Thursday, January 21, 2016

Aryans (Iranian and Indian) belong to common origin.

Aryans (Iranian and Indian) belong to common origin.

I couldn't resist for long and finally visited Udvada the place of sacred fire of Parsis "Atash Behram" on 19 January 2016. Udvada, a coastal village in Valsad district of Gujarat, has been inhabited by Parsis since 1742. Now only 25 Parsis (old age) live in the village of 7000 population. Many of them live in Mumbai. During Paris festival, all the 150-200 beautiful houses of Parsis are full with their owners, pilgrims and visitors. The 'Dastur' (Priest) stays in a house opposite to the Fire Temple. The priestly families are called 'Athornas' and the commoners are called 'Behdins'. There is a house besides the Dastur's house belongs to the aunty of Firoz Gandhi.

Non Parsis are not allowed inside the fire temple therefore we saw it from outside and visited the information centre nearby that has given us information on Parsis. We saw the sadre (sadaro the top garment) and kasti (the thread of janeu). They use mostly kathi/babul (acacia) wood and occasionally sukhad for keeping the sacred fire glowing. Babul wood is solid and lasts long in fire and the char remain glowing under the ash. People offer machi (9 pieces of wood hold like a scaffold while offering to fire) of kathi or sukhad to the fire temple. (The matchbox is called machis in Gujarat)

After the visit, one can be convinced that Parsis and Aryans belong to the common origin. Aryan Iranians (Persia) and Aryan Indians (upto Hindu Kush), were part of the same group.

Ahuna (aum?) Vairya (vir), the most sacred word was given to Prophet Zarathushtra by the Ahura Mazada, the GOD to chant against the attack of the evil spirit. Ahura (Lord of life) Mazda (omniscient) is the one Supreme God of Parsi Zoroastrian. Ahura Mazga is eternal light. The fire, the son of Ahura Mazda, is the physical manifestation of light, present at all ceremonies of Parsis.

Similarly Diya, yagya, fire is common in all Hindu rituals/sanskar from birth to death. Hindu marriages are performed by taking 4-7 rounds of the sacred fire. The chullah (fire place) of all Hindu houses is a sacred place of fire. Till recent past, the fire in chullah was kept alive (burning coal under the ash) like Parasi fire temples. One has to remove shoes before entering kitchen, as it is a sacred place of Hindus. There is prohibition for outsiders to enter into kitchen where fire is kept. Similarly in garbha griha (sanctum santorum) of Hindu temples, where the lamp is kept, people other than priests are not allowed. Aarti is nothing but a prayer of God (like Ahura Mazda of Parasi) with lighted lamps (like fire, in Parasi). At the end of aarti, Hindu people raise hands over flame then raise palm to forehead to take the blessings of the deity through aarti flame, the fire. Light, the fire, is common for Hindus and Parsis.

One will be surprised to know that the earthen dhupiya used by Hindus for offering naivaidhya to deities has the same shape like the Kebla, the fire pot of the Parsi.

Light, the physical manifestation, fire is the symbol of Zoroastrian religion. The religious teaching of Parsi keeps the "eternal light" in the centre, called Atash (fire) Baheram (Brahman of Hindu).

If some study put on ancient dynasties mentioned in the Gathas, there are chances of finding some linkages with the early kings mentioned in Hindu Shrimad Bhagvat.

Their Gathas are called Kathas by Hindu. Dualism of truth and falsehood, good and evil, happiness and pain, light and darkness, righteousness and unrighteousness have been addressed as reality of worldly existence. Spenta Mainyu (the holy spirit)/spirit and Angra Mainyu (the evil spirit)/matter are two opposite forces. Holy part is eternal and evil part ends. Ahura Mazda stands above and beyond them. Hindus described them chetan and jad, purush and prakriti.

Divine cosmic law of Asha governs the creation. The first prayer the Zoroastrian child is taught is Ashem Vohu, Asha, humata (good thought), hukhta (good word) and huvarshta (good deed). "Through the best Asha, Through the highest Asha, That we may catch sight of Thee, That we may approach Thee, That we may be in perfect union with Thee."

Zoroastrians believe that God has created all creatures free. Man is born free and does not have the stain of original sin (Hindus put stain of sin by birth). He has freedom to make choice between good and evil. "Hear with your ears and the highest Truths, Consider them with clear thought, Before deciding between the two paths, may by man, each one for himself." Once he makes the decision, he has to be responsible for the consequences. (The same like karma principle of Hinduism)

Amesha Spentas (Holy immortals) represents three masculine and three feminine aspects of God's nature. Asha Vahishta (Best order) (Hindu Vashishtha); Vohu Manah (good mind), loving kindness to all; Khshatra Vairya (strength to serve humanity) (kshatriya vir of Hindu) are three masculine immortal. Armaiti (faith) (Hindu shraddha); Haurvatat (spiritual wholeness) (Hindu purnatva) and Ameretat (immortality) (Hindu amaratva) are three feminine immortal.

Man should live in harmony with the law of Asha, respecting the sanctity of the elements in nature, the ecology. Parsis do salutation to the four directions (Namach i char nem). Hindu do the same, salute the nature in all four directions.

Man's duty to be a "hamkar" (Omkar), coworker with Ahura Mazda (the God) in combating evils in its various forms. Ultimately evil will be completely destroyed and the kingdom of righteousness will be established.

"Joy comes to the one who brings joy into others".

Light is life, either in the darkness of the sky or the spark of God in us. असतो मा सद् गमय, तमसो मा ज्योतिर् गमय, मृत्योर मा अमृतम् गमय।

"Raise my consciousness, O Ahura"

21 January 2015


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