Category Archives: Religion

 Ērmān ī uzvān ī pārsīg (The Society of Friends of the Pārsīg Language)

Dear Parsi Zarthosthi readers, My fellow Humdins, Sahebji to all,
I am Esfandyar Patrawalla, and I am here to speak to our community as a young, concerned Zarthosthi and an enabler of action to reverse the crisis we are facing.
As no culture or people survive without a spiritual hinge, we too must always be conscious of the fact that the Mazdayasni Zarthosthi tradition is the foundation of our entire culture and cultural consciousness. Should it disappear, so do we.
We must also recognise that our culture and spirituality are in grave danger of being lost to the sands of time.
As was noted by different eminent Parsi scholars and personalities, like Shehnaz Cama in her recently published piece in The Times of India titled “Time is running out for Parsi culture. Race to save it from extinction is on”, the time is running out and most Parsis are entirely unaware of what constitutes their spiritual system and the cultural and linguistic elements that bind them all together, in essence, like the Pārsīg language (also called Middle Persian or Pahlavi) in which many of the most important of our texts and our intellectual heritage are preserved, as well as our prayers, many of which we utter every day while doing our sudro-kusti prayers, but are unaware of the language as well as their meaning.
As Shehnaz Cama noted in the article:
“It is a crisis of memory as well as memory-keepers. The loss is at once urgent and historical. They fear that the tangible and intangible threads of their history, culture, philanthropy, and memory would vanish as well. It was the history of an entire community simply vanishing.”
The grammatical tense structure of the sentence is present-continous. As in, we are living through this decay, and this must make us tensed.
To reverse this decay and revitalise one of the pillars of the Ēr (= Mazdayasni, Iranic) spirituality, we have the great pleasure to announce the launch of “Ērmān ī uzvān ī pārsīg”, an independent project in Iranian Studies that emphasises public education and authentic practice of the Pārsīg language by using a Natural and Immersive Method.
The project, which owes its foundations to renown behdēn scholar Raham Asha, is currently coordinated and directed by Ario Sedaghat, a fellow young Iranian humdēn and a researcher in philosophy based in Milan, Italy.
For an introduction to the current work on the project, see:
The website, set to expand over the coming year, not only features materials from the Pārsīg classical corpus transcribed to the highest orthographic standards, but also presents new texts freshly written, translated, and retro-translated into Pārsīg, each serving a distinct purpose, made by our colleagues.
As for education, we have a comprehensive teaching plan involving both self-study and online lessons.
For online courses, see:
For an initial (and not final) edition of online self-study, see:
For other schedules that students can opt for based on their preferences, contact
The core purpose of Ērmān is the meticulous rehabilitation of this highly misunderstood and wrongly dismissed language as the main key to the entire spirit of Ērīh and the enormous heritage associated with it. As a group of young Iranian scholars and students, Ērmān seeks to build an online school for the Iranian public and intellectual frahang, i.e., education, that has the Daēnā Mazdayasni and its teachings as its core. This project has been in the testing phase for two years, and it is part of a larger effort in Iranian Studies (Perso-Aryan Studies) to transcend the conventional orientalistic naiveté that pervades academia and ignores many contexts and the richness of our intellectual and spiritual heritage.
There is a serious danger that the Zoroastrian community, and the Parsi community in particular, might forget everything that our ancestors and ourselves have stood for over the course of thousands of years. There will be nothing left of “Parsipannu” once the spiritual aspect of it is lost to time. We simply then devolve to the very Karapan vapid ritualists that mumbled prayers without understanding their meanings & against whom our very dear Asho Zarthost stood so defiantly to keep intact the spiritual essence of Asha and Mazdayasni Daēnā.
Thus, it is my kind request to all my fellow Parsi readers here to kindly get involved with the project and, if you find it useful, make contributions to it, either as patrons or as students enrolling to learn the language, so as to understand the contextuals of our holy Daēnā and culture.
I thank everyone for reading and supporting.
Yazdān panāh bād ud ahlāyīh bē abzāyād!
For contacting Mr. Ario Sedaghat, director and coordinator of Ērmān, email at:
The website address
For questions email
For joining in on online lessons see:
Esfandyar Patrawalla
I am also attaching images below that help navigate through the website more readily & help understand the structure:

