Avan Yasht – III (The Yasht Series)

Daisy P. Navdar is a teacher by profession and a firm believer in the efficacy of our Manthravani. She is focused on ensuring that the deep significance of our prayers is realized by our youth. She credits her learnings and insights, shared in her articles, to all Zoroastrian priests and scholars whose efforts have contributed towards providing light and wisdom for all Zarthostis.

I invite you to join me as I journey through the wonderful teachings shared in a Khordeh Avesta, which was printed in 1902 – more than a 100 years ago! Authored by Dinbai Sohrabji Engineer, the teachings, stories and notes in this book speak about the various powers of our prayers, while sharing anecdotes of people who have used these prayers and the tremendous achievements that each has accomplished.

We have all watched, in great awe, the gentle mastery of our very own Zubin Mehta (musician extraordinaire) as he conducts his orchestra. The movement of his baton seems to have a rhythm of its own and it seems to be the source of the all-enveloping sound that drowns us in a sea of ecstasy. He is the master of all the music that washes over us and not one note can be heard without his permission. That is his craft and his passion. The reason why I have used this allegory to further explain my point is because I could find none more befitting.

Now picture this… the Hukairya mountain is the highest peak of the Elburz range. From this peak, flows our vital Avan Ardvisur, like a maiden gushing forth in the full bloom of her youth. She is bursting with vitality and life. It is said that when the time comes for Frasho Kereti (the making perfect / wonderful) to happen, then Pak Dadar Ahura Mazda himself will be standing as witness to orchestrate the grand event.

Ahura Mazda has told the Rathestars (the warrior class) that, on that day Peshotan, the son of Gushtasp, will break the prison in which he is captive and he will kill Ahriman. To perform this extraordinary feat, Peshotan will have the assistance of Pak Dadar Ahura Mazda himself. Ahura Mazda will orchestrate and instruct the holy Ameshaspands to wait on the Hukairya mountain and give them directions. In turn, the Ameshaspands will garner the support of the Yazads and rush to help Peshotan, each with their own brand of powers. Here is a list of each Yazad and their associated powers as given by Dinbai in her book:

  1. Meher Yazad: The ruler of farms and all that grows within it.
  2. Sarosh Yazad: The ruler of all strength be it physical, emotional or spiritual.
  3. Rashne Rast Yazad: The one who is most just, dispenser of the perfect judgement.
  4. Behram Yazad: The most fearless of all, one who can overpower the most powerful weapon of Ahriman, fear!
  5. Astaad Yazad: The winner! The one who grants the boon to win against all odds.

Taking this epic battle forward, there is one element to this, which is surprising for us all. The entire consolidated powers of Dadar Ahura Mazda, along with the strength and unique powers of His Ameshaspands and their corresponding Yazads, needs one final push. This final, and perhaps most important one, is the Manthravani of the people of the Mazdayasni faith.

The Rathestars whom we speak of as warriors are those who joust with evil and conquer it with their mighty manthras, so the image of a warrior on a steed with a sword by his side is replaced with the devout faith of a man who opens a book and prays.

All these mighty beings, and Peshotan himself, in the epic and final battle NEED our Manthra, recited by us (yes, you and me) to achieve the final annihilation of Ahriman and the making perfect of our world.

Daisy P. Navdar
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