The third salgreh of the Zoroastrian Association of California’s (ZAC) Atash Kadeh was celebrated with great religious fervor on 13th November, 2019. A Maachi was offered in all five gehs – two of which were Hama Anjuman Maachis, followed by a Hama Anjuman Jashan performed by Ervads Zarrir Bhandara and Jal Birdy.
After the Jashan, an informative and interactive talk on ‘Fire’ was delivered by Er. Zarrir Bhandara, in which he briefly gave the history of the enthronement of the fire. Stating that three days and nights before the opening of the Atash Kadeh, under the guidance of Dasturji Dr. Kotwal, the Vendidad Sadeh and 6 Bajs were performed on the fire that was burning in our house for the last ten years and from that same fire, this Padshah was enthroned.
He then explained the significance of offering the Machi to the Padshah. Machi comes from a word Manch, which means a throne. The first two pieces are the base of the throne, the next two are seat, then the arm rest and finally the backrest. Furthermore, he asked the gathering, “are we fire-worshippers or do we worship God through fire? We worship the ceremoniously enthroned fires namely the Atashbehram, Atash Adran and Atash Dadgah, as son of Ahura Mazda. Therefore, revering those fires would be akin to worshiping God through fire. However, it is also true to say we worship fire as well as other living creations (Ameshaspands) because God is the energy that allows all living elements and beings to exist and the purest physical manifestation of that energy is sanctified fire. We revere all God’s creations and that God’s spark/energy is present in all living beings and the manifestation of that energy is fire.”
At the conclusion, he thanked all the attendees and the ZAC committee for providing dinner. After that birthday cake was cut by Ervads Jal Birdy and Zarrir Bhandara.