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Learning the Pārsīg Language:
Here you will find information about our periodic online classes, the “Pārsīg in 30 Lessons” self-study program, A Concise Grammar, Dictionary and exercises for learning Pārsīg.
Mādayān | Texts:
Here you will find a selection of Pārsīg texts, from classical literature to new works written, translated or retrotranslated to Pārsīg.
Among the present works we have: The Book of the Deeds of Ardašēr, the Memorial of Vazurgmihr, the Jāmāspīg; stories from Aesop, ʿAwfī’s Collections of Stories,…
Māhrōz | History:
Here you will find historical works such as Pārsīg inscriptions and texts relating to the traditional history of Iran, and research about the historical narrative in relation to the religious & royal institutions, and Iranians’ bipartite ideology to these two institutions.
Dānišn | Sciences:
Here you will find works about the sciences in Ērānšahr, ranging from encyclopedia-writing, logic and philosophy to cosmology, astronomy and medicine.
 āfrīn ud jašn | Benedictions and Feasts:
Here you can find texts and researches related to benedictory formulas and rituals of Iranian festivities, banquets and such.
A selection of extant Pārsīg poems; a set of translations into Pārsīg from modern Iranian languages like Farsi, Luri, Ādari etc., and more.

Homage to Tishtrya – The Brightest Star

26th November, 2023, marks Roj Tir of Mah Tir, or the Parab of Tir, as per the Shahanshahi calendar. This auspicious day is observed as the feast of Tirgan. Since the Shahanshahi calendar is not intercalated, this festival of rain now falls during autumn. Regardless, it is a very special occasion to offer thanks to Tir Yazata for keeping us all free from Apaosa – the demon of draught.
Across civilizations, the celestial path of Sirius was observed and revered. Its journey inspired reverence, leading to its classification as a sacred entity. The appearance of Sirius in the night sky was often accompanied by grand feasts and joyous celebrations, paying homage to its profound influence and celestial splendor.
Tir, or Tistar (Avesta Tishtrya), is the Divinity presiding over the Star Sirius (Greek Seirios which means glowing or scorching) or the Dog Star which is the brightest star visible from all parts of the earth in the night sky. Sirius is colloquially called the ‘Dog Star’, on account of its prominence in the constellation of Canis Major or Big Dog.
In the Tir Yasht, Tistar-Tir is venerated as radiant, glorious and invoked to bring rain, enhance harvest and keep the demon of draught at bay. Also, according to Tir Yasht (8.44), just as Ahura Mazda has ordained that Zarathushtra oversee the affairs of human beings on earth, so also Ahura Mazda ordained that Tishtriya oversee the workings of the stars.
In the Tir Yasht, we particularly invoke Tishtrya as, “Provider of rain, helpful and health giving”. In fact, Tishtrya yazata affirms in the same litany: “If men would worship me with the Yasna in which my own name is invoked, then I would render the world prosperous and fertile by showering rain”. The Tir Yasht also records the victory of Tishtrya over Apaosha, the demon of drought and ensuring happiness not just for people but all vegetation and animals.
Tishtriya or Sirius is our galaxy’s brightest star in the night sky. It is approximately eight and half light-years away, which means light from this star takes about eight and a half years to reach earth as compared to the sun of our solar system whose light takes about eight and a half minutes to reach Earth. Visible on a clear sky to the naked eye, it is seen to emit a mild violet tint.
In the ancient Veda this star was known as the Chieftain’s star; in other Hindu writings, it is referred to as Sukra, the Rain God, or Rain Star. The Dog Star is also described as, “he who awakens the gods of the air, and summons them to their office of bringing the rain.”
By the ancient Egyptians, Sirius was revered as the Nile Star, or Star of Isis. Likewise, ancient Egyptians observed that in the month of July, with the heliacal rising of the Star Sirius (Heliacal rising means the first night that a star is seen in the eastern horizon, just before dawn) the Nile generally started to flood and bring fertility to the land. Thus, the flood and the rising of Sirius also marked the ancient Egyptian New Year. The ancient Greeks also observed that the appearance of Sirius or the Dog Star heralded the hot and humid summer season causing plants to wilt and men to tire. The season following the star’s appearance came to be known as the ‘Dog Days of summer’, an expression still in use.
