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Volume III  No.5 

July – August 2002  :  Mah  Amardad,  Fasal  Sal 1371     

Airyanem  Ishim  ashvanem  ashahe  ratum  yazamaide,

amavantem,  verethrajanem,  vitbaeshanghem,

vispa  thaeshsao  taurvayantem,

vispa  tbaehsho  titarentem; 

yo  upemo, yo  madhemo, yo  fratemo,

zaozizuye  taro  Mathrem  panch  Gathao. 

We revere the holy Airyema Ishyo*

leading to Righteousness, which is full

of strength and leads to success, which

is devoid of hatred, nay always

overcomes all hatred and

goes beyond it. 

This is the word of Invocation,

the first, the middle and the last;

it is the Sacred Word in addition to five Gathas

(Havan Gah: Para 7) 

      *It is section 54.2 of the Yasna in the Gatha dialect in Praise of Airyaman, an ancient Aryan deity representing Friendship and Love.  In the Avesta as well as in the Veda, Airyaman is invoked at the time of marriage, in fact this verse is recited in the wedding service of the Zarathushtrians.




            Dastur Naoroze D. Minocher Homji   ……………………………………………………2


            Cyuys P. Mehta  ……………………………………………………………………4

      HEROINES  OF  ANCIENT  IRAN : Story of Queen Humai

            The Marchioness of Winchester  …………………………………………………………5


            Dr. Jose Luis Abreu   ………………………………………………………………………8



Dastur Naoroze  D. Minocher Homji 



                              with hands uplifted for the Perfect Bliss”  

(Source: “Parsiana”, February 1969) 

“A steady, ever-increasing flow of devotion and self-realization

will bring you to the perception of the infinite



(The information given below is taken from the book “IN SERACH OF THE SELF AND SELF SUPREME” by Dr. Nowzer Pheozeshah Mehta, Ph.D.) 

      First Level:- Sustenance of the physical body and comforts attendant upon the digestion and elimination. This is the level at which  a body starts its life. 

      Second Level:- This could be described as the level of the senses. As a child grows up it finds pleasure and pain in the use of the senses, such as sights, the sounds, the smells and the tastes. 

      Third Level:- This is the level when one develops love for oneself or the satisfaction of one’s ego becomes paramount. Desire to have material possessions, being liked by others, to have better clothes, food, housing and other amenities. This love for self remains all through life until the demise of the body.  Further this love brings man into conflict with others who have also have the same desire for the same things. Thus in life one finds love and hate, pride and prejudice, amity and anger, contentment and greed, attraction and antipathy, each bringing pleasure or pain.  Most human beings live at this level of consciousness. 

      What next?  Those who are not satisfied with the third level of consciousness undertake an inward journey to find out truth for themselves, to find out their true identity whether they are just body and soul, and to find the true purpose of  life. Through intensive thinking and meditation they see the glimpse of higher consciousness. 

      Fourth Level:-  At this level peace reigns supreme.  Of course such periods are brief in the beginning but with practice, and perseverance such periods can be lengthened. This happens during meditation. Once back in worldly life one is again in the domain of pleasure and pain.  

      Fifth Level:-  At this level the twin feeling of pleasure and pain is replaced by joy in or out of meditation, but not completely. 

      Sixth Level:-  Joy completely replaces pleasure and pain both in and out of meditation. 

      Seventh Level:-  Joy is replaced by Bliss. One’s own soul is now in complete union with Supreme Soul called God, Allah, Ahura Mazda, Bhagwan or Heavenly Father.  

(Complied by Cyrus P. Mehta, England) 

                  Thou art Divine, I know, O Lord Supreme,

                  Since Good found entrance to my heart through Love,

                  This taught me that for inner growth

                  Quiet and silent meditation is best.   (Gatha Ushtavaiti: Ys.43.15)   



The  Marchioness   of   Winchester 



Umai1 was the first and by far the greatest of the three queens, who, according to the partly legendary and partly historical dynastic scheme of the Shahnama, ruled over Iran in ancient times.  This beautiful and intelligent Princess married the Iranian King Bahman2, who some few months later became seriously ill.  Feeling the approach of death, he summoned all the members of his family, together with the nobles and chiefs, and expressed a desire that Huami should rule until such time as she had a son or a daughter of age to take over the sovereignty.  Shortly afterwards he died, and Humai succeeded to the throne.  Her first act, on being declared Queen, was to open her treasury and lavishly distribute her wealth among all equally.  She determined, wherever possible, to right wrong, help the poor, and establish peace and prosperity throughout the land. 

