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Dadestan-i Denig ('Religious Decisions')

This digital edition copyright © 1996 by Joseph H. Peterson. If you find texts in this archive useful, please do not copy except for private study ("fair use"). Comments in [] added by JHP, mainly to facilitate searches. Original page numbers appear like this: [4]. All pages have anchor tags and so can be cited like this: http://www.avesta.org/mp/dd.htm#p4.

Punctuation and spelling have also been normalized to conform with other texts in this series.

Translated by E. W. West, from Sacred Books of the East, volume 18, Oxford University Press, 1882.

Concerning this text, Dastur Firoze M. Kotwal and James Boyd (in their 1982 book A Guide to the Zoroastrian Religion) write,

"a Pahlavi work of the ninth century A.C. which contains answers given by Dastur Manushchihr i Goshnajaman of Pars and Kerman, Iran, to 92 queries put to him by his co-religionists."

Please let me know if you find any typos, or have suggestions for improving this e-text or web site. Thanks. -JHP.


Chapter 1. Introductory
Chapter 2. Why a righteous man is better than all creatures, spiritual or worldly
Chapter 3. Why a righteous man is created, and how he should act
Chapter 4. Why a righteous man is great
Chapter 5. How temporal distress is to be regarded
Chapter 6. Why the good suffer more than the bad in this world
Chapter 7. Why we are created, and what we ought to do
Chapter 8. Whether good works done for the dead differ in effect from those ordered or done by themselves
Chapter 9. How far they differ
Chapter 10. The growth of good works during life
Chapter 11. Whether the growth of a good work be as commendable as the original good work
Chapter 12. Whether it eradicates sin equally well
Chapter 13. Whether one is made responsible for all his sins and good works separately at the last account, or only for their balance
Chapter 14. The angels who take account of sin and good works, and how sinners are punished
Chapter 15. The exposure of a corpse does not occasion the final departure of life, and is meritorious
Chapter 16. Whether the soul be aware of, or disturbed by, the corpse being gnawed
Chapter 17. Reasons for the exposure of corpses
Chapter 18. How the corpse and bones are to be disposed of
Chapter 19. Whether departed souls can see Ohrmazd and Ahriman
Chapter 20. Where the souls of the righteous and wicked go
Chapter 21. The Daitih peak, the Chinwad bridge, and the two paths of departed souls
Chapter 22. Whether the spirits are distressed when a righteous man dies
Chapter 23. How the life departs from the body
Chapter 24. Where a righteous soul stays for the first three nights after death, and what it does next
Chapter 25. Where a wicked soul stays for the first three nights after death, and what it does next
Chapter 26. The nature of heaven and its pleasures
Chapter 27. The nature of hell and its punishments
Chapter 28. Why ceremonies in honor of Srosh are performed for the three days after a death
Chapter 29. Why Srosh must be reverenced separately from other angels
Chapter 30. Why three sacred cakes are consecrated at dawn after the third night from a death
Chapter 31. How a righteous soul goes to heaven, and what it finds and does there
Chapter 32. How a wicked soul goes to hell, and what it finds and suffers there
Chapter 33. The position and subdivisions of hell
Chapter 34. The two ways from the Daitih peak; that of the righteous to heaven, and that of the wicked to hell
Chapter 35. The continuance of mankind in the world till the resurrection
Chapter 36. The preparers of the renovation of the universe
Chapter 37. The contest of the good and evil spirits from the creation till the resurrection, and the condition of creation after the resurrection, with references to Christianity and Judaism
Chapter 38. The effect of doing more good works than are necessary for attaining to the supreme heaven
Chapter 39. Reasons for wearing the sacred thread girdle [kusti]
Chapter 40. On the sacred shirt [sudre] and thread-girdle, grace before and after eating, and cleansing the mouth before the after-grace
Chapter 41. The sin of apostasy, and how to atone for it
Chapter 42. The good works of him who saves others from apostasy
Chapter 43. The distance at which the fire can be addressed, the use of a lamp, and the proper order of the propitiatory dedications, when consecrating a sacred cake [dron]
Chapter 44. Whether a skillful priest who is employed to perform ceremonies, but is not officially the priest of the district, should be paid a regular stipend
Chapter 45. The separate duties of priests and disciples
Chapter 46. When a priest can abandon the priesthood to obtain a livelihood
Chapter 47. Whether a priest who knows the Avesta, or one who understands the commentary, be more entitled to the foremost place at a sacred feast
Chapter 48. The advantage and proper mode of celebrating the ceremonial
Chapter 49. Whether it be lawful to buy corn and keep it long, so as to raise the price for the sake of profit
Chapter 50. Whether it be lawful to sell wine to foreigners and infidels
Chapter 51. The sin of drunkenness, and what constitutes immoderate drinking
Chapter 52. Whether a man who bargains to deliver wheat in a month, and takes a deposit, is bound to deliver the wheat if its market-price has risen enormously
Chapter 53. Whether it be lawful to sell cattle to those of a different religion
Chapter 54. Whether a man without a son can give away his property to one daughter on his death-bed; the laws of inheritance, and when an adopted son must be appointed, in such a case
Chapter 55. Whose duty it is to order the ceremonies after a death
Chapter 56. The laws of adoption and family-guardianship
Chapter 57. Those who are fit, or unfit, for adoption
Chapter 58. The three kinds of adoption
Chapter 59. The least amount of property that requites the appointment of an adopted son
Chapter 60. The sin of not appointing an adopted son, or of appointing a dishonest one
Chapter 61. The merit and demerit of family-guardianship
Chapter 62. The laws of inheritance
Chapter 63. Whether it be lawful to seize property from foreigners and infidels
Chapter 64. The origin of Gayomard, Mashye, and Mashyane
Chapter 65. The origin of next-of-kin marriage
Chapter 66. Regarding the cost of religious rites, and whether a priest's fees can be reduced when others will take less
Chapter 67. The cause of the rainbow
Chapter 68. The cause of the phases of the moon
Chapter 69. The cause of eclipses
Chapter 70. The causes of river-beds
Chapter 71. What things happen through destiny, and what through exertion
Chapter 72. The seven heinous sinners, and the necessity of avoiding him who commits unnatural intercourse
Chapter 73. Whether the stench of such intercourse reaches the sky
Chapter 74. Whether that stench disturbs the archangels
Chapter 75. Whether the angels raise such a sinner from the dead at the resurrection
Chapter 76. Whether it be a good work to kill such a sinner
Chapter 77. Why such intercourse is a heinous sin
Chapter 78. Why adultery is heinous, and how one can atone for it
Chapter 79. The sin of not repeating the full grace before drinking (when one is able to do so), and how one can atone for it
Chapter 80. Regarding him who does not order ceremonies
Chapter 81. About the ceremonies for the living soul
Chapter 82. About him who pays for ceremonies and him who takes the money without performing them
Chapter 83. Whether a priest must undertake all religious rites
Chapter 84. Whether gifts to the priesthood for ceremonies can be diminished or increased
Chapter 85. The advantages of increasing such gifts
Chapter 86. The harm of diminishing such gifts
Chapter 87. Why it is good to give such gifts
Chapter 88. About the cost of religious rites in Pars
Chapter 89. Whether when a man has once resolved to go into Pars, with gifts for the priesthood, it be lawful for him to send another man with the gifts
Chapter 90. The seven immortal rulers in the region of Xwaniratha before the coming of the good religion
Chapter 91. The nature and material of the sky
Chapter 92. The course and benefit of the water of Aredvisur
Chapter 93. Tishtar's seizing of water from the ocean to rain it upon the earth, and his conflict with Apaosh
Chapter 94. Conclusion


Dadestan-i Denig

Some chapters of the inquiries which Mitro-khurshed, son of Aturo-mahan,1 and others of the good religion made of the glorified (anoshako-ruban) Manuschihar,2 son of Yudan-Yim, and the replies given by him in explanation.

1. The name Âtûr-mâhân occurs in a Pahlavi inscription, dated A.Y. 378 (A.D. 1009), in one of the Kanherl caves, near Bombay (see Indian Antiquary, vol. ix, pp. 266, 267), and Adharmâh is mentioned in Hoffmann's Auszüge aus syrischen Akten persischer Mârtyrer (Leipzig, 1880), p. 203; so that this name must have been commonly used by Parsis in former times, though unknown now.
2. He calls himself pontiff and director of the priests of Pars and Kerman in A.Y. 250=A.D. 881, and was therefore, the leader of the religion (see Chaps. XLV, 5, XCIV, 13, and Ep, III, 21). Besides these titles of pêshûpâi, 'leader,' farmâdâr, 'director,' and rad, 'pontiff or executive high-priest,' he is also called aêrpat khûdâi, 'priestly lordship,' in the heading to Ep. III, and has the general title aerpat, 'priest,' in those of Ep. I and II. The reading of the name of his father, Yudan-Yim (Pers. Juvân-Jam, 'the youthful Jamshed '), is merely a guess; the Parsis read either Gôshna-jam or Jôdân-dam; and, perhaps, Gûshna-dam, 'breathing virility,' is a likely alternative reading.


0. Through the name and power and assistance of the creator Ohrmazd and all good beings, all the heavenly and earthly angels, and every creature and creation that Ohrmazd set going for his own angels and all pertaining to the celestial spheres.

[4] 1. To those of the good religion, who are these inquirers owing to devout force of demeanor and strength of character, the type of wisdom and standard of ability — and of whom, moreover, the questions, seeking wisdom, contemplating good works, and investigating religion, are specified the blessing and reply of Manuschihar, son of Yudan-Yim, are these: — 2. That is, forasmuch as with full affection, great dignity, and grandeur you have blessed me in this inquiring epistle,1 so much as you have blessed, and just as you have blessed, with full measure and perfect profusion, may it happen fully likewise unto you, in the first place, and to your connections, separately for yourselves and dependents; may it come upon you for a long period, and may it be connected with a happy end.

1. Regarding this epistle, nothing further is known that can be gathered from the text of this reply to it, which gives the substance of the questions it contained.
3. As to that which you ordered to write about wishes for an interview and conversation with me, and the friendliness and regard for religion of yourselves and our former disciple2 (lanmanak kâdmôn) — who is a servant of the sacred beings (yazhdâno)3 and a fellow-soldier in struggling with the fiend, alike persistent in reliance upon the good religion of Mazda-worship — I am equally desirous of that one path of righteousness when its extension is to a place in the best existence,4 and equally hopeful [5] of resurrection (akhezhishno) at the renovation of the best existence.5 4. As to the interview and important conversation of that disciple of ours (mânak), and his going, and that also which he expounded of the religion — that of him who is intimate in interview and conversation with him who is wise and righteous the stunted6 good works are then more developing7 — and as to the degree of praise which you ordered to write concerning me, much greater than reason, and the important statements full of the observations of friendship as to kind regards, my course about these is also that which leads to gratitude.

2. This disciple appears to have been previously sent by Manuschihar to the community he is addressing, most probably to serve as their high-priest.
3. The word is plural, like Elohim in the book of Genesis, but it means 'God' in Persian.
4. Another name for Garothman, the highest heaven, or dwelling of Ohrmazd (see Sls. VI, 3, 4).
5. That is, when this transitory world is purified and made permanent, so as to form a part of heaven, which is expected to take place at the resurrection.
6. Pahl. kazd, which may be compared ,vith Pers. kazh, 'distorted,' or may be a miswriting of Pahl. kas, 'small.'
7. The modern MSS., M14 and J, add 'and those which are great are more attainable.'
5. That which you ordered to write about the way of knowing and understanding not being for any one else but for your servant, was owing to your affection, and for the sake of kind regard; but on account of the importance of truth it is more expressly to be regarded as being proper to write also to other spiritual8 men, as to the learning which is more fully studied by them. 6. For even with the perplexing struggle of the fiend, and the grievous devastation and collapse (nizôrih) which have happened to religious people, after all, through the persistence (khvâparih) of the sacred beings even [6] now there are pontiffs (radâno), priests, high-priests, judges, and also other religious leaders of those of the religion in various quarters. 7. Moreover, the other priests and spiritual9 men here enumerated have well considered the commentary (zand) of the text (mânsar) [scripture] which is muttered, are acquainted with opinions explaining the religion, and are, in many places, the cause of preferring good works; with whom also, on account of their understanding and knowing about such opinions, the sacred beings are pleased.

8. The word is mainôk (minavad), but the omission of one stroke would make it magôg, 'priestly,' which was probably the original reading.
9. See note 8 above.
8. The desires expressed, and the good wishes as to what is mine and has happened to me, which you ordered to write, are likewise marks of friendship and kind regard, and owing to them a like measure of friendship and kind regard becomes your10 own.

10. All MSS. have 'thy.'
9. As to that which you ordered to write in much friendship and commendation and profusely about me — as regards the administration of the realm (kêshvar dastôbarih), of the unity without counterpart (dadigarih), and the singleness co-extensive with any duality — if the writing of that, too, were owing to your friendship, even then it seemed to me disquieting, owing to this being so much praise. 10. If in these times and countries there be an understanding of the time and a boasting about any one, if it be graceful as regards him who is a leader of the religion (dinô pêshûpâi) of long-continued faith, I consider it not suitable for myself. 11. Though [7] the praise of a leader (sardâr), raised by agreeable voices,11 is uttered about me, yet I am not pleased when they extol my greatness more than that of their own leader; for my wish is for that praise which is due to my own rank and similar limits, and seems suitable to me; and humility in oneself is as correct as grandeur among inferiors.

11. This translation of mâmo-advâzhiko-âkhezhako is somewhat doubtful.
12. That which is about the lengthy writing of questions, as to your worldly circumstances (stihânihâ) and worldly affairs, has also shown this, that I should write a reply at a time in which I have leisure. 13. That is more important on account of your well-expressed questions and boldness about ambiguous answers, and your ardent desire for the setting aside of time; for the setting aside, or not beginning, of a reply is implied. 14. But owing to the perplexing12 struggle on account of the fiend there is little leisure for quick and searching thought, and owing to that which is undecided13 there is little for indispensable (frêzhvâniko) work.

12. Or 'prodigious.'
13. That is, awaiting the high-priest's judicial and ecclesiastical decision.
15. As to a reply at a period of leisure time, the occurrence of the time appointed is manifested in everything, apart even from the kind regards of friendship, and the collection of information whereby, owing to my little leisure, it is declared unto you. 16. And I have, too, this confidence, that your questions are written with religious faith and desiring religious decision; and in the reply the statement of reasons from revelation (dinô) is manifold, for [8] guidance which is not destitute of wisdom and which is without risk from every kind of importunity.14

14. Or 'over-persuation.'
17. And this same epistle15 came in the month Tishtar,16 at such season as, owing to entreaties for three years from the country-folk (dêsikâno), and the burden of troubles of the offspring (sarako) of those of the good religion, the much importunity for arranging what was undecided among them — which, inasmuch as I had no power about investigating that trouble and suffering, was the more indispensable — the arrangements for the preservation and education of disciples,17 and many private matters which had accumulated, I obtained no opportunity for properly looking over these same questions till the month Shahrewar,18 when I came to Shiraz19 and had at various times a little leisure.

15. See § 2.
16. The fourth month of the Parsee year, which corresponded to July-August in the time of Manuschihar.
17. That is, candidates for the priesthood and young priests.
18. The sixth month of the Parsee year, which then corresponded to September-October.
19. From this it would appear that the Dadestan-i Denig was written at Shiraz which, being the principal city of Pars, was probably the high-priest's usual residence.
18. And I looked over these same questions; and when I saw the compact writing (ham-dâdakihâ-yektibûnishnih) it then seemed to me more important to make each chapter of the questions separate and more explanatory. 19. And I gave the questions to a writer, in the same copy which you ordered to write, and instructed him to write the various chapters, every single question in one chapter; and the several opinions, both due to my acquaintance with the religion and my remembrance in perfection, [9] both of the decisions (dastôbarih) of the ancients and as regards wisdom, are the replies I intend to write below the questions.

20. When there is nothing in such as you ask, concerning which I consider such otherwise, as I write, than what is like that which was once advisedly our different opinion from those high-priests of the ancients who were better and wiser, and have become our lord (ahvô), master (rado), and high-priest, I have written that,20 even though the usual decision on the same subject is such as our high-priests, who are of our family, have maintained in particular. 21. Afterwards, moreover, about the sayings of that high-priest whose custom is otherwise there is no difference of opinion expressed;21 and if there be any one for whose opinion I have acquired perfect reverence, a priestly man acquainted with the religion, who understands and who manages intelligently, by holding in reverence the ancient treatises and truth, and the sayings of the high-priests, whatever of his is to the purpose, as regards the reply, this also is written as successful illustration.

