"Zoroaster was thus the first to teach the doctrines of an individual judgment, Heaven and Hell, the future resurrection of the body, the general Last Judgment, and life everlasting for the reunited soul and body. These doctrines were to become familiar articles of faith to much of mankind, through borrowings by Judaism, Christianity and Islam; yet it is in Zoroastrianism itself that they have their fullest logical coherence ..." (Mary Boyce, Zoroastrians, pg 29)
According to Zoroastrian scripture, the end of the world will come about when a comet, called Gochihr, strikes the earth. Its "fire and halo" will melt all metals and minerals and will burn up the world in a general conflagration. The resulting boiling flood of metal will flow over the earth like a river. The righteous, as well as the wicked souls (released from hell) will pass through it. The wicked will be purified of their sins, but the pious will feel like they're passing through warm milk. The most detailed description of this is found in the 30th chapter of the Bundahishn.
Frashegird (Av. 'Frasho-kereti', lit. 'making wonderful') refers to the renovation of the universe, the last judgment. The exact date of Zarathushtra is uncertain, but was probably around 1000-1200 BC.
Righteousness is so worthy and great and valuable, that in one place it is revealed that Zarathushtra asked Ohrmazd: 'How much time remains until the time of Frashegird, that is the making of Frashegird and the Future Body?' Ohrmazd said: '3,000 years'. Zarathushtra was afraid and said: 'A long time remains!' Ohrmazd said: 'Then do not let this time seem long to you, for so long as the souls of the righteous are in Garothman, then this much time of 3,000 years will seem in their sight as long a period and as easy as when a comely maiden of 15 years and a young man of 20 years come with one another to their house and sleep upon their soft quilts, and the young man loves the girl with all his soul, and for them that (alone) is required: "May night never become day!" So for those also who are righteous, for them on account of the pleasure and peace which is theirs in Garothman, then for them that (alone) is required: "May that time never come!"' (From Pahlavi Rivayat, ch 25. based on tr. of A.V. Williams, 1990.)
In his Gathas (Hymns), Zarathushtra tells
us of The World Savior, Saoshyant (Pahl. Soshyant), who is to
come and stop the cruelty of bloodthirsty and wicked people, and
renew the world, and end death. See Yasna 48.11-12,
Yasna 43.3, The victorious Saoshyant
and his helpers make the world wonderful: Yt19.9+,
Yt19.88+, Astvat-ereta rises
out of lake Kansaoya, and Asha will conquer the Druj: Yt19.92+,
Exaltation of mankind, see Dk3.247,
Three saviors will be born of virgins miraculously impregnated
with Zarathushtra's seed while bathing in Lake Kansaoya: Ushedar,
Ushedarmah, and the Saoshyant (named Astvat-ereta).
Compare the following account with Bd35.56-60, Bd33.36-38.
Three saviors will be born of virgins miraculously impregnated with Zarathushtra's seed while bathing in Lake Kansaoya: Ushedar, Ushedarmah, and the Saoshyant (named Astvat-ereta). Compare the following account with Bd35.56-60, Bd33.36-38.
1. After that time when Zarathushtra came to a consultation with Ohrmazd, and 1,500 years after the time of Zarathushtra, when it is the millennium of Religion, Ushedar will come into consultation with Ohrmazd for 50 years. 2. On the same day Mihr Yazad, that is, the sun, will stand at mid-day, for ten days and nights it will stand at the zenith of Heavens. 3. For three years, whatever plants are not needed (i.e. not harvested) they will not wither then.
4. He [i.e. Ushedar] will purify the religion, he will bring (the ritual precepts of) Hadamansar into use, and men will act according to Hadamansar. 5. The (members of the) wolf species will all go to one place, and in one place they will be merged, and there will be one wolf whose breadth (will be) 415 paces and length 433 paces. 6. And on the authority of Ushedar they [i.e. the Mazda-worshippers] will muster an army, and they will go to battle with that wolf. First they will perform the yasna, and through their yasna (it will) not (be) possible to withstand (them).
7. Then Ushedar will say: 'With the sharpest and broadest blades find a means (to destroy) that demon of great strength'. And then men will slay that demon, with whip and dagger and mace and sword and lance and arrow and other weapons. 8. And for one parsang around, poison from that demon will envelop the earth and plants and they will burn. 9. Out of that a demon [?] will scamper (in) the form of a black locust, and it will go into the demon of the serpent, and in that will be its habitation; for this reason it will not (any longer) be very oppressive.
10. After 400 years there will be the Malkosan rain. 11. When it is the time for that rain, (in) the first year the upholders of Religion will say to people: 'Store provisions, for there will be rain'; people will store provisions.
