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Volume III No. 12 

February-March 2003: Mah Spendarmad, Fasal Sal 1371: Gathas: 16-3-03/20-3-03  




We commemorate the Fravashis of men and women of all climes,

who have worked for the furtherance of righteousness. 

May the Fravashis bless us with knowledge and health.    

May they keep watch over our abodes, and may they always protect us. 

Let us so live that our living may be an honor to our departed. 

There are no reserved seats in the theater of God.  There are no classes in the amphitheatre of the Creator.  There are no bargains, there are no sales and there are no purchases.  It is all a plan of God.  Those who understand, and those who know how to receive without distinction, those who know how to forget themselves gazing at the sacred fire, those who are convinced that the Life in its essence is clean, is pure, is Love and is God, become the receivers of love from all sides and all quarters.  They know that love is not a commodity for storing, that love has to be consumed in the burning fire to create fragrance for all and to be sent to all the four corners of the globe that it may reach every one.”[Jamshed Nusserwanji] 


  1. FIRE A SACRED ELEMENT: Framroz Rustomjee
  2. SAOSHYANT [Part Three]: Ali A. Jafarey

                 The Marchioness of Winchester 

  1.     THE SEEDS OF DIVINE [Poem]: Dr. Jose Luis Abreu
  2.     SHOULD YOU ALWAYS FORGIVE? : Roxanne Roberts
  3.     SPENTA ARMAITY – SPENDARMAD [Prayer]: Noshir F. Vajifdar 

      12       BAI DOSIBAI DASTURNA [Life Sketch] 


Framroz Rustomjee 


arathushtra discovered that Fire was one earthly symbol that interpreted, to the fullest, God’s Great Law of Order.  The several Sparks that go to form the fire eventually blend into one great flame which, throws its beams upwards, drawing down as it were from the God of the Universe the energy that is needed to keep itself active.  Thus fire stood as the magnificent symbol of Law, Energy, Force, Light and Radiance.  Then Zarathushtra realized how very essential it was to feed the fire with fragrant wood and incense.  Zarathushtra was realizing all this knowledge from within the depth of0 himself.  The Fravashi that dwelt within Zarathushtra was revealing more and more of His Glory to God’s servant to prepare him for his mission among mankind, drinking deeper and deeper at the Fountain of Divine Lore, increasing in wisdom and stature towards the goal of Perfection. 

      Zarathushtra was not slow to realize the Holy Flame that burnt within him.  It was the Spark of God that was rising into flame. He saw that the flame within him had to be perpetually energized, and that the only way in which he could do so was by the fragrance of righteous thoughts, words and deeds of his life, which served as the inner offering to the flame within him.  He therefore tended the Sacred Flame of his temple with offering of dry fragrant wood as a constant reminder to his mind of the fragrant offering of absolutely pure thoughts – Humata, of absolutely pure words – Hukhta, and of absolutely pure deeds – Huvarashta. 

      Zarathushtra learnt that fire was an element that could never be made impure, but that it could burn away and thus cleanse all impurity, though the human conscience was bound to receive its pangs by any act done to pollute a fire.  Zarathushtra therefore taught laws of guidance of all mankind to preserve fire as sacred element.  On earth, fire represented the Indwelling Divine Energy.  He commended all the priests of his religion to tend the fires of the temples, and to recognize in the radiance of the fire, the all-pervading Love and Mercy of God, whose abode always is the abode of Light. 

      It is interesting to observe how very scientifically and by a gradual process of deep culture Zarathushtra became the Enlightened One in those prehistoric times. His profound views on religion disclose the reaction of the mind against the mere worship of nature, which drifts the mind into polytheism and into “the Doctrine of Emanations.” [Source: ‘The Life of Holy Zarathushtrta’ by the author]  


From all that dwells below the skies,

Let faith and hope with joy arise,

Let beauty, truth, and good be sung,

In every land and every tongue.



