به نام خداوند بخشنده و مهربان

مراسم، اسطوره ها، افسانه ها، دعاها و آیینهای ایرانیان



به نام خداوند جان آفرین

Zoroastrian Rituals & Practices



Magi or Mogh (مغ) were priests in Zoroastrianism and the earlier religions of the western Iranians. The earliest known use of the word Magi is in the trilingual inscription written by Darius the Great, known as the Behistun Inscription. Old Persian texts, predating the Hellenistic period, refer to a magus as a Zurvanic, and presumably Zoroastrian, priest. The practoce of a practitioner of magic in ancient Persia would include astronomy/astrology, alchemy and other forms of esoteric knowledge

This association was in turn the product of the Hellenistic fascination for (Pseudo‑) Zoroaster, who was perceived by the Greeks to be the Chaldean founder of the Magi and inventor of both astrology and magic, a meaning that still survives in the modern-day words "magic" and "magician". Majūs or Magūs was originally a term meaning Zoroastrians (and specifically, Zoroastrian priests) in Arabic. It was a technical term, meaning magus, and like its synonym gabr (of uncertain etymology) originally had no pejorative implications. It is also translated as "fire worshipper".



Fire was holy to Zoroastrians. It was ranked according to its uses: that is, from the lesser fires of potters and goldsmiths, through cooking-fires and hearth-fires up to the three great eternal fires of Sasanian Persia. These fires were the Farnbag, the Gushnasp and the Burzen-Mihr flames, sacred respectively to the three classes of priests, warriors, and farmers. The Farnbag fire was at first located in Khwarism, but (according to tradition) removed to Kabulistan by Zoroaster's patron, King Vishpaspa; and relocated again, circa 500 A.D., by King Khosrow to the sanctuary of Kariyan in the Persian province of Fars. The Gushnasp fire was located in the city of Shiz. The Burzen-Mihr fire appears to be of dubious location.

There are also heavenly fires, fires that come from the sky, from meteorites, lightning, etc. there is fire that comes from the earth like molten fire, there is fire that comes from water like deep sea eruptions and fire that even comes from ice like the tip of volcanos.



Although the term "fire-worshippers" is primarily associated with Zoroastrians, the idea that Zoroastrians worship fire is originally from anti-Zoroastrian polemic. Instead, fire—even in a fire temple (the Zoroastrian terms are more prosaic and simply mean "house of fire") is considered to be an agent of purity and as a symbol of righteousness and truth. In the present day this is explained to be because fire burns ever-upward and cannot itself be polluted. Nonetheless, Sadeh and Chaharshanbe Suri are both fire-related festivals celebrated throughout Greater Iran and date back to when Zoroastrianism was still the predominant religion of the region.

In Zoroastrianism there are different angel-like figures. For example, each person has one guardian angel, called Fravashi. They patronize human beings and other creatures, and also manifest God’s energy. The Amesha Spentas have often been regarded as angels, although there is no direct reference to them conveying messages, but are rather emanations of Ahura Mazda (“Wise Lord”, God); they initially appeared in an abstract fashion and then later became personalized, associated with diverse aspects of the divine creation.

Zoroastrianism recognizes various classes of spiritual beings besides the Supreme Being (Ahura Mazda): The Amesha Spentas, Yazatas, and Fravashis. In practice (cf. Sad Dar, chapter 26), Zoroastrians pick a patron angel for their protection, and throughout their lives are careful to observe prayers dedicated to that angel.