12. (In) that year there will not be rain; and (in) the second year they will speak likewise and (people) will store provisions (but in) that year there will not be rain; (and in) the third year they will speak likewise and (people) will store provisions (but in) that year there will not be rain); and (in) the fourth year they will speak likewise and the unbelieving people will say: 'That which the Mazda-worshippers say will not be, for they said this before also, (but) it was not so'.
13. Those provisions which they have stored previously will not be required for ten winters, and they will not store provisions any more, and (in) that year there will be rain.
14. (In) the first year it will stop three times in summer, three times in winter; (in) the second year it will stop twice in winter, twice in summer; (in) the third year it will stop once in winter, and once in summer. 15. (In) the fourth year, (in) the month of Hordad and (on) the day of Dai-pa-Mihr, snow will fall, until the month of Dai on the day of Dai-pa-Mihr;14 it will not stop at all even for a (little) time (16) and then the Mazda-worshippers will curse (him); by the curse of the Mazda-worshippers he will die, and the lives of men and beneficent animals of the place will be weak.
17. And then in those times men and beneficent animals will be brought from the var which Jam [[Jamshed, i.e. Yima Khshaeta]] made, and they will stay in different places; and they will be very great in body, very comely, good workers. But he (is) a powerful demon, whom they will not be able to kill in battle.
18. And when that winter has passed, beneficent animals will be so weak so that when people see one of the beneficent animals, then it will seem to them (to be) a miracle. 19. And wild animals of the mountain and of the plain will come to men, and they will think thus: 'Men will treat us just like their own children'.
20. And then Ashawahist will cry out (from) above, and will speak thus: 'Do not kill those beneficent animals any more as you have killed them (up to) now! For the beneficent animals will come to maturity so (slowly) that henceforth they will dwindle away. Do not kill (them)!'
21. And the Mazda-worshippers will act accordingly. And the wild animals of the mountain and the plain, when maturity will come to their bodies so (slowly) that thenceforth they will dwindle away, will come to men and they will say: 'Eat me, before the devouring dragon devours me!' and the Mazda-worshippers will act accordingly.
22. At the end of the millennium, Ushedarmah will come in to consultation with Ohrmazd for 30 years. 23. The sun will stand at the zenith from that day for 20 days and nights. 24. And for six years, those plants which are not needed will not wither. 25. And he will bring (the legal precepts of) Dadig into use: people will act according to the law.
26. And the (members of the) serpent species will all go forth to one place, and in one place they will be merged, and there will be one serpent, 833 paces in breadth 1,666 paces in length.
27. And on the authority of Ushedarmah the Mazda-worshippers will muster an army and they will go into battle with that serpent.
28. When they arrive Ushedarmah will say: 'perform the Yasna!' and they will perform the Yasna, and they will chase that demon away, and for one parsang poison from that demon will envelop the earth and they will burn.
29. From that a demon will scamper forth (in) the form of a black locust, and in the demon of the two-legged species (will be) its habitation; for this reason it will not (any longer) be very oppressive.
30. In that millennium, Zohak will escape from (his) fetters. He will take dominion over demons and men; thus he will clamour: 'Whoever does not harm water and fire and plants, then bring him so that I may devour him'.
31. And fire and water and plant will go to Ohrmazd complaining of the harm which men are doing to them, and they will say: 'Raise up Faridoon (who is) dead, so that he will smite Zohak, for if (it is) otherwise, I will not exist on the earth!'
32. Then Ohrmazd with the Amahraspands will approach the soul of Faridoon. 33. And he will say: 'Stand up, smite Zohak!' 34. The soul of Faridoon will say: 'I cannot smite (him), go to the soul of Saman Kersasp!' 35. Then Ohrmazd with the Amahraspands will approach the soul of Saman , and he will raise up Saman Kersasp, and he [i.e. Saman Kersasp] will slay Zohak. 36. Zohak will cry out so much that one quarter of the beneficent animals in Eranshahr will run away.
37. After that, at the end of the millennium of Ushedarmah, the Soshyans will come in to consultation with Ohrmazd for 30 years. 38. And (on) that day the sun will stand at the zenith for 30 days. 39. And when the Soshans comes back from consultation, then Kay Khosraw will come towards him, when he is sitting (up)on Way of the Long Dominion. 40. The Soshans will ask: 'What man are you, whose soul even (sits) (up)on Way of the Long Dominion, changed by you into the form of a camel?' 41. Kay Khosraw will answer: 'I am Kay Khosraw'.
42. And the Soshans will say: '(Are) you Kay Khosraw of far-reaching intelligence, who foresaw with wisdom when you destroyed the image shrine on (the shore of) Lake Chechast?' 43. Kay Khosraw will say: 'I am that Kay Khosraw'. 44. And the Soshans will say: 'So you did a goodly deed! For if you had not done (it), it would have been the thief of all that transformation whereby (there will be) the bringing about of the Good Renovation'.