20. That is, his own different opinion apparently, but the writer's sentences are often so involved as to confuse the reader.
21. Meaning, apparently, that he does not propose to mention the opinions of others unless he approves of them.
22. If owing to such cause it be not fully perceived, or regarding the decision it be not clear, it is chiefly not owing to the incompleteness of the decision of revelation in clearness of demonstration and correctness of meaning, but owing to our incomplete attainment to understanding the authoritative decrees (nikêzhak fragûfto)22 of the religion. 23. From the [10] imperfection (avêhih) of that also which is asked of us the hasty thinking, notably therein, owing to the grievousness of the times, is even till now devoid of a distinct knowledge, interpreting the texts about the compassion of the good spirits, and regarding a clearer demonstration of the exposition of revelation which is thereby23 more fully declared, as regards religious practice, from two sources, one is from the treatises which are an exposition of the rules and wisdom of the leader of the religion, and one — which is more descriptively expressed (mâdigânotar hankhetûntô) — is the writings (vutako) of various glorified ancients, those who were the great leaders of those of the primitive faith [paoiryo-tkaesha].24 24. Owing to that,25 as their writings (nipikân) about the demonstration of reasons, on account of depth and minute wording, are not well known, even to minute observers and penetrative (vêhramako) understandings, and through the little diffusion (frâjo-padikhûih), likewise, of difficult words, there may be doubts among the less intelligent, so, about the purport of these same questions, if there be anything which is wanted by you more clear and more plain in meaning, or a nearer way to a true interpretation, not without clearness, of any decision, of a learned leader of the religion, I will give a reply, whenever you ask and I am able, so far as my knowledge and want of power permit.

22. The MSS. have fragûto, possibly Pers. farjûd, 'miracle.'
23. That is, revelation is declared by the exposition.
24. The true Mazda-worshipping religion in all ages, both before and after the time of Zartosht (see Sls. I, 3).
25. Want of knowledge referred to in § 23.
25. When one has to observe the nature of the attributes (gôhârâno) of the sacred beings the [11] investigator's great advantage is the perfection, peace, equipment with righteousness, and fiend-destroying power of his own people; and since you are made aware of the result of wishes and actions, and are directed by me, many new blessings also arise from you.

26. That which is written to you yourselves and unto all, in the beginning and even the end, is completely adapted to your own several wants; may it have an exalted end, with one courier (aê-barido) and continuously from beginning to end, and also perpetually!

27. A fair copy (bûrzhishniko pachino) of the questions, as well as the replies, is this; so that, when there is nothing in it which owing to that cause26 is different, I am of opinion as is here written.

26. Owing to the copying. The sentence is equivalent to the modern phrase, 'errors excepted.'


1. First you ask thus: Why is a righteous man created better than the stars and moon and sun and fire of Ohrmazd, and is called in revelation greater and better than the spiritual creation, and also than that which is worldly?

2. The reply is this, that the greatness and goodness of advance in wisdom and just judgment over the creatures arise from proficiency (hûnar). 3. Justice is the one good proficiency over the creatures, the means of wisdom are great, and praise bestowed is the most effectual performance [12] of what is desirable (kamishn-karih). 4. For all three are mutually connected together; since the manifestation of justice is through wisdom, and its advantage is the performance of what is desirable for the creator; wisdom is the performance of what is desirable for the requirements of the creator, and its weapon (zeno) is justice; and the desire of the creator, which is progress, is in wisdom with justice. 5. All three are great among the creatures, and their lodgment in the superior beings and righteous men is spiritual, in the spirit which is the pure guardian angel [farohar], in the understanding for encountering, averting, smiting, and prostrating (khvapak) the fiend, in the army of angels, and in the sovereignty of the far-seeing (dur-venako) spirit, Ohrmazd; and, materially, in the worldly equipment and mutual connection of body and life. 6. And their appliances are the wisdom and worldly efficacy of treatises on the wise adoption of good thoughts, good words, and good deeds, and the relinquishment and discontinuance of evil thoughts, evil words, and evil deeds. 7. And their acquirer is the worldly ruler who is providing for Ohrmazd, and approving and stimulating the pure religion, a praiser of the good and pure creator, and a director of persistence in destruction of the fiend. 8. And in the promulgation (rubako-dahishnih) of the good and religious liturgy (mansar), the coming of the good cause of the resurrection, and the production of the renovation of the universe [Frashegird] are his cooperation and his own thanksgiving; and over the creatures of this prior world he is a guardian, defender, and manager.

9. And such rulers are great and pre-eminent; yet every man is not for that greatness, but it is mentioned as to superior beings and concerning righteous men, in whom it has arisen, and the best are the three who are the beginning, middle, and end of the creation. 10. One is the pure man, Gayomard, who was its first rational praiser; he in whose keeping was the whole creation of the sacred beings, from its beginning and immaturity unto the final completion of the worldly creatures, over which was the exercise of goodness of his well-destined progeny, such as Hooshang, Takhmorup, Yim [Jamshed], and Faridoon, such as the apostles of the religion, like Zartosht, Ushedar, and Ushedarmah, and the producers of the renovation of the universe, like Saoshant, Roshanp-chashm, and Khur-chashm. 11. The approver of the enterprises (rubak-dahishniha) of cooperators, the purely-praising and just worshipper of the sacred beings through the strength of the spirit, the disabler of the worldly activity of the fiend as regards worldly bodies, and the one of pure religion — which is his charge (spor), the revelation of the place of the beneficent spirit and of the destruction of the depravity of the evil spirit, the subjugation (khvapishno) of the fiend, the completion of the triumph of the creator, and the unlimited progress of the creatures — is the upholder of Mazda-worship. 12. And likewise through the goodness of Gayomard, which is the begetting of Zartosht, he is also just; likewise through the goodness of Saoshant, by which he is the progeny of Zartosht, he is also progressive in every good thought, good word, and good deed, more than the creatures which are produced with a hope of the religion, and equally thankful. 13. And one is the producer of bodies, the renovator (Frashegar) Saoshant, who is the putter down, with complete subjugation from the world, of the glorification of fiends and demons, and of the contention with angels in apostasy and heterodoxy of various kinds and unatoned for; and the completer of the renovation [Frashegird] through the full continuance of the glorification of the angels, and the perfect continuance of the pure religion.

14. And through that excellent, unblemished, brotherly work such a ruler may be seen above the sun with swift horses, the primeval luminaries, and all removal of darkness, the advance of illumination which is the display (tojishno) of the days and nights of the world. 15. Regarding the same completion of the renovation of the universe it is said in the revelation of the Mazda-worshippers, that this great light is the vesture of the like righteous men.


1. The second is that which you ask thus: For what purpose is a righteous man created for the world, and what manner is it necessary for him to exist in the world?

2. The reply is this, that the creator created the creatures for progress, which is his wish; and it is necessary for us to promote whatever is his wish, so that we may obtain whatever is our wish. 3. And, since that persistent creator is powerful, whatever is our wish, and so far as we remain very faithful, such is as it were deserving of his wish, which is for our obtainment of whatever is our wish.

4. The miracle of these creatures was fully achieved (avorido) not unequally, and the gain (guaftako) also from the achievement of the same miracle is manifest; that is, achieving, and knowing that his achievement is with design (chim) and his desire is goodness, when the designed achievement, which is his creature, and also the goodness, which is his wish, are certain, and likewise, owing to the perfect ability which is due to the creator, the wish is achieved, it is manifest. 5. And, afterwards, it is decided by wisdom that he has achieved it, and the creatures, as perfected for the complete progress which is his wish, lapse into evil; and since when evil exists good becomes the subjugation of evil — for when evil is not complete, and after it is expressly said that his creatures are created for his own will, the progress due to subjugations of evil is on account of the good completed — it is similarly testified, in accordance with the will aforesaid, that it is achieved.

6. The creatures are for the performance of what is desirable for the creator, and the performance of what is desirable for the creator is necessary for two purposes, which are the practice of worship and contention. 7. As the worship is that of the persistent creator, who is a friend to his own creatures, and the contention is that with the fiend — the contender who is an enemy to the creation of the creator — that great worship is a pledge, most intimate to one's self, of the utmost contention also, and a pledge for the prosperity owing to the friend subjugating by a look which is a contender with the enemy, the great endeavor of the acquirers of reliance upon any mortals whatever. 8. For when the persistent one accomplished that most perfect and wholly miraculous creation of the lord, and his unwavering look — which was upon the coming on of the wandering evil spirit, the erratic, unobservant spirit — was unmingled with the sight of an eye, he made a spirit of observant temperament, which was the necessary soul, the virtuous lord of the body moving into the world. 9. And the animating life, the preserving guardian spirit, the acquiring intellect, the protecting understanding, the deciding wisdom, the demeanor which is itself a physician, the impelling strength, the eye for what is seen, the ear for what is heard, the nose for what is smelt, the mouth for recognizing flavor, the body for approaching the assembly (pidram) of the righteous, the heart for thinking, the tongue for speaking; the hand for working, the foot for walking, these which make life comfortable, these which are developments in creating, these which are to join the body, these which are to be considered perfected, are urged on by him continuously, and the means of industry of the original body are arranged advisedly. 10. And by proper regulation, and the recompense of good thoughts, good words, and good deeds, he announced and adorned conspicuous, patient, and virtuous conduct; and that procurer of the indispensable did not forget to keep men in his own true service and proper bounds, the supreme sovereignty of the creator.

11. And man became a pure glorifier and pure praiser of that all-good friend, through the progress which is his wish. 12. Because pure friendship is owing to sure meditation on every virtue, and from its existence no harm whatever arose, pure glorifying is owing to glorifying every goodness, and from its existence no vileness whatever arose; and pure praising is owing to all prosperity, and from its existence no distress whatever arose. 13. And pronouncing the benedictions he is steadfast in the same pure friendship, just glorifying, and expressive praising, which are performed even as though Vohuman were kept lodging in the thoughts, Srosh in the words, and Ard in the actions. 14. That, moreover, which is owing to the lodgment of Vohuman in the thoughts is virtuously rushing unto true propitiation from the heart, and keeping selfishness away from the desires; the lodgment of Srosh in the words is owing to him who is intelligent being a true speaker, and him who is unintelligent being a listener to what is true and to the high-priests; and the lodgment of Ard in the actions is declared to be owing to promoting that which is known as goodness, and abstaining, from that which one does not know. 15. And these three benefits which have been recited are sent down (farostako) in two ways that the ancients have mentioned, which are that deliberately taken and that they should deliberately leave, whose means are wisdom and proper exertion.

16. And his (man's) high-priest is he whose instigation is to keep him truly in accordance with the revelation (dino) of the sacred beings, and is the origin of his pure meditation which is truly through goodness like Vohuman's. 17. As the religious of the ancients have religiously said, that of him who keeps the goodness of Vohuman lodging in the thoughts the true way is then that of the good spirit. 18. The Mazda-worshipper understands the will of the creator in the true way, and grows and acquires by performing what is desirable for the creator, which obtains the benefit of the renovation.

19. A more concise reply is this, that a righteous man is the creature by whom is accepted that occupation which is provided for him, and is fully watchful in the world as to his not being deceived by the rapacious fiend. 20. And as a determiner, by wisdom, of the will of the creator — one who is himself a propitiator and understander, and a promoter of the understanding of goodness — and of whatever pertains to him (the creator), he is a giver of heed thereto; and it is necessary for him to be thus, so that such greatness and goodness may also be his more securely in the spiritual existence.


1. The third question is that you ask thus: For what reason does this greatness of a righteous man exist?

2. The reply is this, that it is for the performance of what is desirable for the creator by the Mazda-worshipper; because he strives unhesitatingly that the way for the performance of what is desirable for the creator may be the propitiation which is his desire, and that desired propitiation becomes perfect through sound wisdom. 3. The wisdom by which he understands about the desire of the heavenly angels is not appointed (vakht), but is the true, pure religion which is knowledge of the spirits, the science of sciences, the teacher of the teaching of the angels, and the source of all knowledge.

4. And the progress, too, of the pure religion of the Mazda-worshippers is through the righteous man, as is shown of him in revelation thus: 'I created, O Zartosht the Spitaman! the righteous man who is very active, and I will guard his hands from evil deeds; I will also have him conveyed unto those who are afterwards righteous and more actively wise. 5. And at the same time the religion of me who created him is his desire, and it is the obtainment of a ruler which is to be changed by the well-organized renovation of the universe.'

6. As through wisdom is created the world of righteousness, through wisdom is subjugated every evil, and through wisdom is perfected every good; and the best wisdom is the pure religion whose progress is that achieved by the upholders of religion, the greatness of the best men of the righteous, in whose destiny it is, such as that which was shown about Gayomard, Zartosht, and Soshans.


1. The fourth question is that which you ask thus: Of this destruction (zadam) and terror which ever happen to us from the retribution of the period, and are a cause of the other evils and defects of the good religion, what kind of opinion exists? And is there a good opinion of us among the spirits, or not?

2. The reply is this, that it is said in the revelation of the Mazda-worshippers that the impediments (ras-bandih), through which there is vexation in righteousness, are because its doctrine is this, that, regarding the difficulty, anxiety, and discomfort which occur through good works set going, it is not desirable to account them as much difficulty, trouble, and discomfort. 3. Whereas it is not desirable to account them as anxiety and difficulty, it is then declared by it thereof, that, as its recompense, so much comfort and pleasure will come to the soul, as that no one is to think of that difficulty and discomfort which came upon him through so many such good works, because he is steadfast to maintain the good religion, and utters thanksgivings (va stayedo). 4. And as regards the discomfort, which the same good religion of ours has had, it comes on from the opponents of the religion.

5. Through the coming of religion we have full enjoyment (bara gukarem), and owing to religion, unlike bondsmen (aburdoganvar), we do not become changeable among the angels; our spiritual life (ahvoih) of praise then arrives in readiness, and owing to the angels there are joyous salutation, spiritual life, and glory for the soul.


1. The fifth question is that you ask thus: Why does evil always happen more to the good than to the bad?

2. The reply is this, that not at every time and every place, and not to all the good, does evil happen more — for the spiritual welfare of the good is certainly more — but in the world it is very much more manifest. 3. And the reasons for it are many; one which is conclusive is even this, that the modes and causes of its occurrence are more; for the occurrence of evil is more particularly appointed (vakhto) by two modes, one by the demons, the appointers of evil, and one by the vile, the doers of evil; even to the vileness of creation and the vile they cause vexation. 4. Moreover, incalculable is the evil which happens to the vile from the demons, and that to the good from the demons and also from the vile, and the mode of its occurrence is in the same way without a demon.

5. This, too, is more particularly such as the ancients have said, that the labor and trouble of the good are much more in the world, and their reward and recompense are more certain in the spiritual existence; and the comfort and pleasure of the vile are more in the world, and their pain and punishment in the spiritual existence are more severe. 6. And this, too, is the case, that the good, through fear of the pain and punishment of hell, should forsake the comfort and ease in the world, and should not think, speak, or do anything improper whatever. 7. And through hope for the comfort and pleasure in heaven they should accept willingly, for the neck, much trouble and fear in the practice of virtue in thought, word, and deed.

8. The vile, through provision with temporary enjoyment — even that enjoyment of improprieties for which eventually there is hell — then enjoy themselves therein temporarily, and lustfully on account of selfishness; those various actions also, through which there would be a way to heaven, they do not trouble themselves with.

9. And in this way, in the world, the comfort and pleasure of the vile are more, and the anxiety, vexation, despondency, and distress of the good have become more; the reason is revealed by the stars.


1. The sixth question is that which you ask thus: Why are we men produced for the world, and what is it necessary for us to do therein?

2. The reply is this, that even in the reply to an accompanying question it is written that the creatures are achieved for justice and the performance of what is desirable for the creator; and to prepare thoroughly well that which is unlimited and the virtuous progress of the creatures, whose distress is like fear, there is the unparalleled (abradarvato) renovation of the universe.

3. And that preparation arises from the complete predominance of the creator and the non-predominance of the fiend, as is said of it in revelation thus: 'In that time I become completely predominant, I who am Ohrmazd; in nothing whatever is the evil spirit predominant.' 4. And also about the good procedure of the creature-creation it is recounted thus: 'Happy am I when the creatures are so created by me, and according to any wish whatever of mine they give the sovereignty to me, and also come to the sovereignty when I have created it for the performance of what is desirable for the expression of what sovereignty is.'

5. And it is necessary for us to become so in the world as that the supreme sovereignty of the creator may be kept more friendly to us, its own true servants. 6. The way to that true service is known through wisdom, is believed (vavari-aito) through truth, and is utilized through goodness; and the path of excellence more particularly leads to it. 7. And to set the good spirit rightly in the place of thought it is deliberately taken and they should deliberately leave it, as it is said in revelation that Ohrmazd spoke out to Zartosht thus: 'Thou shouldst assist Vohuman with thy pure spiritual faculties (ahvo), so that they may make him fully welcome; for when thou assistest Vohuman with thy pure spiritual faculties, so that they make him fully welcome, thou shalt thus fully understand the two ways, that which is good conduct, and that also which is bad conduct.'