Amesha Spentas (Phl. Amahraspandan) (“Archangels”) Literally, “Beneficent Immortals”, these are the highest spiritual beings created by Ahura Mazda. Their names are:

Vohu Mano (Phl. Vohuman): lit. Good Mind. Presides over cattle.
Asha Vahishta (Phl. Ardwahisht): lit. Highest Asha, the Amahraspand presiding over Asha and fire.
Khshathra Vairya (Phl. Shahrewar): lit. ‘Desirable Dominion’, the Amahraspand presiding over metals.
Spenta Armaiti (Phl. Spandarmad): lit. ‘Holy Devotion’, the Amahraspand presiding over the earth.
Haurvatat (Phl. Hordad): lit. ‘Perfection or Health’. Presides over water.
Ameretat (Phl. Amurdad): lit. ‘Immortality’, the Amahraspand presiding over the Earth.
Fravashis (Phl. Farohars) (“Guardian Angels”):


Also known as Arda Fravash (“Holy Guardian Angels”). Each person is accompanied by a guardian angel (Y26.4, 55.1), which acts as a guide throughout life. They originally patrolled the boundaries of the ramparts of heaven (Bd6.3, Zs5.2), but volunteer to descend to earth to stand by individuals to the end of their days. Ahura Mazda advises Zarathushtra to invoke them for help whenever he finds himself in danger (Yt13.19-20). If not for their guardianship, animals and people could not have continued to exist, because the wicked Druj would have destroyed them all (Yt13.12-13).

The Fravashi also serves as an ideal which the soul has to strive for and emulate, and ultimately becomes one with after death (Y16.7, 26.7, 26.11, 71.23, Yt22.39) (See Dhalla, History of Zoroastrianism, pg 232-243, 375-378).

They manifest the energy of God, and preserve order in the creation. They are said to fly like winged birds, and are represented by a winged disk, often with a person superimposed (as in the above representation).

Yazatas (Phl. Yazads) (“Angels”): Lit ‘adorable ones’, a created spiritual being, worthy of being honored or praised. Like the Amesha Spentas they personify abstract ideas and virtues, or concrete objects of nature. The Yazatas are ever trying to help people, and protect us from evil (cf. Dk3, ch. 66). See below for some specifics of the more important Yazatas.

LIST OF YAZATAS:

