Jardaloo Salli Boti : A Classic Parsi Meat and Apricot Specialty

This unique dish is a true Parsi Cuisine classic, using boneless cubes (boti) of any meat of choice and Persian touches like apricot (jardaloo,) red vinegar and sugar along with a blend of mouthwatering Indian spices and aromatics. It’s best served topped with crisp ‘Salli’ or shoestring potatoes (although a handful of crushed potato chips work well too.)


Dried apricots can be used un-pitted since the apricot will soften and blend into the gravy, pits can be removed prior to serving or while eating.
The dried golden apricots available in Western countries are generally sold pitted and work just as well for this preparation, offering a slightly tangier albeit equally delicious taste.
Click Here for the recipe

Azar Kaivan And The Zoroastrian Ishraqis

Ruins of Istakhr, ancient Zoroastrian city


1.     Introduction

2.     Azar  Kaivan

3.     The  Kaivan School

4.     Mir Findiriski  and  Baha al-Din Amili

5.     The  Desatir

6.     Dabistan-i  Mazahib  and  the  Sipasiyan

7.     Jivanji  J.  Modi  and  Dastur  Dhalla

8.     Other  Philosophers  and  Mystics


1.   Introduction

The standard interpretation of Suhrawardi’s influence has generally been heavily disposed to an emphasis upon the Safavid era events associated with the “School of Isfahan.” One of the reasons given is that “the illuminationist school of Suhrawardi provided the basis upon which an esoteric interpretation of Shi’ite Islam could be formulated.” (1) Yet outside Iran, the spread of Suhrawardi’s ideas is known to have affected India through diverse channels. The Zoroastrian extension of this phenomenon is rarely awarded profile. (2) 

Read on…

Courtesy : K F Keravala

The DABISTÁN, Or School Of Manners

The DABISTÁN, Or School Of Manners



Courtesy : Kaizad Keravala

Parsis and Kashmir

As Zubin Mehta visits the valley, it’s time to explore an unknown mystical legacy




The forth-coming performance of Zubin Mehta, born in 1936 in a Parsi family in Mumbai,   has rekindled our interest in a very rich but lesser known Parsi presence in Kashmir.  Parsis or Zoroastrians are the followers of Zoaraster known as  Zartusht in the Islamic  world. Muslims are intimately acquainted with this religion as it is the only non Arab belief that finds honourable mention in Holy Quran. Islam equates pious followers of zartush, mentioned by Arab name Majusi, to the  men of piety from semitic religions, Islam, Christianity and Judaism. Zartusht lived some time in 6th century BC  in Middle Asia, then comprising Iran and Afghanistan with a  lineage tracing to a spiritual  family from Balkh, Afghanistan. The close affinity of Zoarastrians with the semitic religions, especially Islam is well documented in the literature of the two religions. Majusis, like Muslims, believe in one ness of God, Ahur Mazda, and offer prayers five times a day. The only surviving monotheistic belief at the time of prophet of Islam (pbuh), it  therefore evoked   keen interest in this religion from the Muslim saints and scholars. The first Majusi who came in contact with the prophet (pbuh) and converted to Islam was Hazrat Salman Farsi. Recognizing his superior  spiritual prowess and piety  amongst the believers, Prophet (pbuh) showed great affection towards him and called him among the Ahl bait, a distinction bestowed to no other Muslim. Salman Farsi made  great  contribution towards establishing a just, honest and egalitarian society in the formative years of Islam. The Zoarastrian thought and philosophy was integrated  into the larger fabric of Muslim society in the form of what is known in history as the Iranian influence.  This subsuming gave  Islam and the world the great Abassi empire, the zenith of Islamic faith, art, and culture.

Click to continue reading…


Courtesy : K F Keravala


Farzan Adil Kotwal – a Zoroastrian Priest at 20 !

When you meet Frazan Adil Kotwal, a 20-something media student it is hard to believe that he is a Zoroastrian priest. To add to this he is training to become a western classical singer, performing for the Opera. If that were not enough, Frazan also plays the violin and cello and acts in various theatre productions across the country.

Click Here for the full story

The Palace of Darius at Susa

The Palace of Darius at  Susa – By Jean Perrot
The Palace of Darius at Susa: Residence of Achaemenid Persia, by Jean Perrot


The palace complex of the Persian King Darius I, the Great (522-486 BCE), provides unique evidence of the sophistication of Achaemenid architecture and construction. This palace, built 2500 years ago in western Iran, lay at the centre of the Persian Empire that stretched from the Nile and the Aegean to the Indus Valley. First rediscovered in 1851, the Palace of Darius was partly excavated over the next century but it was only field research between 1969 and 1979 by the noted French archaeologist Jean Perrot which revealed the site’s full dimension and complexity. Its bull-headed capitals, enamel friezes of richly-clad archers holding spears, figures of noble lions and winged monsters, introduced a new iconography into the ancient Persian world. The discovery and excavation of the palace, which this book records, thus casts a new light on the beginnings of the Achaemenid period. Edited by the distinguished scholar of ancient Persia, John Curtis, the lavishly illustrated volume is a work of seminal importance for the understanding of ancient Persia, likely to be radically altered by Perrot’s research and findings.


