Translated by E. W. West, from Sacred Books of the East,
volume 24, Clarendon Press, 1885.
- The seventy-fifth subject is this, that, when they wish to
provide a supply of water for any cultivated land, it is first
necessary that they make an inspection through every course and
channel of the water, to ascertain whether there be dead matter
therein, or not; and, after that, through the water in like manner.
2. If they be in the middle of it, when the water is within their
cultivated land, and dead matter comes in sight, if it be possible
to ward it off one wards it off, and if it be possible to divert
the water one diverts it. 3. And if the water arrives with dead
matter unawares, it is no sin for them. 4. But if no inspection
of the stream and cultivated land be made, and the water arrives
with dead matter, those people are polluted, and it is necessary
to perform the Barashnom ceremony as regards their heads.
- The seventy-sixth subject is this, when a woman brings forth,
it is necessary that she should not wash her head for twenty-one
days, nor put her hand again on anything, nor walk on a terrace-roof,
nor put her foot on a threshold in her habitation. 2. And after
the twenty-one days, if she sees herself in such a state that
she is able to wash her head, she washes her head. 3. And, after
that, until the coming on of the fortieth day, it is requisite
to abstain from the vicinity of a fire and anything that is wooden
or earthen; it is also requisite to abstain from everything of
her cooking and pot-boiling. 4. Afterwards, when it is forty days,
she is to wash her head, and it is proper for her to do every
kind of work.
- Till the lapse of a second forty days it is not proper for
her husband to make an approach to her, for it is a great sin,
and it is possible that she may become pregnant a second time,
as within a period of forty days women become very quickly pregnant.
- And if after the first forty days she sees herself impure,
unless she knows with accuracy that it has come from the infant,
it is necessary to consider if she be menstruous.
- The seventy-seventh subject is this, that, when a woman's
infant is still-born, it is necessary to give her first something
washed with ceremony and brought with fire-ashes, so that it may
make the heart within her pure. 2. After that, for three days,
it is altogether improper to give her water, or anything in which
there is water or salt. 3. And these three days are from period
to period, in such a manner that, if the duty of mid-day prayer
has occurred, they extend till the mid-day prayer itself, and
she is to pass over one other hour and it is then proper to swallow
water. 4. After that, till the lapse of forty days, she is to
sit apart again, and, afterwards, to undergo the Barashnom ceremony.
- On the infant's becoming a four-months' child, whenever it
is still-born it is a dead body, for the reason that so long as
it does not reach the fourth month life does not come to it. 6.
And if after three months this affair occurs, one is to exercise
great caution (i'htiyat) and to insist strictly on this matter.
- For our religion has reiterated on this matter that, if one
be polluted and do not keep himself pure so long as he is living
he never becomes clean from that pollution. 8. That, if he wash
his head ten thousand times in ceremonial ablution, he certainly
does not any way become pure from it. 9. Because this pollution
is not from without; it is from within every bone and vein and
tendon; and water makes clean only anything that is on the skin.
10. Impurity which is in the bones, except through the liquid
consecrated by the religious formula, does not otherwise become
- The seventy-eighth subject is this, that in every habitation
where any one departs, passing away from the world, it is necessary
to endeavor that they may not eat and not consecrate fresh meat
for three days therein. 2. Because the danger is that some one
else may depart, passing away; so the relations of that former
person should not eat meat for three days.
- The seventy-ninth subject is this, that it is necessary to
make an effort that they may exercise munificence and liberality
towards the good and the worthy. 2. For the exercise of liberality
is grand, in such manner as it is better and pleasanter, in like
manner, for the ground on which a liberal man walks, better for
the wind that blows upon a liberal man, better for the horse on
which a liberal man sits, better, in like manner, for the cow
and goat that a liberal man eats, and pleasanter for the sun and
moon and stars that shine upon a liberal man.
- To such an extent is a liberal and munificent man precious
('haziz), that Ohrmazd speaks thus: 'I have wished that I might
give a recompense to a munificent man, if it be suitable for him,
but I have not found any recompense and happiness that are suitable
for him, except a blessing.' 4. And virtuous men and the united
archangels are perpetually uttering blessings on account of the
liberal man who maintains no refusal of his own things to a stranger.
