Who deserves to be taught the Zarathushtrian
Which organizations deserve to receive the
Zarathushtrian teachings and which do not?
Are there any persons or organizations that
should not be offered the teachings of Zarathushtra?
If given organizations are perceived as
evil, should one stay away and not teach to them the Zarathushtrian
message? Can a Zarathushtrian meet with them?
If meeting certain people affects my image …
even in that case, should I meet them to teach the good religion?
Who chooses the person or organization that
can have access to the Good Religion?
…By the way…
What is evil?
How should I react before a different
opinion if that opinion comes from a Zarathushtrian person and I think
the person is very wrong?
right…He/She is very wrong… How do I teach what is right? By being
serene and understanding, or by being offensive?
Lately I have
dedicated my life and efforts to propagate the teachings of Zarathushtra
in an environment that is completely different to the environment in the
place in which Zarathushtrianism was born. This has been a unique
experience and I thank Ahura Mazda because both the experience and having
a wonderful family have made my life valuable.
The treasure of
knowledge that I am given by the writings of Zarathushtra has opened the
door to a new dimension of understanding and love for my companions on
this beautiful planet. I have learned that hate should not have a place in
my heart under any condition. If it tries to enter my life, I have the
power to expel it. Such a power is inside me: It is the power of Good Mind
(Vohumana), Serenity (Aramaity) and Righteousness.
did not just speak of a message. Rather, his own actions, conduct and
behavior provided the greatest message. In this same way, with our
actions, we can give our messages. Thus, we may teach more people through
our behavior than by reading the Gathas to them. Our behavior is sometimes
the most powerful motivation that leads people to be curious and take up
reading the message.
According to my
own vivid experience in Venezuela, a person does not become a
Zarathushtrian instantly. Of course not…! And I do not think anybody does!
I think that to become a Zarathushtrian is a life-long commitement. What
often happens is that we decide to become Zarathushtrians, and then our
“training” takes all the years of our lives.
So, how do we
choose the person who can become a Zarathushtrian?
I personally do not choose anybody. My
belief is that no one chooses anyone. For me, everybody is born with
freedom of choice. Regardless of what they believe, in all cases I love my
parents, my family and my friends just the same. Every person has the
right to choose his own thinking. This reminds me of a passage in the
“…each man and woman, for his or herself, selects either of
the two principles.” (Song 3.2)
hypothetically the world were divided in two: Zarathushtrians and non-
Zarathushtrians (or Righteous and Not-Righteous). Even in this case,
Zarathustra would alert us so,
“...I, whom the Wise Lord knows, come to you all as the
leader of the two parties, so that we may all live in accordance with
(Song 4. 2)
state with clarity the condition of free-will as established since the
beginning of creation:
"O Wise One, at the beginning, You, through Your mind,
fashioned for us the living world, conceptions and intellects, put life in
the physical frame, and gave deeds and words, so that one makes his choice
through free will".
if not elsewhere as well, the foundation for the propagation of
Zarathushtrianism is being built on respect for the freedom of choice of
Venezuelans. Based on this freedom, the traditions, the culture, the
values, the customs, the beliefs and the feelings of every person are
treated well and with respect. Zarathushtrian values should never be
imposed on a people or persons because these values are cultivated
internally by the individual. Without this internal cultivation, a person
would immediately reject the imposition. Externally, we can only give
guidance to a person. This is the reason that made Zarathushtra say these
words to Ahura Mazda:
"... Do enlighten my inner-self with this doctrine".
The person who
is propagating the seeds of Zarathushtrianism will find different types of
people, different profiles. He/She should be ready to plant the seeds
under favorable conditions and also with adverse conditions. Planting the
seeds should be a natural process instead of an aggressive one. The seeds
of propagation lie in our words and actions. If our external behavior, our
words and actions, are wise; some seeds will find a place in the mind of
the people surrounding us.
To respect other religions and doctrines, I
will not mention their names in this writing. But let’s say that one of
our friends belongs to another religious group. What do we do to encourage
his/her interest in Zarathushtrianism? Well, the first thing is to act
righteously (Asha), with a good mind (Vohumana) and with serenity (Aramaity),
and of course reflecting radiant happiness. With these ingredients taught
by Zarathushtra as necessary for our mission, people will have an open
mind and open hearts to listen to what we have to say. Let’s see how God
considers a good mind and serenity give people their freedom of choice,
and give us a simple formula for propagation:
“… Serenity is Yours, … wisdom of mind is Yours, which has
given the world the choice (freedom of choice) to go either to a settled
person, or to the one who is not”.