Aban:
See Aredvi Sura Anahita.
Ahurani:
Female Yazads presiding over water
Airyaman:
Yazad of friendship and healing. (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Akhshti:
Yazad personifying peace
Anaghra Raocha (Phl. Anagran):
Yazad of the 'endless light' (Var. Aneran)
Apam Napat:
Yazad of waters (Indo-Iranian in origin). aka Ahura Berezant (Phl. Burz Yazad)
Aredvi Sura Anahita:
lit. 'strong, immaculate Anahita', female Yazad personifying water. She resides in the starry regions (cf. Yt5.85, 88, 132). Her hymn is preserved in Yasht 5. Also known as Aban Yazad. (Var: Arduisur)
Arshtat (Phl. Ashtad):
Female Yazad personifying rectitude or justice
Ashi Vanghuhi (Phl. Ard):
lit. 'good blessings, rewards', female Yazad presiding over blessings (Var: 'Ashishwangh, Arshishwang')
Asman:
Yazad presiding over the sky.
Atar (Phl. Adar):
lit. fire; yazad presiding over fire. He is referred to as 'the Son of Ahura Mazda' in the Avesta. (Var: Pah. 'atash, atesh, adur', Av. 'Atar')
Chisti (or Chista):
Female Yazad personifying religious wisdom. Her name probably means 'Instruction'. Also known as Razishta Chista ('Most Upright Chista')
Daena (Phl Den):
Female Yazad presiding over the religion, also, Inner Self or Conscience.
Dahm (Phl.):
Yazad honored on the fourth day after death
Dahma Afriti (Dahman Afrin):
embodiment of power of benediction
Damoish Upamana:
Yazad personifying anathema
Drvaspa:
Female Yazad personifying cattle
Erethe:
Female Yazad personifying truth
Gaw (Phl.):
Yazad personifying cattle.
Geush Urvan (Phl. Goshorun):
lit. 'the soul of the cow (or settlement)'. Personification of animal life
Gowad:
See Vayu.
Haoma (Phl. Hom):
Yazad presiding over the haoma plant, which has medicinal and spiritual properties. (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Haptoiringa:
A star Yazad, associated with Ursa Major.
Havani (Phl. Hawan):
Yazad presiding over the second watch (gah) of each day (sunrise to midday, i.e., 12 noon).
Hvare-khshaeta (Phl. Khwarshed):
lit. 'the shining sun', the Yazad presiding over the Sun (var. Parsi Pers. Khorshed)
Khwarenah (Phl. khwarrah, farrah):
Yazad presiding over Divine Grace or Fortune.
Maonghah (Phl Mah):
Yazad presiding over the Moon.
Manthra Spenta (Phl. Mahraspand):
lit. 'Holy Word', Yazad who embodies the Holy Word
Mithra (Phl. Mihr):
Yazad presiding over the contract, personification of light. (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Nairyosangha (Phl. Neryosang):
Yazad who acts as messenger of Ahura Mazda, associated with prayer. (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Paoiryaenis:
Star Yazad associated with the Pleiades.
Parendi:
Female Yazad of 'Abundance' or 'Plenitude'. (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Paurwanya:
Star Yazad associated with a constellation of uncertain identity.
Raman (Phl. Ram):
Yazad presiding over Joy or Felicity
Rapithwin:
Yazad presiding over the period of the day (gah) from noon to mid-afternoon
Rasanstat:
Female Yazad personifying truth
Rashnu (Phl. Rashn):
Yazad of Justice
Rata:
Female Yazad (Indo-Iranian in origin) personifying charity
Satavaesa:
A star Yazad, perhaps of Fomalhaut
Sraosha (Phl. Srosh):
lit. 'Hearkening'; a spirit being who guards the soul for three days after death
Tishtrya (Phl. Tishtar, Tir):
Yazad presiding over the star Sirius. Tishtrya also directs the rain.
Tishtryaeinis:
Star Yazad associated with Canis Minor.
Upa-paoiri:
41 Arietis
Ushah:
Female Yazad of the dawn (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Ushahin:
Yazad presiding over the first watch (gah) of each day (from midnight to daybreak).
Uzerin:
Yazad presiding over the fourth watch (gah) of each day (from 3 p.m. to sunset).
Vanant:
Star Yazad, associated with Vega.
Vayu (Phl. Wad):
Yazad personifying the wind or atmosphere (Var. Gowad, Govad) (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Verethraghna (Phl. Warharan):
lit. 'victory', Yazad personifying victory (Var: Pers. Bahram, Behram.) (Indo-Iranian in origin)
Visya:
Yazad associated with the settlement, invoked along with Savanghi
Zamyat (Zam):
Female Yazad presiding over the earth
Zantuma:
Yazad presiding over the tribe.

Other spiritual beings, not classified with the above:

Thwasha:
Personification of 'Infinite Space'
Zrvan Akarana:
Personification of 'Boundless Time'


موبد موبدان غیر از آنچه دربارهٔ مسائل دینی و هدایت معنوی تعلیمات لازم را معمول می‌داشتند، عزل و نصب پادشاه را نیز در دست داشته و چنانچه پادشاهی طبق تعالیم روحانی اعظم، رفتار نمی‌کرد، نالایق به‌شمار می‌رفت و بوسیلهٔ موبدان عزل می‌شد

انتخاب پادشاه، مخصوص عالی‌ترین نمایندگان طبقات روحانی و سپاهیان و دبیران بود و در صورت اختلاف میان آنان منحصر به موبد موبدان می‌شد. در نامه تنسر در این باره مطالبی آمده‌است

تعریف کلی تاریخ از مغان این است که آنان را طابفه ای از مادها می دانند که عهده دار وظایف آیینی بودند. این طایفه در دوره هخامنشی نیز بر امور آیینی نظارت می کردند اما نه با اختیار تو اقتدار دوره مادها. طی حکومت سلوکیان و اشکانیان، دیگر کمتر نامی از مغان می بینیم و در دوره ساسانیان، با وجود قدرت یافتن طبقه روحانیون، مغان را در پایین ترین درجه می یابیم