The festival of Tirgan is one of the three most widely celebrated seasonal festivals of ancient Iran. While Navruz (Mah Fravardin, Roj Hormuzd) celebrates renewed life and the warmth of spring after the cold winter season and Meherangan (Mah Meher, Roj Meher) commemorates harvest during autumn, Tirangan (Mah Tir, Roj Tir) welcomes the heat of summer and life-giving rain.
Tiragan is mainly associated with the legend of the arrow (tir), which is briefly alluded to in the Tir Yasht: “We honor the bright, khwarrah (glory) endowed star Tishtrya who flies as swiftly to the Vouru-kasha sea as the supernatural arrow which the archer Erexsha, the best archer of the Iranians, shot from Mount Airyo-xshutha to Mount Xwanwant. For Ahura Mazda gave him assistance; so, did the waters …”
The legend of Erexsha (modern Eruchsha) or Pahlavi Arish Shivatir i.e Arish of the swift arrow is also referred to in other texts like Firdausi’s Shahnameh (Book of Kings) and Mirkond, History of the Early Kings of Persia, translated by David Shea. According to these later texts, Erekhsha or ‘Arish of the swift arrow’, was the best archer in the Iranian army. When Shah Minochihr and Afrasyab of pre-historic Iran decided to make peace, and fix the boundary between Iran and Turan, it was agreed that Arish would ascend a Mountain and from the peak fire an arrow and the place in which the arrow would land would form the boundary between the two kingdoms.
Arish thereupon ascended the mountain, and discharged an arrow, the flight of which continued from the dawn of day until noon, when it fell on the banks of the Jihun (the Oxus or Amu Darya in Central Asia, in modern times the border around Tajikistan and Afghanistan). The day was Tir Roj of Tir Mah. Thus, the festival of Tirangan also celebrates the spirit of peace and freedom.
The Persian Rivayat (essentially correspondence between the Zoroastrian Priests of Navsari in India and the Zoroastrian priests of Yazd in Iran) speak of a great draught in Iran as a result of the conflict between Iranians and Turanians. Shah Faridoon had segregated Iran and Turan under a covenant. However, the Turanians under Afrasiab breached the covenant. The arrow was released on Roj Tir of Mah Tir and when Afrasiab and the Turanians left Iran it took them ten days to reach Turan. The tenth day was Roj Govad (dedicated to the good wind) and it rained heavily on that day and ended eight years of draught and ushered peace and prosperity for both Iran and Turan.
Late Professor Dr. Mary Boyce, in her book, ‘Persian Stronghold of Zoroastrianism’ refers to the custom among Zoroastrians of Yazd in Iran, tying rainbow-colored bands on their wrists on Tirangan for ten days and then throwing them in a stream. These colorful bands were worn as good-luck charms and during this period children in particular found great joy in swimming or splashing around in the local village streams. The Rivayat however records that priests used to write a Nirang (short prayer) which members of the community wore on their wrist or arm on Roj Tir of Mah Tir and removed it after ten days on Roj Govad and cast it into running brooks and streams, symbolically casting all calamities (particularly draught and hunger) to the flowing waters to carry away.
Noshir Dadrawalla

NAMC Institute of Zoroastrian Studies – Upcoming Presentations and Courses

                            NAMC institute of Zoroastrian Studies
     We are pleased to announce our upcoming Discussion Group Presentations and Courses:
      Discussion Group Presentation – Zoroastrianism Outside the Box:   Prayer – What is it? – Sunday, November 26, 2023, 2:00 pm EST, 11 am PST
 Presenter: Ervad Jal Panthaki
  No registration is required for presentations.

Meeting ID: 824 3218 1448      Passcode: NAMCIZS




Discussion Group Presentation – Zoroastrianism Outside the Box:  Mazda is not God – It is the Foundation of Creation – Sunday, Dec. 10, 2023, 2:00 pm EST, 11 am PST

Presenter: Fereydoon Keshavarz
No registration is required for presentations.

