SSZ Conference, Chicago September 6, 2014

The Zoroastrian Association of Metropolitan Chicago (ZAC) is planning a a one day Conference organized by the Society of Scholars of Zoroastrianism(SSZ) as has been done for the past several years.

All families, students and scholars are invited and encouraged to attend this 2014 SSZ Conference.
It will be held on Saturday September 6, 2014 at the Arbab Rustam Guiv Dar-e-Meher, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. A nominal registration fee of $10 will cover breakfast, lunch and teas. For further information, please contact Rohinton Rivetna (, 630-325 5383) or Kayomarsh Mehta (, 630-654 8828). To register, please RSVP to Dinaz Weber (, 630-830 6747) no later than August 29th.

The Conference will begin with the singing of a Monajat by Mani Rao (in order to revive the tradition of singing of devotional songs as a form of worship) and a Benediction by Mobedyar Bomi Damkevala, followed by presentations by lay scholars, academicians, theologians (Mobeds), educationists and most importantly by our next generation practitioners who are encouraged to study a specific topic and present to the assembly to reinforce their learning. These conferences also offer an opportunity to academicians to present and publish their works.

The presentations will include a variety of topics on Zoroastrian religion, ethics, prayers, culture and history. Interestingly this year’s topic “Lessons of Tushnamaiti” is to be presented by our young mobed, Ervad Rayomand Ravji who holds great promise for our community. He has recently also been elected President of ZAC and has excellent oratory skills. Tushnamiti as explained by Gatha Scholar Irach Taraporevala is “the idea of inner growth of the soul, through silent meditation” and appears in Ushtavaiti Gatha, Yasna 43.15. Tushnamaiti invokes a great deal of interest as meditation generally is recognized to be a Vedantic concept. It comes as a surprise to many that it was referred to by Zarathushtra himself as a self-cleansing and a growth process. Ervad Ravji will expand on this teaching.

Our other Next Generation speakers will be Persis Driver and Khursheed Ichaporia. Persis will speak on the topic of Phenology and how it can be applied to connect our grass roots and Khursheed will speak on the topic of Ghambars and how we can reconnect through this observance.

Our High Priest, Dastoor Dr. Kersey Antia, who has kept alive the tradition of life long study and learning of our scriptures by our High Priests, will make a presentation and grace us with his presence.

We are fortunate to also have Mr. Kersee Kabraji of Pune a student of the Gathas participate and give us his insight into The Gathas. Mr. Kabraji, editor of “A Gathic View of Zoroastrianism and Ethical Life,” is on a lecture tour of U.S. and Canada, visiting several other locations during his 3 week visit.

Gathic scholar and author, Dr. Pallan Ichaporia will present his insights into “Scriptural Understanding of the Gathas.”

Associate professor Wouter Henkleman of the Oriental Institute (OI) will speak on “The Royal Table of the Achemenids” drawn from a study by the OI of thousands of tablets discovered in Persepolis in the 1930s.

Submitted by
Rohinton Rivetna

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