این نادیده گرفتن شاید دلیل بر گفتار گروهی از علمای دینی صدر اسلام باشد که مغان را جدا از روحانیون زرتشتی و در واقع پیروان مهر یا میترا می دانستند. با ورود اسلام به ایران، مغان با واژه «مجوس» شناخته شدند؛ نامی که در انگلیسی به صورت »مگوس» (Magus) ریشه واژه جادو (Magic) شد

دانش مغان در اخترگویی و آشنایی آنان با گیاهان دارویی و چگونگی مداوای بیماران، در کنار آشنایی آنان با اصول و تعالیم آیینی، این گروه و وابستگان آنها را آشنا به علوم خفیه و جادو معرفی می کرد؛ باوری که بعدها در میان غربیان فراگیر شد

در تاریخ ادیان، مغان و مکاشفان و رمزهای نهانی معرفی می شدند؛ کسانی که بادر بودند با دانش و علم مختص به خودشان، شرایط مطلوب برای خویش و آنانی را که خواهانش باشند فراهم آورند. در بسیاری از کتب حاشیه ای ادیانی همچون یهودیت و مسیحیت، مغان، «جادوگران سپیدی» هستند که با نیروهای فعال در عناصر طبیعت که برای دیگران ناشناخته است، آشنایند

در روزگار باستان، مغان همواره نقش مشاوران شاه و بلاگردانان جامعه را ایفا می کردند. به باور عمومی، سخن و دانش های کهن آنان بود که سختی ها و مصائب را از مردمان دور می کرد. با شیوع دین محوری در غرب و ورود عناصر یهودی به مسیحیت، هر چند خود آنان مفهوم جادوگری را به کتاب مقدس (عهد عتیق) کشاندند و مطالبی را به عنوان اسرار کتاب مقدس در زمینه جادوگری مطرح کردند، اما مغان و جادوگران را در یک طبقه قرار دادند

در قرون وسطی بسیاری از کسانی را که در علوم خفیه و دانش های نهانی تحقیق می کردند به نام «مغ» خواندند. این دست مذهبیان مسیحی هر چند آیین و باورهای مغان را محکوم کردند، اما آن دانش و معرفتی را که در واقع مغان را در نظر آنان تبدیل به جادوگران کرده بود، به نفع خود و به تدریج تصاحب کردند و راویان حکمت و عرفان و فلسفه در دوران رنسانس شدند



HOMA

The Huma (Persian: هما‎, pronounced Homā, Avestan: Homāio), also Homa, is a mythical bird of Iranian legends and fables similar to griffin, and continuing as a common motif in Sufi and diwan poetry. Although there are many legends of the creature, common to all is that the bird is said never to alight on the ground, and instead to live its entire life flying invisibly high above the earth. The Huma bird is said to never come to rest, living its entire life flying invisibly high above the earth, and never alighting on the ground (in some legends it is said to have no legs).

Huma is considered to be compassionate, and a 'bird of fortune' since its shadow (or touch) is said to be auspicious. In Sufi tradition, catching the Huma is beyond even the wildest imagination, but catching a glimpse of it or even a shadow of it is sure to make one happy for the rest of his/her life. It is also believed that Huma cannot be caught alive, and the person killing a Huma will die in forty days.

In Attar of Nishapur's allegorical masterpiece The Conference of the Birds, an eminent example of Sufi works in Persian literature, the Huma bird is portrayed as a pupil that refuses to undertake a journey because such an undertaking would compromise the privilege of bestowing kingship on those whom it flew over. In Iranian literature, this kingship-bestowing function of the Huma bird is identified with pre-Islamic monarchs, the kingship-bestowing function of the Huma bird reappear in Indian stories of the Mughal era, in which the shadow (or the alighting) of the Huma bird on a person's head or shoulder were said to bestow (or foretell) kingship. Accordingly, the feathers decorating the turbans of kings were said to be plumage of the Huma bird.