- For it is declared in revelation, that the creator Ohrmazd
spoke to Zartosht, the Spitaman, thus: 'I have created the supreme
heaven of heavens for the sake of any of the liberal who provide
for the worthy and give them something; and gloomy hell is for
all those persons who give anything to the unworthy.'
- In like manner it is declared in revelation, that there are
thirty-three ways to heaven, besides that of the souls of the
liberal. 7. If the soul be of any one else, it is not able to
arrive in heaven by that way. 8. Besides this happy way, a soul
of the liberal is able to arrive in heaven by means of the thirty-three
ways. 9. For no one is it easier to arrive in heaven than for
- The eightieth subject is this, that there is a time when thou
recitest one Ashem-vohu, and the merit of it may be as much as
that of ten. 2. There is a time when thou recitest one Ashem-vohu,
and the merit of it may be as much as that of a hundred. 3. A
time may be when thou recitest one, and the merit of it may be
as much as that of a thousand. 4. A time may be when the merit
of one Ashem-vohu may be as much as that of ten thousand. 5. A
time may be when the merit of one Ashem-vohu is as much as the
value (qimat) of this world and that other world.
- As for that Ashem-vohu whose nature is as much as ten, that
is when they recite it as they eat bread. 7. That which is, from
nature, as much as a hundred is when they recite it after eating.
8. That which is so much by nature that, having turned side over
side, they recite it correctly may be a merit of a thousand. 9.
That which is of the nature of ten thousand is that which thou
recitest when thou risest up from sleep. 10. And that whose nature
is as much as this world and that other world is when they recite
it at the time of the dissolution of life; for, if he be not able
to recite it himself, friends and relations give it into his mouth.
11. If he be fit for hell he becomes fit for the ever-stationary,
if he be fit for the ever-stationary he becomes fit for heaven,
and if he be fit for heaven he becomes fit for the supreme heaven.
- The eighty-first subject is this, that every duty and good
work, which it is requisite to perform, they should accomplish
while within that day, and not postpone for the morrow.
- For it is declared in revelation, that the creator Ohrmazd
spoke to Zartosht thus: 'O Zartosht! I have created no one better
than thee in the world, and after thee I shall likewise not create
one; thou art my chosen one, and I have made this world apparent
on account of thee. 3. And all these people ('halaiq) whom I have
created, and the whole of these monarchs who have existed and
do exist, have always maintained the hope that I should create
thee in their days, so that they should accept (qabul kunand)
the religion, and their souls should attain to the supreme heaven.
- 'Nevertheless I have created thee at the present time, in
the middle period; for it is three thousand years from the days
of Gayomard till now, and from now till the resurrection are the
three thousand years that remain; therefore, I have created thee
in the middle. 5. For whatever is in the middle is more precious
and better and more valuable, in the same manner as the heart
is in the middle of the whole body and is unquestionably (la-jarm)
very precious, in the same manner as the land of Eran [Iran] is
more valuable than other lands, for the reason that it is in the
middle. 6. And the country of Eran, which is in the fourth climate
(iqlim), is better than other places, for the reason that it is
in the middle. 7. Therefore, I have created thee in the middle,
in the manner of what is precious, and I have given thee the apostleship,
and have sent thee to a monarch, a friend of knowledge and a friend
- 'Afterwards, I have sent thee, with thus much preciousness,
to the people; and the knowledge of the good works that mankind
perform in life, and have not been able to bring to hand without
trouble (mi'hnat), I have made clear and plain unto thee; and
I have made thee aware of the whole of knowledge. 9. I have taught
it to thee in the Avesta, in a language that no one in the world
considers plain and easy; and I have told thee its interpretation
(zand) in a language that is more current among mankind, and thou
likewise hast more eloquence (faz'h) therein.
- 'While thou hast all this greatness that I have given to thee,
O Zartosht! I enact a precept for thee, that " every good
work which thou art able to do today do not postpone for tomorrow,
and accomplish with thine own hand the counsel of thine own soul."
11. Do not be proud (gharrah) on the score that it is still the
time of youth, and it is quite possible to do it hereafter, while
thou thinkest thus: "I will do it after this." 12. For
there have been many people whose remaining life was one day,
and they have been taken away in the presence of fifty years'
- Therefore, make an effort, so that thou mayest not postpone
today's duty for tomorrow. 14. Because Ahriman, the evil wicked
one, has entrusted two fiends with this matter, the name of one
is Tardy (der) and the name of the other is Afterwards (pas).
