Zoroastrianism is one of the world’s oldest and most influential religions of all time. So there are some really interesting facts about it. From It’s unusual death rituals involving wells, and vultures, to it’s founding prophet Zoroaster. This is a list of 5 things you should know about Zoroastrianism.
If someone dies then there corpse is moved to the tower of Silence. The tower is organized into three concentric circles, one for men, one for women, and one for children. The corpse is in the centre stripped naked. They then wait for the vultures to come, and tear the body pieces until there is nothing but bone left. After the bones have been dried by the sun they are pushed into a well, and then four days late it is believed that the departed soul reaches the next world and appears before god to be judged.
Good Thoughts, Good Words, Good Deeds
Zoroastrianism revolves around three basic tenets- Good Thoughts, Good words, and Good Deeds.
Other tenets are –
Belief in a Supreme and Universal God. They believe Ahura Mazda is the ultimate, omniscient, and omnipotent god. He protects the good from the evil and keeps chaos at bay.
Belief in the duality of existence. They believe that the world is a constant battle ground between good and evil, and that even though good will eventually triumph, humans still have a responsibility to stay away from evil.
Belief in the divinity of creation. Zoroastrians believe that the world, both the visible and the invisible one was made from Ahura Mazda’s own body, and we therefore have a responsibility to keep it pure.
Belief in the spiritual nature of the world and human beings. Zoroastrians believe that god created spiritual entities and beings before manifesting their counterparts in the material plane.
One Of The Oldest Religions
Zoroastrianism is one of the oldest monotheistic religions in the world, and yet most people never heard of it. It does however have quite a reasonably sized following still to this day, with over 200,000 followers. Around 80% of Zoroastrians live in India.
Zoroastrians worship the God Ahura Mazda. Ahura means Lord or Spirit, and Mazda means wisdom. Ahura Mazda first appeared in the Achaemenid period, in 550 – 330 BCE under the rule of Darius I.
The religion was founded by the prophet Zoroaster (or Zarathrustra), about 3,500 years ago in Iran.
The birth date of Zoroaster is unknown, but he did live somewhere around 1,500 BCE. He wrote three different hymns which are at the core of liturgical Zoroastrian thinking.