(Song, 4. 9)
It is necessary
to first accomplish an inner-propagation. By cultivating Zarathushtrian
seeds with success within ourselves; then only after that can we move on
to propagating the message to others. Once we realize and respect the laws
that govern the universe, then we can learn to transmit our insight to
others by using the right means (good communication, for example). It is
in the Gathas, and it is not a strategy we need to invent:
“Lord, one who listens and realizes the truth, becomes a
life-healing wise person. He controls his tongue to express the right
words when he wills. He, O Wise One, through Your radiant light, proves
good to both parties”.
Thus, from song
4.9, we may infer that we realize the truth ourselves first, and then we
can heal other people’s lives, using good and gentle words, and without
In the message
of Zarathushtra, we can find a plan for the propagation of the good
conscience, and also the means to accomplish the plan are shown. This is
revealed by the Gathas in a beautiful stanza:
“Indeed, Wise One, this reward is given to those, who,
in their choice of physical life, truly serve the community of the
fruitful world with their deeds of good mind, and God, promote Your plan
of wisdom through communal righteousness”. (Song 7.14)
The stanza can
be complemented by another stanza that explains the means for promotion:
“Wise God, You grant good to both these parties through the
progressive mentality by means of fire -- light, warmth and energy --
because with the growth of serenity and righteousness, it shall convert
many a seeker”. (Song 12.6)
There is more
information about the means of promotion in the following stanzas, where
the three principles of good mind, serenity and righteousness are
“The person of good intellect says that the deeds of good
mind must be maintained. He knows that progressive serenity is the true
product of righteousness. All these, Lord Wise, are means of promotion in
Your dominion”. (Song 7.10)
“The person who belongs to progressive serenity,
promotes Righteousness with his intellect, words, deeds, and conscience”.
It has been
asked: To whom should the propagation of Zarathushtrianism be addressed?
And… how should it be done? At least in Venezuela, we just simply follow
the teachings of Zarathushtra himself on how to promote the message.
However, the mission is not easy because
many obstacles are found. Among obstacles are:
A lack of literature in Spanish
A lack of time dedicated to propagation by
the first missionaries.
The fear of people to change, and
The absence of an adequate infrastructure.
When I get to
the matter of obstacles, I always remember what Ahura Mazda told
Zarathushtra, and it is just as if I were hearing it from ancient times:
“I realized You, God Wise, to be progressive when I was
encircled by it through good mind, and when I first learned from Your
words that it would be difficult for me to teach people the devotion to
practice what You told me is the best”. (Song 8. 11)
obstacles, as Zarathushtrians we have a responsibility for rehabilitating
the world, for rescuing the world from wrong dimensions. This is the
justification for our work in the promotion of the message.
It is necessary
to stress that violent behaviors and polemical discussions will lead
nowhere in our promotion of the good conscience. No one will listen to the
message if we try to deliver information in an aggressive way. It is
amazing to see how Zarathushtra also warns us on this delicate point:
“Put down fury, check violence, you who wish to
strengthen the promotion of good mind through righteousness, because a
progressive man is associated with this…”. (Song 13.7)
we do not look at the name of people or the name of their former
organizations. Instead, we start to promote the Good Conscience. We look
at the people as human beings, and we look at the human side of
organizations. We look at the people in their organizations, and we look
at their eyes, hug them and call them friends. When this authentic
friendship is established among us, then we introduce our friends to
another fine friend: “Zarathushtra”.
We do not look
at another’s traditions, cultures, values, and beliefs as obstacles. We
look at a person’s infinite potential to become great Zarathushtrians and
universal citizens in a lifetime.
experience has tried to use the model or plan formulated in the Gathas. We
have a small, solid and growing community, which is expanding in several
states. We have social and academic programs that are modest in comparison
to the needs of our entire society. A few children and some old people are
given help and assistance to get food, medicine or toys. Some young people
are granted scholarships to attend school. Some people are studying
Zarathushtrian values at academic levels. Surely, in the future, our
dreams of building a more ideal society will come true. At least, we are
going to give a try to participating in God’s Plans. Perhaps some day we
will even have a Venezuelan Fire Temple, a place where Venezuelans, Latin
Americans, and people from everywhere and without distinctions of cultures
or traditions, will meet. Another of our dreams is to have a solid
educational institution where we can teach the universal values of the
doctrine of wisdom. As stated in the Gathas:
“Let those, who have joined You in action, assemble to
hear You, because You are the Lord of true speech with words of good mind.
Of these words, Wise One, You are the foremost promulgator”. (Song 16.
By the way … whoever is evil, he/she still
has the potential to become a Zarathushtrian…! This statement was not
formulated by Venezuelans, it was the very Zarathushtra who said:
“Mazda, they shall be taught how to deliver the wrong
into the hands of righteousness”. (Y 3.8)
Appeared in the Winter 2002 issue of the FEZANA journal under the overall
heading “Zarathushtrian Education: Zarathushtra’s vision in a life time’s
learning”, guest edited by Dr. Mehrborzin Soroushian, and Dr. Natalie