45. Again he will ask: 'Did you smite the scoundrel Tur Frangrasiyab?' 46. He will say: 'I smote (him)'. 47. The Soshans will say: 'So you did a goodly deed! For if you had not smitten the scoundrel Tur Frangrasiyab, he would have been the thief of all that (transformation) whereby (there will be) the bringing about of the Good Renovation'.
48. The Soshans will say: 'Go, my Lord, and praise the Religion'; Kay Khosraw will praise the religion.
49. Then in those fifty-seven years Kay Khosraw will be Lord of the Seven Regions, the Soshans will be Mowbadan Mowbad.
50. And then Kersasp will go (forth) with that mace of good width, and Tus will stand before him and will put an arrow in (his) bow; he will say to Kersasp: 'Praise the Religion, that is perform the Yasna with the Gathas, throw away the mace, for if you do not praise the Religion and throw away the mace, then I shall shoot this arrow at you!'
51. Because of (his) fear of Tus's arrow, Kersasp will praise the Religion and throw away (his) mace.
52. All people will be upholders of Religion; they will be loving and benevolent to one another.
53. All people living after that will not die.
54. (As for) those (who are) dead, the Soshans, and the makers of the Renovation who are his helpers *will raise them in (their) dead bodies.
55. Ohrmazd will summon bones from the earth, and blood from the waters, and hair from the plants, and spirit from the wind; he will mix one with the other and he will create the form which each has [i.e. in this present life].
56. The Soshans will perform one Yasna, he will raise one fifth of the dead; with the second Yasna a fifth, with the third Yasna a fifth, with the fourth Yasna a fifth, with the fifth Yasna he will raise all the dead.
57. And every person will recognize (others), saying: 'This (is) my father' and 'this (is) my brother!' and 'this (is) my wife!' and 'this is someone of my family!'
58. There will once again be enjoyment of all food and all the things from which (there is) pleasure and comfort and enjoyment for mankind, just as Ohrmazd created (the world) in the primal creation.
59. There will be a thousand times as many foods and tastes as there are now. 60. He who (so) believes will eat, and he who does not (so) believe will not eat.
61. Ohrmazd will make this earth twice as great (in) length and breadth as it is now, and the human form will be made with the loveliness which they saw as most fair and good in the world.
62. A man will be given the very same padixshay wife whom he had in the material world. 63. He who had no wife, will then be given a wife. 64. The woman who had no husband will then be given a husband.
65. That man and woman who did extraordinary (good) deeds in the physical body, they will be given one to another.
66. And when they raise up the dead, those who perpetrated *injury and *harm to those of the *Good Religion and acted *with violence, they will all die; for three days they will lie down dead.
67. And then they will be restored, and those other margarzan (sinners), every one dead will be restored, except those *thinking and also *doing evil against the Yazads.
68. There was an authority who said: 'The dead will be raised up again, they will confess and for every margarzan (sin) which they committed, then shall their heads be cut off once, and they will be thrown back to Hell, and the punishment of 9,000 years will be shown to them'.
69. And at dawn after the third night Spandarmad will stand up and say: 'Punishment for all of them! And as for the other sinful ones, who were not margarzan sinners, they are to be punished for the sins they committed!'
70. And Shahrewar will melt the metal of all the mountains in the world, it [i.e. the molten metal] will reach (up to) mouth level at the place of the test, and all mankind will pass through that (molten) metal, and by this the sinful will finally become cleansed of their sins.
71. And for them the pain will be just as if molten metal were released on them in the material world. 72. For the righteous it will be easy, as if they take them into warm milk.
73. Before the Soshans will raise up the dead, on his authority an army will be mustered; they will go into battle with the demon Heresy.
74. He will ask the demon Heresy: 'Demon, your task against the belief of the Mazda-worshipping religion was that you committed a sin in the body which then said this: "I am the agent". Surely your task is pointless [?], is it not?' 75. And it will say: 'I am the offspring of the Evil Spirit, whose task is not pointless [?], nor is mine'.
76. The Soshans will perform one Yasna; that demon will slither away to the place where it is now; from that place it will slither back, and it will slither (over) this earth on the four uppermost sides, and the uppermost one third (of the total area).
77. The earth will cry out: 'I cannot endure this demon, which is indeed hidden, I cannot endure its habitation in me, for its seizes me with such scarification and tears me like the four-legged wolf when it tears the belly of beneficent animals from them and seizes their young.
78. 'So go forth, (you) who are Mazda-worshippers, and seek the remedy for this!' 79. Accordingly the Mazda-worshippers will muster an army and they will perform a Yasna. 80. That demon will slither from that place where it is. 81. And it will slither to the middle third part of this earth, and to the furthermost [i.e. lowest] third part. 82. The earth will cry out just as I wrote above.