1. The seventh question is that you ask thus: When a man is passing away, and after the occurrence of his passing away, how does the good work then go to him and assist him, which any others may do for him who has gone out from the world, on the third night in the dawn, at which he goes out to the balance? And is its greatness such as though it be done by his own hand, or otherwise?

2. The reply is this: When any others do a good work for him who has passed away, after the passing away, and if he who has passed away did not order that good work in his lifetime, and did not bequeath it, nor was its originator, and it was not even his by design (dado), then it does not go and does not reach him out at the balance. 3. Even at the time for being proceeded with, when that good work does not assist it is not appropriated, for that which is appropriated as the design of some one is appropriated by acceptance from some one; when it is not his by design it is then not accepted as his.

4. If he who has passed away did not order that good work, and did not even bequeath it, but was consenting to it by design, that which shall be done in his lifetime then reaches out in the three nights (satuih) for the aggrandizement of his position; but that which shall be done after his passing away is not in the account of the three nights and the balance, but reaches out, at the time the good work is proceeded with, for the enjoyment of the soul.

5. And if he who has passed away ordered that good work in his own lifetime, or bequeathed it, or was the originator and cause of the soul's employment, although it is proceeded with after his passing away, it then reaches out to him for the happiness of his soul, since the origin of the thanksgiving (sipas), and the orderer and ownership of the good work are certain.

6. Any good work whatever which is proceeded with is clearly a like good work as regards those who account for it as with him who is the doer of it; also in the account of his soul the good work is as much with him who did it, but the soul of him by whom the good work is done by his own hand, is handsomer and stronger than of him by whom it is ordered. 7. And its similitude is such as when a man's handsome and seemly suit of clothes is his own, and he wears it on his body and is handsomer, more splendid, and more seemly than another man who wears a suit of clothes, in like manner, which is his own by theft.


1. The eighth question is that which you ask thus: Of him who, out of his own wealth, himself directed others thus: 'Let them act advantageously (khanjinako) for my soul,' is it so that what others may do for him out of that wealth and that done by his own toil are very different, one from the other, or not?

2. The reply is this, that they are very different, one from the other; for that which he orders out of his own wealth is more effectual than that which others may do for him without order. 3. And among the kinds of good work, that is more effectual which one practices himself and with his own toil; then that which one sets going out of whatever is his own by his own order, regarding which he afterwards bequeaths and orders out of his own property and it comes into progress; and, lastly, that which others may do for him.

4. Since thus his own and that which is his by design, when any one manages for him and in his lifetime, aggrandize his position then, and his soul is preserved, when he manages for him thereafter the enjoyment then reaches unto his soul. 5. When not consenting as to the good work, and it is not his by design, even though others may do it for him it does not then come into his possession.


1. The ninth question is that which you ask thus: How much does the growth of his good works increase, from the time when the good works are done, so long as he is living?

2. The reply is this, that from the time when a good work comes into progress its growth remains on the increase so long as he is living; moreover, when he is distressed by that good work, while the increase does not desist from increase, it grows just as a child becomes enlarged in the womb of a mother.


1. The tenth question is that which you ask thus: Does the growth which increases become as commendable in the fourth night as the original good work in his possession, or does it become otherwise?

2. The reply is this, that it is otherwise; for the original good work stands up opposing sin, and the growing good work stands up opposed to the growth of sin.


1. The eleventh question is that you ask thus: Does the growth of a good work eradicate sin just like the original good work, or not?

2. The reply is this, that the growth does eradicate it, as happens with the good work which is for atonement for sin; it shall be done as retribution for sin, and it eradicates the sin, which is specially mentioned in revelation. 3. 'Then the place of his other good work is evidently the soul; and, in order to be with the sin at its origin, it remains and is taken into account.' 4. 'Through good works and the growth of good works is the recompense of the soul, so that they should do those good works in atonement for sin.' 5. And concerning the sin eradicated it is said: 'An original good work eradicates original sin, and the growth of a good work eradicates the growth of a sin.'


1. The twelfth question is that which you ask thus: In the fourth night do they score off (bara angarend) the sin by the good works, and does he go by the residue (bon); or do they inflict punishment on him for the sin which has happened to him, and give reward and recompense for the good works which he has done?

2. The reply is this, that at dawn of the third night the account is prepared it is said, and about the sin which he has atoned for, and the good work which is its equivalent (avar) there is no need for account, since the account is about the good works which may be appropriated by him as his own, and about the sin which may remain in him as its origin. 3. Because the origin of it (the sin atoned for) remains distinct, and it is canceled (astardo) by it (the good work), they balance it therewith; and they weigh the excess and deficiency, as it may be, of the other good works and sin.

4. Of those living, at the just, impartial (achafsishno) balance the man of proper habits (dado), whose good works are more, when sin has happened to him, undergoes a temporary (vidanaik) punishment and becomes eternally cleansed by the good works; and he of improper habits, of much sin and little good works, attains temporary enjoyment by those good works, but through the sin which they perceive in him he is suffering punishment unto the resurrection.


1. The thirteenth question is that which you ask thus: Who should prepare the account of the soul as to sin and good works, and in what place should they make it up? And when punishment is inflicted by them, where is their place then?

2. The reply is this, that the account about the doers of actions, as to good works and sin, three times every day whilst the doer of the actions is living, Vohuman the archangel should prepare; because taking account of the thoughts, words, and deeds of all material existences is among his duties. 3. And about the sin which affects accusers, which is committed by (val) breakers of promises, even in the world Mihr is said to be over the bodies, words, and fortunes (hu-bakhtako) of the promise-breakers; and as to the amount, and also as to being more than the stipulation when there is a period of time, Mihr is the account-keeper. 4. In the three nights' account (satuih) Srosh the righteous and Rashnu the just are over the estimate of the limits of the good works and sin of righteousness and wickedness. 5. In the future existence, the completion of every account, the creator Ohrmazd himself takes account, by whom both the former account of the three nights and all the thoughts, words, and deeds of the creatures are known through his omniscient wisdom.

6. The punishment for a soul of the sinners comes from that spirit with whom the sin, which was committed by it, is connected; fostered by the iniquity practiced, that punishment comes upon the souls of the sinful and wicked, first on earth, afterwards in hell, and lastly at the organization of the future existence. 7. When. the punishment of the three nights is undergone the soul of the righteous attains to heaven and the best existence, and the soul of the wicked to hell and the worst existence, 8. When they have undergone their punishment at the renovation of the universe they attain, by complete purification from every sin, unto the everlasting progress, happy progress, and perfect progress of the best and undisturbed existence.


1. The fourteenth question is that which you ask thus: Is the eradication of life the gnawing of dogs and birds upon the corpse? And does the sin of those who suppose it a sin proceed from that origin, or not?

2. [1] The reply is this, that the decrease of sin and increase of good works, owing to good thoughts, good words, and good deeds, arise really from the effort and disquietude which come on by means of the religion the soul practices, and through the strength in effort, steadfastness of religion, and protection of soul which the faithful possess. 3. That evil which occurs when doing good works, which is the one (hana) when doing iniquity, and when one strives it is the one when he does not strive, the one when content and the one when not content, and after it is undesired, and no cause of good works is with it, it occurs just as undesired, for the sake of favor and reward, is the certain eradication of life. 4. It happens once only (aetum) unto the righteous and the wicked, every one who may have received the reward — that reward is living until the time of passing away — but the gnawing of dogs and birds does not happen unto every one and every body. 5. It is necessary for those to act very differently whose understanding of good works is owing to proper heed; of dead matter; and, on account of the rapid change (vardi-hastano) of that pollution, and a desire of atonement for sin, they should carry the body of one passed away out to a mountain-spur (kof vakhsh), or a place of that description, enjoining unanimously that the dogs and birds may gnaw it, owing to the position of the appointed place. 6. Therefore, as owing to that fear, the commands of religion, and progressive desire it is accepted strenuously for the wicked himself, his own recompense is therein, and it happens to him in that way for the removal (narafsishno) of sin and for the gratification of his soul.

1. Compare M. F. Kanga, Henning Memorial Volume, pg. 223 ff.


1. The fifteenth question is that which you ask thus: When the dogs and birds tear it (the corpse) does the soul know it, and does it occur uncomfortably for it, or how is it?

2. The reply is this, that the pain occasioned by the tearing and gnawing so galls (maledo) the body of men that, though the soul were abiding with the body, such soul, which one knows is happy and immortal, would then depart from the body, along with the animating life, the informing (sinayinako) consciousness, and the remaining resources of life. 3. The body is inert, unmoving, and not to be galled; and at last no pain whatever galls it, nor is it perceived; and the soul, with the life, is outside of the body, and is not unsafe as regards its gnawing, but through the spiritual perception it sees and knows it.

4. That which is wicked is then again desirous of its bodily existence, when it sees them thus: the wonderfully-constructed body which was its vesture, and is dispersed, and that spiritual life (huko) which was with its heart, and is even on account of this — that is: 'Because in my bodily existence and worldly progress there was no atonement for sin and no accumulation of righteousness' — also in mourning about it thus: 'In the prosperity which this body of mine had, it would have been possible for me to atone for sin and to save the soul, but now I am separated from every one and from the joy of the world, which is great hope of spiritual life; and I have attained to the perplexing account and more serious danger.' 5. And the gnawing becomes as grievous to it, on account of that body, as a closely-shut arsenal (afzar beta-i badtum) and a concealed innermost garment are useless among those with limbs provided with weapons and accouterments, and are destroyed.

6. And of that, too, which is righteous and filled with the great joy that arises from being really certain of the best existence, then also the spiritual life which was with its body, on account of the great righteousness, fit for the exalted (firakhtaganik), which was ever accumulated by it with the body, is well developed (madam hu-tashido), and the wonderfully-constructed body is destroyed in the manner of a garment, particularly when its dispersion (apashishno) occurs thereby.

7. And the consciousness of men, as it sits three nights outside of the body, in the vicinity of the body, has to remember and expect that which is truly fear and trouble (khar) unto the demons [devs], and reward, peace, and glad tidings (novik) unto the spirits of the good; and, on account of the dispersion and injuring of the body, it utters a cry spiritually, thus: 'Why do the dogs and birds gnaw this organized body, when still at last the body and life unite together at the raising of the dead?' 8. And this is the reminding of the resurrection and liberation, and it becomes the happiness and hope of the spirit of the body and the other good spirits, and the fear and vexation of the demons and fiends [devs and drujs].


1. The sixteenth question is that which you ask thus: What is the purpose of giving up a corpse to the birds?

2. The reply is this, that the construction of the body of those passed away is so wonderful that two co-existences have come together for it, one which is to occasion endurance (der padayinidano) and one which is to cause conflict (nipordinidano), and their natures are these, for watching the angels and averting the demons. 3. After appertaining to it the life — so long as it is in the locality of the place of the body — and the demons of dull intellects, who are frightened by the body, are just like a sheep startled by wolves when they shall further frighten it by a wolf. 4. The spirit of the body, on account of being the spiritual life (huko) for the heart in the body, is indestructible; so is the will which resided therein, even when they shall release it from its abode.

5. In the same way the body of those who are passed away is so much the more innocently worthy of the rights (sano) of one properly passed away, and what it is therein provided with, as it has uttered thanksgivings. 6. For those guardian spirits who keep watch over the body of Keresasp the Saman are also such praises from the life and body, for that reason, moreover, when they unite.

7. The injury of the destroyer to the body of those passed away is contaminating; the Nasush ('corruption') rushes on it and, owing to its violence when it becomes triumphant over the life of the righteous man, and frightens it from the place of the catastrophe (hankardikih), and puts itself into the place of the body, that body is then, for that reason, called Nasai ('dead matter'). 8. And, on account of the coexistence of rapid changing and the mode of attacking of the same Nasush, even when it is necessary for the disintegration of the body, this is also then to lie and change sanatorily.

9. Hence, as the body of men is formed out of hard bone and soft fat, that which is established is the expulsion of the bone from the fat. 10. For the bone through its hardness, when no damp fat is with it, and it does not become a holder of its damp, is itself essentially dry; and it becomes unconsumable and attaining durability, through dryness, out of the dead matter even for perpetuity. 11. And the sun is provided to make rotten, dispersed, and useless the fat that is around the bone, which on the decay of the animating life is to become increasingly damp, and, after the departure of life through terror and disgust (adostih), it comes to rottenness and stench; and the noxious creatures in it alike afflict it and the hard part such as bone.

12. As regards the shrinking away of those who are sinners, the nearer way to a remedy is the gnawer away from men; the fat becomes separate from the bone, and is seized and digested, as by the separation of the fat from the dead matter for digestion, moreover, the permanent matter (asarih) and bone attain more fully unto their own nature (sano), and the body (kalpudo) to emptiness. 13. Because there is no other way to consume that fat of men, since it is most grievous to them (the sinners), and the pollution and contamination are made a blessing unto it (the gnawer). 14. The dispersers (astardo-garan) completely disperse from it; they are appointed and produced, a production not worthy, for its defilement of those purified and animals is contaminating, through contact again with men. 15. The crow (galag) and such-like, through scorching away by the fire of the luminaries, become worthy; moreover, the affliction of that which is completely pure fire arises therefrom, as it is not able itself to come unto the scorched one, for then the defilement (darvakh) of the scorcher by the most grievous gnawer would be possible.

16. But it is not proper to recount (angastano) the devouring of the noxious creatures, for the spirit of the body is troubled when it observes the alarmed (vazid) spirituality which was in the body of those destroyed, the noxious creatures upon the goodly forms, and the mode and strangeness of their disintegration and spoliation. 17. And so it then becomes the more remedial way when, as it is ordered in revelation, the body fraught with corruption is placed on the ground of a clear mountain spur (kof vakhsh); and, in order not to convey it to the water, plants, and men of the plain, it is fastened in the customary manner, so that the corpse-eating dogs and corpse-eating birds, which are not subject to the hand (dasto-amuko) of men, and are likewise not entertained as food, shall yet not drag any of it away for man's eating of dead matter.

18. For streams and waters go themselves and consume that fat, and are digested by the vital fire [vohu-fryan fire] which is in the life of the creatures of Ohrmazd; and from fat the corpses and dead matter are reduced unto dregs of clay and permanent matter, even with the dust they are mingled and become scattered about. 19. Likewise to those dogs, flying creatures, and birds they themselves (the waters) have given the corpse-eating quality and habit, and on account of dull intellect they (the creatures) are not overwhelmed even by that sin.

20. From that fat which is mingled with the living body of a creature of Ohrmazd then arises also the assault of the demons, as is shown in the chapter on the reason for showing a dog to a dead person, so that the body of those passed away, when the gnawers away are mingled with the living body of a creature of Ohrmazd, exhibits a partial resurrection and the tokens of it, and thereby the demons keep in it (the living body), and give pain by the will of the sacred being.


1. The seventeenth question is that you ask thus: Is it better when they give it to the birds, or what mode is better?

2. The reply is this, that after showing the dog [sag did] — the reason of which is as declared in its own chapter — they shall carry the corpse at once to the hills and rising ground (vakhsh bum); and, for the reason that the dogs and birds should not bring that dead matter away to a watered, cultivated, or inhabited place, one is to fasten it in the manner of a thief. 3. When the corpse-eating birds have eaten the fat, that fat which, when it is not possible to eat it, becomes rotten, offensive, and fraught with noxious creatures, then men shall properly convey the bones away to the bone-receptacle (astodano), which one is to elevate so from the ground, and over which a roof (ashkupo) so stands, that in no way does the rain fall upon the dead matter, nor the water reach up to it therein, nor the damp make up to it therein, nor are the dog and fox able to go to it, and for the sake of light coming to it a hole is made therein.

4. More authoritatively (dastobariha) it is said that bone-receptacle is a vault (kadako) of solid stone, and its covering (nihumbako) one is to construct also of a single stone which is cut perforated (sulak-homand), and around it one is to fill in with stone and mortar.


1. The eighteenth question is that which you ask thus: When the souls of the righteous and the souls of the wicked go out to the spirits, will it then be possible for them to see Ohrmazd and Ahriman, or not?

2. The reply is this, that concerning Ahriman it is said that his is no material existence (stish); and Ohrmazd, as a spirit among the spirits, is to be heard by those who are material and those also who are spiritual, but his form (kerpo) is not completely visible except through wisdom. 3. And a semblance of his power is seen, as was told unto Zartosht the Spitaman when he saw the result (zah) of his handiwork, and he (Ohrmazd) spoke thus: 'Grasp the hand of a righteous man! for the kindly operation of my religion through thee thyself is as much as he shall grasp, and thou mayst see him whose reception (mahmanih) of my wisdom and glory is the most.'

4. And about the souls of the righteous and wicked, in the spiritual places they see the throne (gas), which they deem a sight of Ohrmazd. 5. And so also those who are domiciled with (ham-neman) Ahriman, through that wisdom with reference to whose creator they shall suffer, will understand minutely as regards Ohrmazd and the nature of Ahriman (Ahrimanih). 6. And he who is of the righteous is delighted at escaping from Ahriman and coming to the existence pertaining to Ohrmazd; and they shall offer homage to the glory of Ohrmazd. 7. And he who is wicked, through being deceived by Ahriman, and turning from the direction (pelag) of Ohrmazd, becomes more vexed and more penitent; the hope (zahishno) and forgiveness which he possesses, and the retribution and manacling which are his among the fiends and spirits through his own handiwork, are by the permission which comes from the most persistent of the persistent at the period of the resurrection.