[Part Three] 

Ali A. Jafarey 

Saoshyant in Pahlavi Scriptures 

      I would prefer to present the Pahlavi version as given by my Mentor Dasturji Dr. Mankeckji N. Dhalla, in his outstanding work, “History of Zoroastrianism”, New York 1938, pages 423-427. 


      “Those who further the work of final restoration: The work of regenerating the world was commenced by Gayomard, the first man, and was looked forward to from the time of the Gathas, will be brought to completion and perfection by Sashyos the last savior.  Gayomard, Jamshid, Zarathusht, and all pious men who have worked for the betterment of the universe are among those that help in bringing about the final renovation.  The great work proceeds with greater or lesser success according as mankind are stronger or weaker in the practice of righteousness as various periods.  In two of his visions the prophet sees a tree with four and seven branches respectively. The branches are made of different metals and represent the various periods of the religious history of Zoroastrianism.  The first and the golden branch represents the golden age of the faith under King Gushtasp [Vishtaspa], the silver and steel boughs symbolize a decadence, while the iron branch, or age of the great catastrophe, is the period of the final overthrow of the empire, the overwhelming cataclysm that threatened to submerge the world except the triumph of virtue and right.  When the mighty work of reclaiming mankind from evil is accomplished, there will follow the Renovation of the universe.  Those who work to bring this period nearer are said to be holding communion with Ormazd.  

      Saviors: Born immaculately: Ormazd sends his special messengers at various periods of chaos and confusion to save humanity from the clutches of Ahriman.  This is clear in the Gathas as in the Yonger Avesta.  These Messianic heralds of the real truth to be embodied in the final Soshyos, exemplify righteousness completes and translates the abstract teachings of religion into concrete actions that thus make the seemingly incomprehensible intelligible and tangible to the masses.  The most prominent among these leaders in the last three millennium, as noted before, are the three sons that are to be born miraculously to Zarthusht from his seed through a supernatural conception by a maid, bathing in the waters of lake Kans (an idea as old as Yasht 19), and the names of these three ideal promoters of mankind, as perpetuated in the forms current during the Pahlavi period as Hoshedar, Hoshedar-mah and Soshyos, who will appear at an interval of a millennium each.  It is said that Zarthusht went three times to his wife Hvovi and each time the seed went to the ground.  On each of these occasions, important for mankind, the spiritual seeds were caught up by the angle Neryosangh and entrusted to the keeping of Ardvisur, the divinity of waters, and from these sanctified waters they will be born in time to come, as miraculously conceived at different periods by three virgins.  The advent of all-beneficial renovators of the faith for the regeneration of the world will, as we shall see below, be attended with portents and miraculous signs. 

      The millennium of Hoshedar: A child is born to a virgin named Shemik-abu of the age of fifteen, who miraculously conceives Zarathusht’s seed when she drinks the waters from a pool. The seed was emitted during the lifetime of Zarathusht and lay concealed in the waters until the maiden kindled the germs and became pregnant.  The child thus immaculately born in the first three millenniums of the world is named Hoshedar, a later modified corrupt transcript of the Avestan Ukhshyatereta. In the first of the last three thousand years of the world, before the final renovation and the resurrection, he holds, at the age of thirty, a conference with Ormazd and receives a revelation.  When he returns from this divine conference, Hoshedar makes the sun stand still for ten days and ten nights to convince the people of the   world about authenticity of his mission.  During his millennium, righteousness, liberality, and all the virtues supreme will be practiced during this aeon.  Two thirds of the people of Iran, according to the Pahlavi texts, will turn out righteous. The wisdom of the religion will constantly increase the poverty of the people and slaughter of cattle will decrease, as she is the benefactor that will help the wickedness of the wolfish nature of mankind. 

