An inquirer wrote:
"I am eager to learn more about the Zoroastrian idea of the Saoshyant (Savior). I am familiar with the legend that a Savior will come out of a Virgin birth and that this idea was (some say taken) by the Christians for Jesus."
Yes, the idea of the Saoshyant was first revealed by Zarathushtra, who spoke of three saviours to come.
The following is an excerpt from "The Saga of the Aryans", a religious novel I have written. Volumes I and II of this book are currently published in book form. This is from Volume V. The material is based on our Avestan and Pahlavi scriptures, and is an important aspect of our religious belief.
Palash was telling the story of Zarathushtra to his beloved Avah.
As the birds chirped and the sun shone on the green and verdant fields of Iran, Avah listened attentively; her head framed in her hands as she looked up from the grass.
Palash went on. The strong Aryan youth smiled at the lovely face of his sweetheart, his heart filled with love.
"My beloved, our Holy Prophet Zarathushtra now explained the Future of the world to Kavi Vishtaaspa. The Future, as was revealed to Zarathushtra by Mighty God, Ahura Mazda Himself.
"Zarathushtra, in a vision, had been shown a tree with four branches. The branches were made of metals such as gold, silver steel and iron. Ahura Mazda then revealed to Zarathushtra, that the tree and it's branches represented the various periods in the history of the good religion. The first golden branch represented the golden period of the religion, when Kavi Vishtaaspa - the glorious King of the Aryans would protect and nourish it, bringing it to all the seven regions of the world: when the whole world would know and accept Zarathushtra as the One who carries the message of God.
"But, the silver and steel branches of the tree stood for the period when the religion would loose much of it's ancient power and glory. The world would forget Ahura Mazda and His Messenger: the descendants of the Aryans would even throw away the sacred Aryan Kusti girdle that their ancestors had so proudly worn. Stange practices, statue-worship and the belief in non-Aryan, negative concepts such as rebirth; and the world being thought to be illusion; would creep into the minds of the Aryans. This would be the sorry state of the world - except for blessed Iran, where the Aryan faith would still be strong.
"The last branch was the one made of Iron - and it signified the last of the great stages, it stood for the period of catastrophe - when the great Aryan empire of Iran would be overthrown by savage invaders. In this sad age, the religion of Zarathushtra would be forgotten by most of the Aryans of Iran - save for the precious few who would still hang on in caves or in mountain retreats, save for those brave few who would set sail for other lands, leaving their precious Iran behind - all to preserve their ancient faith.
"But for these adherents of the Aryan religion, the forces of evil would encompass the entire world. Our own Mother Earth, the earth that sustains our very lives now would be torn up one day to gain access to oil, whole forests cut down: mankind in that age would rage like a demon, wilfully polluting and desecrating the Creations of God. So unrighteously proud would man be of his scientific achievements and his trips in machines to outside the earth, that he would declare that there is no God - alas that this day and age would ever come about!
"These are the four stages of righteousness itself in the world. Ahura Mazda has therefore promised to send His Messengers whenever chaos rages on the earth, whenever mankind strays from the true path of Ereta (righteousness) - in order to save mankind from the clutches of the evil one. These Messengers would bring the final event of the play of Creation nearer - the ultimate aim of the universe, the RENOVATION of the world. Asho Zarathushtra, our Holy Prophet is the first such messenger, indeed he was born for striking the first deadly blow against evil.
"The Holy Zarathushtra will be followed by three great Messengers, in the thousands of years to come. These are actually the sons of Zarathushtra himself, who will be born miraculously to virgin mothers among our Aryan descendants.
"After his righteous marriage, it is said that Zarathushtra went three times unto his wife Havovi, and each time the spiritual seed was caught up by the divinity Neryosangh and carried to the safe keeping of Ava Ardvisur, the Divinity of the waters. Lake Kans in Iran are the waters in which the seeds are preserved, and from these holy waters they would be born in the future - conceived miraculously by three Aryan maidens, who would in different periods of time drink of, or bathe in the waters of the lake.
"In the first of the last three thousand years of the world, before the final Renovation, Shemik-abu is the first such virgin who would come to the Lake. At the age of fifteen, she will bathe in the water and miraculously conceive the son of Zarathushtra - who will be called UKHSHYAT-ERETA (HOSHEDAR), he who will increase Ereta (righteousness).