I.B.Tauris in association with Iran Heritage Foundation. It can be purchased here.


A former Director of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), Jean Perrot (1920-2012) is an archaeologist and scholar who led the Délégation Archéologique Française en Iran (DAFI) which made many important Achaemenid discoveries in Iran between 1968 and 1979. John Curtis is Keeper of Special Middle Eastern Projects at the British Museum.


‘King Darius’ Palace at Susa is perhaps the least well known yet the most important of the Achaemenid Persian palaces, less perhaps for its remains on the ground than for its architecture and treasures which are to be seen in Teheran and notably in the Louvre. French exploration of Susa, which began in 1885/6, continues. This magisterial volume, the translation of the French edition of 2010, brings together at last a comprehensive account of the architectural remains and the finds, from various scholarly hands. It is a major resource and, with its lavish illustration, a joy to handle and read.’
Sir John Boardman, FBA, Emeritus Lincoln Professor of Classical Art and Archaeology, University of Oxford
‘This lavishly illustrated volume on Darius I’s palace at Susa is not only of utmost importance for the specialist in Near EasternArchaeology. With its chapters on the history of Elam in Achaemenid times, and on the royal builder himself, it is also an indispensable tool for historians of Pre-Islamic Persia. Its comprehensive account of the French excavations provides key insights into European encounters with Iran as well into the history of scholarship.’
Josef Wiesehöfer, Professor of Ancient History, Kiel University
‘This sumptuous volume provides a richly illustrated, authoritative survey of the key structures and many individual objects found at Susa that can be said to have contributed so much to the advancement of Achaemenid studies, beginning in the second half of the nineteenth century. Above all, students of the evolution of early Achaemenid art and architecture will find this multi-authored volume to be essential reading.’
David Stronach, OBE, Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern Archaeology, University of California, Berkeley


  1. Introduction
  2. Foreword
  3. List of Events in the Achaemenid Period
  4. Genealogical Table of the Achaemenid Dynasty
  5. Susa and Elam in the Achaemenid Empire
  6. Darius: The Great King
  7. The Discoverers of the Palace of Susa
  8. The Franco-Iranian Programme (1969-1979)
  9. The Geophysical Survey of the Achaemenid Foundations
  10. The Archaeological Data
  11. Restoration, reconstruction
  12. The Egyptian Statue of Darius
  13. The Main Achaemenid Inscriptions of Susa
  14. The Fired Arts
  15. Decorative Arts at Susa during the Persian Period
  16. Other Works of Darius and his Successors
  17. The Susa and Iranian and Middle-Eastern Architecture
  18. Darius in his Time
  19. Appendix: The Inscriptions of Darius at Bisitun

Daraius Mistry wins 2 awards in NZ

My Dear Global Zarathushtis :
Please join me in congratulating my good friend Daraius Mistry from Aukland New Zealand for becoming the recipient of these two very prestigious awards:
1. Business Excellence in ICT Category conferred on him by Deputy Prime Minister of New Zealand, Bill English
2. Best Medium Sized Business conferred on him by the Indian High & CEO of UNITEC
I have had the good fortune of knowing Daraius for the past 15+ years as a very dedicated Zarathushti in New Zealand who has focused his life on  serving the Zarathushti community and committed this dedication towards reaching out to our future generation.
Daraius has truly been a motivational role model for the community in New Zealand
The attached article published in Parsiana and written by my trusted friend Rashna Tata, Past President of the Zarathushtrian Association of New Zealand provides more details about these fabulous accolades.
Thanks Rashna for sharing and Congrats Daraius.
Meher Amalsad

Collision of Religion and Society

(Text of Paper presented at the Parliament of World Religions, Chicago, 1993 as a representative of the Parliament and not as a member of a religious group. The issues addressed are universal in nature.)      


Collision of Religion and Society

    Pervin J. Mistry



Religion and Society together present the Oneness of Life and the Oneness of Humanity. Religion did not originate with primitive mankind out of fear. It is a moral code of conduct and has existed from the time mankind appeared on earth. It is a relationship between the Creator and His creation. It fulfils the will of God.

            Life and Religion are both interwoven. The purpose of Religion is to know about Life and the purpose of Life is to be reunited to God through Religion. Every moment of life, every thought, every word, every deed, is an act of Religion. It is Universal and ALL Religions ARE universal because the SOURCE is the same.