15. Both these fiends are united, and they make an effort and
exertion with man, so that his duty falls back behindhand. 16.
For, as to every duty and good work which comes forward, that
fiend whose name is Tardy speaks thus: 'Thou wilt live long, and
it is possible to perform this duty at all times;' and that fiend
whose name is Afterwards says: 'Pass on now; it is possible to
perform it afterwards.' 17. And these two fiends united keep the
soul away from its own duty, till the end arrives; all duties
have fallen back behindhand, and it has to experience regret ('hasarat)
and penitence. 18. It has no benefit through duty and good works,
and departs from this world.
- The eighty-second subject is this, that, when thou risest
up from the bed-clothes, it is necessary to tie the sacred thread-girdle
[kusti] again at that same place, and it is not desirable to put
forth a step without the girdle.
- For it is declared in revelation, that every single step which
one puts forth without the sacred thread-girdle [[kusti]] is a Farman sin,
and through four steps it becomes a tanapuhr sin which would be
a weight of a thousand and two hundred dirhams. 3. Therefore,
it is necessary to keep watch over oneself, as regards this sin,
and to tie on the sacred thread-girdle [[kusti]].
- The eighty-third subject is this, that it is requisite to
abstain from the keeping of fasts. 2. For, in our religion, it
is not proper that they should not eat every day or anything,
because it would be a sin not to do so.
- With us the keeping of fast is this, that we keep fast from
committing sin with our eyes and tongue and ears and hands and
feet. 4. Some people are striving about it, so that they may not
eat anything all day, and they practice abstinence from eating
anything. 5. For us it is also necessary to make an effort, so
that we may not think, or speak, or commit any sin; and it is
necessary that no bad action should proceed from our hands, or
tongue, or ears, or feet, which would be a sin owing to them.
- Since I have spoken in this manner, and have brought forward
the fasting of the seven members of the body, that which, in other
religions, is fasting owing to not eating is, in our religion,
fasting owing to not committing sin.
- The eighty-fourth subject is this, when they wish to sleep,
it is requisite to utter one Yatha-ahu-vairyo and one Ashem-vohu,
and to accomplish repentance one is to speak thus: 'I am sorrowing
for, and repentant and in renunciation of all that sin which I
have spoken and was imagined by me, and has assailed me; of these
actions I am in renunciation.'
- Afterwards one is to lie down; and every time that one acts
in the manner that I have mentioned, and wears the sacred thread-girdle
[[kusti]] on the waist -- while he is equally sharing the whole of the good
works which they are performing in all the world during that night,
and he is of similar merit -- every single breath that he inhales
and exhales is a good work of a weight of three dirhams. 3. And
when he turns from side to side he should, in like manner recite
- The eighty-fifth subject is this, that, in every matter that
comes forward, it is necessary to inquire of the wise and relations,
so as to have their advice, and not to transact any business according
to one's own idea and opinion.
- For it is declared in revelation, that the sacred good and
propitious, spoke to Zartosht thus: 'As to every business that
thou wishest to transact, do thou receive wisdom and knowledge
at one place with the wise who reply, and cast away what is unconsidered,
so that Ahriman may not reach it midway, and injury ('halal) may
not occur to that business.'
- In like manner the archangel Spandarmad, at the time when
her gaze passed on to Minachihar, issued to him this admonition
and precept (vaziyat), and said: 'O Minochihar! although there
be deliberation in an affair, this may be no reason for it as
regards the spirits; although a horse may be good, there may be
no resource except a whip for it; and although one may be a wise
man, there should be no retreat on his part from having advice,
so that his business may become complete.'
- The eighty-sixth subject is this, that it is not proper to
kill a beaver [lit. 'water dog']; but, if they see it in any place,
it is necessary to take it up and carry it to running water. 2.
For, in the commentary of the Vendidad it is ranked as a great
sin for the killer; and, as to every one who kills a beaver, the
source of his seed becomes exhausted.
- The eighty-seventh subject is this, that, when any one departs
from the world, it is necessary to make an effort, in those three
days, so that they may continuously perform the ceremonial of
Srosh and make the fire blaze, and may recite the Avesta; because
the soul is three days in this world.