LION & BULL

The bull is the most common animal found on top of Persian columns at Persepolis, but there are also lions, bulls with the head of a man in the style of the Assyrian lamassu, and griffins with the heads of eagles and the bodies of lions. The bulls and lions may reflect the symbolism around Nowruz, the Persian New Year at the spring equinox, of an eternally fighting bull personifying the moon, and a lion personifying the Sun. This was the day when tributary nations presented their annual tribute to the king, as depicted in the stairway reliefs at Persepolis, and it has been suggested that Persepolis was specifically built for Nowruz celebrations.



LAMASSU

Lamassu is a Sumerian protective deity. Initially depicted as a female deity in Sumerian times, when it was called Lamma, it was later depicted from Assyrian times as a hybrid of a human, bird, and either a bull or lion—specifically having a human head, the body of a bull or a lion, and bird wings, under the name Lamassu.

The lamassu is a celestial being from ancient Mesopotamian religion bearing a human head, bull's body, sometimes with the horns and the ears of a bull, and wings. It appears frequently in Mesopotamian art. The lamassu and shedu were household protective spirits of the common Babylonian people, becoming associated later as royal protectors, and were placed as sentinels at entrances. The Akkadians associated the god Papsukkal with a lamassu and the god Išum with shedu.

To protect houses, the lamassu were engraved in clay tablets, which were then buried under the door's threshold. They were often placed as a pair at the entrance of palaces. At the entrance of cities, they were sculpted in colossal size, and placed as a pair, one at each side of the door of the city, that generally had doors in the surrounding wall, each one looking towards one of the cardinal points.

The ancient Jewish people were influenced by the iconography of Assyrian culture. The prophet Ezekiel wrote about a fantastic being made up of aspects of a human being, a lion, an eagle and a bull. Later, in the early Christian period, the four Gospels were ascribed to each of these components. When it was depicted in art, this image was called the Tetramorph.



CHAMROSH

Chamrosh is the archetype of all birds, said to rule and protect Persia. According to the Avesta, Persia is pillaged every three years by outsiders, and when this happens, the angel Burj sends Chamrosh out to protect Iran & Iranians. Chamrosh is said to live on the summit of Mount Alborz. Chamrosh is described as having the body of a dog with the head and wings of an eagle. It is a protective entity who defends Persians against outside invaders, especially raiders, swooping down upon them and carrying them off.



PARI

The Pari's are tiny, lovely, winged creatures – neither good nor evil – who enjoy playing pranks on people but can also be helpful. They were thought to be spirits imprisoned in the fairy-form to atone for a past sin or sins but were not considered immortal and were certainly not human souls. According to Zoroastrian beliefs, the Pari's seem to have been originally regarded as fallen angels who were denied entry into Paradise until they’ve done penance.

A Pari might bring a message from the God or, alternately, trick someone into believing some untruth or an outright lie. They largely appear in folklore as pranksters who hide objects or misdirect, and their most popular antics would be the ancient Persian equivalent of hiding a person’s car keys. They were later elevated to benevolent spirits by the Muslims and served the same purpose as angels in bringing messages from the divine. These spirits were physically beautiful, and often depicted with wings.

The generic name for the home of the Pari's was Pari-istan, sometimes associated with the Kooh-e-Qaf, either a single magical mountain at the farthest point of the world, or a mountain range surrounding the known world. The Pari's are in a state of constant enmity with the deevs (described below) which are devils who would lock the Pari's in iron cages because they refused to commit to evil. Pari's eat perfume, which repels the deevs.



WINGED UNICORNS

Often considered the most wondrous of all mythical creatures, the unicorn is also a symbol of magic, miracles, and enchantment. The magical and enchanting unicorn appears to only a rare few and has the ability to bestow magic, miracles and wisdom to those who are pure of heart and virtuous in their deeds. A winged unicorn (or flying unicorn) is a fictional ungulate, typically portrayed as a horse, with wings like Pegasus and the horn of a unicorn representing light.