      If the excellent Humai possessed one weakness, it was love of power. So dear to her was the sovereignty that when some time later a son was born to her, she concealed the infant, giving out word to the people that it had died at birth.  When the child was eight months old, he showed promise of developing into a fine sturdy boy bearing a striking resemblance to King Bahman, and Humai’s jealous fears grew as she regarded him.  She then bethought her of a plan by which to dispose of him.  She sent for a skilful carpenter, and bade him build a miniature ark, choosing the finest materials and lining it with brocade of Rum. When completed, 

                              She placed within a pillow for a bed,

                              And filled it full of pearls of splendid water.

                              They poured in quantities of ruddy gold,

                              Mixed with cornelians and emeralds 

Then on the infant’s arm she bound a wondrous jewel “such as kings might wear”, and when midnight came, the nurse was sent to deposit him in the ark.  She wrapped him warmly in fine silk, and, heartbroken and tearful, did as she was bid, setting the ark adrift upon the River Farat.3 

      When dawn broke, a washer-man carrying on his trade at an inlet of the stream, was startled at the sight of the beautiful little craft floating towards him.  He recovered it, and, beholding the babe inside quickly swathed the ark in a heap of clothes he had been washing, and hurried into the house in search of his wife.  At first, the good woman began to scold him for not attending to his work; but, when he unwrapped the bundle and showed her the treasure it contained, her ill-humor gave place to ecstasy, and both gazed rapturously on the infant and the gold and gems which surrounded him.  They wondered greatly as to whom such a babe could belong.  A king’s son, forsooth!  There was, however, no means of finding out, and these humble folk longed for a child, having lost the only one they had.  They therefore adopted the infant as their son, and named him Darab, because they found him in the water4.  Some time later they deemed it advisable to move to another city, where they sold a large proportion of the jewels, and were thus enabled to live in happiness and prosperity with their beloved foster-child.  

      Darab grew to be a splendid youth, full of strength and daring.  His fondness for the bow and arrow nevertheless, caused his father much annoyance.  In vain he endeavored to interest the lad in his trade, Darab protesting that such work was not for him.  Feeling a desire to learn Avesta or the Sacred Scriptures, he asked his father to procure him a tutor, and the good man immediately complied with this request.  Later, he expressed a wish to become a knight, and this was also gratified, his loving foster-father selecting as his instructor one who was highly skilled in horsemanship. 

      As he grew older, Darab became more than ever convinced that these humble people were not his parents, and one day he took a sudden resolution.  As soon as the washer-man had departed to his work, he made fast the door, and, brandishing a scimitar, ordered his mother to tell him who he was. The terrified woman then told him the whole story of how he had been found.  Darab was amazed, and demanded to know whether she had any money or jewels.  She showed him her store amongst which was a large uncut ruby, and placed all at his disposal saying that she and her husband lived but for him.  Darab then purchased a horse and became a wonderful rider. 

      Meanwhile, peace and happiness had prevailed in Iran under the rule of the good and just Queen Humai, when suddenly news was brought to her that an army was coming from Rum to invade the country. She, therefore, ordered the warrior Rashnavad to gather an army and lead it towards Rum.  Darab, learning of this, enrolled his name on the list of the troops.  When the army was fully mustered, the Queen came out to review the host and the supervise the registration and the numbering of the men.  As the soldiers came towards her, she suddenly caught the sight of Darab seated upon his steed with kingly grace.  Greatly impressed by his handsome face and lofty bearing, she wondered as to his identity and pondered long upon him, until, having given instructions that they should keep her informed as to their progress, the troops took leave of their queen and marched through the desert towards Rum. 

      One night a terrific storm arose; the rain poured down and flooded the earth, which shook with the force of the thunder. Rashavand the general was, therefore compelled to  order a halt and bid his men seek refuge until the tempest abated.  Darab, glancing wearily around him, espied a ruined edifice, and making his way under the vaulted dome sank down and dropped off to sleep.  Some time later, Rashnavad, happening to pass the ruins on his round, was startled at the sound of a strange voice proceeding from the desert:

                        O ruined vault! be very circumspect!

                        Be careful of the monarch of Iran.

                        He had not any shelter, friend or mate,

                        And so he came and sheltered under thee. 