"At the age of thirty, Hoshedar shall meet with Ahura Mazda face to face and receive a Relevation. Returning from this divine conference, Hoshedar will make the sun stand still in the middle of the sky in the Rapithvanem (noon-day) position - the most excellent and auspicious time as per our Aryan beliefs. The sun will not move for TEN days and nights - he will does this to convince humanity of his Great Mission. A thousand years - a millenium of time now will fall under his influence, during which Righteousness increases in the minds and hearts of men. The world moves more and more towards perfection in this time, and two-thirds of the Aryans in Iran will be righteous again. Poverty, and slaughter of cattle will decrease - the very presence of the Aryan Prophet helping to remove the wolfish nature in man.
"In the second of the last three millenia, Shapir-abu bathes in the waters of Lake Kans and conceives the second son of Zarathushtra. Although she is a virgin and has never known man, she becomes pregnant and gives birth to the second Saviour UKHSHYAT-NEMANGH (Hoshedar-mah) - he who will increase piety in the world.
"At the age of Thirty, Hoshedar-mah confers with Ahura Mazda and receives a divine relevation. He then goes out into the world, and announces his Prophethood by making the sun stand still for TWENTY days and nights in the noon-day position. And then his work starts.
"By his very presence and power, the evil brood of ahreman on this earth - serpents and monsters, ants and scorpions, cats and wolves all will be destroyed. Humanity advances greatly towards perfection, and the final goal of Renovation, in this millenium of time. A sign of the times will be that cattle will wonderously start to give milk in abundant, large quantities: a single cow giving so much milk so as to satisfy a thousand men. Hunger and thirst will decrease - the world will indeed move nearer to its goal, of a perfect world that neither hungers nor thirsts. A single meal will satisfy a man for three days in this age, and the art of spiritual healing will be perfected to such an extent that disease will be almost eradicated, and death all but conquered.
"In this glorious time to come, men will be more humble and peaceful than ever before. They will have much greater Faith in the Aryan religion, and show greater Devotion to the Almighty. Indeed, this will be so."
"The world will reach perfection in the final millenium of Soshyos. When this time has been reached, man shall have stopped eating meat, and will subsist on milk and vegetables. However even milk will be slowly given up, and water and vegetables will be the only sustenance of mankind. And just before the Renovation of the World occurs, man will not even partake of milk, vegetables or even water - he will start to live without food of any kind, yet he will not die. The stages have been described thus: during the fifty-seven years of the activity of Soshyos, man will live on milk and vegetables for the first seventeen years, then on water for the next thirty years, and the last ten years he shall live only on spiritual food.
"This applies to the highly spiritually attuned men living during THAT time, and as for us now - we are enjoined to eat, so that we have energy to fight against evil. Fasting and torturing the body so is expressly forbidden in our religion, because now we need the food we eat to fight hunger - which the evil one has created. We need the food we eat, so that man and wife can love one another, and beget children - yes, indeed this is true.
"After all, Ahura Mazda has also proclaimed this to Zarathushtra:
" LET THIS HOLY WORD BE REMEMBERED: BY EATING NOTHING YOU HAVE NO POWER FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS (ASHA), NO POWER FOR AGRICULTURE, NO DESIRE TO BEGET CHILDREN. CERTAINLY BY EATING ALL MY CREATION LIVES; BY NOT EATING IT DIES. "
"In the end time it is a different matter altogether, because then evil will be at it's lowest ebb. At this time, when the world is ready and waiting for the last of the Saviours, a virgin named Gobak-abu will conceive the third and final son of Zarathushtra. At the age of fifteen, she will become pregnant after drinking of the water of Lake Kans in Iran. She shall give birth, in the realm of Khvaniras to the most glorious ASTVAT- ERETA (Soshyos) - his very name signalling that he is the final Saviour to come: for it means `He who will establish ERETA, righteousness on this earth'!
"At the age of thirty, Soshyos will be awarded the Final Relevation from Ahura Mazda - the same pristine message that had been given to Zarathushtra millenia ago, in all it's entirety, will be revealed to him. All the works (NASKS) of our religion that had been lost in the Iron age will come back at a stroke.