Meeting ID: 824 3218 1448   Passcode: NAMCIZS

Courses – Pre-Zoroastrian & Zoroastrian Dynasties – November 25, 2023 to June 8, 2024 – Saturdays @ 11:00 am EST
                                                              Peshdadian  – Ervad Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia –  Nov. 25, 2023 to Dec. 16, 2023
                                                              Kiyanian       –  Mr. Meheryar Rivetna        –  Jan. 6, 2024 to Jan 27, 2024
                                                              Achaemenid – Ervad Cawas Desai             –  Feb. 17, 2024 to March 9, 2024
                                                              Parthian       –  Dr. Xerxes Kotval                 –   April 6, 2024 to April 20, 2024
                                                              Sassanian    –   Ervad Behram Panthaki     –   May 11, 2024 to June 8, 2024
                                                              (See attachment for details) – Registration is required for each course.
For enrollment in any course please fill out the registration form using the QR code or by clicking the link given in the attachment.
NEW   ➡️➡️ – Online Mobed Refresher – A course designed for Ordained Mobeds of North America (for ordained mobeds only)
                                                              January 20, 2024 to February 17, 2024 – Saturdays @ 11:00 am EST
                                                             Instructor:  Ervad Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia
For enrollment in the course please fill out the registration form using the QR code or by clicking the link given in the attachment.
Associations and Organizations:   Please forward this announcement including attachments to all your members.  Thank you.
North American Mobeds Council

Zoroastrians of Iran

Zoroastrians of Iran –
(A History of Transformation and survival) by Janet Kesternberg Amighi.
Mazda Publishers, U.S.A. (Year 2022)

    Just as Zoroastrians in Iran have adopted a secularized form of pre-Islamic culture with duality of Iraniyat and Zoroastrianism, Parsis of India too have encouraged themselves towards India’s heritage and culture and they are following their Zoroastrian religion with joy of India’s proudful culture and history.”

 Rayoman S. Ilavia

 Surat (Gujarat) India.

Email –

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SSZ Conference

Zoroastrian Association of Metropolitan Chicago

proudly hosts the

2023 Society of Scholars of Zoroastrianism (SSZ) Conference

Theme: “Zoroastrian Religious Texts and Manuscripts –
Ancient times to Recent Discoveries”


Chair and Keynote Speaker: Miguel Ángel Andrés-Toledo,
FEZANA Professor of Zoroastrian Languages and Literature at the University of Toronto.

(Followed by a traditional community thanksgiving meal – “patra nu bhonu”)

at the

Rustam Guiv Dar-e-Mehr

8615 Meadowbrook Drive, Burr Ridge, IL 60527


Saturday November 18, 2023

supported by

Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America (FEZANA)
FEZANA Information Research Educational System (FIRES)


World Zoroastrian Organization

All community members, students, scholars and members of interfaith communities are invited and encouraged to participate. Your presence gives support to the speakers, and your feedback is invaluable so that future research efforts may be directed in a constructive manner for the benefit of both the academicians as well as the community.


Conference Chair:  Prof. Miguel Angel AndrésToledo

Morning Session –Session Chair: Eruch Rustomji

9:30     Breakfast

10:30 — 12:00     Academic Symposium (online on ZOOM), conducted by Prof. Andrés-Toledo, Zal Taleyarkhan and Noshir Contractor. In person participation at the dar-e-mehr is available.

Prof. Andrés-Toledo — Few Means a Lot: The Recent Discovery of Zoroastrian Manuscripts in

Prof. Enrico RaffaelliThe Structure of the Zoroastrian Month and its Impact on Ritual Practices.

Dr. Ted Goods — The Effusive Soul: The Theory of Emotion in Denkard III.

12:30   Dastur Dr. Kersey Antia — Prayers

1:00     Lunch & Reflection on Morning Session.

Afternoon Session – Session Chair: Afshan Barshan

Community-Forum (in-person)

2:00     Tea and Registration for Afternoon Session

2:15     Benediction – Mobedyar Boman Damkevala
Monajat – Mani Rao
WelcomeJamshed Rivetna (ZAC President)
Welcome, Intro to SSZ, and Annual Report – Zal Taleyarkhan (SSZ President) & Rohinton Rivetna

2:45     Prof Andrés-ToledoHistorical Review of the Corpus of Zoroastrian Religious Texts and

3:45     Kamal Saher, Meheryar Rivetna and Vispi Karkaria Quiz: Sharpen Your Knowledge of
Zoroastrian History and Scriptures

4:45     Tea break

Session Chair:  Vispi Karkaria

5:00     Persis Driver and ZAMC Youth Oral History Research Project.