WINGED LION

The winged lion is a mythological creature and celestial being that resembles a lion with bird-like wings. The winged lion is found in various forms especially in Ancient and Medieval civilizations. The winged lion is a symbol of peace. The Gate of Xerxes at Perespolis shows that the Winged Lion was placed at the corner of one entrance. When you stood in front of the gate you saw a lion with four legs and when you were inside the gate you saw a lion with four legs. They are seen at the opening of cities, so that everyone who enters sees them. This was intentionally done to make it seem powerful and were used as a symbol of power.



SIMURGH

Simurgh is a benevolent, mythical bird in Iranian mythology and literature. It is sometimes equated with other mythological birds such as a "phoenix" (Persian: ققنوس‎ quqnūs). The figure can be found in all periods of Iranian art and literature and is also evident in the iconography of Georgia, medieval Armenia, the Eastern Roman Empire, and other regions that were within the realm of Persian cultural influence.

The phrase sī-murğ (سی مرغ) means "thirty birds" in Persian, it is depicted in Iranian art as a winged creature in the shape of a bird, gigantic enough to carry off an elephant or a whale. It appears as a peacock with the head of a dog and the claws of a lion – sometimes, however, also with a human face. The simurgh is inherently benevolent and unambiguously female. Being part mammal, she suckles her young. The simurgh has teeth. It has an enmity towards snakes, and its natural habitat is a place with plenty of water. Its feathers are said to be the colour of copper, and though it was originally described as being a dog-bird, later it was shown with either the head of a man or a dog.

Iranian legends consider the bird so old that it had seen the destruction of the world three times over. The simurgh learned so much by living so long that it is thought to possess the knowledge of all the ages. In one legend, the simurgh was said to live 1,700 years before plunging itself into flames (much like the phoenix).

The simurgh was considered to purify the land and waters and hence bestow fertility. The creature represented the union between the Earth and the sky, serving as mediator and messenger between the two. The simurgh roosted in Gaokerena, the Hōm (Avestan: Haoma) Tree of Life, which stands in the middle of the world sea (Vourukasha). The plant is potent medicine and is called all-healing, and the seeds of all plants are deposited on it. When the simurgh took flight, the leaves of the tree of life shook, making all the seeds of every plant fall out. These seeds floated around the world on the winds of Vayu-Vata and the rains of Tishtrya, in cosmology taking root to become every type of plant that ever lived and curing all the illnesses of mankind.

The Simurgh made its most famous appearance in Ferdowsi's epic Shahnameh (Book of Kings) and is believed to be able to rise from the ashes and cyclically regenerate or otherwise be born again. It is associated with fire and the sun and rises from the ashes.



TAVOOS

The symbol of Persian/Iranian monarchy. This symbolism originates from the Peacock Throne, a famous golden throne taken from India by the Persians in 1739. Of course, the Peacock is one of the most culturally significant birds in Iranian culture; it appears in art and poetry from the Medieval period onwards with great regularity.

One example of a Persian community who worshipped the peacock were the Yezidis, who inhabit the Armenia,Kurdistan and Caucasus mountains. The Yezidis worshipped Malik-e-Taus, a redeem devil in the semblance of the peacock. Yazidi accounts of creation differ from those of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Translated in English as Peacock Angel, it is one of the central figures of Yazidi religion. In Yazidi creation stories, God created the world and entrusted it to the care of seven Holy Beings, often known as Angels or heft sirr ('the Seven Mysteries'), preeminent of which is Tawûsê Melek, the Peacock Angel. Tawûsê Melek is not a source of evil or wickedness. They consider him to be the leader of the archangels. When God gave life to Adam from his own breath and instructed all archangels to bow to Adam. The archangels obeyed, except for Tawûsê Melek which refused to bow down to Adam and Eve not because it disobeyed God's orders but because it wanted to pass the test and could not bow down in front of anything other than God.

In answer to God, Tawûsê Melek replied, How can I submit to another being! I am from your illumination while Adam is made of dust. Then God praised him and made him the leader of all angels and his deputy on the Earth.