated sins of mankind, the forces of Khshafan are formed, which surround the earth, virtually, strangling the life-breath of the earth! To counter these ultra-powerful Satanic forces of that time the Fravashis of diverse grades – from the yazatic to those of ordinary departed souls, come down (Veecharenti).
Thus, in para 49, the words dasa pairi khshafano are to be taken in this technical sense. Elucidating these words beautifully, the late Dr. Framroze S. Chiniwalla says, “those are highly esoteric technical terms, which demonstrate the factual knowledge” about the Fravashis.
It is the misfortune of the Parsee community that some latterday Dasturs and Parsee scholars miserably fell for the pseudo-claptrap of superficial translations of this very pertinent paragraph and almost overnight, torpedoed the age-old tradition of celebrating the Muktad for 18 days!!
We say this with conviction, because, our modern scholars fail to answer two pertinent questions that arise: (1) How does one explain the recitation of this very paragraph of the Fravardin Yasht in the Baaj ceremony of the departed soul on its death anniversary? And (2) How does one explain the millenia-old tradition of the Parsees of celebrating the Fravardegan Hingaam for 18 days?
We shall answer both these questions and vindicate the wisdom of our spiritually advanced forefathers. According to the religious doctrine, the year is divided into two groups of festive occasions (hingaam). Both these groups of Time are governed by Khordad Ameshaspand. One is called Yaairya and the other Sared, who are the co-workers of Khordad. The death anniversary of the departed is a part of the Sared hingaam. At this time, i.e. on the day of the baaj, Fravashi of the departed soul wants to take the soul towards the last – 6th Gahambar, the Hamaspathmaedem Gahambar. Therefore, she, that is the Fravarshi, wants to break and destroy the evil Kerdar (the feminine apparition), viz., Khshafan. Thus, the death anniversary day of the departed soul becomes a veritable mini Hamaspathmaedem hingaam for the departed when the Khshafan has to be destroyed. For this reason, the same paragraph of the Fravardin Yashti, which refers to the Fravardegan days, is recited in the Baaj ceremony, on the death anniversary (the Baaj day). What does this show? That “dasa pairi khshafano” does not only mean moving round on 10 nights, but something much more!
This automatically brings us to the next question: that, if it does not only mean 10 nights, how did the tradition of 18 nights or days come about?
We reiterate that the souls of the departed Zarthostis come down to earth for only 10 days during the Fasli Fravardegan period. They come ensconced in the vehicles and custody of the highly exalted Ashaunam Fravashis. These 10 days are a part of the Fravardegan or Muktad Hingaam. There are also reasons for the number of days being 10 for the coming down of the souls. But, we won’t go into the details of that aspect, while answering our questioner. Our main question is, whether the Fravardegan Hingaam days are 10 or 18, and if so, why.
We have already seen that the Khshafan or darkness or evil envelopes the earth during the last days of each year. To reduce and destroy this Khshafan, the Ashaunam Fravashis (the combined Fravashis of the seven Ameshaspands and of the perfected souls of the numerous yazatic intelligences) come down. These Fravashis of the Yazatic forces remain here for the first 10 days plus 7 days of the New Year, which belong to the 7 Ameshaspands namely, from Roj Hormazd to Roj Amardad! The Ameshaspands replenish Khurshed Yazad whose material form is the Sun, with the benevolent yazatic currents. Therefore, these 7 days of the Ameshaspands in the month of Fravardin are as important as the first ten days of the Fravardegan days! And the invocation of the Ashaunam Fravashi during these 7 days is done with the words, Daham vispesha…. During these 7 days, if the barehs (behdaans) are still there, and if the Muktad ceremonies continue, to be performed, the Fravashis of the souls of the departed are immensely pleased.
One point still remains to be clarified. The first 10 days plus the next 7 days make 17 days in all. The 18th day is the Ashishwangh Roj of the last month, Spendarmad, which is the day for meditating on the “Invitation to the Fravashis” and the souls who’d be coming the next day. In Gujarati, its called, “Iijan na Mithra Karvano Divas”.
Thus, the 18 Fravardegan days, i.e. days, which destroy darkness and evil and spread plenty and prosperity all round consist of:
a) Roj Ashishwangh of Mah Spendarmad – the Invitation Day.
b) Panj-i-Keh or the 5 small days of the Fravardegan Hingaam.
c) Panj-i-Meh or the 5 big days of the Fravardegan Hingaam.
d) The 7 days of the Ameshaspands – from Roj Ohrmazd to Roj Amerdad of the month Fravardin.