83. And that demon will slither from that place, it will go to that (other) place where it is now, and it will seize the demon Gozihr, and will tell him: 'The creations of the Holy Spirit wish to inflict punishment on the creations of the Evil Spirit. I will never agree to (let) the creations of the Holy Spirit punish the creations of the Evil Spirit'. And both will slither off at once from that place.
84. And they will slither to the lowest third part, the furthermost third part of this earth, and the earth will cry out in the same manner (as I wrote above).
85. And the Mazda-worshippers will likewise perform a Yasna, and through their Yasna (it will) not (be) possible to withstand them.
88. And then Shahrewar will release molten metal into that hole where they entered (the world), and it will go in after them. 87. Those demons will thus fall from this earth to Hell, just as a stone, 88. when it falls or is thrown into water, quickly sinks to the bottom of the water. 89. Then when punishment is inflicted on the wicked ones, the Sosans will perform one act of worship and one-fifth of the other demons will be destroyed, and he will perform a second act of worship one-fifth (will be destroyed), (with) a third act of worship one-fifth (will be destroyed), (with) a fourth act of worship one-fifth (will be destroyed) and he will perform a fifth act of worship and all the demons will be taken away.
90. Wrath and Greed will (each) say to the Evil Spirit: 'I shall devour you, ignorant Evil Spirit for your creation has been seized from you and the thief (has suffered) no harm and it is not possible for me to survive'.
91. First demon-created Greed will devour Wrath of the bloody club, and second he will devour demon-created Zamestan, and thirdly Sej of the furtive movement, and fourthly Zarman short of breath, until (only) a few yet live.
92. The Evil Spirit will say to demon-created Greed, and demon-created Greed (will say) to the Evil Spirit: 'I shall devour you, ignorant one, for the Yazads seized the evil creation from you'.
93. The Evil Spirit will stand up and go to the Holy Spirit; thus he will say: 'This creation was created by me, and demon-created Greed, who is my creation, now says that you wish to devour me; I shall take you to judgment'.
94. Ohrmazd will stand up with Srosh the righteous, and Srosh's righteousness will smite Greed. Ohrmazd (95) will expel the Evil Spirit out of the sky, with the hateful darkness and the evil which he first brought when he invaded, and he will expel all (of it) from the sky through the hole through which he [i.e., the Evil Spirit] invaded. And that hole will make him so stunned and senseless, (that) after that (his) stupefaction will remain.
96. There was one who said: 'The eternally-existing ones will make him powerless by killing his form. The Evil Spirit will be no more: no (more) of his creation!'
97. At that time, when the wicked will have been punished and will have passed through the (molten) metal, there will be the Assembly of Isadwastar and reward and punishment will be given to every person (according) to the number of good deeds he has done.
98. They will perform one act of worship and the earth will rise by three spears (in) height, with the second act of worship it will rise by 300 spears (in) height, with the third act of worship (it will rise by 3,000 spears in height), with the fourth act of worship it will rise by 30,000 spears (in) height, with the fifth act of worship it will reach the star station, and Garothman will descend from the place (where it is now) to the star station.
99 Then Ohrmazd and the Amahraspands and all the Yazads and mankind will be in one place, and the star too and the moon and the sun and the Victorious Fire will all be in the form of a man who is strong, and they will all be in the form of a man, and they will come to the earth.
100. Then it will be entirely the creation of Ohrmazd.
101. And after that it will not be necessary for him to perform any action, and mankind, in the likeness of a body of 40 years of age, will all be immortal and deathless, and ageless, and without feeling or decay.
102. And their work will be this, to behold Ohrmazd and to pay homage, and to do for the other lords all (things) which seem to themselves very peaceful. Everyone will love others like himself. And the goodness of the Future Body, apart from what (I have) written above, is such that it can neither be known nor described through limited human knowledge and reason.
103. All the beneficent animals will exist once again, and (also) the taste of meat. Female will be caused to merge again into female and male into male until they have been merged once again in lineage back to the Uniquely-created Ox.
104. Then the body of the Ox will be fashioned in the spirit state, it will be merged into the body of men. It will leave the taste (of meat) in the body of men.
105. If, after that, meat eating is not necessary, it is because the pleasure of the taste of all meats will remain in the mouth at all times; and then the body of the Ox will return to mankind, and it will exist bodily in the material world.
106. And man and woman will have desire for one another, and they will enjoy it and consummate it but there will be no birth from them.
107. And the principal kinds of plants will be restored, and there will be no diminution of them, but every place (will be) like the spring, resembling a garden in which (there are) all (kinds of) plants and flowers; and with the wisdom of this world it is not possible to comprehend and know its wondrousness and worthiness and pleasantness and purity. (From Pahlavi Rivayat, ch 48. based on tr. of A.V. Williams, 1990.)
See Denkard book 3, chapter 210
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