1. The nineteenth question is that you ask thus: To what place do the righteous and wicked go?

2. The reply is this, that it is thus said that the souls of those passed away and of the dead are three nights on earth; and the first night satisfaction comes to them from their good thoughts and vexation from their evil thoughts, the second night come pleasure from their good words and discomfort and punishment from their evil words, and the third night come exaltation from their good deeds and punishment from their evil deeds. 3. And that third night, in the dawn, they go to the place of account on Alburz; the account being rendered they proceed to the bridge, and he who is righteous passes over the bridge on the ascent (lalaih), and if belonging to the ever-stationary (hamistagan) [purgatory] he goes thither where their place is, if along with an excess of good works his habits are correct (frarun-dad) he goes even unto heaven (vahishto), and if along with an excess of good works and correct habits he has chanted the sacred hymns (gasano) he goes even unto the supreme heaven (garothman). 4. He who is of the wicked falls from the lower end (tih) of the bridge, or from the middle of the bridge; he falls head-foremost to hell, and is precipitated (nikuni-aito) unto that grade which is suitable for his wickedness.


1. The twentieth question is that which you ask thus: How are the Chinwad bridge, the Daitih peak (chakad), and the path of the righteous and wicked; how are they when one is righteous, and how when one is wicked?

2. The reply is this, that thus the high-priests have said, that the Daitih peak is in Airan-vej [Eranwej], in the middle of the world; reaching unto the vicinity of that peak is that beam-shaped (dar-kerpo) spirit, the Chinwad bridge, which is thrown across from the Alburz enclosure (var) back to the Daitih peak. 3. As it were that bridge is like a beam of many sides, of whose edges (posto) there are some which are broad, and there are some which are thin and sharp; its broad sides (sukiha) are so large that its width is twenty-seven reeds (nai), and its sharp sides are so contracted (tang) that in thinness it is just like the edge of a razor. 4. And when the souls of the righteous and wicked arrive it turns to that side which is suitable to their necessities, through the great glory of the creator and the command of him who takes the just account.

5. Moreover, the bridge becomes a broad bridge for the righteous, as much as the height of nine spears (nizhako) — and the length of those which they carry is each separately three reeds—; and it becomes a narrow bridge for the wicked, even unto a resemblance to the edge of a razor. 6. And he who is of the righteous passes over the bridge, and a worldly similitude of the pleasantness of his path upon it is when thou shalt eagerly and unweariedly walk in the golden-colored spring, and with the gallant (hu-chir) body and sweet-scented blossom in the pleasant skin of that maiden spirit, the price of goodness. 7. He who is of the wicked, as he places a footstep on to the bridge, on account of affliction (siparih) and its sharpness, falls from the middle of the bridge, and rolls over head-foremost. 8. And the unpleasantness of his path to hell is in similitude such as the worldly one in the midst of that stinking and dying existence (hastan), there where numbers of the sharp-pointed darts (tezo muk dujo) are planted out inverted and point upwards, and they come unwillingly running; they shall not allow them to stay behind, or to make delay. 9. So much greater than the worldly similitude is that pleasantness and unpleasantness unto the souls, as such as is fit for the spirit is greater than that fit for the world.


1. The twenty-first question is that which you ask thus: When he who is righteous passes away, who has performed much worship of the sacred beings, and many duties and good works, do the spirit of creation, the spirit of the sacred ceremony (yazishno) and religion of the Mazda-worshippers, the water, earth, plants, and animals, make complaint unto Ohrmazd, owing to the passing away of him who is righteous, and is it distressing to them when he goes out from the world, or how is it?

2. The reply is this, that as to him who is of the righteous, in his transit of worldly pain in passing away, and also after passing away to the passage onwards which is his limit (shtar) still in the perplexing account, and, after the account, in his own joy, and in what occurs when his gossips (ham-vachan) in the world — by whom the spiritual beings are also not unrecognized, nor his position unknown — are in worldly demeanor downcast and grieving, on all these occasions his thoughts, procuring forgiveness, are about the sacred beings. 3. And the spirit of creation, and the good spirit of the religion of the Mazda-worshippers, which are in the worldly existence — of which also, in the world, that righteous one is a praiser, an employer, a manager, a protection, and a forbearing friend — shall make an outcry to the creator about him who is righteous, who is away from worldly protection, also for the granting of a promoter of forbearance, and for a restorer (avordar) of what is extorted; likewise a petition about the compensatory concomitants as to his new protection and disposer.

4. And the almighty creator responds, and allots a teacher for smiting the fiend, for the satisfaction of the righteous, and for the protection of the good creatures. 5. As it is said, that in every age a high-priest of the religion and his managing of the creatures are made manifest, in whom, in that age, the protection of the creatures and the will of the sacred beings are progressing.


Death and how the life departs from the body

1. The twenty-second question is that which you ask thus: When they shall snatch forth the life from the body of man how does it depart?

2. The reply is this, that it is said to be in resemblance such as when the redness is drawn up out of a fire; for when the inflammable material of a fire is burnt, and has remained without glowing, and when it does not obtain new inflammable material, or extinguishing matter (nizhayishnik) comes upon it, its redness and heat then depart from it; the life, too, on the departure of the breath (vado vashakih), does not stay in the body, but in like manner departs.

3. To a like purport the high-priests of the religion have also said this, that mortals and men by listening perceive the time when the spirits shall put a noose (band) on the neck; when his time has fully come one then conducts him with a companion (pavan ham-bar), and at his falling are the place of death and cause of death; and having made lethargy (bushasp) deliver him up, and terrified his fever (tapo), death (aosh) seizes decrepitude (zarman) away from him.

4. The strength in those intrusted with him, and the good proceedings and pursuit of means which remain behind, giving them strength, are the determination (vichir) which is their own inward physician. 5. And should it be a passing away (vidarg) which obtains no light, and on account of their disquietudes they have gone to the understanders of remedies for strength for the remedial duties, and the way is closed, he proceeds with insufficiency of means. 6. And the soul of the body, which is the master of its house (kadak khudai), along with the animating life, goes out of the impotent body to the immortal souls, as a wise master of a house goes out of a foreign (anirano) house to a residence of the good worship.

7. It was also told to the ancient learned that life (khaya) is where there is a living spirit within the soul's body, which is connected with the soul, as much as a development (sarituntano) of the body, and is the life (zivandakih) of the soul of a body of one passed away.


1. The twenty-third question is that which you ask thus: When he who is righteous passes away, where is the place the soul sits the first night, the second, and the third; and what does it do?

2. The reply is this, that thus it is said, that the soul of man, itself the spirit of the body, after passing away, is three nights upon earth, doubtful about its own position (gas), and in fear of the account; and it experiences terror, distress (dahyako), and fear through anxiety about the Chinwad bridge; and as it sits it notices about its own good works and sin. 3. And the soul, which in a manner belongs to that same spirit of the body which is alike experiencing and alike touching it, becomes acquainted by sight with the sin which it has committed, and the good works which it has scantily done.

4. And the first night from its own good thoughts, the second night from its good words, and the third night from its good deeds it obtains pleasure for the soul; and if also, with the righteousness, there be sin which remains in it as its origin, the first punishment in retribution for the evil deed occurs that same third night. 5. The same third night, on the fresh arrival of a dawn, the treasurer of good works, like a handsome maiden (kaniko), comes out to meet it with the store of its own good works; and, collected by witches (pariko-chind), the sin and crime unatoned for (atokhto) come on to the account and are justly accounted for.

6. For the remaining (ketrund) sin it undergoes punishment at the [chinwad] bridge, and the evil thoughts, evil words, and evil deeds are atoned for; and with the good thoughts, good words, and good deeds of its own commendable and pleasing spirit it steps forward unto the supreme heaven (garothman), or to heaven (vahishto), or to the ever-stationary (hamistagan) [purgatory] of the righteous, there where there is a place for it in righteousness.


1. The twenty-fourth question is that which you ask thus: When he who is wicked shall die, where is the place the soul sits the first night, the second, and the third; and what does it say and do?

2. The reply is this, that those three nights the soul is upon earth, and notices about the thoughts, words, and deeds of its own body; it is doubtful about its own position, and experiences grievous fear of the account, great terror of the bridge, and perplexing fear on account of hell. 3. Thought is oppressive as an indicator of fear, and the soul, in a manner the spirit of the body, is a computer and acquirer of acquaintance by sight about the good works which it has not done, and the sin which it has committed.

4. And the first night it is hastening away from its own evil thoughts? the second night from its own evil words, and the third night from its own evil deeds; but, owing to the good works which it has done in the world, the first night the spirit of its good thoughts, the second night the spirit of its good words, and the third night the spirit of its good deeds, come unto the soul, and become pleasing and commendable to it.

5. And the third night, on the fresh arrival of a dawn, its sin, in the frightful, polluted shape of a maiden (charatik) who is an injurer, comes to meet it with the store of its sin; and a stinking northerly wind comes out to meet it, and it comes on shudderingly, quiveringly, and unwillingly running to the account. 6. And through being deceived and deceiving, heresy (avarun-dinoih), unrelenting and false accusation of constant companions, and the wide-spread sinfulness of a fiend-like existence (druj-stihih) it is ruined, falls from the bridge, and is precipitated to hell.


1. The twenty-fifth question is that which you ask thus: How are the nature of heaven (vahisht), and the comfort and pleasure which are in heaven?

2. The reply is this, that it is lofty, exalted, and supreme, most brilliant, most fragrant, and most pure, most supplied with beautiful existences, most desirable, and most good, and the place and abode of the sacred beings (yazdano). 3. And in it are all comfort, pleasure, joy, happiness (vashidagih), and welfare, more and better even than the greatest and most supreme welfare and pleasure in the world; and there is no want, pain, distress, or discomfort whatever in it; and its pleasantness and: the welfare of the angels are from that constantly beneficial place (gas), the full and undiminishable space (gunj), the good and boundless world.

4. And the freedom of the heavenly from danger from evil in heaven is like unto their freedom from disturbance, and the coming of the good angels is like unto the heavenly ones' own good works provided. 5. This prosperity (freh-hasto) and welfare of the spiritual existence is more than that of the world, as much as that which is unlimited and everlasting is more than that which is limited and demoniacal (shedaniko).


1. The twenty-sixth question is that which you ask thus: How are the nature of hell, and the pain, discomfort, punishment, and stench of hell?

2. The reply is this, that it is sunken, deep, and descending, most dark, most stinking, and most terrible, most supplied with wretched existences (anazidantum), and most bad, the place and cave (grestako) of the demons and fiends. 3. And in it is no comfort, pleasantness, or joy whatever; but in it are all stench, filth, pain, punishment, distress, profound evil, and discomfort; and there is no resemblance of it whatever to worldly stench, filthiness, pain, and evil. 4. And since there is no resemblance of the mixed evil of the world to that which is its sole-indicating (ae-numai) good, there is also a deviation (gumishno) of it from the origin and abode of evil.

5. And so much more grievous is the evil in hell than even the most grievous evil on earth, as the greatness of the spiritual existence is more than that of the world; and more grievous is the terror of the punishment on the soul than that of the vileness of the demons on the body. 6. And the punishment on the soul is from those whose abode it has become, from the demons and darkness — a likeness of that evil to hell — the head (kamarako) of whom is Ahriman the deadly.

7. And the words of the expressive utterance of the high-priests are these, that where there is a fear of every other thing it is more than the thing itself but hell is a thing worse than the fear of it.


1. The twenty-seventh question is that which you ask thus: Why and what is the ceremony of the three nights (satuih), when during three days they order and perform the sacred-cake ceremony (yazishno drono) of Srosh?

2. The reply is this, that the life and soul, when from the realm of the spirit of air they attain unto worldly attire, and have passed into its pain and misfortune, are more sensitive (nazuktar); owing to their nurture, birth, and mission, protection and defense are more desirable and more suitable for the discreet (hu-chiraganiktar); and milk food, and renewed (navagunak) and constant attention to the fire are requisite. 3. So also when they are ousted from bodily existence, and pain and the eradication of life have come upon them, they are in like manner more sensitive, and sending them protection and defense from spirits and worldly existences is more desirable. 4. And on account of their spiritual character the offering (firishtishno) of gifts for the angels, fit for the ritual of a spirit (mainok nirangik), is more presentable; and also a fire newly tended (nogond) is that which is more the custom in the sacred ceremony (yazishno).

5. For the same reason in the three days when in connection with the soul the sacred ceremony, the burning of fire, its cleanly clearance (gondishno), and other religious and ritualistic defense, feeding on milk and eating with a spoon are ordered, because — as the sacred ceremony, the defense and protection of the worldly existences, is, by order of the creator, the business of Srosh the righteous, and he is also one of those taking the account in the three nights — Srosh the righteous gives the soul, for three days and nights, the place of the spirit of air in the world, and protection. 6. And because of the protectiveness of Srosh, and that one is assisted likewise by Srosh's taking the account, and for that purpose, are the manifest reasons for performing and ordering the ceremony of Srosh for three days and nights.

7. And the fourth day the ordering and performing the ceremony of the righteous guardian spirit (asho farohar) are for the same soul and the remaining righteous guardian spirits of those who are and were and will be, from Gayomard the propitious to Soshans the triumphant.


1. The twenty-eighth question is that you ask thus: For what reason is it not allowable to perform the ceremony of Srosh, the living spirit (ahvo), along with other propitiations (shnumano), when they reverence him separately?

2. The reply is this, that the lord of all things is the creator who is persistent over his own creatures, and a precious work is his own true service which is given by him to Srosh the righteous whom, for this reason, one is to reverence separately when even his name is not frequently mentioned, and one is not even to reverence the names of the archangels [amahraspandan] with him.


1. The twenty-ninth question is that which you ask thus: The third night, in the light of dawn, what is the reason for consecrating separately the three sacred cakes [dron] with three dedications (shnuman)?

2. The reply is this, that one sacred cake, whose dedication is to Rashn and Ashtad, is for satisfying the light of dawn and the period of Ushahin, because the mountain Aushdashtar [Av. Ushi-darena] is mentioned in the propitiation of the angel [Yazad] Ashtad. 3. With Ashtad is the propitiation of the period of Ushahin, and she is the ruler of glory [khwarenah] of that time when the account occurs; the souls are in the light of the dawn of Ushahin when they go to the account; their passage (vidar) is through the bright dawn.

4. One sacred cake, which is in propitiation of the good Vae, is, moreover, on this account: whereas the bad Vae is a despoiler and destroyer, even so the good Vae is a resister (kukhshidar), and likewise encountering the bad Vae; he is also a diminisher (vizudar) of his abstraction of life, and a receiver and protection of life, on account of the sacred cake [Dron].


1. The thirtieth question is that which you ask thus: When a soul of the righteous goes on to heaven, in what manner does it go; also, who receives it, who leads it, and who makes it a household attendant of Ohrmazd? Also, does any one of the righteous in heaven come out to meet it, and shall any thereof make inquiry of it, or how? 2. Shall they also make up an account as to its sin and good works, and how is the comfort and pleasantness in heaven shown to it; also, what is its food? 3. Is it also their assistance which reaches unto the world, or not? And is the limit (samano) of heaven manifest, or what way is it?

4. The reply is this, that a soul of the righteous steps forth unto heaven through the strength of the spirit of good works, along with the good spirit which is the escort (parvanako) of the soul, into its allotted station and the uppermost (tayiko) which is for its own good works; along with the spiritual good works, without those for the world, and a crown and coronet, a turban-sash and a fourfold fillet-pendant, a decorated robe (jamako) and suitable equipments, spiritually flying unto heaven (vahisht) or to the supreme heaven (Garothman), there where its place is. 5. And Vohuman, the archangel [amahraspand], makes it a household attendant (khavag-i-maninedo) to Ohrmazd the creator, and by order of Ohrmazd announces its position (gas) and reward; and it becomes glad to beg for the position of household attendant of Ohrmazd, through what it sees and knows.

6. Ohrmazd the creator of good producers (dahakan) is a spirit even among spirits, and spirits even have looked for a sight of him; which spirits are manifestly above worldly existences. 7. But when, through the majesty of the creator, spirits put on worldly appearances (venishnoiha), or are attending (sinayaniko) to the world and spirit, and put away appearance (venishno apadojend), then he whose patron spirit (ahvo) is in the world is able to see the attending spirits, in such similitude as when they see bodies in which is a soul, or when they see a fire in which is Warharan, or see water in which is its own spirit. 8. Moreover, in that household attendance, that Ohrmazd has seen the soul is certain, for Ohrmazd sees all things; and many even of the fiend's souls, who are put away from those of Ohrmazd in spiritual understanding, are delighted by the appearance (numudano) of those of Ohrmazd.