      The millennium of Hoshedar-mah: A maiden named Shapir-abu is destined to approach the waters and conceive thereby, again through the second seed of Zarthusht.  The virgin who has never approached man gives birth to a child who is named Hoshedar-mah, an imperfect rendering of the Avestan Ukhshyant-nemangh, who confers with Ormazd.  At the age of thirty years he announces his advent by making the sun to stand still for twenty days and twenty nights.  His benign presence and Messianic power, it is destined, will destroy the wicked power of every serpentine and monster engender.  Mankind greatly advances toward the realization of the final goal of perfection during this millennium.  Cattle give milk in great quantities.  In connection with this millennium view, it may be added, from the Pahlavi texts of this later period, that the small cattle which gives milk will give milk then in redoubled quantity, and a cow will give such milk as could be used by a thousand men.  Hunger and thirst will decrease, as the world reaches nearer to its perfection.  A single meal will be sufficient to satisfy a man for three days.  Mankind will furthermore become so versed in the art of healing, and in the science of physical culture that it will be able to withstand disease and death more successfully.  Humility, peace, and liberality will be now and forever more zealously practiced by men. 

      The millennium of Soshyos: The word according to the Pahlavi texts, which carry onward the ideal teachings of Zarathusht in the Gathas as developed further in the Younger Avesta, in ever striving and tending toward final betterment, and will reach perfection in the millennium of Soshyos. It needs only the final touch of the greatest of renovators to bring about the result for the eternal welfare of the universe. Men by this time, when these millennial conditions have been reached have ceased eating meat, and subsist on milk, and vegetables form only food of mankind. The Bundahisn moreover, adds that, before Resurrection and the Renovation of the universe occur, men will give up milk, vegetables, and even water and they will ultimately subsists without food of any kind, and yet not die.  Still another Pahlavi text states that during the period of the fifty-seven years of the activity of this last apostle mankind will be able to subsists for seventeen years simply on vegetables, then thirty on water alone and for the last ten years on spiritual food. 

      “At this time according to the texts, when the world is ripe to welcome the last of the prophets, a virgin named Gobak-abu conceives immaculately the third seed of Zarthusht in the same manner as her two forerunners had done.  At the age of fifteen she becomes pregnant and gives birth to the most illustrious Soshyos in the realm of Khvaniras.  When the final savior is thirty years of age, the sun stands still in the zenith, of the sky for thirty days and thirty nights; through his supernal power of the demonic nature among men will be broken.  He will cause Resurrection and the future existence.   His body, which is as radiant as the sun, partakes only of spiritual food and he is clad with kingly glory.  Around him he looks with the power of six eyes and he it is that foresees the end of the Evil Spirit.  He is the greatest renovator of the world.  He comes to restore the dead to life, and to bring final perfection to the world.                     

      “Any kind of wickedness that may still be lingering, in spite of the supreme beneficence will perish through his presence.  The angels will enable mankind to cooperate with the great apostle Soshyos to rout Druj.  In advance of his divine mission to the world he has met Ormazd in conference and has received the supreme sanction for his task. During the fifty-seven years of his work, he will drive out the drujes from the world, and will make the world eternally happy. 

      Dasturji Dhalla has provided his chapter of twelve pages [423-433] with Pahlavi references to present it in a condensed form [references not stated here for the sake of brevity].  He has nothing to mention on Shah Bahram Varjavand even in his nine chapters on “A Period of Decadence from the seventh to the eighteenth century” (pages 437-477). [To be continued].  


P.D. Mehta


any people shy away from religion because they feel that to be religious means to be solemn, to shun the legitimate joys of everyday life, to spend one’s life praying and fasting, in short to be miserable.  Nothing could be further from truth.  Religious living simply means living daily secular life virtuously. It can well include prayer and worship, for those are spontaneous expressions of man’s tenderly growing awareness of Transcendence, and of the fact that he is primarily a religious being and only secondarily everything else.  Zarathushtra as a man of action and as a Prophet of God was a very practical man with sound psychological insight.  He well knew that man of course will run away from a misery agent, but incline favorably towards happiness bringer.  So he affirmed that not only God but also this physical world is good.  Thus one of the outstanding features of Zarathushtrian religion is its joyousness. 