6:00     Hors d’oevres and Drinks

6:30     Traditional Community Thanksgiving Dinner – “Patra nu Bhonu” served by ZAMC Youth.


All day: $35 per person, each additional adult family member will be $25; children 12-18 will be $10, children under 12 free. Includes breakfast, lunch, tea and a traditional community thanks-giving dinner (“Patra-nu-bhonu”).

Morning Session only:  The morning session will be online on ZOOM.  For those participating online only there is no registration fee.  For those participating in person at the dar-e-mehr, registration is $10 per person; children under 12 free. Includes breakfast and lunch.

Afternoon Session only: $30 per person, each additional adult family member will be $20; children 12-18 will be $10, children under 12 free. Includes tea and a traditional community thanks-giving dinner (“Patra-nu-bhonu”).

Please RSVP by November 10th (specify “All Day”, “Morning Only” or “Afternoon only”) to Zarin Karanjia ( For further information contact Rohinton Rivetna (, 630 248 4387).


To register and find out more about the Morning Academic Symposium on ZOOM, click here.




The Hymns of Atharvan Zarathushtra

The Hymns of Atharvan Zarathushtra – Jatindra Mohan Chaterji














With a Foreword by S. Radhakrishnan,  former President of India

There are several languages used by the author/ Avestan, Farsi, Gujarati, Sanskrit and Bengali all submitted in Devnagri script. His comments in addition to the translations, are quite insightful.
He brings in poets and philosophers as and where appropriate.
There is a hard bound copy of Chatterjee’s epic tome,  in the K R Cama Library opposite Lion’s Gate in South Mumbai
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Click Here to download the entire book

The Godha Story

We all know these are called GODHAS. But not many know the left and the right have a separate name. Anyone ?
The one on the left is known as SAROSH and on the right is called BURGIS.

On the left hand side pillar – Frashusho Manthra
On the right hand side pillar – Manthra Spenta
Left hand side below the Godha – Sarosh
Right hand side below the Godha – Burjish
Just below the Khuan – Atash Adar Froba
On the first step – Atash Adar Burzin Meher
On the second step – Atash Adar Khordad
On the third step – Atash Adar Gushasp
On the last step – Miswane –e- Gatu – Avval
(Courtesy: Ervad Behram Dhabhar)

Zoroastrianism, The Great Deluge, Human History I Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia I The iRonik Show

We have done a few episodes on Hinduism and our spiritual history, going ahead we do want to understand about other religions from the experts. We have Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia with us who is one of the foremost spokesperson on Zoroastrianism and a researcher on ancient Iranian languages. Dr. Karanjia is a M.A., Ph. D. in Avesta-Pahlavi from St. Xavier’s College, University of Mumbai, and serves as the Principal of Dadar Athornan Institute. In this podcast we spoke about the history of Zoroastrianism, where and how the religion began, the great flood which wiped out the human race. We also discussed about the Parsi community, their declining population. We tried to understand Zoroastrian belief when it comes to god, meditation, spirits and procreation.

Khordad Sal Mubarak!


Dear Friends,

Monday, August 21, 2023, Shahenshahi Roj Khordad Mah Fravardin, will be observed by Parsis as ‘Khordad Sal‘.

On this day, after your daily (farajyat) prayers, recite the line below (from the Fravardin Yasht) 101, 303, 505, 707 or 909 times:

“Ushta no zāto āthrava yo Spitāmo Zarathushtro.”

which means,

“Rejoice! (Thanks to Thee, O Ahura, that) the savior Spitama Zarathushtra is born.”

May the Asho Farohar of Vakshure Vakshuran (Prophet of Prophets) Asho Spitaman Zarathushtra shower His blessings on our troubled community on this day of great spiritual remembrance!

On this auspicious occasion, we present some not-so-well-known facts about the most exalted spiritual status and powers of Prophet Asho Spitaman Zarathushtra as revealed in the Avesta scriptures (Gatha, Yasna and Yashts) and Pahlavi writings.

Read on…


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