9. And the righteous in heaven, who have been his intimate friends, of the same religion and like goodness, speak to him of the display of affection, the courteous inquiry, and the suitable eminence from coming to heaven, and his everlasting well-being in heaven.

10. And the account as to sin and good works does not occur unto the heavenly ones; it is itself among the perplexing questions of this treatise, for the taking of the account and the atonement for the sins of a soul of those passed away and appointed unto heaven happen so, although its place (gas) is there until the renovation of the universe, and it has no need for a new account. 11. And that account is at the time the account occurs; those taking the account are Ohrmazd, Vohuman, Mihr, Srosh, and Rashn, and they shall make up the account of all with justice, each one at his own time, as the reply is written in its own chapter.

12. As to that which you ask concerning food, the meals of the world are taken in two ways: one is the distribution of water in haste, and one is with enjoyment (aurvazishno) to the end; but in heaven there is no haste as to water, and rejoicing with much delight they are like unto those who, as worldly beings, make an end of a meal of luxury (aurvazishnikih). 13. To that also which is the spiritual completion of the soul's pleasure it is attaining in like proportion, and in its appearance to worldly beings it is a butter of the name of Maidyozarem. 14. And the reason of that name of it is this, that of the material food in the world that which is the product of cattle is said to be the best (pashum), among the products of cattle in use as food is the butter of milk, and among butters that is extolled as to goodness which they shall make in the second month of the year, and when Mihr is in the constellation Taurus; as that month is scripturally (dinoiko) called Zaremaya, the explanation of the name to be accounted for is this, that its worldly representative (andazako) is the best food in the world.

15. And there is no giving out of assistance by the soul of the righteous from heaven and the supreme heaven; for, as to that existence full of joy, there is then no deserving of it for any one unless each one is fully worthy of it. 16. But the soul has a remembrance of the world and worldly people, its relations and gossips; and he who is unremembered and unexpecting (abarmarvad) is undisturbed, and enjoys in his own time all the pleasure of the world as it occurs in the renovation of the universe, and wishes to attain to it. 17. And, in like manner, of the comfort, pleasure, and joy of the soul, which, being attained in proportion, they cause to produce in heaven and the supreme heaven, its own good works of every kind are a comfort and pleasure such as there are in the world from a man who is a wise friend — he who is a reverent worshipper — and other educated men, to her who is a beautiful, modest, and husband-loving woman — she who is a manager (arastar) under protection — and other women who are clever producers of advantage. 18. This, too, which arises from beasts of burden, cattle, wild beasts, birds, fish, and other species of animals; this, too, from luminaries, fires, streams (hu-tajishnan), winds, decorations, metals, and colored earths; this, too, which is from the fences (pardakano) of grounds, houses, and the primitive lands of the well-yielding cattle; this, too, which is from rivers, fountains, wells, and the primary species of water; this, too, which is from trees and shrubs, fruits, grain, and fodder, salads, aromatic herbs, and other plants; this, too, which is the preparation of the land for these creatures and primitive creations; this, too, from the species of pleasant tastes, smells, and colors of all natures, the producers of protections, the patron spirits (ahuan), and the appliances of the patron spirits, can come unto mortals.

19. And what the spirit of good works is in similitude is expressly a likeness of stars and males, females and cattle, fires and sacred fires, metals of every kind, dogs, lands, waters, and plants. 20. The spiritual good works are attached (avayukhto) to the soul, and in the degree and proportion which are their strength, due to the advancement of good works by him who is righteous, they are suitable as enjoyment for him who is righteous. 21. He obtains durability thereby and necessarily preparation, conjointly with constant pleasure and without a single day's vexation (ayomae-beshiha).

22. There is also an abundant joyfulness, of which no example is appointed (vakhto) in the world from the beginning, but it comes thus to those who are heavenly ones and those of the supreme heaven; and of which even the highest worldly happiness and pleasure are no similitude, except through the possession of knowledge which is said to be a sample of it for worldly beings. 23. And of its indications by the world the limited with the unlimited, the imperishable with perishableness, the consumable with inconsumableness are then no equivalent similitudes of it. 24. And it is the limited, perishable, and consumable things of the world's existence which are the imperishable and inconsumable ones of the existence of endless light, the indestructible ones of the all-beneficial and ever-beneficial space (gunj), and the all-joyful ones — without a single day's vexation — of the radiant supreme heaven (Garothman). 25. And the throne (gas) of the righteous in heaven and the supreme heaven is the reward he obtains first, and is his until the resurrection, when even the world becomes pure and undisturbed; he is himself unchangeable thereby, but through the resurrection he obtains what is great and good and perfect, and is eternally glorious.


1. The thirty-first question is that which you ask thus: When he who is wicked goes to hell, how does he go, and in what manner does he go; also, who comes to meet him, and who leads him to hell; also, does any one of the infernal ones (dushahuikano) come to meet him, or how is it? 2. Shall they also inflict punishment upon him, for the sin which he has committed, at once, or is his punishment the same until the future existence? 3. Also, what is their food in hell, and of what description are their pain and discomfort; and is the limit of hell manifest, or how is it?

4. The reply is this, that a soul of the wicked, the fourth night after passing away, its account being rendered, rolls head-foremost and totters (kapinedo) from the Chinwad bridge; and Vizarash, the demon, conveys (nayedo) him cruelly bound therefrom, and leads him unto hell. 5. And with him are the spirits and demons connected with the sin of that soul, watching in many guises, resembling the very producers of doubt (viman-dadaran-ich), the wounders, slayers, destroyers, deadly ones, monsters (dush-gerpano), and criminals, those who are unseemly, those, too, who are diseased and polluted, biters and tearers, noxious creatures, windy stenches, glooms, fiery stenches, thirsty ones, those of evil habits, disturbers of sleep (khvap-kharan), and other special causers of sin and kinds of perverting, with whom, in worldly semblance, are the spiritual causers of distress. 6. And proportional to the strength and power which have become theirs, owing to his sin, they surround him uncomfortably, and make him experience vexation, even unto the time of the renovation of the universe. 7. And through the leading of Vizarash he comes unwillingly unto hell, becomes a household attendant (khavag-i-manoi-aito) of the fiend and evil one, is repentant of the delusion of a desire for fables (vardakiha), is a longer for getting away from hell to the world, and has a wonderful desire for good works.

8. And his food is as a sample of those which are among the most fetid, most putrid, most polluted, and most thoroughly unpleasant; and there is no enjoyment and completeness in his eating, but he shall devour (jalad) with a craving which keeps him hungry and thirsty, due to water which is hastily sipped. 9. Owing to that vicious habit there is no satisfaction therefrom, but it increases his haste and the punishment, rapidity, and tediousness of his anguish.

10. The locality in hell is not limited (samani-ait) before the resurrection, and until the time of the renovation of the universe [Frashegird] he is in hell. 11. Also out of his sin is the punishment connected with it, and that punishment comes upon him, from the fiend and spirit of his own sin, in that manner and proportion with which he has harassed and vexed others and has reverenced, praised, and served that which is vile.

12. And at the time of the renovation, when the fiend perishes, the souls of the wicked pass into melted-metal (ayeno) for three days; and all fiends and evil thoughts, which are owing to their sin, have anguish effectually, and are hurried away by the cutting and breaking away of the accumulation (ham-dadakih) of sin of the wicked souls. 13. And by that pre-eminent (avartum) ablution in the melted metal they are thoroughly purified from guilt and infamy (dasto va raspako), and through the perseverance (khvaparih) and mercifulness of the pre-eminent persistent ones they are pardoned, and become most saintly (mogtum) pure ones; as it is said in metaphor that the pure are of two kinds, one which is glorious (khvarvato), and one which is metallic (ayenavato).

14. And after that purification there are no demons, no punishment, and no hell as regards the wicked, and their disposal (virastako) also is just; they become righteous, painless, deathless, fearless, and free from harm. 15. And with them comes the spirit of the good works which were done and instigated by them in the world, and procures them pleasure and joy in the degree and proportion of those good works. 16. But the recompense of a soul of the righteous is a better formation (veh-dadih) and more.


1. As to the thirty-second question and reply, that which you ask is thus: In which direction and which land is hell, and how is it?

2. The reply is this, that the place of a soul of the wicked, after the dying off of the body, is in three districts (vimand): one of them is called that of the ever-stationary [hamistagan or purgatory] of the wicked, and it is a chaos (gumezako), but the evil is abundantly and considerably more than the good; and the place is terrible, dark, stinking, and grievous with evil. 3. And one is that which is called the worst existence, and it is there the first tormentors (vikhrunigano) and demons have their abode; it is full of evil and punishment, and there is no comfort and pleasure whatever. 4. And one is called Drujaskan, and is at the bottom of the gloomy existence, where the head (kamarako) of the demons rushes; there is the populous abode of all darkness and all evil.

5. These three places, collectively, are called hell, which is northerly, descending, and underneath this earth, even unto the utmost declivity of the sky; and its gate is in the earth, a place of the northern quarter, and is called the Arezur ridge, a mountain which, among its fellow mountains of the name of Arezur that are amid the rugged (kofik) mountains, is said in revelation to have a great fame with the demons, and the rushing together and assembly of the demons in the world are on the summit of that mountain, or as it is called 'the head of Arezur.'


1. As to the thirty-third question and reply, that which you ask is thus: In what manner is there one way of the righteous from the Daitih peak to heaven, and one of the wicked to hell; and what is their nature?

2. The reply is this, that: one is for ascent, and one for descent; and on account of both being of one appearance I write thus much for understanding and full explanation, that is to say: (3) The righteous souls pass over on the Chinwad bridge by spiritual flight and the power of good works; and they step forth up to the star, or to the moon, or to the sun station, or to the endless light [Anagran]. 4. The soul of the wicked, owing to its falling from the bridge, its lying demon, and the pollution collected by its sin, they shall lead therefrom to the descent into the earth, as both ways lead from that bridge on the Daitih peak.


1. The thirty-fourth question is that which you ask thus: Does this world become quite without men, so that there is no bodily existence in it what- ever, and then shall they produce the resurrection, or how is it?

2. The reply is this, that this world, continuously from its immaturity even unto its pure renovation [Frashegird] has never been, and also will not be, without men; and in the evil spirit, the worthless (ashapir), no stirring desire of this arises. 3. And near to the time of the renovation the bodily existences desist from eating, and live without food (pavan akhurishnih); and the offspring who are born from them are those of an immortal, for they possess durable and blood-exhausted (khun-girai) bodies. 4. Such are they who are the bodily-existing men that are in the world when there are men, passed away, who rise again and live again.


1. The thirty-fifth question is that which you ask thus: Who are they who are requisite in producing the renovation of the universe [Frashegird], who were they, and how are they?

2. The reply is this, that of those assignable for that most perfect work the statements recited are lengthy, for even Gayomard, Yim the splendid [Jamshed], Zartosht the Spitaman, the spiritual chief (rado) of the righteous, and many great thanksgivers were appointed for completing the appliances of the renovation; and their great miracles and successful (avachiraganik) management have moved on, which works for the production of the renovation. 3. Likewise, on the approach of the renovation, Keresasp the Saman who smites Dahak [Zohak], Kai-Khusro who was made to pass away by Vae the long-continuing lord, Tus and Vevan [Giw] the allies (avakano), and many other mighty doers are aiding the production of the renovation.

4. But those who are the producers of the renovation more renowned throughout the spheres (vaspoharakaniktar) are said to be seven, whose names are Roshano-chashm [Av. Raochas-chaeshman], Khur-chashm [Av. Hvare-chaeshman], Fradat-gadman [Fradat-hvareno], Varedat-gadman [Av. Varedat-hvareno], Kamak-vakhshishn [Av. Vouru-nemo], Kamak-sud [Av. Vouru-savo], and Soshans [Av. Saoshyas]. 5. As it is said that in the fifty-seven years, which are the period of the raising of the dead, Roshan-chashm in Arzah, Khur-chashm in Savah, Fradat-gadman in Fradatafsh, Varedat-gadman in Vidatafsh, Kamak-vakhshishn in Vorubarst, and Kamak-sud in Vorujarsht, while Soshans in the illustrious and pure Khwaniras is connected with them, are immortal. 6. The completely good sense, perfect hearing, and full glory of those seven producers of the renovation [Frashegird] are so miraculous that they converse from region unto region, every one together with the six others, just as now men at an interview utter words of conference and cooperation with the tongue, one to the other, and can hold a conversation.

7. The same perfect deeds for six years in the six other regions, and for fifty years in the illustrious Khwaniras, prepare immortality, and set going everlasting life and everlasting weal (sudih) through the help and power and glory of the omniscient and beneficent spirit, the creator Ohrmazd.


1. As to the thirty-sixth question and reply, that which you ask is thus: How shall they produce the resurrection, how do they prepare the dead, and when the dead are prepared by them, how are they? 2. When it is produced by them, is an increase in the brilliance of the stars, moon, and sun necessary, and does it arise, or not? are there seas, rivers, and mountains, or not? and is the world just as large as this, or does it become more so and wider?

3. The reply is this, that the preparation and production of the resurrection are an achievement connected with miracle, a sublimity (rabaih), and, afterwards, also a wondrous appearance unto the creatures who are uninformed. 4. The secrets and affairs of the persistent creator are like every mystery and secret; excepting himself — he who is capable of all knowledge, the fully-informed, and all in all (vispano vispo) — no one of the worldly beings and imperfect spirits has known them.

5. A true proverb (gobishno-go) of the intelligent and worldly, which is obvious, is that as it is easier in teaching to teach again learning already taught and forgotten than that which was untaught, and easier to repair again a well-built house, given gratuitously, than that which is not so given, so also the formation again of that which was formed is more excellent (hunirtar), and the wonder is less, than the creation of creatures. 6. And through the wisdom and glory of the omniscient and omnipotent creator, by whom the saddened (alikhto) creatures were created, that which was to perish is produced again anew, and that which was not to perish, except a little, is produced handsome even for a creation of the creator.

7. He who is a pure, spiritual creature is made unblemished; he, also, who is a worldly creature is immortal and undecaying, hungerless and thirstless, undistressed and painless; while, though he moves (jundedo) in a gloomy, evil existence, the fiend is rightly judging from its arrangement (min nivardo) that it is not the place of a beneficent being, but the place of an existence which is deadly, ignorant, deceiving, full of malice, seducing, destroying, causing disgrace, making unobservant (aubengar), and full of envy. 8. And his existence is so full of malice, deceit, seductiveness, unobservance, destructiveness, and destruction that he has no voice except for accomplices (ham-budikan) and antagonists, except also for his own creatures and gossips when their hearts are desirous of evil, seducing, destroying, making unobservant, causing malice, and bearing envy. 9. And he is disclosed (vishad) from his own origin and abyss full of darkness, unto the limits of darkness and confines of the luminaries; and in his terribleness and demoniacal deliberation he gazes at the unblemished light and creatures of the beneficent Ohrmazd. 10. And through abundant envy and complete maliciousness is his lying; and he mounts (subaredo) to seize, destroy, render unobservant, and cause to perish these same well-formed creatures of the sacred beings. 11. And owing to his observance of falsehood he directed falsehood and lies with avidity (vareno), which were necessary for obtaining his success in his own rendering others unobservant (aubeno); even in the nine thousand winters (hazangrok zim) of falsehood that which is disregarded therein is his own falsity.

12. He who is the most lordly of the lords of the pre-eminent luminaries, and the most spiritual of spirits, and all the beings of Ohrmazd the creator — who was himself capable of an effectual (tubano) gain for every scheme of his — do not allow that fiend into the interior, into the radiance (farogid) of the luminaries. 13. And they understood through their own universal wisdom that fiend's thoughts of vileness, and meditation of falsehood and lies, and became aware of them by themselves and through their own intuition, and shall not accept the perdition (aoshih) of the fiend, but are to be rightly listening to the commands of him [Ohrmazd] who is worthy. 14. For his [the fiend's] is not the nature of him who is good, nor the wisdom of him who is propitious; and he does not turn from the confines of the shining ones, and the developments pertaining to those of the good being, until he arrives at the creatures; and he struggles in an attempt (auzmano), spreads forth into the sky, is mobbed (garohagi-ait) in combats, is completely surrounded, and is tested with perfect appliances. 15. His resources, also, are destroyed, his internal vigor is subdued, his weapons of falsehood are disregarded, and his means of deceiving shall perish; and with completeness of experience, thorough painfulness, routed troops, broken battle-array, and disarranged means he enjoys on the outside the radiance of the luminaries with the impotence (anaiyyaragih) of a desire which again returns to him.