      Zarathushtra says:                  


The Marchioness of Winchester

Stories of Purandukht and Azarmdukht 


      After the death of Shirwi (A.D. 628), who ruled only for seven months, several other sons of Khusrau Parwiz ruled over Iran; but were murdered by different conspirators until no Princes were left. Thus, for a considerable period, the country had no King.  Eventually, however, the people gave the throne and crown to Princess Purandukht, a sister of Shirwi, and a descendant of Sasan  

      Purandukht (Puranducht, A.D.630-631) was a good and gentle lady, and had been horrified at the part Shirwi had taken to bring his father’s death.  Now that the country had made her its Queen, she determined to purify the atmosphere, and to see that justice was adequately meted out to the wrongdoers and that peace prevailed.  Her words, as she took her seat upon the throne, may serve as evidence of her great zeal:

                              The people scattered and I will enrich

                              The poor with treasure that they may not bide 

                              In their distress, God grant that in the world

                              There may be none aggrieved, because his pain

                              Is my calamity, I will expel

                              Foes from my realm, and walk in royal ways.     

      Wise as she was good, Queen Purandukht very soon succeeded in reviving law and order in the land of Iran.  But her reign proved all too brief.  Within six months of her accession to the throne, she fell ill and died.  Reflecting on the sudden death of Purandukht, the poet gives us some of the finest couplets in the Shahnama, the wise man of Tus anticipating by many centuries some of the famous quatrains in the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam:     

      Such is the process of the turning sky,   For sixty years o thirty, ten or four,

      If thine be opulence or poverty,     If thou hadst many years or barely one.

      If thou shalt win what thou desirest so,   For they in every place will succor thee.

      Or disappointed be in wretchedness,   Let go thy clutch upon this Wayside Inn

      And whether thou be one of wealth or woe,   Because a goodlier place is thine to win,

      Both woe and wealth will pass away no less,   If thine endeavor be to learning given,      

      Reign as a Shah a thousand years, five score,   Thou wilt by knowledge roam revolving heaven. 

      Purandukht was the first historical Shahbanu, who as reigning sovereign of Iran graced the throne of Cyrus and Darius, Ardshir and Shapur.  Among other things, she is said to have restored the  “True Cross”, but it seems more probable that this was done in the reign of Ardshir, her predecessor on the throne of Iran, if the date of its elevation at Jerusalem---14th of September in the year 629 of the Christian era is correct.  



      After the death of Purandukht, her sister Azarmdukht (Azermidocht, A.D. 631-632) came to the throne. Although a capable ruler, with excellent intentions, she seems to have been a somewhat formidable lady, intolerant and over-conscious of her power, as may be gathered from her first address to the people: 

                        O sages, veterans

                        And masters of affairs! Be just in all,

                        And follow precedent, for ye hereafter

                        Must make the bricks your pillow.  I will foster

                        The loyal liege, assist him with dinars

                        And if he erreth be long suffering;

                        But him that is disloyal and deserteth

                        The way of wisdom and of precedent

                        Will I suspend in shame upon the gibbet,

                        Be he an Arab, Ruman cavalier,

                        Or Persian Thane.  

      We are told that the chief noble of the time, who was governor of Khurasan, wished to make Azarmdukht his wife, upon which she had him privately executed for his presumption.  This noble’s son was the Rustom, who fought valiantly against the Arabs and fell at the battle of Kadisiya some years later.  On hearing of his father’s fate Rustom, who was in temporary authority in Khurasan, marched with great army against Azrmudukht, overthrew her and put her death.  This occurred when the unfortunate Queen had reigned but four months. 