- The fourth night it is requisite to consecrate three sacred
cakes; one with a dedication to Rashn and Ashtad, one with a dedication
to the spirit Ram, and one with a dedication to the righteous
guardian spirit; and one is to consecrate a dress and something
as a righteous gift for that soul.
- It is necessary that the dress be new and of uniform quality
(jins), and such as turban, shirt, vest, girdle, trousers, shoes
(pasandil), and mouth-veil. 4. Since they give those among the
spirits a counterpart of those garments, therefore, whatever is
more beautiful, and more surpassing in grandeur for the soul in
that place, is necessary where that place is, because our fathers
and mothers and the whole of our relations are in that place.
5. And since the souls recognize and ask after one another in
that world, they are, therefore, more joyful on account of every
one whose dress and grandeur are more surpassing. 6. In a similar
manner, when the dress is old and ragged, they are ashamed, and
exhibit heaviness of heart.
- They call that dress a righteous gift because they consecrate
it; and it is necessary to give it to the priests and high-priests,
as it is a righteous gift on account of their position. 8. And
it is suitable for them to keep it for the reason that the souls
are nearer to them; people should also make an effort that the
dress may be stitched like the dress of a priest.
- The sacred beings make up the account and reckoning for the
soul when the priest recites frasasti ahurahe mazdau
and removes the Frasast from this side to that side. 10. The soul
passes over the Chinwad bridge when, on the fourth night, it arrives
from the world at the Chinwad bridge. 11. First it goes to the
abode of fire (atash-gah); afterwards, one step reaches to the
star station, the second step reaches to the moon station, the
third step to the sun station, and with the fourth step it reaches
the Chinwad bridge, and they convey it to its own place.
- The eighty-eighth subject is this, that, as to any piece of
wood on which they carry a corpse, or on which they wash it, and
that which may be defiled with blood and impurity, that on which
menstruous defilement, or a bare limb, is deposited by a menstruous
woman, and that on which they impale a human being, it is necessary
to avoid the whole of these pieces of wood, and not to work with
them again, because one's dress becomes impure; and it is not
proper to burn them. 2. It is necessary to put them in a place
where any one, who pulls them up and stirs them, will not bring
them into the use of mankind.
- The eighty-ninth subject is this, that Ohrmazd keeps watch
when any one, through imposition ('hilat) and unawares, eats dead
matter, or gives it to one of the good religion, or throws dead
matter upon one of the good religion. 2. While his will and command
are, that it is necessary that such a person should undergo the
Barashnom ceremony, and accomplish repentance before the spiritual
chiefs and high-priests. 3. So that, after that, one may indicate
to him the sin in these actions, and he may perform the retribution
which the high-priest mentions, in order that, owing to this,
his sin may depart.
- The ninetieth subject is this, that it is not proper that
they should give anything to a sinful person or one worthy of
death, because it is like that they have placed in the jaws of
a destructive serpent (azhdaha). 2. And, if this be food which
he devours and they give, they pass into the committing of sin;
and that person who may have given food to him is a participator
with him. 3. In eating food, if there be no danger and fear of
them, it is not desirable to give anything to them, for it would
be a great sin.
- The ninety-first subject is this, that is, in what mode is
it necessary to wash everything that becomes polluted by dead
- Gold one is to wash over once with ceremonial ablution to
make it dry once with dust, and to wash it over once with water.
3. Silver (nuqrah) one is to do twice; copper, tin, lead, and
brass articles three times; steel four times; stone articles six
times; turquoise, ruby (yaqut), amber, carbuncle, cornelian ('haqiq),
and, like these, whatever is from a mine (ma'hdan) are all to
be washed six times in the manner which I have stated. 4. Afterwards
they are clean in that manner, when every single time one washes
them over with ceremonial ablution, makes them dry with dust,
and washes it off; and just like this on the occasion of the other
times -- up to three times, or four, or six -- as far as whatever
- For pearls two modes are ordered, but the conclusion is this,
that they should wash them six times, just like stone articles.
6. The whole of wooden and earthen ware it is requisite to throw
away. 7. All clothing of the body it is requisite to wash six
times in the manner that I have stated, and, after that, to put
them in a place where the sun and moon must shine on them for
six months; after that they are fit for a menstruous woman.
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