16. And the same well-shining light of all kinds of the creator, when they shall not let in him who is Ahriman, shall remain an unlimited time, while the fiend is in household attendance on those of the frontier through not being let in, and constantly troubled at the everlasting creatures. 17. The household attendance of the fiend seemed to it [the light] perpetually afflicting; and also the previous struggle of the fiend when the celestial spirit (ahvo) pertaining to the luminaries was not contended with by him, his defeat (makhituntano) when the luminaries were not defeated by him, his infliction of punishment before sin, and his causing hatred before hatred exists are all recounted by it to the justice and judiciousness whose unchangeableness, will, persistence, and freedom from hatred — which is the character of its faithful ones — are not so, to him who is the primeval (peshako) creator.

18. The fiend, after his falsity, the struggle — on account of the fighting of the shining ones and the decreed keeping him away which was due to the fighter for the luminaries — and the ill-success of the struggle of himself and army, ordered the beating back of the worthy fighter against destruction, the malicious avenging again of the causer of hatred, and the destroyer's internal vileness and disorganization anew of his own place. 19. He saw the beneficent actions by which, through the wisdom of Ohrmazd, the spiritual wisdom, within the allotted (burin-homond) time, the limited space, the restricted conflict, the moderate trouble, and the definite (farjam-homand) labor existing, struggles against the fiend, who is the unlawful establisher of the wizard; and he returned inside to fall disarmed (asamano) and alive, and until he shall be fully tormented (pur-dardag-hae) and shall be thoroughly experienced, they shall not let him out again in the allotted time that the fiend ordered for the success of falsehood and lies. 20. And the same fiend and the primeval (kadmon) demons are cast out confusedly, irreverently, sorrowfully, disconcertedly, fully afflicting their friends, thoroughly experienced, even with their falsehoods and not inordinate means, with lengthy slumbers, with broken-down (avasist) deceits and dissipated resources, confounded and impotent, into the perdition of Ahriman, the disappearance of the fiend, the annihilation of the demons, and the non-existence of antagonism.

21. To make the good creatures again fresh and pure, and to keep them constant and forward in pure and virtuous conduct is to render them immortal; and the not letting in of the coexistent one, owing to the many new assaults (padjastoih) that occur in his perpetual household attendance of falsity — through which there would have been a constant terror of light for the creatures of the sacred beings [Yazads] — is to maintain a greater advantage. 22. And his (Ohrmazd's) means are not the not letting in of the fiend, but the triumph arranged for himself in the end — the endless, unlimited light being also produced by him, and the constantly-beneficial space that is self-sustained — which (triumph) is the resource of all natures, races, characters, powers, and duties from the beginning and maturing of those of the good religion and the rushing of the liar and destroyer on to the creatures, which are requisite for the final, legitimate triumph of the well-directing creator, and for the termination of the struggles of all by the protection and recompense of the praises and propitiation performed, which are the healing of the righteous and the restoration of the wicked at the renovation [Frashegird]. 23. Even these developments, even these established habits (dad-shaniha), even these emissions of strength, even these births, even these races, even these townspeople (dihikoiha), even these characters, even these sciences, even these manageable and managing ones, and even these other, many, special species and manners which at various periods (anbano) of time are in the hope that the quantity and nature of their auxiliaries may be complete, and their coming accomplished and not deficient in success (vakhto), are distributed and made happy by him.

24. The sky is in three thirds, of which the one at the top is joined to the endless light, in which is the constantly-beneficial space; the one at the bottom reached to the gloomy abyss, in which is the fiend full of evil; and one is between those two thirds which are below and above. 25. And the uppermost third, which is called 'the rampart of the supreme heaven' (garothmano drupushto), was made by him with purity, all splendor, and every pleasure, and no access to it for the fiend. 26. And he provided that third for undisturbedly convoking the pure, the archangels [amahraspandan], and the righteous that have offered praises who, as it were unarmed (azenavar), struggle unprepared and thoroughly in contest with the champions of the coexistent one, and they smite the coexistent one and his own progeny (goharako) already described, and afford support to the imperishable state, through the help of the archangels [amahraspandan] and the glory of the creator. 27. And, again also, in their fearlessness they seek for the destruction of the demons and for the perfection of the creatures of the good beings; as one who is fearless, owing to some rampart which is inaccessible to arrows and blows, and shoots arrows at the expanse below, is troubled (bakhsedo) for friends below.

28. And he made a distinction in the prescribed splendor and glory for the lowermost third of the sky; and the difference is that it is liable to injury (pavan resh), so that the fiend, who is void of goodness, comes and makes that third full of darkness and full of demons, and shall be able to perplex in that difficulty when the thousand winters occur, and the five detested (lakhsidako) kinds of the demons of life have also overwhelmed with sin those of the wicked who are deceived by the demons and have fled from the contest. 29. But they shall not let the fiend fully in, owing to the luminaries of the resplendent one, during the allotted time when the demons' punishing and the repentance of the wicked are accomplished.

30. And he appointed for the middle third the creatures of the world separated from the world and the spiritual existence; and among those creatures were produced for them the managing man as a guardian of the creatures, and the deciding wisdom as an appliance of man; and the true religion, the best of knowledge was prepared by him. 31. And that third is for the place of combat and the contest of the two different natures; and in the uppermost part of the same third is stationed by him the light of the brilliant sun and moon and glorious stars, and they are provided by him that they may watch the coming of the adversary, and revolve around the creatures. 32. All the sacred ceremonies of the distant earth (bum), the light, the abundant rains, and the good angels vanquish and smite the wizards and witches who rush about below them, and struggle to perplex by injury to the creatures; they make all such assailants become fugitives. 33. And through their revolution the ascents and descents, the increase and diminution (narafsishno), of the creatures shall occur, the flow and ebb of the seas, and the increase of the dye-like blood of the inferior creatures; also owing to them and through them have elapsed the divisions of the days, nights, months, years, periods, and all the millenniums (hazagrok ziman) of time.

34. He also appointed unto our forefathers the equipment which is their own, a material vesture, a sturdy bravery, and the guardian spirits of the righteous [asho farohar]; and he provided that they should remain at various times in their own nature, and come into worldly vesture. 35. And those for great hosts and many slaves are born, for the duties of the period, into some tribe; he who has plenty of offspring is like Fravak, he who is of the early law (peshdad) like Hoshang, he who is a smiter of the demon like Takhmorup, he who is full of glory like Yim [Jamshed], he who is full of healing like Feridoon, he who has both wisdoms like the righteous Manushchihar, he who is full of strength like Keresasp, he who is of a glorious race like Kai-Kavad, he who is full of wisdom like Aoshanar [Av. Aoshnara?]. 36. He who is noble is like Siyavash [Av. Kavi Syavarshan], he who is an eminent doer (avarkar) like Kai-Khusro, he who is exalted like Kai-Vishtasp, he who is completely good like the righteous Zartosht, he who arranges the world like Peshyotanu, he who is over the religion (dino-avarag) like Aturo-pad [Adurbad], he who is liturgical like Ushedar, he who is legal like Ushedarmah, and he who is metrical and concluding like Soshans. 37. Among them are many illustrious ones, glorious doers, supporters of the religion, and good managers, who are completely (apur) for the smiting of the fiend and the will of the creator.

38. He also produced the creatures as contenders, and granted assistance (vedvarih), through the great, in the struggle for the perfect happiness from heaven at the renovation [Frashegird] of the universe; and he made them universally (vaspoharakaniha) contented. 39. A vitiated thought of a living, well-disposed being is a stumble (nishivo) which is owing to evil; and these are even those contented with death, because they know their limit, and it shall be definite (burino-homond) and terminable; the evil of the world, in life, is definite, and they shall not make one exist unlimitedly and indefinitely in the evil of the world, through an eternal life with pain.

40. And through a great mystery, wholly miraculous, he produced a durable immortality for the living; a perplexity so long as the best and utmost of it is such an immortality of adversity, for it is ever living molested and eternally suffering. 41. And their development, the strength of lineage obtained, is ever young in succession, and the tender, well-destined ones, who are good, are in adversity and perpetuity of life, so that there is a succession of life through their own well-destined offspring. 42. They become eternally famous, so that they obtain, every one, an old age which is renewed, free from sickness and decay, visibly in their own offspring and family (goharako) whenever they become complete; and any one of the combative, whose struggle is through the smiting that his fellow-combatant obtains, is of a comfortable disposition at the balance. 43. This one, too, is for stepping forth to heaven, even as that pre-eminent one of the righteous, the greatest of the apostles and the most fortunate of those born, the chief of worldly beings, the righteous Zartosht the Spitaman, when the omniscient wisdom, as a trance (gip), came upon him from Ohrmazd, and he saw him who was immortal and childless, and also him who was mortal and provided with children; that perpetual life of the childless then seemed to him terrible, and that succession of mortals seemed commendable; so that the coming of his assured offspring, Ushedar, Ushedarmah, and Soshans, became more longed for and more desired, and death more than the perpetual life of his own body.

44. And when he who is all-watchful and all-knowing had arranged the means of opposing the fiend, there came for destroying, like a general leader (vispvar), that fiend of deceiving nature, the harassing, rushing, evil-wishing, primeval (pesh) contender, together with the demons Akomano ('evil thought'), Aeshm ('wrath'), Zarman ('decrepitude'), Bushasp ('lethargy'), craving distress, bygone luck, Vae, Vareno ('lust'), Asto-vidad, and Vizarash, and the original, innumerable demons and fiends of Mazendara. 45. And his darkness and gloom, scorpions (kadzuno), porcupines, and vermin, poison and venom, and the mischief originally in the lowermost third of the sky, issue upwards, astute in evil, into the middle third, in which are the agreeable creatures which Ohrmazd created.

46. And he smote the ox, he made Gayomard mortal, and he shook the earth; and the land was shattered, creation became dark, and the demons rushed below, above, and on all sides, and they mounted even to the uppermost third of the sky. 47. And there the barricade (band) and rampart fortifying (vakhshiko) the spiritual world is approached, for which the safeguard (nigas) of all barricades, that is itself the great glory of the pure religion, solving doubts — which is the safeguard of all barricades — is arrayed. 48. And the splendid, belt-bearing Pleiades, like the star-studded girdle of the spirit-fashioned, good religion of the Mazda-worshippers, are so arrayed as luminaries of the fully-glorious ones. 49. And there was no possibility (aitokih) of any demon or fiend, nor yet even of the demon of demons, the mightiest (mazvantum) in valor, rushing up across that boundary; they are beaten back now, when they have not reached it from the gloom, at once and finally (yak-vayo akhar).

50. And the fiend of gloomy race, accustomed to destruction (aosh-ayin), changed into causes of death the position (gas) of the brilliant, supreme heaven of the pure, heavenly angels — which he ordained through the power of Mitokht ('falsehood') — and the triumph of the glory of the world's creatures, as ordained through two decrees (ziko): one, the destruction of the living by the power of death; and one causing the manacling of souls by a course of wickedness. 51. And he made as leaders therein that one astute in evil who is already named, and Asto-vidad who is explained as 'the disintegration of material beings;' he also entrusted the demon Bushasp ('lethargy') with the weakening of the breath, the demon Tap ('fever') with stupefying and disordering the understanding, and the demon Az ('greediness') with suggesting cravings and causing drinking before having the thirst of a dog. 52. Also the demon Zarman ('decrepitude') for injuring the body and abstracting the strength; the bad Vae's tearing away the life by stupefying the body; the demon Aeshm ('wrath') for occasioning trouble by contests, and causing an increase of slaughter; the noxious creatures of gloomy places for producing stinging and causing injury; the demon Zairich for poisoning eatables and producing causes of death; with Niyaz ('want') the stealthily-moving and dreading the light, the fearfulness of Nihiv ('terror') chilling the warmth, and many injurious powers and demons of the destroyers were made by him constant assistants of Asto-vidad in causing death.

53. Also, for rendering wicked and making fit for hell those whose souls are under the sway of falsehood (kadba), which in religious language is called Mitokht — since it is said in revelation that that is as much an evil as all the demons with the demons of demons — there is Akomano ('evil thought'), who is with the evil spirit owing to the speaking of Mitokht ('falsehood'). 54. And for his doctrine (dinoih) of falsehood, and winning the creatures, slander the deceiver, lust the selfish, hatred, and envy, besides the overpowering progress of disgrace (nang), the improper desires of the creatures, indolence in seeking wisdom, quarreling about that which is no indication of learning, disputing (sitoj) about the nature of a righteous one, and many other seductive powers and demons helping to win, were made auxiliary to the doctrine of falsehood in deceiving the creatures.

55. Also, to turn his disturbance to creatures of even other kinds, there are demons and fiends of further descriptions (freh-aitan); and for the assistance of those combatants he established also those afflictions (nivakan) of many, the witches of natures for gloomy places, whose vesture is the radiance of the lights that fall [meteors], and rush, and turn below the luminaries which have to soar (vazishnikano) in stopping the way of any little concealment of the spirits and worldly beings. 56. And they (the witches) overspread the light and glory of those luminaries, of whose bestowal of glory and their own diminution of it, moreover, for seizing the creatures, consist the pain, death, and original evil of the abode for the demon of demons.

57. And those demons and original fiends, who are the heads and mighty ones of the demons, injudiciously, prematurely moving, prematurely speaking, not for their own disciplined advantage, but with unbecoming hatred, lawless manner, envy, and spears exposing the body, undesirably struggle together — a perplexing contention of troublers — about the destruction of the luminaries. 58. The army of angels, judiciously and leisurely fighting for the good creatures of the sacred beings, not with premature hatred and forward spears (pesh-nizahih), but by keeping harm away from themselves — the champions' customary mode of wounding — valiantly, strongly, properly, and completely triumphantly struggle for a victory triumphantly fought. 59. For Ahriman the demons are procurers (vashikano) of success in the contests till the end, when the fiend becomes invisible and the creatures become pure.

60. Since worldly beings observe, explain, and declare among worldly beings the work of the spirits and knowledge of customs (ristako), by true observation, through wisdom, that that life (zik) is proper when it is in the similitude of the true power of wisdom, and the visible life is undiscerning of that which is to come and that which is provided, so also the evidence of a knowledge of the end of the contention is certain and clearly visible. 61. And tokens are discernible and signs apparent which, to the wisdom of the ancients — if it extended, indeed, to a knowledge about this pre-eminent subject — were hidden by the fiends, who are concealers of them from the perception (hazishno) of worldly beings, and also from their coming to the perception of worldly beings.

62. The learned high-priests who were founders (payinikano) of the religion knew it (the evidence), and those portions of it were transmitted by them to the ancients which the successive realizers of it, for the ages before me (levinam), have possessed. 63. The deceivers [unorthodox] of the transmitters, who have existed at various times, even among those who are blessed, have remained a mass of knowledge for me, by being my reminder of the mature and proper duty of those truly wise (hu-chiraganiko), through the directions issuable by even worldly decision, and of so many of which I have a remembrance, for the writing of which there would be no end. 64. Then the manifest power of the fiend among us below, and the way provided by the creator for his becoming invisible and his impotence are clear; so also the full power of the creator of the army of angels, assuredly the procurers of success in the end, and the accomplishment all-powerfully — which is his own advantage — of the completely-happy progress, forever, of all creations which are his creatures, are thereby visible and manifest; and many tokens and signs thereof are manifestly clear.

65. One is this, that the creator is in his own predestined (bagdadako) abode, and the fiend is advancing and has rushed in, and his advancing is for the subjugation of the creation.

66. One, that the creatures of Ohrmazd are spiritual and also worldly, and that is no world of the fiend, but he gathers an evil spiritual state into the world; and as among so many the greed of success is only in one, so the triumph is manifest of the good spirits and worldly beings over the evil spirits.

67. One is this, that his defeat in the end is manifest from his contention and aggression (pesh-zadarih); for the fiend is an aggressor in an unlawful struggle, and leaving the army of Ohrmazd — subsequently the lawful defender (lakhvar-zadar) — the fiend of violence is a cause of power among those wholly unrequiting the creator in the world. 68. If, also, every time that he smites the creatures he is equally and lawfully beaten once again, it is assuredly evident therefrom that, when their beating and being beaten are on an equality together, at first he whose hand was foremost was the smiter, and the backward fighter was beaten; but at last that backward fighter is the smiter, and the foremost fighter becomes beaten; for when he is beaten in the former combat, there is then a combat again, and his enemy is beaten.

69. One is this, that when the supply of weapons, the fighting, and the ability of the contenders are equal, the supply of weapons of him who is the beginner (peshidar) has always sooner disappeared, and, at last, he is unarmed and his opponent remains armed; and an armed man is known to be victorious over him who is unarmed, just as one fighting is triumphant over one not fighting. 70. And a similitude of it, which is derived from the world, is even such as when each one of two furious ones (ardo) of equal strength, in a fight together, has an arrow, and each one is in fear of the other's possession of an arrow; and one of them alone shoots his arrow, and makes it reach his opponent; then he is without an arrow, and his opponent, fully mindful of it, has an arrow, and becomes fearless through possession of the arrow, his own intrepidity, and the lack of arrows and complete terror of that earlier shooter. 71. And as regards mighty deeds he is successful; and though there be as much strength for the earlier fighter a successful termination is undiscoverable for him; despoiled of possession by him who is later, and ruined in that which is all-powerful, his end and disappearance are undoubted, clear, and manifest.