      Azarmdukht was the last Persian Princess who ruled the country of Iran in ancient times, and the last heroine whose story is told in Shahnama.  Firdausi closes his poem with the reign Yazdagird (Isd- egird III, A.D. 632-652), the last Zoroastrian Emperor of Iran. [Series concluded]  


Look to this day,

For yesterday is but a dream.

And tomorrow is a vision.

But today well lived,

Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness.

And every tomorrow is a vision of hope.

So, look well to this day. 

[Translated from Sanskrit]  


Dr. Jose Luis Abreu 

Long ago, in ancient times,                                           

A wise man met the divine,

He was given some seeds,

The divine said: “This is what men need.” 

He started planting in his hand,

Some seeds of Vohuman,

Later, many people received happiness.

Harvesting fruits of Righteousness. 

The plants from those seeds,

Gave countless fruits to humanity,

For some flavored with Armaity.

Somebody said: This is what we need. 

After many years of cultivation,

The wise man passed away,

But before that, he addressed all to say,

If I depart, please don’t stop the propagation. 

He asked to plant without limitation,

In the color of the skin or nationality,

These seeds should have intensity,

To reach any land ready for plantation. 

Nobody should be denied the opportunity,

Of planting these wonderful seeds,

They are for whoever is in the need,

Reaching for better life of immortality.  

Somehow the seeds in a different land arrived,

Where nobody thought they could grow,

Some people did not want there the seeds to go,

But despite this adversity, they are indeed alive. 

The seeds are growing so fast,

Becoming strong trees,

That a friend said: “Here are at last.”

If you do not believe me, come and see. 

These seeds belong to any land,

With a soil made of Vohuman,

Not just to a special personality,

That thinks of chosen by divinity. 

It would be against human rights,

Not to give the necessary light,

Needed by the good seeds,

Growing into strong trees. 

My friend, the Gathas are the seeds,

That our lives should finally meet,

As they become strong trees,

The House of Song our sheltering need.. 

And Zarathushtra is the wise man

One who started the cultivation.

Using our bright Vohuman,

Let’s keep alive his good intention. 

“If we could erase the “I’s” and “mine’s” from religion, politics, economics etc.

We should soon be free and bring heaven upon earth. 

[Mahtma Gandhi] 


Roxanne Roberts 


n Sept 11, 2002, Toad Beamer was on doomed United Flight 93 headed for San Francisco. Minutes before the plane crashed into a field in rural Pennsylvania, he asked an air-phone operator to send his love to his family, then began to pray, “Our Father, who art in Heaven…”  Days later, his widow, Lisa remarked that the Lord’s Prayer asks God “to forgive our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.  And in some ways, he was forgiving those people for what they were doing; the most horrible thing you could ever do to someone.” 

      For centuries, the subject of forgiveness has fascinated and vexed moral men and women. It pits judgment against mercy, rage against compassion, instinct against intellect.  Forgiveness is one of the key doctrines in most religions, asking followers to forgive as God forgives them. 

      Now there’s a new, practical take on the subject, where spirit meets self-interest: Several new books and medical studies conclude that people who forgive live longer, healthier and happier lives.  But an eye for an eye satisfies the very human desire for fairness.  People are punished in direct proportion to their sins.  There is justice in the world, and so the debate --- fueled by the horrors of Sept. 11, violence in the Mid-east, corporate betrayals, sexual abuses by priests --- moves from the pulpit to the pundits.  Forgive because it’s good for you and breaks the cycle of hatred.  Don’t forgive because there are some things too terrible, too evil for any ethical person to pardon.  From any entirely pragmatic point of view, forgiveness is better for you.  

      In 1998, the Campaign for Forgiveness Research began to apply scientific data to the subject.  Everett Worthington, chairman of the psychology department at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond is executive director of the campaign and author of  “Five Steps to Forgiveness: The Art and Science of Forgiving.” Worthington started his career as a clinical psychologist in marriage counseling, where forgiveness was an ongoing issue.  In 1995, just a month after finishing a book on the subject his mother was murdered during a robbery.  His initial reaction was to kill the person who did this.  Instead he made a painful decision to personally test his theories about forgiveness.  His model: to eliminate the emotions of “un-forgiveness” for his own mental and physical health.