"He will make the sun then stand still in the noon-day position (Rapithvanem) for THIRTY days and nights, proclaiming his divine mandate to the people of the world. He has tremendous supernatural power - so much so that man's evil nature itself will be eradicated. He will then cause the Resurrection to happen.
"His body would be as glorious as the Sun - men will recognize Him as the Final Saviour instantly. He will live on spiritual food alone, with an aura of Kingly Glory around him.
"It is said that he looks around with the power of six eyes - it is he who forsees the final destruction of the evil spirit. He is the greatest World-Renovator of all, come to resurrect the dead to life - and to bring about the final Perfection of the world.
"The spiritual beings, the YAZATAS (worshipful ones) will influence mankind to co-operate with Soshyos in the great task of routing the evil Druj: this will be accomplished in fifty-seven years in all. Soshyos will also be helped by immortal Aryans who have lived in their bodies down the ages. These secret benefactors of mankinds will number more than a thousand, and they include Peshotan, Ashavazd, Tus, Giv, Aghrerath, Urvatadnar, Narsih and others. Peshotan (Chitra-mahan) will come with a hundred and fifty disciples, to help Soshyos. Kaikhushru, the great Aryan King will rise from the dead himself, to assist Soshyos in the task of raising the dead. And, there will also be fifteen men and fifteen women living in the world in those days who will come forward to help Soshyos.
"The monstrous Azi-Dahak (Zohak) will at that time break free of his chains on Mount Demavand, and come out into the world and go on a murderous rampage. The Great Ahura Mazda then shall command the Yazatas Sarosh and Neryosangh to raise the body of the great hero, Kersasp from the dead. The hero would rise up, arm himself and confront Zohak - defeating him and this time destroying the man-monster for ever.
"Soshyos will have six special deputies at that time: Roshn- chashm, Khur-chashm, Fradat-gadman, Varedat-gadman, Kamak- vakhshishn, and Kamak-sud, and he along with those special deputies will divide the great work among them - working one each in each of the seven zones. Wonderously, they will communicate with one another even if they be thousands of miles apart - by reading each other's thoughts with a spiritual sixth sense.
"This glorious work of Soshyos and the deputies will last for fifty-seven years, of which fifty years will pass in the seventh zone Khvaniras - where Zarathushtra Himself taught, and where Soshyos will now base His work. In those fifty-seven years, all evil will pass away - man will abandon evil and practise true righteousness. The Aryan religion of Mazda-Yasna will indeed be practised to its fullest extent. Disease, suffering and death will be no more present on the earth - as on the earth of yore. The earth will now be as perfect as it was when first created."
"The dead will now be raised to life again - right from the first man who died, Gaya-Merethan (Gayomard). This is the Glorious Ristakhiz: the Resurrection which was first announced by Zarathushtra to the ancient Aryans, as being the Ultimate Plan of God for the world.
"The living on the earth at this time will live so righteously that the very children born to them will be of a perfect, spiritual nature. They will stand ready to welcome the resurrected dead, who will now receive new bodies. These dead of the millenia passed will be made to rise up from the very place they had died long ago. Yes, this is a great Miracle of God, my beloved Avah!"
Palash smiled. The brown-eyed Aryan youth then continued, describing the events of the future to the listening girl who was looking at him, love evident in her eyes.
"Zarathushtra once questioned Ahura Mazda, as how this would happen - because by then, the bodies of the dead would have been destroyed by Dakhma-nashini (the utter destruction of the dead body) and mingled with the elements. How could they then be recreated?
"Ahura Mazda replied that He, the Great Lord had once created the Universe, with all its innumerable stars, the sun, the moon and the earth, fire and water, the wind and the clouds, vegetation and the human race, out of absolutely nothing at the time of Creation. If it was thus possible for Almighty God to give existance to something that had no existance before, then it would be very possible for Him to recreate what had existed once before - thus the act of Ressurection would actually be simpler and much easier than the Creation. Just as it is easier to teach that which was taught before but forgotten than it is to teach that which never was learnt, just as it is easier to repair a house than to build a new one - so is it easier to restore the Creation than to have brought it out from nothing in the beginning!
