History Main / Zoroastrianism

30th Mar '14 6:32:35 AM Jallen
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[[redirect:UsefulNotes/Zoroastrianism]][[redirect:UsefulNotes/{{Zoroastrianism}}]]
30th Mar '14 6:32:07 AM Jallen
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One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''', or '''Ormazd''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.

An interesting note is that the complex mythology of the religion, involving Ahura Mazda, the Amesha Spentas and ahuras[[note]][[Franchise/TolkiensLegendarium Tolkien]] fans: think of the Valar and Maiar[[/note]] and demonic ''daevas'' is an [[InvertedTrope inversion]] of HinduMythology and (to a lesser extent) NorseMythology; the ''ahuras'' are etymologically related to the [[BloodKnight Asuras and Aesir]], while the ''daevas'' are equivalent to the Hindu ''Devas'' (and related to the Norse god Tyr and various words relating to, um, ''divi''nity in the West.

The religion is usually considered the world's oldest revealed religion, centering its origins around a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1500 BC to c. 600 BC, though he most likely lived around 1000 BC. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. A heretic form of Zoroastrianism was also followed in UsefulNotes/Armenia before the kingdom converted to Christianity, with it's own native deities thrown in. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

Among their more interesting customs was the belief in the sacredness of earth, water, and most famously, fire. This led to the custom of keeping an eternal flame at Zoroastrian temples. This also led to the mistaken belief by outsiders that they actually worshiped fire rather then regarding it as a symbol of Ahura Mazda. But one of the stranger aspects of this was the custom of disposing of the dead by placing them in raised platforms ("Towers of Silence") for the birds to eat to avoid desecration of sacred elements.

Though now a small religion, Zoroastrians can be found in a number of places in the world. The largest groups in Asia are the Iranian Zoroastrians and the Parsees of India. Probably the best known Zoroastrian in the world was one Farrokh Bulsara, a British Parsee everyone knows as FreddieMercury.

to:

One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''', or '''Ormazd''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.

An interesting note is that the complex mythology of the religion, involving Ahura Mazda, the Amesha Spentas and ahuras[[note]][[Franchise/TolkiensLegendarium Tolkien]] fans: think of the Valar and Maiar[[/note]] and demonic ''daevas'' is an [[InvertedTrope inversion]] of HinduMythology and (to a lesser extent) NorseMythology; the ''ahuras'' are etymologically related to the [[BloodKnight Asuras and Aesir]], while the ''daevas'' are equivalent to the Hindu ''Devas'' (and related to the Norse god Tyr and various words relating to, um, ''divi''nity in the West.

The religion is usually considered the world's oldest revealed religion, centering its origins around a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1500 BC to c. 600 BC, though he most likely lived around 1000 BC. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. A heretic form of Zoroastrianism was also followed in UsefulNotes/Armenia before the kingdom converted to Christianity, with it's own native deities thrown in. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

Among their more interesting customs was the belief in the sacredness of earth, water, and most famously, fire. This led to the custom of keeping an eternal flame at Zoroastrian temples. This also led to the mistaken belief by outsiders that they actually worshiped fire rather then regarding it as a symbol of Ahura Mazda. But one of the stranger aspects of this was the custom of disposing of the dead by placing them in raised platforms ("Towers of Silence") for the birds to eat to avoid desecration of sacred elements.

Though now a small religion, Zoroastrians can be found in a number of places in the world. The largest groups in Asia are the Iranian Zoroastrians and the Parsees of India. Probably the best known Zoroastrian in the world was one Farrokh Bulsara, a British Parsee everyone knows as FreddieMercury.
[[redirect:UsefulNotes/Zoroastrianism]]
30th Mar '14 6:28:50 AM Jallen
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Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. A heretic form of Zoroastrianism was also followed in Armenia before the kingdom converted to Christianity, with it's own native deities thrown in. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

to:

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. A heretic form of Zoroastrianism was also followed in Armenia UsefulNotes/Armenia before the kingdom converted to Christianity, with it's own native deities thrown in. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.
11th Feb '14 11:52:55 PM Surenity
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Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

to:

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. A heretic form of Zoroastrianism was also followed in Armenia before the kingdom converted to Christianity, with it's own native deities thrown in. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.
21st Aug '13 12:44:44 PM karstovich2
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One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''', or '''Ormazd''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.