72. One is this, that owing to the previous non-appearance of the fiend, the coming forward of sickness and death unto the creatures of the sacred beings occurred when the fiend rushed in, and he rendered the existence of men sickly; he also destroyed and put to death the progeny of animals. 73. Afterwards, through lawfully driving him away, sickness and death come in turn (barikiha) unto the demons, and the healthiness of the righteous and perfect life unto the creatures of the sacred beings, as its counterpart is the great healthiness which comes, more rightly rising, unto the creatures advised by the sacred beings, through united arrangement. 74. And, in the end, a worldly similitude of the sickness and grievous, complete death for the fiends, and of the healthiness and intrinsic (benafshman-chigunih) life for the creatures of the sacred beings, is that which occurs when one of two litigants (ham-patkar), prematurely revengeful, gives to his fellow-litigant an irritating [ordeal?] poison, and himself eats wholesome flour before the later litigant gives a poison, as an antidote, to the earlier litigant, and himself eats the poison-subduing flour; after which he is cured by the poison, and his enemy is dead through the poison of the later flour.

75. One is this, that Ohrmazd the creator, is a manager with omniscient wisdom, and the contention of the fiend of scornful looks (tar nigirishn) is through lust of defilement; of united power is the management of that creator, as existing with (hamzik) all the vigilance in the wisdom which is in everything; and that united power is the strength of the management of heaven. 76. And of much power is the contention of the fiend, as his manifold changing of will — which is hostile to the will of even his own creatures, and is through the weakness and exhausted strength of an evil nature — is the contending power which forms his visible strength.

77. One is this, that is, on account of the fiend's contending ill-advisedly, however strongly the contest is adapted for the damage of his own fiendishness, and regret and bad consequences therefrom are perceptible. 78. Such as the very paralyzing affliction which was appointed (nihado) by him for the creatures of the world in putting the living to death, which he ordered with violence and the hope that it would be his greatest triumph. 79. Even that is what is so self-damaging to the same fiend that, when he puts to death him who is wicked, and he who is wicked, who is performing what is desirable for him (the fiend) — that performance of what is desirable being the practice of sin — is useless and goes thither where he is penitent of that seduction, the spirit of the owner (shah) of the sin, whose soul is wicked, is righteous, in whose worldly body exist the fetters of pain and darkness; and owing to the unfettering of its hands from that pain it (the spirit) is far away, and goes to heaven, which is the most fortified of fortresses. 80. Fearlessly it fights for it, even as the guardian spirit [Farohar] of Yim the splendid [Jamshed] kept away all trouble (vesham), the guardian spirit [Farohar] of Faridoon kept away even those active in vexing, and other guardian spirits of those passed away are enumerated as engaged in the defeat of many fiends.

81. One is this, that the most grievous severance that is owing to him (the fiend) is the production of the mortality of the creatures, in which the afflicting (nizgun) demon Asto-vidad is the head of the many Mazainya demons. 82. And the propitious creator's developers were thus unprovoked (anargond) when the only person, who is called Gayomard, was destroyed by him, and came back to the world as a man and a woman whose names were Marhaya and Marhiyoih [Mashye and Mashyane]; and the propagation and connection of races were through their next-of-kin marriage [kwetodas] of a sister. 83. The unlucky fiend, while he increased offspring and fortune for them through death, so uplifted his voice in their presence, about the death of the living ones of their offspring and lineage, that together with the unmeasured destructiveness of the deadly evil spirit, and the unjust contention of his through death and the conveyer of death [Asto-vidad], the sting also of birth was owing to death. 84. The repetitions of the cry were many, so that the issue (bar) of thousands and thousands of myriads from those two persons, and the multitude passed away, from a number which is limited and a counterpart (aedunoih) of the living people in the world, are apparent; and for the annihilation of many fiends, through death, the propitiousness of the contending power of the creator is clear and manifest.

85. One is this, that the most steadfast quality of the demon himself is darkness, the evil of which is so complete that they shall call the demons also those of a gloomy race. 86. But such is the power in the arms and resources of the angels [Yazads], that even the first gloomy darkness in the world is perpetually subdued by the one power really originating with the sun and suitable thereto, and the world is illuminated.

87. One is this, that the most mischievous weapon of the demons is the habit of self-deception which, on account of rendering the soul wicked thereby, seemed to them as the greatest triumph for themselves, and a complete disaster for the angels [Yazads]. 88. In the great glory of the pure, true religion of the sacred beings is as much strength as is adapted to the full power of the lawlessness and much opposition of falsehood, and also to the fully accurate (arshido) speaking which is in itself an evidence of the true speaking of every proper truth; and no truth whatever is perverted by it. 89. And the false sayings are many, and good sayings — their opponents through good statement — do not escape from their imperfect truth; since a similitude of them is that which occurs when, concerning that which is white-colored, the whole of the truthful speak about its white color, but as to the liars there are some who speak of its black color, some of its mud color, some of its blue color, some of its bran color, some of its red color, and some of its yellow color. 90. And every single statement of each of the truthful is as much evidence, about those several colors of those who are liars, as even the compiled sayings of the Abraham of the Christians, which are the word of him who is also called their Messiah, about the Son of the Supreme Being; thus, they recount that the Son, who is not less than the Father, is himself He, the Being whom they consider undying. 91. One falsehood they tell about the same Messiah is that he died, and one falsehood they tell is that he did not die; it is a falsehood for those who say he did not die, and for those who say he did die; wherefore did he not die, when he is not dead? and wherefore is it said he did not die, when he is mentioned as dead? 92. Even the compilation itself is an opponent to its own words, for, though it said he is dead, it spoke unto one not dead; and though he is not dead, it spoke unto one dead. 93. The proper office (gas) of a compiler and mutilator — through whose complete attainments the demons of like power as to the force of truth are strengthened, and the pure, good religion of the Mazda-worshippers is itself dissipated and rendered useless for itself — is a habit (dado) growing with the fiend; and, as he is seen to be victorious who overturns reliance on changeableness and similar powers, the final disruption of forces is a disruption of peculiarities (khudih vishopishno).

94. One is this, that is, even that prodigious devastation of which it is declared that it happens through the rain of Malkos, when, through snow, immoderate cold, and the unproductiveness of the world, most mortals die; and even the things attainable by mortals are attended with threatenings of scarcity. 95. Afterwards — as among the all-wise, preconcerted remedies (pesh charih) of the beneficent spirit such a remedy was established (and nihad char) that there is one of the species of lands, that is called 'the enclosure formed by Yim [Jamshed],' through which, by orders issued by Yim the splendid and rich in flocks, the son of Vivangha, the world is again filled men of the best races, animals of good breeds, the loftiest trees, and most savory (kharejistano) foods, in that manner came back miraculously for the restoration of the world; which new men are substituted for the former created beings, which is an upraising of the dead. 96. Likewise from that miracle is manifested the non-attainment of the evil spirit to the universal control of the glory of the creator for every purpose.

97. One is this, that — when the heterodox (dush-dino) Dahak [Zohak], on whom most powerful demons and fiends in the shape of serpents are winged, escapes from the fetters of Faridoon, and, through witchcraft, remains a demon even to the demons and a destroyer — a mighty man who is roused up beforehand from the dead, and is called Keresasp the Saman, crushes that fiendishness with a club consisting of a cypress tree, and brings that Dahak through wholesome fear to the just law of the sacred beings.

98. One is this, that these, which are distinct from those born and the men who have labored together, Asto-vidad has not obtained, nor even will obtain, for death; and through the power of immortals, and the action of the good discourses (hu-sakhunaganih), they urge on to the sacred beings those who are inquiring (kav-homand), even to the immortality which is the renovation of the other creatures. 99. One, which is where the mingled conflict of the meeting of good and evil occurs, is the glorious good-yielding one of the creator which is guarded by purity, so that the fiend has not attained to injuring it, since it is pronounced to be the uninjured ox which is called Hadhayas. 100. Also the long life which is through its all-controlling power until they cause the end to occur, and the devourers of fires are subdued by it — besides the whole strength of the unboasting (achum) creatures of the beneficent spirit, after they live even without eating — is because of the Hom that is white and the promoter (frashm) of perfect glory, which possesses the wholesomeness of the elixir of immortality, and through it the living become ever-living. 101. And also as many more specially pure glorious ones whose enumeration would be tedious.

102. One is this, that the struggle of the evil one and the demons with the creatures is not precisely the existence of various kinds of contest, but by natural operation and through desire of deceit. 103. And the demon of slander (Spazg), whose nature it is to make the indignation (zohar) of the creatures pour out, one upon the other, about nothing, as he does not succeed in making it pour out among the righteous, he makes the wicked even pour it out upon the wicked; and as he does not succeed even in making it pour out among the wicked, he makes a demon pour it out upon a demon. 104. The impetuous assailant, Wrath (Aeshm), as he does not succeed in causing strife among the righteous, flings discord and strife amid the wicked; and when he does not succeed as to the strife even of the wicked, he makes the demons and fiends fight together. 105. So also the demon of greediness (Az), when he does not attain, in devouring, to that of the good, mounts by his own nature unto devouring that of the demons. 106. So also the deadly Asto-vidad is ever an antagonistic operator; when there is no righteous one who is mortal, nor any creatures in the world, the wicked dying one (mirak) rides to the fiends through a death which is an antagonism of himself.

107. The means of the united forces are means such as the wise and the high-priests have proclaimed, that is, at the time of the renovation of the universe [Frashegird] being nigh, when completion has come to generation — those who were provided being born — and after they occasion freedom from generation (azerkhunishnih), they cause men and animals to exist, though passed away and dead. 108. All men, righteous and wicked, who continue in the world become immortal, the men are righteous whom Asto-vidad does not obtain for death by evil noosing (dush-vadishno) from behind, and who have completely attained to the rules of the sacred beings (yang-i yazdan); and the soul of the wicked, which is repentant of deceit, turns back upon the demons and fiends themselves all that previous violence of destruction and perversion, contention and blinding which is natural to a demon, and they fight, and strike, and tear, and cause to tear, and destroy among themselves (benafshman val benafshman) so long as they are in hell and numerous.

109. The wicked who are penitent become courageous anew as to the demon who perverts, the living occasion strength, and the retribution of the hellish existence of the wicked is completed, because the increase of sins, owing to the sin which they committed, ceases. 110. They are let out from hell, though their sins are thus accumulated by the demons; they have also prepared the spirit of sin by the three days in molten metal, which drives away tears, as its name is owing to the lessening of tears, which is all in that which occurs when all the doers of actions for the demon of falsehood pass through that preparation. 111. And he who, for three days, thus bathes (vushakedo) his sins which are owing to the fiend, and has destroyed the filth (chakhu) of the accumulated sins, is like those who have passed off and turned over a burden.

112. And the impotence of sin is owing to the destroyer of the fiend by the perception of light, who was their creator they (men) all see all, they all forgive, and they all are powerful as regards all things for the creator. 113. And, moreover, after the three days, when they occur, all the creatures of the good creator are purified and pure by the perfect washing passed through, by the most amazing preparation ordained (bakhto), and by the most complete account they render complete. 114. And they are triumphant over the fiend through their own weapons, through their own driving away of their own littleness (kasvidarih), and the glory of the creator and that of the angels; and since he becomes exhausted in resources (den char) they make him become extinct.

115. But previously they are attacked, and dispersed, and subdued, and this even fully painfully and with complete experience; and they aid, through backward goodness, in the antagonism of means which are separated divergently, through scattered resources and subdued strength, like the life from the body of worldly mortals, and this, moreover, confusedly, uselessly, and unmovingly. 116. But the abode for the essential material existence (sti-i chihariko), about which there is a seeking for interment, is not powerless, and on inquiring the wishes of such numbers they have cast him out; and no share whatever, nor fragment of a share, of fiendishness, nor even so much as some morsel of unpardonableness sent by fiendishness, remains in this light.

117. Those who are righteous, intelligent through their own glory of religion (Den) which is a spirit in the form of light are scattered (parvandag-aito) equally around the sky of skies, when from every single side of it there arises, for the sake of margin, three times as much space as the earth created by Ohrmazd, in the preparation of the creatures which were created by him. 118. Through his own will he again constructs the bodies of the evil creation, unlaboriously, easily, and full-gloriously, though their construction is even from the clay of [Mount] Aushdashtar, and their moisture is from the purified water of Areduisur the undefiled [Av. Ardvi Sura Anahita]. 119. And from that which is a good protector through him, and which is also connected with him, even from the Hadhayas ox, is the strength of everlasting welfare (vehgarih) and immortality; and the living are again produced for the body, they have immortal life, and they become hungerless and thirstless, undecaying and undying, undistressed and undiseased, ever-living and ever-beneficial.

120. After the renovation of the universe there is no demon, because there is no deceit; and no fiend, because there is no falsity; there is no evil spirit (angramino), because there is no destruction; there is no hell, because there is no wickedness; there is no strife, because there is no anger; there is no hatred, because there is no ill-temper (dazih); there is no pain, because there is no disease. 121. There is also no Dahak [Zohak], because there is no fear; there is no want, because there is no greediness; there is no shame, because there is no deformity; there is no falsehood, because there is no desire of falsehood; there is no heterodoxy, because there are no false statements; and there is no tardiness, because it speaks of a dilatory (shusto) race in that which is said thus: 'They are all those of evil thoughts, of evil words, of evil deeds, a race of all evils to be made to tear by the evil spirit.'

122. And on his (the demon's) disappearance every evil has disappeared, on the disappearance of evil every good is perfected, and in the time of complete goodness it is not possible to occasion (andakhtano) any pain or distress whatever, by any means, to any creature. 123. Those who are present (nunak) sufferers, when there is a blow of a fist on the body, or the point of a nail (tekh burak) is driven into a limb, are pained on account of the combination (ham-dadakih) of a different nature for the purposes of the fiend in the body. 124. But at that time of no complication (ahamyakhtih), when a limb is struck upon a limb, or even such a thing as a knife, or sword, or club, or stone, or arrow reaches the body, there is no pain or discomfort whatever corresponding to that present pain. 125. And at that time one consideration (vushid-ae) occurs, for now the pain from that beating and striking is always owing to that different nature, and on account of their being suitable to it, but at that time everything being of like nature and like formation there is never any distress.

126. And in that most happy time they let the sun, moon, and luminaries exist, but there is no need for a return of the day and a removal of its going forth (frashm), for the world is a dispenser (vakhtar) of all light, and all creatures, too, are brilliant, those luminaries also become as it were perfectly splendid for them. 127. And every creature, too, is of like will and like power; whichever were mortals, unenvious of the welfare of all creatures, are alike joyous, and that share of their position and pleasure rejoices them which has come to them from the glory of all the existences and capabilities of him, the all-good, who is aware of all of everything through his own perfect persistence and complete resources.

128. And he allots, to the doers of good works and the suitable ranks, the power of a judge (dadako), wealthiness, goodness, and the directorship (radih) of what is intended. 129. He is the designer of what is intended, as it is said about his creatures and capability that fire is producing wind, fire is producing water, and fire is producing earth; wind is producing fire, wind is producing water, and wind is producing earth; water is producing fire, water is producing wind, and water is producing earth; earth is producing fire, earth is producing wind, and earth is producing water. 130. The spirit is both the cause of spirit and the cause of matter (stish); and the cause of matter, too, is also the cause of spirit, through that perpetual capability.

131. And, moreover, all the angels, the souls, and the guardian spirits [Farohars] are attending to the wishes of the glory of the creator and the commands of the creator, without trouble and fully rejoicing, in likeness unto the forms of seas, rivers, mountains, trees, and waters; and they have comforted and decorated the creation. 132. And the angels, souls, and guardian spirits, themselves also the constituted spirits of a former contact with life, are thereby pleased and rejoiced; eternal and thoroughly prepared they are naturalized in that complete joy.


1. As to the thirty-seventh question and reply, that which you ask is thus: The measure that they measure good works with being revealed, how is it then when there is more, or not, done by us?

2. The reply is this, that every thought, word, and deed whose result is joy, happiness, and commendable recompense — when a happy result is obtainable, and the exuberance (afzuno) of thought, word, and deed is important — is well-thought, well-said, and well-done. 3. And for him the result of whose wish for good works is conclusively joy and exaltation of soul — which are his attainment of recompense from the constantly-beneficial space, the immortal and unlimited, which shall never perish — there is no measure of the multitude of good works. 4. For everyone by whom many are performed, and who engages in still more, appropriates the result more fully, and is more worthy; but it is not obtained for the completion of that which is a definite measure, therefore he does not obtain still more, and it is not necessary he should; and it is, moreover, not obtained even for the completion of a limit of unlimitedness.