"The earth, the water, plants and fire, will now return those elements of each body they had absorbed - and the bodies will be reformed again. Gayomard, the ancestor of the human race will be the first to be raised up, then the first human pair Mashya and Mashyoi, followed by the rest of humanity, the righteous as well as the wicked. But as for men who practised the abhorred act of homosexuality during their lives, men who have forsaken the Aryan religion after being born in it, and men like Afrasiab and the accursed Alexander who will attack the Aryan religion and the Aryan country of Iran in the times to come - these cursed men will not be given their bodies; for these are the enemies of religion, no longer men but now evil demons themselves.
"Now, the Universal Judgement occurs. The righteous and wicked are now collected together as sheep in one place, powerless before the Power of God - and they then undergo the Final Judgement. Each and every soul now sees its own good deeds and evil deeds during its life, as if in a bright mirror raised before itself. The evil soul stands out with its evident misdeeds, as a black sheep would among the white.
"Ahura Mazda Himself now judges each soul and pronounces a final, decisive judgement. God indeed remembers in each detail the individual judgement passed on each soul immediately after death. His Judgment is strict and just, dealing out reward and punishment equal to the word, thought and deed - no one indeed can escape from His Judgement.
"The souls, when assembled for the Last Judgement, recognize one another after the long time they were apart - when they were in the spiritual world and their relations and friends were in the material creation. The father embraces his son, the husband his wife and the brother his sister, while the friend inquires after the well-being of his friend. The ones who have been wicked, bitterly complain to the righteous that they should have warned them against the perils of wickedness, and not just have practised righteousness by themselves but tried to convince them too of the merits thereof.
"The righteous are now sorry for the wicked and they weep, and the wicked sorrow and weep for themselves - the righteous now separated from the wicked and sent back to heaven. Before this the righteous had enjoyed heavenly bliss in the spiritual condition, now they enter heaven in the physical body. The wicked are sent back to hell - where they suffer again, this time in the body, for three days.
"The wicked soul indeed suffers at three different periods - first when they are on the earth, then after death in hell upto the time of the Resurrection, then for three days in hell in the body itself. Therefore are we enjoined to avoid evil while we live on this earth, Avah; but to lead righteous lives - for the reward will be great for the righteous - on this earth, after death in heaven, and at this final time in the physical body.
"The Fire of the anger of Ahura Mazda has remained silent for centuries. The Fire shall come down to the world and destroy evil at the time of the Renovation.
"A blazing comet now falls from the stars, and all the mountains on the earth are melted and levelled. The world itself is burnt up in a great ball of Fire. The Yazata Shatravar Himself, the Lord of Metals on this earth will cause the metals in the mountains to melt and pass in a boiling tide over the whole globe, immersing the souls of the righteous as well as the wicked. The wicked will be thus burnt in this river of molten metal, and their sins removed from them. They become entirely purified as a result. At the same time, miraculously so; the righteous souls will pass through this same inferno - and feel as if they were wading through warm milk! The Power of Ahura Mazda be praised.
"The worst sinners such as Zohak and Afrasiab will suffer very intensely in the final three days and the final flood of metal. However, even the sinners are now released from their torture in hell - for God does not want even the worst sinner to suffer for ever in the claws of the evil one - such is His Mercy.
"Following the final universal conflagaration, there will then occur the final Renovation of the world. The sinners have been purified of their evil by the red-hot metal, and now become as virtuous and worthy of bliss as the righteous. The Yazatas (worshipful beings) now ensure that the joyous reward of any good deed done on the earth is returned to that soul ten-fold. However, the righteous souls experience far greater happiness than the ones who have been cleansed, because they rightly deserve it so."
"The Heavenly bliss which is now the lot of everyone, now becomes ever-lasting by awarding immortality to every body. The Final Saviour Soshyos now performs the Holy YASNA ceremony, and prepares the white HOM juice - which all drink of, becoming immortal and ever young. Every man and woman becomes as innocent and loving as cattle. If a human was full grown at the time of his death, he now appears as a forty year old, whereas those who died earlier now appear as fifteen year olds.
Palash and his beautiful sweetheart Avah were imagining in their mind's eye, the Glorious Future of the World - that the Aryan Prophet Zarathushtra had revealed to the Aryan peoples. This concept, of the Resurrection of the dead and the World's final Renovation - would be what would inspire the Aryan peoples for centuries to come. This would be the belief that they had so much faith in, that would give them so much Hope - even though the forces of evil would rage and rant at them endlessly, through the millenia to follow.