The religion was originated by a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1500 BC to c. 600 BC, though he most likely lived around 1000 BC. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.

to:

One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''', or '''Ormazd''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.

people.

An interesting note is that the complex mythology of the religion, involving Ahura Mazda, the Amesha Spentas and ahuras[[note]][[Franchise/TolkiensLegendarium Tolkien]] fans: think of the Valar and Maiar[[/note]] and demonic ''daevas'' is an [[InvertedTrope inversion]] of HinduMythology and (to a lesser extent) NorseMythology; the ''ahuras'' are etymologically related to the [[BloodKnight Asuras and Aesir]], while the ''daevas'' are equivalent to the Hindu ''Devas'' (and related to the Norse god Tyr and various words relating to, um, ''divi''nity in the West.

The religion was originated by is usually considered the world's oldest revealed religion, centering its origins around a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1500 BC to c. 600 BC, though he most likely lived around 1000 BC. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.
15th Mar '13 6:05:37 PM ElectorDark
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One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.

to:

One of the oldest religions in history and in Ancient times the only major religion in the Middle East other than Judaism and polytheism. Its doctrine centers around an eternal war between Good (represented by '''Ahura Mazda''') Mazda''', or '''Ormazd''') and Evil (represented by '''Angra Mainyu''', or '''Ahriman'''). The former can be roughly equated with {{God}} but the latter is definitely '''[[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial not]]''' {{Satan}}, since {{Satan}} is a [[FallenAngel rebel angel/spirit/former prosecutor]] fighting his own creator (beginning open rebellion around the time the Persians were running things, [[HijackedByJesus for some reason]]) - thus, FailureIsTheOnlyOption. Ahriman is Ahura Mazda's uncreated EvilCounterpart and thus an equal or near-equal GodOfEvil who actually has a shot at the title (though akin to {{Satan}}, [[EvilWillFail he will lose in the end anyway]]). Humans have free will, and they face their own personal version of the divine struggle, between Truth and the Lie. Based on one's actions in their struggle, they are either led to paradise (the word comes to us from Zoroastrianism) or hell. Interestingly, hell in Zoroastrianism is not eternal, but meant to reform people.
13th Sep '12 10:16:31 AM jomar
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The religion was originated by a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1000 BC to c. 600 BC, tending towards the earlier estimates. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.

to:

The religion was originated by a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1000 1500 BC to c. 600 BC, tending towards the earlier estimates.though he most likely lived around 1000 BC. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.
24th Aug '12 6:50:07 PM jomar
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The religion was originated by a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1000 BC to c. 600 BC, tending towards the earlier estimates. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible.

to:

The religion was originated by a prophet called Zarathustra (Anglicized to Zoroaster, via Greek Zoroastres). Historians aren't quite sure when he lived, with estimates ranging from c. 1000 BC to c. 600 BC, tending towards the earlier estimates. He is thought to have lived in what is now northern Afghanistan, though, again, historians are not quite sure. Zoroaster wrote the Gathas and seven of the Yasnas, parts of the text known as the ''Avesta'', which is analogous to Literature/TheBible.
Literature/TheBible. Incidentally, the ''Avesta'' gave its name to the language it was written in, an East Iranian tongue known to us as Avestan.
31st Jul '12 1:42:53 PM karstovich2
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Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews. Nonetheless several of them have fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

to:

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because they were so well established in their country, country and were monotheists, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews. Nonetheless several Jews; like the majority of the non-Muslim inhabitants of the Muslim empires, however, the Caliphate's tax policies (in which non-Muslims pay far higher taxes than Muslims) led to mass conversions in the centuries following the conquests (to the chagrin of the Caliphate, as they had to find alternative sources of revenue). Rather than convert, many of them have fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.
31st May '12 4:12:25 PM jatay3
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Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because of their well-established status in their country, and lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews. Nonetheless several of them have fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.

to:

Zoroastrianism was the national religion of the various pre-Islamic Persian dynasties. After the Islamic conquest of Persia they were sometimes regarded as "honorary people of the book" because of their well-established status they were so well established in their country, and they lived in a second class but tolerable status alongside Christians and Jews. Nonetheless several of them have fled to India where they remain today as the "Parsees". The Parsees were favored in the days of TheRaj and had something of a reputation as a ProudMerchantRace.
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