No Temples or AltarsWorshipping on High Places. Fire does play a symbolic central role in religious ceremonies. Through heroic struggle, mortal man becomes a vessel of sublime change and gives rise to consciously willed evolution. Zoroastrianism stills retains practitioners in the 21st Century, most notably the Parsees of Mumbai, India. Fire temples are places of worship in Zoroastrianism. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. 4th century CE, Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus makes the following observations in his Rerum gestarum libri The word namaz is now also used by Persian and Indo-Pakistani Muslims to mean prayer. Strabo, a Greek writer from the first century ACE, confirms the observations of Herodotus and other writers that "the Persians do not erect statues or altars, but 'offer sacrifice' (worship) on a high place," and that the worship ceremonies were officiated by the Magi, (the legendary Zoroastrian priests discussed further in the Priesthood Page). Zoroastrian Fire Temple of Yazd, Iran Zoroastrian Fire Temple of Yazd, Iran. A flame always burns upwards, so are the paths toward the horizons of a yet unrealized future. At the heart of a Zoroastrian place of worship burns a fire - and where possible the fire burns continuously symbolizing an eternal flame. These fire-keepers are priests of the Zoroastrian religion. Zoroastrianism. The temporal fire also represents the fire of creation. The region is known for its continuously burning natural gas fires, which to the ancients must have seemed like the miraculous phenomenon of an ever-burning fire - a symbol of special importance in Zoroastrianism. Traditionally, Zoroastrians worship individually at home, or in the open, facing a source of light. In Indo-European languages, there were two concepts regarding fire: that of an animate type called *egni- (cf. Zoroastrians worship in fire temples, where a sacred fire is kept burning to signify an eternal flame, and fire is always present during special prayers and ceremonies. The polytheistic faith of the early Persians was most likely already developed in some form prior to their arrival in the region of Iran sometime around the 3rd millennium BCE and then was influenced by the Elamites and people of Susiana who were already established there. The Misconception of Zoroastrians as Fire Worshipers . Zoroastrianism (or Mazdaism) is a religion and philosophy based on the teachings of prophet Zoroaster (also known as Zarathustra, in Avestan) and was formerly among the world’s largest religions. Change ). In temples the source of light is a flame maintained in a fire urn. While Zoroastrians are sometimes mistaken for fire worshipers, they do not worship the fire itself. The passing of Zoroastrian ideas and values from one person to the next is symbolized by a new flame being lit from an existing one. Silk Road Spread. Zoroastrians worship together on special occasions often called a jashne or jashan (also jashn / jasan), words that evolved from yasna (Avestan), which later became yazishn (Middle Persian) and then izeshne or ijeshne. Long known as fire worshippers, Zoroastrian fire adoration traces its roots back to those combustible oil deposits found naturally near the surface of the ground there, most notably the Baku Springs region. Fire is an extremely important symbol in Zoroastrianism as it represents God's (or Ahura Mazda's) ultimate wisdom and eternal light, as well as is a symbol of purification and Ahura Mazda's presence. A fire temple, Atashkadeh (Persian: آتشکده ‎), Atashgah (آتشگاه) or Dar-e Mehr (در مهر) is the place of worship for the followers of Zoroastrianism, the ancient religion of Iran . Find high-quality stock photos that you won't find anywhere else. It is derived from namazh, in turn derived from the Middle Persian namaach, a word with roots in the Avestan nemangh. The holiest temple fires take up to a year to consecrate, and many have been burning for years or even centuries. Zoroastrian Zoroastrianism practices: Zoroastrians believe that the elements are pure and that fire represents God’s light or wisdom. Het zoroastrisme is de inheemse monotheïstische en dualistische religie van Iran die werd gesticht door de profeet Zarathustra (Oudgrieks: Zoroaster).Het zoroastrisme is een van de oudste levende religieuze tradities ter wereld, en is van de 6e eeuw v. Chr. Plato (our note: at Ax. Ahura Mazda has an evil opponent called Aura Mainyu (which may have strongly influenced the idea of Satan in the Abrahamic religions). The fire temple or places of worship are consecrated for prayers and sacred ceremonies. The idea of the sacred fire is also a fundamental symbol in Zoroastrian worship. 