It was a sunny day in ancient Iran about eight thousand years ago - and a light breeze blew around the young Aryan couple seated near the water well. The grain and flower fields extended for miles all around them, right upto the very gates of King Vishtaaspa's capital. The entire population of the capital was agog with the news of the Prophet's recent relevations to the King, for the Aryans of that generation had never heard these secrets before: the entire story of the World from Creation upto the Renovation - as per the Great Plan of God - had been outlined to them.
And Palash, who lived in the Aryan capital had taken the news to his Avah, the fair Aryan maiden who was his beloved and who lived and worked with her parents in the fields. News which thrilled the young couple beyond measure - for it was the news of the ultimate defeat of evil by the forces of Good.
"Families are reunited, the husband and wife live with their children as in the old world but there is no longer any birth of children. They now fully enjoy the reward of their good deeds, they are hungerless, and do not thirst. They do not sorrow or grieve, and are now eternal and undying - untouched by the blemish of disease, old age and death. The body is now a perfect one, and can no longer suffer from pain - neither a blow, nor a knife, nor a sword or stone or arrow can hurt or injure the flesh. There are no ailments of any sort, and the body and soul are filled with eternal bliss.
"Now follows the last, decisive battle between good and evil. The armies of Almighty God Ahura Mazda, and those of the evil one ahreman, now oppose one another. Each and every good spirit will engage in battle with its evil counterpart, and in each and every case evil shall be vanquished. Ahura Mazda will Himself combat with ahriman, Vohuman with akoman, Artavahist will fight indar, Shatravar with sovar, Sarosh with eshm and Spandarmad with taromat. Khurdad and Amardad will assail tairev and zairich, Truth fighting with falsehood. Druj itself will be destroyed. Drujo-deman itself, the abode of the evil one - where evil-doers have suffered in agony through the millenia - will be burnt away and destroyed.
"Ahura Mazda now Himself comes down to the world and acts as the ZAOTA, the head sacrificial priest and Sarosh Yazad will be His RASPI. God now holds the sacred Kusti-girdle in His Hands, and recites the AHUNAVAR as He did when He first created the Universe.
"The evil one is utterly paralysed on hearing this most sacred of MATHRAS in the voice of Ahura Mazda Himself, and he rushes back to darkness by the same passage through which he had come out and attacked the Creation in the beginning of the world. Lost without sustenance from human souls either on earth or in hell, he now ceases to exist and is forgotten for ever.
"Now disappear all evil demons from the world, along with all hatred, anger, ill-temper, fear, shame and strife, greediness and want. Evil of every kind disappears. Good of every kind is brought to the highest level of perfection.
"Ahura Mazda now establishes His Divine Kingdom on the earth. The Sacred Prayer in the Ahunavar is at long last fulfilled - Kshetremchai Ahurai Ayim, The Kingdom of God shall come.
"Mankind now thinks, speaks and act as per the Will of Almighty God, and His Will is known and obeyed by all. Mankind now has Full Faith in the Lord, and they now sing the praises of God for ever and ever, living in perfect bliss. No more will there be evil or unhappiness, because man is no longer opposed to the Divine Will but accepts it totally, living in the company of Ahura Mazda on this earth for all time to come.
"This is the great promise of the ancient Aryan faith of Zarathuhtra. These ideas will influence the whole world in time to come. Know all this to be true, my beloved! So has our great Prophet Zarathushtra revealed."
O! What a Glorious Future for the world
Zarathushtra has shown the Aryans today
That misery and poverty will be no more,
Death and disease removed from the earth.
They who have died will be formed again, alive
Soshyos will give all the sweet elixir of Hom
and make all mankind immortal and eternal,
When Ahura Mazda Himself comes down to the world
Chanting the Ahunavar, grasping the Kusti Girdle
God's Ultimate Power shall defeat the evil one
and bring about Glorious FRASHOGARD, Renovation.
All hail to God! and His divine Renovators
Who will bring Earth back to the Pristine state.
We are the Aryans, and we have the Faith!
(End of Chapter Ten)
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