            God is one! Religion, per se, is One. The Heart of our Solar System is also One – which is our Sun. But, the Sun cannot function alone. It needs all the planets to perform Its task and divide Its light into different spectrums. In the same way, Divinity also needs all the different Religions to perform the task of spiritual evolution for Mankind. Just as every planet is needed to form the family of the Sun, each and every Religion is required to promote the spiritual development of the family of Humanity.

            All Religions are based on Truth found in the Laws of Nature. These Laws of Nature – such as birth and death, night and day, tides –  are Eternal and Immutable. Nature doesn’t change Its Laws for us just because we do not like or do not understand them. To guide Mankind to live in harmony WITH Nature, our Prophets have formulated their teachings on Nature’s Immutable Truth. Let no man think he can change Truth. Truth, if it changes, is no Truth to begin with! Our own perception of Truth changes, but NOT the TRUTH Itself!


Click Collision of Religion and Society to read the entire article.


Courtesy : Hushang Vakil

Dhan Daar Patiyo

An authentic Parsi feast: Rice and lentils with prawn sauce

Good food, good health and a good life – this is the profound Parsi belief. For us, good food doesn’t necessarily translate into an elaborate meal; it generally refers to a more simplistic and balanced approach to cooking. Since we Parsis like to feast often, we come up with easy-to-prepare meals that make our special occasions even more special.

To get your celebration started, here is how to prepare dhandal patia (rice with lentils, topped with a spicy sauce).

Serve all three dishes together. To eat, pour daal over the rice and top it with the spicy prawn sauce.

Dhandal patia is ideal for family gatherings (the above recipe can serve up to 7 to 8 people). It also saves you the hassle of preparing a separate dish for children who have a very low tolerance for spicy food, as they can simply enjoy the rice with daal. Also, the dish is versatile so if you prefer fish over prawns, you can go ahead and use 1kg fish in the above recipe instead of the prawns.

So if you are one of those who dread hosting parties with the thought of toiling away in the kitchen, this might just be the perfect recipe for you.

Happy Parsi feasting!

Click Here for the recipe

From Samarkand to San Francisco-Talk by Dr. Jenny Rose

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco
In collaboration with
School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), London
and Society for Art & Cultural Heritage of India (SACHI)


From Samarkand to San Francisco: A Zoroastrian Synopsis

by Dr. Jennifer Rose

Sunday, September 22, 2:00–3:30 pm
Samsung Hall, Asian Art Museum
200 Larkin Street, San Francisco
$5.00 after museum admission. 
Ticket includes entry into the museum’s collections, and the special exhibitions Cyrus Cylinder: A New Beginning, and In the Moment: The Larry Ellison Collection
Closing Day for Cyrus Cylinder exhibition. Viewing opportunity, first come, first served.

Advance reservation recommended.  Link for ticketing details

In a lively, illustrated presentation, Dr. Jennifer Rose will provide an introduction to the Zoroastrian religion, one of the world’s oldest surviving belief systems. From its origins in Bronze Age Central Asia to its evolution across three powerful Iranian empires, and its expansion to India, Europe, and North America, Zoroastrianism has had a profound impact on surrounding cultures and religions.  The talk will explore these points of interaction by tracing the religion’s history in relation to artifacts on display in The Everlasting Flame: Zoroastrianism in History and Imagination, an upcoming exhibition at the School of Oriental and African Studies (London), as well as objects in the Cyrus Cylinder exhibition currently on view at the Asian Art Museum.  Images from Dr. Rose’s recent travels in Iran and Central Asia will be included.

The presentation will be followed by a Q & A. Participants will have the chance to view a rare artifact newly acquired by the Asian Art Museum—a silver Muktad bowl, used by Parsis (Zoroastrians from India) to hold flowers in memory of the departed during the last 10 days of the Zoroastrian year.

About the Speaker:

Dr. Jennifer Rose, adjunct professor of Zoroastrian studies in the Department of Religion at Claremont Graduate University, holds an MA in Religious Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London, and a PhD in Ancient Iranian studies from Columbia University, New York.  She has published extensively, including two recent books – Zoroastrianism: An Introduction (I.B. Tauris) and Zoroastrianism: A Guide for the Perplexed (Continuum). Dr. Rose has lectured internationally at universities, museums and Zoroastrian Association events and led tours to important archaeological, cultural and devotional sites in Iran and Central Asia. She is currently on the advisory panel for The Everlasting Flame exhibition, on view at SOAS this fall.

SACHI (Society for Art and Cultural Heritage of India) is a nonprofit, educational organization that was formed to serve as a forum for promoting, understanding, and appreciating the richness and diversity of the art, culture, and heritage of India.

For more information, visit  http://www.sachi.org