1. As to the thirty-eighth question and reply, that which you ask is thus: What are the reason and cause of tying on the sacred thread-girdle (kusti)1 which, when they shall tie it on is said to be so greatly valuable, and when they shall not tie it the sin is so grievous?

2. The reply is this, that the all-good, most spiritual of spirits, and most ruling of rulers is the creator, and there is no need of troubles for men of the poor as to any wealth or anything, for all are his own. 3. And through his will as ruler, and all-powerful, he demands this of men, to remain properly skirted as a true servant not even bound — which is due to that service, and also the indication of a servant as is seen and clearly declared in the ever-fixed (hamai-dado) religion and belief.

4. Formerly men paid homage through the will and worship, as it were more effectually, more essentially, and more suitably for the discreet; and every day spent in worship offered and homage paid they account as of the greatest use, particularly for observing the world, and understanding its character. 5. And as to him of whose offering of homage no worldly advantage whatever is apparent — as fruit is apparent from trees, flavor from foods, fragrance from aromatic herbs, tint (bam) from colors, the good quality of spears from the forest, health from the patient (molvarakan), and decision from words — but, audibly speaking, his head is lowered in sign of humility as though the head, which is uppermost in the body and in the most pre-eminent position, and is lowered as far even as the sole of the foot, which is lowermost in the body, salutes and is placed on the ground in thought about worship and desire of paying homage — and the appearance which exists as regards himself through that lowliest (kihasto) servitude is in accordance with that which is apparent from trees, food, and the many other worldly advantages before recited — whoever has offered homage and such advantageous (veshishnako) appearance is manifest — even then that sign of humility and servitude is what great multitudes consider the offering of homage of a man more essential for hypocrisy (shedo).

1. The Kûstîk (Pers. kustî) consists of a string, about the size of a stay-lace, which is first passed twice round the waist very loosely, over the sacred shirt (see Chap. XL, 2), and tied in front with a loose double knot (right-handed and left-handed), and the long ends are then passed a third time round the waist and tied again behind with a similar double knot. This string contains six strands, each consisting of twelve very fine, white, woollen threads twisted together, or seventy-two threads in all. Near each end the six strands are braided together, instead of being twisted, and for the last inch they are braided into three separate string-ends of two strands each; these string-ends, therefore, contain twenty-four threads each, and form a kind of fringed end to the string. This fringe is a sort of remembrancer, as its six strands are supposed to symbolize the six Gahambars or season-festivals, the twelve threads in each strand symbolize the twelve months, the twenty-four threads in each string-end symbolize the twenty-four kardaks or sections of the Visparad, and the seventy-two threads in the whole string symbolize the seventy-two his or chapters of the Yasna. The girdle has to be re-tied every time the hands have been washed, which, in order to comply with the ceremonial laws, occurs many times in the day; and each time it has to be done with ceremony and a particular formula of prayer (see 27).

6. But owing to that which happens when they plant a tree in the name of a sacred being and eat the produce, and practice other worldly labor of worldly advantage, owing also to work of this kind through the doing of which they preserve all the growing crops of the whole world, and through tillage and multitudinous cultivated plots (khustakiha) it is manifest that they should meditate inwardly (den minoyen). 7. A token and sign of worship is of great use, and a great assistance (banjishno) therein is this belt (band), which is called the Kusti, that is tied on the middle of the body.

8. The reasons of the assistance are numerous; and its first assistance is this, that as to him who — as a worshipper of the sacred beings, owing to the undeceitful (akadba) religion whose indication is sagaciously propitiating with the purifying cup — wears upon the body that spiritual, customary, and doctrinal indication of the sacred beings with a wisdom which is truly religion, his steadfastness and religious service of the sacred beings are audibly spoken thereby; even for the religious it is commanded, because it is an assisting motive of beneficial high-priests and such-like submitters to the commands of the religion of the sacred beings.

9. One is this, that, as the lowliest servant and greatest lord are steadily agreed, and it is beneficial when they (the servants) wear a belt upon the body as a sign of service — because it is not the custom to grant that little at any time without guardianship — the lapse of which service is also not a beneficial lapse, then those unbound are without a token of the lord's service.

10. One is this, that it is commanded in revelation to keep thought, word, and deed confined from sin by a belt, and just like a servant; for the sake of confinement of sins from purity of thought, whose dwelling is the heart, one is to wear the same belt, which is the token of a servant, on the middle of the body and before the heart; and the periodical (hangamikano) sight of the token and sign of confined sins, and of the constant reminder for one's own mind, is the necessity of wearing it as a belt which is very restraining from the sin in thought, word, and deed that is manifest even in experience; which wearing of the same belt is as a reason and cause of much remembrance of much sin, that in the same way is therefore a restraint of it.

11. One is this, that the ancients acquainted with religion have communicated these tidings (srobo) unto our ancestors and to us: 'When the destroyer came upon the creatures, the demons and witches (parikas) especially rushed up in the earth and atmosphere, and even to just below the position of the stars; and they saw multitudes of luminaries, and also the barricade and rampart of the glory of the religion, and the girdle (parvand) of the wishes and good works of all, when it is arrayed like a brilliant thread-girdle (kusti), and all its luminaries are girded (parvasto) by the girdle as the girdle of the omniscient wisdom has girded the all-intelligent angels.' 12. That great glory of the pure religion, solving doubts, became as beautiful and far-adorning as is stated in the liturgy (mansar) thus: 'The star-studded girdle (aiwiyangano) of the spirit-fashioned, good religion of the Mazda-worshippers.' 13. All the demons and fiends were terrified by the great glory of the religion, and it is said that, by the recital, practice, and promulgation of the whole routine of the enlightened religion, all those fiends are subdued, and the renovation of the universe is produced by the will of the patron spirits (ahvan). 14. Likewise, on account of that terror, none of the demons and fiends, who are the mightiest of the demons, rushed upon the creatures of that uppermost third of the sky, who are in purity and indestructibility. 15. And it (the girdle) [kusti] is commanded in revelation for men, more particularly for upholders of the religion, to be within the middle third and near to the uppermost third of the body.

16. One is this, that Yim the splendid [Jamshed], son of Vivangha, who in his worldly career was most prosperous in worldly affairs, a keeper away of all agitations of temper and all death, and a provider of freedom from decay and exemption from death, when he was deceived by the fiend was thereby made eager for supreme sovereignty instead of the service of Ohrmazd. 17. And about his administration (dadarih) of the creatures it is said he himself became cut away from radiant glory [khwarrah] by that fiendishness, and their cause of wandering (garinishno) is the demon, and mankind perishes in that wandering from plain and hill-side. 18. And his pardon originated from the fully-persistent creator; therefore he spoke and gave advice unto his successors as to the retribution of those who shall abandon the service of the creator; and therein is explained about the fortress of the angels, with the many proper actions which are the strength of the fortress, and about the proportional way it is strengthened when a belt worn on the waist is ordered for men by him — the fully glorious ruler who was lord of the world, and also in gloriousness well-betokening the good creation — and they likewise order it.

19. One is this, that just as through that reason, which is an appointment (pado-dahishno) that the sacred beings decreed, the sacred thread-girdle [kusti] was worn even before the coming of Zartosht the Spitaman, so after the coming of that messenger (vakhshvar) of the sacred beings, the righteous Zartosht — who enjoined the commands of the good spirits and the exposition of the religion, with discourse praising the sacred beings and scriptures (avistako) about steadfastness in the good religion — the same religious girdle is put on, with a religious formula [nirang], around the body, over the garment of Vohuman [i.e. the sudre]. 20. Because the same intimation, relative to girding (parvandishnik) is wisdom for which the race of the religion is so justly famed that innumerable people, with the same customs and equally proper girding, wear the sacred thread-girdle [kusti], the ceremonial belt of the religion and indication of the creator, on the middle of the body; and it becomes more destructive of the power of destruction, more obstructive of the way to sin, and more contesting (kastaktar) the will of the demons.

21. One is this, that he is unwise that has not worn it when that man has arrived in whose law no belting and no girdling are ordered, and more perplexing and more grievous destruction is so manifested at the time, that it is similar evidence to that exposition of revelation, the purport (aevaz) of whose question and reply is spoken thus: '"O creator! in whom is the manifestation of secretly-progressing destruction, that is, in whom is its progress?" And Ohrmazd spoke thus: "In him who is the guide of a vile religion; whoever it is who puts on a girdle [kusti] at most thrice (3-tumak) in a year, that is, he does not wear a sacred shirt [sudre] and thread-girdle [kusti], and his law also is this, that it is not necessary to wear them"' — and when the law of no belting is so grievous that, when that law shall be accepted, it is observed that destruction is strengthened.

22. The same belt, kept on after the command of Yim [Jamshed], was the first token as regards which an annihilator of destruction is mentioned and established by law, and on both occasions destruction is more grievously manifest. 23. That which is more particularly important is such as the destroyer of destruction, Yim the splendid, advised, which the high-priest of the good, Zartosht the Spitaman, mentioned thus: 'The sacred thread-girdle [kusti] is as a sign of the service of the sacred beings, a token of sin ended, and a presage of beneficence; and one is to put it on and to gird it, in the neighborhood of the heart and on the middle of the body, with the religious formula accompanying the glorious scripture.' 24. That is also betokened by its equally-dividing (hambur) position and determining fashion; for, as a wise man becomes a discriminator between benefit and injury, between good and evil, so also the place of the sacred thread-girdle is between below and above. 25. With a low sacred girdle [kusti] there is a passage for one's want of openness (avishodano) and secret ruin, and also a shutting up of life; with a high sacred girdle there is a way for thought, word, and deed, and no confinement (agirishnokarih) of life; and tying the sacred girdle with a religious rite (ham-dino) is like a glory amid the glories of the angels, for it is itself through the aid of the patron spirit (ahvo). 26. And from the heart, which is the place of thought and dwelling of life, on the upper side (lalaih) are the eye, ear, tongue, and brain, which are the dwellings of sight, hearing, speech, understanding, and intellect; and on its lower side (frodih) is the abode of a father's generativeness.

27. When this sacred thread-girdle [kusti], whose token, sign, and presage are such, is tied, it is girded on with this glorious rite of the glorious ones, the custom of the learned, the command of rulers, and the decree of apostles.

28. That secretly-progressing destruction, which arises from the fiend of insubordination (asardarih) who was much afraid of Yim [Jamshed], and which is averse to the labor of men and the service of Ohrmazd, is a demon and irreligious (dush-dino), who is full of fear of the girdles (parvandiha) of the glory of religion, with which both angels and also worldlings have become belted and diligent.

29. Then, because the glory for this belt of ours, which is called the Kusti and is worn on the middle of the body, remains unreleased (avi-vukht) from the angels, who are givers of glory, and from men who are glorious — which is explained as a similitude and sample of fortunes (baharakoiha) among worldlings, even those who are actually primitive creatures likewise — it has, therefore, seemed comely and desirable. 30. And their heart, will, knowledge, and purpose are as much for it as that which is perceptible where, even apart from those of the good religion who shall tie the sacred thread-girdle with the scripture formula, some of the faiths of all countries, except those who are unbelted, possess the religious custom. 31. Also outside the seat of the existence of faith all men have the waist, or the palms of the hands, or similar joints for a girdle (kustiko); and it is deemed comely, desirable, and convenient for work to wear it. 32. And it is manifestly the lot (dako) of the thoroughly-praising one whose own desire is truth and the enjoyment of welfare, it is a token of the service of the sacred beings, and a sign of walking in the commands of religion, which they shall tie on account of the superior beings (pashuman) with the proper formula, more particularly with that which one utters when there is reliance upon the scripture itself.


1. As to the thirty-ninth question and reply, that which you ask is thus: What kind of goodness and want of goodness can there be in the sacred thread-girdle [kusti] and shirt [sudre]; and what are the sin of running about uncovered, of prayer offered and prayer not offered, and the purpose of cleansing (mishn)?

2. The reply is this, that it (the shirt) is needful to be perfectly pure white and single, which one fold is because Vohuman also is thus the one creature who was first, and afterwards from him the garment which is innermost and concealed is called in revelation.

3. Proper girdling is double, which two folds are because he also who is in the course of the twofold religious wisdom is intelligent, and the duties due to the sacred beings are themselves in two divisions which are called the instinctive and that heard by the ears.

4. After a man is in the girding they shall tie on, the symptoms of any sins of the belted body are free from sin which is condemned (vijirinido); and when he walks uncovered, or naked, or with a two-fold garment, there is then no root of the sin of running about uncovered in him. 5. Moreover, on hymns [Gathas] being chanted during a meal an inward prayer is not also necessary.

6. The purpose of a cleansing (mishn-ae) is this, that the suitableness of men for eating is due to worship of the sacred beings and glorification of the sacred beings. 7. And as to their necessary recommendation (siparih) of any food for eating, the glorifying of the sacred beings, and the true usages about recounting it, it is commanded, before eating, when the mouth is not soiled with food, that the mouth (dahan) should proceed with the utterance of the pure glorification. 8. Being thereupon suitably seated, and having properly eaten the food, one is to make the mouth clean with a toothpick and water; and after eating, before all words, the praise of the sacred beings is glorified by the mouth cleansed by washing. 9. And between the glorifying before eating and the after glorification one is not to speak other words, and when during a meal a word is spoken by the mouth, that kind of glorification which it is the custom to utter before and after eating is offered by its own organ (andam).

10. And every single organ has one function, but two special functions are connected with the mouth, which are speaking and eating; and because they are together they are mutually opposed, for speaking connects that which is an inward possession with outside teachings (chashiha), and through eating, the outside food comes for the inward further vitality of life. 11. As the ancients have said, where one operation is appointed unto two operators, it is more expressly so that during eating two operations may not both at once (ayag-ich-gun) be produced, by speaking and by eating.

12. To keep those two operations distinct, one from the other, the custom of uttering the praise of sacred beings and the glorification of sacred beings when the mouth remains in the act of eating, until the mouth becomes clean from food, is decreed as inconsistent with goodness (aham-vehih). 13. And that which remains from the outpouring (rikh) at the time of a cleansing is called 'a cleansing (misn-ae).'

14. One means for the retention of knowledge is through not having that retention of knowledge exhausted, but when one thus speaks during that: cleansing the words are really originating with the mouth, for he does not retain them; and whenever (maman) he does not speak anything whatever with the tongue, that religious glorification which it is the custom to utter before and after eating is then offered by him from his own limited resources (samano-i vimand), and it will be offered from his own limited resources.


[Apostasy, Conversion]

1. As to the fortieth question and reply, that which you ask is thus: Of those whose decision is this, that it is not necessary to be steadfast in the religion of the Mazda-worshippers — by which decision this is asserted, that they should abandon the religion of the Mazda-worshippers — some one disparages the religion and goes over to a foreign faith (an-airih), then of what nature is his sin owing thereto, and what does the sin owing thereto, as regards those of the same foreign religion, amount to? 2. Or order some one then to tell us clearly concerning it, how it is, and how is the disobedience due to this sin.

3. The reply is this, that an adult is worthy of death [i.e. guilty of a mortal sin] on account of the good religion they would abandon, on account also of the adopted law of the foreign faith he is worthy of death, in whose reliance upon the improper law is also the sin which they maintain and practice by law, and through being in the same law he is equally sinful with them. 4. And also when any one is on that course, and his wish is for the same protection, of which a similitude is in the enduring words of that good law they would forsake, and he adopts that which is vile, even through that impropriety he is equally sinful.

5. When he dies, without renunciation of that sin and impenitently, in that improperly-constituted law, the position of his soul is then in the worst existence, and his punishment is that of many sins worthy of death; from the demons also there come grievously, hand in hand, pain and suffering, gnawing and stench of many kinds, stinging, tearing, and lacerating, primary evil and discomfort. 6. And through their [the foreigners'] law and faith his distress in that worst existence is thus until the last change of existence, when the renovation of the universe is produced by will among living beings.

7. But reality (aitoih), as regards living, arises from renunciation of that disobedience; it makes those attract to the good law who seduced him to that evil law, that which established him improperly in the law it eradicates from his conduct (rubakih), advancing sins it again restrains, and whatever has advanced it repairs again anew through the religion of the Mazda-worshippers, and he becomes thoughtful, constant, and steadfast. 8. The sin which he set going he restrains and atones for by wealth, trouble, and authorizing commands; even in the body he also undergoes punishment in the three nights (satuih); he then obtains forgiveness, and his soul is saved.

9. And as it is said in the persistent law of the sacred beings, that 'the good religion of the sacred beings, who are the Mazda-worshipping superiors, ordains it as retribution,' so that the sin it takes away (spayeiti)l may not exist in him, his retribution is declared by revelation. 10. And by the same witness it is said, that all of the primitive faith [Paoiryo-tkaesha] have been quite of the same opinion about this, that from the good religion except by the way of renunciation of sin there is none unless to hell; but that renunciation should be during life, for it is said that 'whoever when living does not become righteous, that is, does not fully atone for sin, for him when dead there is no grant of the best existence.' 11. To commit no sin is better than retribution and renunciation of sin.

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