      “From a scientific point of view, un-forgiveness is a combination of negative emotions, resentment, bitterness, hatred, anger, hostility and fear,” says Worthington.  “In the short run, un-forgiveness is empowering.  In the long run, un-forgiveness will kill you --- literally.” 

      His research suggests un-forgiving people have high levels of cortisol, a hormone that is released from the adrenal glands in response to stress. Elevated stress hormones are necessary in fight-or-flight situations, but not healthy on a permanent basis. That leads to, he says, heart attacks, coronary diseases and strokes, ulcers, colitis and immune system problems. 

      In February, Prevention magazine reported the results of a forgiveness study at Hope College in Holland, Mich.  Seventy-one subjects were measured for heart rate, blood pressure and stress levels and asked to think about people who had lied, insulted or rejected them. The test subjects then had a choice: Imagine holding grudges, or forgiving the offenders. 

      Forgivers had lower heart rates and blood pressure, felt calmer and more in control.  Holding grudges led to higher stress and greater feelings of anger and sadness.  The mind-body connection is also at the heart of Stanford University’s Forgiveness Project, a six-year study directed by Fred Luskin.  He worked with people from Northern Ireland whose family members were killed by sectarian violence. The deaths had occurred at least two years before – the wounds were deep but not fresh when his subjects arrived in California. 

      “They didn’t like the word ‘forgiveness’ when they first came,” says Luskin. “But when they learned forgiveness was for them and their healing --- not about or for the offender --- they were more open.”  Over time, the initial desire for vengeance ebbs, and forgiveness becomes more of a possibility.  “Forgiveness does not condone horror,” says Luskin. “Forgiveness does not mean you have to reconcile with an offender.  And forgiveness does not mean that you forget what happened --- you remember to protect yourself and loved ones.”  

Good for the soul? 

      A case can be made that forgiveness lets offenders off too easily creating a moral universe where forgiving slips into forgetting and moral laziness passes piety.  If nothing is unforgivable, then the boundaries between good and evil become blurred.  Most questions of, forgiveness stem from personal betrayals by lovers, spouses, parents, children and friends.  Petty arguments slide into lifelong grudges. Even if the offender admits he’s wrong, it’s hard.  The issue becomes complicated intentionally:  Did the person mean to cause, or was it an accident?  And by love: People will often forgive their children anything, but not spouses or siblings. Then there’s the misunderstood difference between forgiveness and justice.  Even if you forgive, you can still believe that person should go to jail, get fired or otherwise pay the price of his transgression.           

Should you forgive? 

      Jeanne Safer, a psychologist and author of “Forgiving & Not Forgiving: Why Sometimes It’s Better Not to Forgive”, says forgiveness, like love, is an emotional state that’s not entirely voluntary.  The problem with all this is that it’s just not possible for everyone.  There is no, one-size-fits-all solutions to crimes of the heart.  There’s so much pressure on people that they must forgive that it leads to a state I christened ‘false forgiveness.’”  

      The “forgiveness lobby” has been effective, says Safer, that there is balancing concept of what she calls “healthy non-forgiveness.”  The argument has been reduced to forgiveness vs. hatred --- when her research indicates there are many shades of gray.  Many people Safer interviewed did not forgive, felt better that, they hadn’t forgiven, and were not overwhelmed with rage or bitterness.  In fact, they felt great.  “To take a moral stance and ethical choices --- based on real understanding --- can restore you to health,” she says. “It can be liberating because you don’t hate yourself for not forgiving.”  Most of us cannot forgive even small heartbreaks, much less massive evil.  

Where to begin?  

