The Advent of Prophet Zarathushtra: by Adil F. Rangoonwala

Mr. Maneck Bhujwala writes: On the occasion of His Holiness Prophet Zarathushtra's birthday (Fasli calender), here are excerpts from an article, "The Advent of Prophet Zarathushtra, written by Adil F. Rangoonwala, that appeared in the Oct.-Dec. issue of Deen Parast magazine:

The Advent of Prophet Zarathushtra

by Adil F. Rangoonwala

"It was a beautiful day in Spring when the Holy Prophet was born. On that day, all the creations rejoiced. "Hail to us," they said, "an athravan is born, who is Spitaman Zaratusht." (Fravardin Yasht; Verse 94). It is said that on this glorious day, Nature was clothed in a rich suffusion of colour, and bliss filled the soul of Mother Earth. At last, the creations were blessed to see the dawn of that new day, which brought with it the glorious light of Heaven on Earth through an Ashavan (carrier of Truth) the Ashavan who would usher in a new age, unheard of in the history of all creations. The Prophet's birth was seen as the descent of the Glory, Purity and Righteousness of the High Heavens and Creator Ahura Mazda on earth. This coming of Divine Light and Wisdom, would be the end of evil that tormented the soul of earth so far. Thus, the soul of the earth rejoiced and proclaimed with joy:

'We worship the holiness of the holy Spitaman Zarathushtra and his Fravashi.. In whose birth and growth, waters and plants increased, in whose birth and growth all the creations created by Spenta Mainyu cried out, "Hail".

"Hail! born for us (is) one priest Spitaman Zarathushtra. Zarathushtra, the spreader of Baresman (in the ceremonies) will now worship us with libations.

(Farvardin Yasht; 'Khordeh Avesta'; M.F.Kanga; verses 87,93 and 94; pages 459 and 462).

According to tradition, Zarathushtra laughed instead of crying at birth.

At around the age of twenty, he left his home to meditate upon the higher things in life upon Mount Ushidaren. The Prophet's soul was yearning for the Highest Truth. His quest was for enlightenment. Zarathushtra fervently asked the Lord thus:

"To Him I pray in-humble-adoration with hands-uplifted for the-Perfect-Bliss to (Thy) Holy Spirit, O Mazda, first-of-all; through deeds inspired- by-Asa (I pray) for all (knowledge), (and) for Wisdom of Vohu Mano (do I pray); thus I-shall-bring-solace to the Soul of Mother-Earth as well."

(The Religion of Zarathushtra; Dr. Irach J. Taraporewalla; Gatha Ahunavaiti; P-93)

As time passed, Zarathushtra's quest became more intense and he wanted answers to questions pertaining to the mysteries of Nature.

"This do I ask Thee, tell me truly, O Ahura: What-Being (is) the Creator, the first Father of Asa? What Being laid-down the path of the Sun and the Stars? Who (is it) through whom the Moon waxeth (and) waneth alternatively? This do-I-ask Thee, tell me truly O Ahura: What Being (holds) apart the Earth and even the Heavens also? Who (holds) apart the Waters and the Plants? Who imparts swiftness to the Wind and to the dark clouds? What-Being, O Mazda, (is) the Creator of Vohu Mano?"

('The Religion of Zarathushtra'; Dr.Irach J. Taraporewala;'Gatha Ushtavaiti' 'Yasna' 44.4; pgs. 211 and 212).

The Prophet's spiritual journey endorses the fact that Ahura Mazda can only be reached through worshipping the Ameshaspands and the Yazads and by living out the virtues they represent.

"When shall I see Thee, Asa, Lord of Truth? When wise in Love, shall I see Vohu Man? When shall I, guided by Sraosa's voice, Walk on the Path to Mighty Ahura? Thy sacred Word proclaiming may we e'er Convert with force of tongues those gone astray."

('The Religion of Zarathushtra'; Dr.Irach J. Taraporewala; free English rendering of 'Gatha Ahunavaiti'; 'Yasna' 28.5, p-97).

Zarathushtra wandered about in search of the Truth for ten, long years. One day, at the age of thirty, he came to the river Daiti. As he crossed it, his body submerged into the water - first upto his knees, then upto his waist, then upto the neck, but no further. After crossing over to the other side, he performed the Yasna or the Ijashne ritual. Soon a very brilliant and glowing entity made his appearance and asked him what he wanted. Zarathushtra expressed his desire to understand the "Truth". He informed him about all the questions that tormented his mind and said that his desire was to learn about the Nature and Will of the Supreme Being. The glowing entity was the divinity of the Good Mind, or Bahman Ameshaspand. The divinity of the Good Mind told Zarathushtra to close his eyes and then transported him to the Court of Ahura Mazda.

It must be noted that this is one of the instances where, for the purpose of communication, a divinity is personified. The basic credo of Zarathushtrianism is against personification of divinities, so, the coming of Vohu Mana also means, that the Prophet's Higher Mind was the receptacle of the Mazda bestowed enlightenment whereby he would receive a divine revelation.

There, the Holy Zarathushtra beheld the Lord Supreme, Whom he was seeking with his heart and soul. He saw Ahura Mazda flanked by other mighty divinities, the Amesha Spentas. Zarathushtra saw the Lord and His Luminaries as Perfect, and as an embodiment of Pure Celestial Light and Supreme incorruptible Purity. What the Prophet knew all along intuitively, through his in born divine stature, was now endorsed by the Wise Lord Himself. Ahura Mazda and the Holy Divinities were radically different from what people thought. They did not have an inscrutable and unpredictable will, and they certainly were not of a corruptable disposition or a harmful intent towards any of their Creations. Zarathushtra saw that Ahura Mazda was the All-Good and All-Wise Lord who only wished His Creations everything good- always!

"He requested Ahura Mazda to give him an understanding of the type of individual whom Ahura Mazda considered a righteous being. Ahura Mazda then revealed to Zarathushtra that he who was truthful, he whose charity made others happy, he who dealt justly with all, he who looked after the fire, water and animals with regard and reverence, and acted as their protector, was considered a righteous being in the world of men, and such a man could attain unto bliss immortal.

Zarathushtra was then commanded by Ahura Mazda to instil into the minds of the people the Divine Thought that in the world of men where, life is brief, those that act unrighteously find in the spiritual realm not happiness but grief, discontentness, and pain of mind, for such is the abode of their soul."

(The Life of Holy Zarathushtra; Framroze Rustomjee; page-33)"

- Excerpts from an article by Adil F. Rangoonwala,

Oct.-Dec. issue of Deen Parast magazine

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