PT: Could you explain the context behind dividing the day into five Gehs in our religion?
Er. Khoremand: The day has been divided into five gehs keeping in mind certain fixed points through the 24 hours, mainly – Sunrise, Mid-day, Evening, Sunset and Midnight. The time divisions were made to gratify the effectiveness of prayers and rituals that eventually recharge our spiritual energies and help us stay connected with the divine world.
PT: Why do we perform the Boi prayers every time the Gehs change?
Er. Khoremand: The ritual of performing the Boi with its appropriate prayers is done to nurture the holy fire (Atash Padshah) with divine spiritual energies. The boi also regulates the consistency in the time intervals that the holy fire is attended to, so as to keep it glowing.
PT: What is the right procedure to perform a boi ceremony? Can any Mobed or Ervad perform it?
Er. Khoremand: First of all, the said boiwala mobed saheb needs to purify himself by performing the kusti prayers and then complete certain specific prayers called the ‘furajyat prayers’. He then dresses up in his Jama and Sapat and enters the sacred Kebla of the Atash Padshah to perform the Boi ceremony. He starts by praying the Atash Niyash standing inside the paavi. He rings the bell nine times, three times each on the words of dushmata, duzakta, duzvarashtha, respectively. After the Atash Niyash prayer is completed, the boiwala mobed comes out into the outer paavi and prays the ‘Dua Namasteyesh’ and ‘Dua Tandorosti’.
PT: Why is the Maachi always offered during the Boi prayers?
Er. Khoremand: ‘Maachi’ means tThrone. A throne shaped formation of 6 to 9 sandalwood sticks is offered to the sacred fire in this ritual. Maachi is the name given to the boi ritual comprising extra prayers and special pieces of sandalwood offered to the sacred fire. There is no compulsion to offer maachi while performing the boi to the Dadgah or Adarian saheb.
PT: Is it a must to perform our Kusti when the Geh changes or during the time of Boi?
Er. Khoremand: Just as performing the Boi in every Geh is vital and essential to the divine of the holy fire, similarly, the kusti prayers are necessary to feed the human body with spiritual energies. It functions as a timely recharge of our body and mind, which generates good energies and vibrations and aids in keeping away all evil and bad energies.