ZoroKids Classes Celebrates Fifth Anniversary!

16th July, 2023, marked the fifth anniversary of the popular ‘ZoroKids Classes’ – a prayer group initiated for our community’s tots with the aim of ingraining in them the beauty of our religion and setting them on the path of     ‘Dharmagyan’ or religious wisdom. Around thirty-six excited ZoroKids, all dressed up in finery, converged at the M J Wadia Agiary  Hall (Lalbaug), to celebrate this auspicious occasion. The hall was beautifully decorated with chawk, chadan and the sagan of each ZoroKid was done, amidst much camaraderie and pleasantries.

The hall was packed to capacity with a 160-strong audience, comprising children, parents, teachers and dignitaries settling in, even as the function commenced with an engaging video,  depicting the ZoroKids’ wondrous 5-year journey.

Going back five years, it was Chairman Trustee – Kersi Limathwalla, late Dara Mehta, Er. Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia, along with Hanoz Patel and Homi Ustad of Hilla Towers, felt a  pressing need to start a prayer group for kids, to catch them young and set them on the path of Dharmagyan. So, Er. Dr. Karanjia created a team of teachers under the leadership of Er. Darayus Desai and thus, was birthed ‘ZoroKids’ Classes. This team of enthusiastic teachers left no stone unturned to instill religion in a unique way into the children. “Why be second best, when you can be the best?” asks Er. Darayus Desai. So, with prayers, stories from Shahnameh and games, accompanied by yummy snacks, the classes started imparting religious knowledge in a fun, yet educative way.

Such is the popularity of the classes today that immaterial of rain, storm, Covid or lockdown, the classes continued with full gusto – online or offline, with quizzes and field trips,always infusing in young minds how Zoroastrianism is an action-oriented religion – that it doesn’t end with prayers, rather it begins, where the prayers end!

Said Er. Desai, “After receiving revelation, prophet Zarathushtra prayed to Avan Yazad to help him convince King Vishtasp and lead him on the right path, to ‘Think, Speak and Act’ in accordance with our Religion.” Hence, the ZoroKids motto, “Anumatae Daenayāi, Anukhtae Daenayāi, Anuvarshtae Daenayāi,” is to bring our kids closer to Ahura Mazda in a profound, yet affable manner.

Kersi Limathwalla gave pearls of wisdom to all present, sharing simple Do’s & Don’ts to lead a true Zoroastrian life, saying, “Always thank and think of Dadar Ahura Mazda, protect His creations and value them; Cleanliness of body, mind, soul and spirit is maintained by leading a virtuous life; God’s laws govern our lives meticulously, so keep the balance in nature undisturbed; Be physically and mentally alert and help the less privileged and needy; Live in a ‘complete awareness’ state with God and do not reduce prayers to part-time  pastime – earnest devotion will automatically lead us to perfection; We must try to excel in whatever work we do; and Our soul should be so well nourished and advanced, that ultimately we can catch a glimpse of God and become worthy of His eternal friendship, as we attain Garothman bahesht.”

Speaking on the occasion of the 5th Anniversary, Er. Dr. Ramiyar Karanjia emphasized the importance of the number 5 in our  religion, “5 Gathas, 5 Gehs, 5 Nyaeshes, the connection of No.5 with Sarosh Yazad and of course our 5 senses… these act as a bridge, enabling us to perform our deeds in a way which will bring harmony between our material and spiritual life.”

The radiant ZoroKids also showcased their remarkable talent and enthralled the audience with renditions of  monajats, prayers, skits, monologues and dialogues. All the ZoroKids’ teachers (past and present) were felicitated by the children. This was followed by a book release of the English version of ‘30 Roj ni Setayesh’, along   with the translation, complied by veterans of the Avesta language classes. Er. Dr. Parvez Bajan gave a clarion call to our parents, “Parsio jaago!”, emphasizing the increasing need for parents to send their kids for such classes, so that they can become the torchbearers of our religion.

The wonderful event concluded on a tasty note with snacks, cake, games and take-home gifts, even as the happy tots returned home, with a promise to return next month, to further understand and explore their roots and their religion.

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