Extremely perplexed, and not a little afraid, he stood and listened, and again heard the voice: 

                        O vault! close not the eye of wisdom,

                        For “neath thee is the son of Shah Bahman.

                        Fear not the rain and keep these words in mind. 

Wondering greatly, Rashnavad remained as if rooted to the spot, until the voice was heard a third time; then, calling some of his men, he commanded them to search the vault.  They entered the ruins and a moment later returned with Darab.  No sooner had they done so than the lofty structure collapsed.  All were astounded at the youth’s miraculous escape, while Rashnavad, after his singular experience, could not but regard it as deeply significant.  At the first opportunity, he questioned Darab, and learned from his lips his strange history.  The general now procured for him a change of raiment, set him upon an Arab steed, and gave him a gold-sheathed sword.  He then dispatched a messenger to fetch the washer-man and his wife.  At day-break, he appointed Darab leader of the troops, when they resumed their march and attacked the army of Rum.  Darab fought like a lion, and slew the Ruman warriors by hundreds, winning the admiration of the Kisra by his bravery. 

      Crowned with complete victory, they returned in triumph to Iran..  The washer-man and his wife had appeared tremblingly in the region of the ruined vault to answer Rashnavad’s summons. They corroborated the story of Darab, and  received from the kindly general words of high praise for their goodness to the foundling.  Arriving within the borders of Iran, Rashnavad wrote a letter to the Queen, giving her the details concerning Darab, and enclosing the few jewels that remained, among which was the gem she had herself bound on his arm.  On receiving this intelligence, Humai was very much affected, and recognized at once the young hero as her son.  She sent for him and embraced him, bitterly regretting her act and scarcely hoping for his forgiveness.  But the generous-hearted youth made light of what he termed his mother’s one fault.  Humai then prepared for him a gorgeous throne, and, beholding him seated there, her eyes filled with wonder and love.  Summoning the entire court, she announced that he was the son of Bhaman, and now their King, and much jubilation and rejoicing ensued. 

      Darab’s first thought, on attaining the sovereignty, was of the faithful washer-man and his wife. As a reward for all their kindness, he bestowed on them riches and many jewels, and, blessing him, they departed. 

      Thus ends the story of Queen Humai, whose character, but for her one weakness, may be described as noble.  In the Avesta she appears as “the holy Huma”.  She ruled over Iran for thirty-two years, and hers was the first reign of which we have historical knowledge.  Among other things she is credited with some ancient buildings in the neighborhood of Persepolis in the province of Pars, whose ruins are still in existence.  

  1. She is also known by the name of  Cihrazad, which means “Noble-born, or “Of noble-mien.
  2. This Bahman is Vohuman Ardashir Dirazdast of the Pahlavi books, and there are historical grounds for connecting his long reign of 112 years with that of Artaxerxes Longimanus (465-425 B.C.) and that of his successors. Consequently, Humai, both in the Pahlavi and Persisn accounts, may be regarded as semi-historical.
  3. In the Arab geographies the Euphrates is called the Farat. If Firdausi’s geography has real background here, it might be taken to show the extent of the Persian empire at that time.
  4. This is the popular etymology to explain the name, as if derived from dar and ab, and to mean “Recovered-from-water”. This is undoubtedly Darius II of real history (425-405 B.C.)

   1st August 2002 marks Jamshed Nusserwanjee’s 50th Death Anniversary


Dr. Jose Luis Abreu

(Founder of Zarathushtrian Group & Spenta University, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela) 

                  please tell me, where is the sacred fire?  

                  I know it has been promised to humanity,  

                  Looking for its radiant light.

                  Is it in Serenity or is it too far in eternity?

                  Does it mean that it is out of my hand?

                  But you promised it to every man,

                  Who would use the precious vohuman.

                  Zarathushtra…is the Fire for the wise?

                  Or for the one who needs the light?

                  Tell me, in which direction

                  I can go to get its protection.

                  Explore profound caves out of sight,

                  Sail bravely indomitable seas

                  I will do it because I want to choose aright.

                  Keeps me away from happiness,

                  And doesn’t let me meet the divine

                  In the abode of righteousness.

                  It should be in Asha dimension that leads to perfection,

                  It should be in good mind

                  That reflects the divine.

Please send your articles & queries to: Virasp P. Mehta

4235 Saint James Place; Wichita, KS 67226; USA


Published for Informal Religious Meetings Trust Fund, Karachi