23.6.31-32: "They have also as many cities as Media, and villages as strongly built as towns in other countries, inhabited by large bodies of citizens. The pages on Tajikistan contain additional photographs of early worship sites. In short, it is the richest residence of the kings. Zoroastrians are not fire-worshippers, as some Westerners wrongly believe. In ancient times, Zoroastrians had no fixed place of worship. The terms “Fire Worship” and “Fire-Worshippers” were always associated with Zoroastrianism and Zoroastrians throughout history. Look upon the fire and behold therein how they were created." Pingback: Mazda, Odin and the Sacred Fire of Zoroaster – rainwindandwolf. Our lives are the temples of our souls. In as much as the spiritual fire - the mainyu athra - is to be fed the fuel of good thoughts and a life led according to the principles of Asha (s… 371D; Isoc. The gathering areas were on hillsides and hilltops. Traditionally, Zoroastrians worship individually at home, or in the open, facing a source of light. Muslims have also taken the concept of praying five times a day and using a prayer cap or head-covering while praying from Zoroastrianism. Compare with Hindi namaste from Vedic Sanskrit namas-te meaning 'honouring-you'. In Zoroastrianism, the great gift of the Gods is manö the “mind energy/courage/spirit” to face destiny with unbounded “fiery vitality,” become the artist of the gods aša.van/artha.van and to win the timeless glory sravá by “hearing the song/music of the Immortals.”, In the poetic gathas, the protection páiiüm of Mazdá the “supreme god of inspiring creativity,” is sought in none “other than thy fire and mind power” aniiém θwahmát áθras.čá man.aηhas.čá, (See Yasna 46.7, 3rd rhymed verse line. "... separated the priesthood from other folk Zoroastrianism is a pre-Islamic Iranian religion and one of the world’s oldest monotheistic religions. The three ancient fire temples, known as the Great Fires, wer… Fire is a source of light and light represents wisdom while darkness represents ignorance. Pak Yazdan, the purest Divinity)." In the eastern (and perhaps original) regions of the Zoroastrian homeland, there are older (3,000 BCE?) Fire, in Zoroastrianism therefore, is considered one of the most sacred elements of nature. We read in the poetic gathas, Yasna 51.9 2nd rhymed verse line: aii.aηhá ḵšûstá aibî ahv.áhü daḵštem dávöi. [Also see our page on Fire as well as athra / atash in our Overview page. Because fire (Atar or Adur/Adar) is used in many Zoroastrian ceremonies, some people have erroneously described Zoroastrians as “fire worshippers”. Moreover, people keep the fire inside the fire temple going forever, never letting it get extinguished. outdoor worship sites in Tajikistan (see photo at the right). Nowadays, even with the advent of temples, worship or praying for Zoroastrians is primarily an individual endeavour at home or in the open, by the sea, on hill tops, or in some other suitable open setting. Avesta talks of 5 kinds of fires (See Yasna 17.11). Their wont, however, is to ascend the summits of the loftiest mountains..." Zoroastrian’s worship in places known as fire temples and it is there that an eternal flame is kept burning with sandalwood and frankincense oils. The gathering areas were on hillsides and hilltops. There are indications that dried shrubs, twigs and wood from Camel Thorn, Juniper and Plane (Chenar) trees were traditionally used for the atash-gah fires.]. Greek historian and visitor to ancient Persia, Herodotus, described (c. 430 BCE) the worship customs of the Persian Zoroastrians of his day as follows: "The customs which I know the Persians to observe are the following: they have no images of the gods (a Greek manner of speaking), no temples nor altars, and consider the use of them a sign of folly. The priests re-introduced ritualism and the worship of the old nature-deities in a new garb by making them archangels of Ahura Mazda. Zoroastrianism at a glance. 2. A similar distinction existed for water. Zoroastrians are not fire-worshippers, as they are sometimes called. In the Zoroastrian religion, fire (see atar), together with clean water (see aban), are agents of ritual purity » Top, •  © Author: K. E. Eduljee, Zoroastrian Heritage, 2005-17 (researched from 1979 onwards)   •  Contact   •  Page validated by W3C.org, Jashan / Jashne - Thanksgiving Ceremonies. Fire represents many ideas and ideals of the faith. In Zoroastrianism, fire symbolizes the Struggle between being and becoming, the pure transformative energy, the WILL POWER that drives mortal man forward towards godhood and becoming infinitely better. The notion of fire worship goes back to reverence for “hearth fire” among ancient Indo-Europeans. The Early Iranian Religion was polytheistic with Ahura Mazda as the king of the gods presiding over a pantheon of many others. These places of worship are called Agiary or Atash Behram (fire temples). Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. Zoroastrians are sometimes mistakenly believed to worship fire. Zoroastrianism, ancient pre- Islamic religion of Iran that survives there in isolated areas and, more prosperously, in India, where the descendants of Zoroastrian Iranian (Persian) immigrants are known as Parsis, or Parsees. At the heart of a Zoroastrian place of worship burns a fire - and where possible the fire burns continuously symbolizing an eternal flame. The notion of fire worship goes back to reverence for “hearth fire” among ancient Indo-Europeans. Fire in our faith embodies the triumph, the unsurpassed power of the spirit ḵratü (Homeric krátos,) the breaking free from the confines of space, love of excellence/virtue ašá/arthá and the projection of the unbounded will power into the ends of time and space. Zoroaster placed less emphasis on ritual worship, instead of focusing on the central ethics of ‘Good Words, Good Thoughts, and Good Deeds’. A podium on which fire containers were built or fire urns placed practices. 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