      There are typically three stages of trauma and recovery, says Worthington:  Numbness (which typically lasts one to two weeks), an attempt to make sense of what happened (one to two years), and finally a desire to move ahead with some form of normal life.  “A lot is a matter of timing,” he says.  If you prematurely or too forcefully coerce someone into trying to forgive, then that can cause people to react negatively with anger, guilt or depression.”  

All about grace  

      Or perhaps it’s not about formulas. Perhaps it’s about grace.  Steven McDonald is a New York policeman who was shot and paralyzed 15 years ago.  His assailant shot him in the head, in the throat and then a third time when he was on the ground.  His wife was two months pregnant.  What became the focus of their attention was their faith --- McDonald is a devout Catholic.  When his baby son was born, seven months after the shooting, McDonald says their hearts opened to the “gift” of forgiveness “to free us from any bitterness and anger.”  Forgiving the offender had very little to do with the shooter and every thing to do with love for their son. 

      “I’ve often heard the phrase ‘forgive and forget’,” he says.  “You never forgive and forget.  The memory of the assault is with you always.  But God desires us to forgive – for our own well-being.”

[Source: “Faith & Value” Section of “The Wichita Eagle”] 


Devotion – Piety – Faith

Ashem shyaothanaish bazaiti armaitish

[Gatha Ushtavaiti 2.6 Ys 44.6]

Armaiti gives grace to righteousness by her action. 

      My religion rests on my faith in You, Ahura Mazda, and my faith gains strength by the devotion I put into my prayers to you.  Let my devotion spread into everything I do in my life, however, important or trivial, and let all my thoughts, words and deeds be in accord with Your will.  Let me always remember you and place you first in all my good endeavors.   

      Unswerving faith, in your goodness and love gives me peace of mind and peace of heart.  It renews my resolve to tread the path of Asha, and to serve its course with devotion and steadfastness.  

      Help me, my Lord, to improve and perfect this reflection through life of faith, piety and devotion and through the Path of your truth as revealed by our Prophet Zarathushtrta.   

      Command me, O Ahura Mazda, and I will follow, order me and I will obey; show me the way and I will tread it. I will live for you and for your purpose in life with the devotion of Armaiti, and express my love for you through a life of love and helpfulness to my fellowmen.  

[Source: “Teach Me To Pray—A Second Book of Prayers for Zoroastrians: -- Noshir F. Vajifdar] 

Bai Dosibai Dasturna

[Wife of Dastur Rustomji Mobedji Kumana of Surat]


      This learned lady was a prominent figure among the Parsis of Surat in her days, being proficient in the history of religion and traditions.  She was actually consulted even by elderly priests on matters of faith.  She was a descendant of the great Dastur Darab Kumana, the leader of the Kadimis in Surat.  In 1865 Sheth Khurshedji R. Cama lectured at Surat and this lady had the rare courage to express her views openly at the meeting!  

      This unprecedented event created a great impression on the Parsis present. Even the great Parsi chronicler, Khan Bahdur Bomanji Behramji Patel, author of Parsi Prakash, complimented her by saying that she was an authority on matters of ancient history of her town. 

      Hearing her fame, Miss Mennant the Oriental savant had to record in her book, “Anquetil du Perron” about her fine capacity, which had impressed other European scholars as well.  In the portrait shown here Miss Mennant wrote in her own handwriting: Dosibai descendante de Darab, ie  “Dosibai, the descendant of Darab”  [Source: “Parsi Lustre On Indian Soil”: Vol. I of 1939 by H.D. Darukhanwala]   

Fill every day with some kind deed

And you‘ll be truly blessed,

For helping someone who’s in need

Brings peace and happiness. 

And you can always guarantee

Your day’s been made worthwhile

When you take the trouble to lend a hand

And go that extra mile. 

[Helana Socha]  

Please send your articles or queries to: Virasp Mehta

4235 Saint James Place, Wichita KS 67226, U.S.A.


Published for Informal Religious Meetings Trust Fund, Karachi