Meaning of Zoroastrianism

What is Zoroastrianism:

Zoroastrianism, also known as Mazdaism, is the religion of the Persian state of the 6th century BC that has as its principle the existence of good and evil. Approximately in the 8th century AD it was replaced by Islam, with the fall of the Sassanid Empire.

See also, Islam.

Zoroastrianism is founded by the prophet Zoroaster and his teachings focused on the moral and spiritual nature of the human being, as well as the encounter between good and evil, with man having the freedom of moral choice between good and evil.

In this religion, good and evil is represented by Ahura Mazda, god of good, and Angra Mainyu as the god of evil. It is for this reason that individuals had to choose the path they wanted to follow since their actions could lead them to hell after their death.

Zoroastrianism is a monotheistic religion for its exclusive worship of Ahura Mazdawhich is equivalent to God for Christians, and dualistic by the existence of the constant struggle between good and evil.

See the article Monotheism.

For more information, see the Dualism article.

On the other hand, the Avesta It is the sacred book for Zoroastrianism and is made up of hymns and songs, the Gatha considered the most important book as it consists of 17 sacred songs represented by Zoroaster himself. The Gatha represent the relationships between Ahura Mazda and the six divine categories called the Amesha Spenta:

  • Vohu Manō: the good mind.
  • Asha Vahishta: the highest truth.
  • Kshathra Vairya: good choice.
  • Spenta Armaity: holy attitude.
  • Haurvatāt: complete state of well-being, physical and spiritual integrity.
  • Ameretāt: state of immortal happiness.
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Currently, in Iran (ancient Persian) a part of the population still practices Zoroastrianism, whose largest number of practitioners are Indians.

Characteristics of Zoroastrianism

  • The Faravahar or Farohar is the main symbol of the religion that represents the soul before its birth and after its death.
  • Fire is a symbol of great importance since the god of good is worshiped through sacred fire, held by the priests in the respective temples. For this reason, cremation is not allowed by believers of the religion.
  • The faithful of Zoroastrianism celebrate the marriage that takes place in the presence of fire as a symbol of great importance.
  • Zoroastrian believers believe in the resurrection of the dead and in the existence of a paradise, purgatory and hell, as spread by Christianity.
  • The emperors are the representatives of the god Mazda on earth to guarantee the subordination of the people to the head of the empire.

Zoroastrianism and Christianity

Zoroastrianism had a great influence on Christianity, Ahura Mazda the good god, aided by a figure similar to the creator God of the world; Angra Mainyu represents evil, equivalent to the devil, generator of destruction that inhabits an abominable place, called hell by Christians, where the dead leave as a result of their negative actions in the earthly world.

Also, both religions are identified with the guardian angels and also with the final judgment in which evil will be definitively defeated. On the other hand, Zoroastrianism also influenced other religions such as Judaism, Islam and Manichaeism.

For more information, see the article Christianity.

See Judaism.

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Also see the Manichaeism article.