Ameretát “Immortality,” “Indestructibility,” in the poetic gathas

Ameretát is the Avestan word for “Immortality,” or more accurately “Indestructibility,” “deathlessness.” It corresponds to the Sanskrit Amrita and the Greek ambrosia.

In the poetic gathas with the exception of 2 verses (Yasna 32.5, 1st rhymed verse line and Yasna 48.1, 3rd rhymed verse line,) Ameretátcomes always with Haürvatát; from the root har; Vedic sar, Greek holo, Latin salvus; “ all and every cure/remedy, every healing formula.”

In the Rig Veda Sómá or nectar of immortality is referred to as “Amrita.”This is especially so in the literature of Buddhism where the name Sómá is almost unknown and is entirely replaced by Amrita. Amrita is derived from a Sanskrit word that literally means “deathless” “undying” “unfading.”

In Greek Mythology ambrosia is the wine of the ageless youth. In Homer’s poems though, nectar is the liquid and ambrosia the sustenance of immortality. However, originally the two terms were indistinguishable. Ambrosia is derived from the Greek ambrotos; “a” stands for “not” and mbrotos for “mortality”. The literal translation of Ambrotos into English would be the word “Immortal, deathless.”

The connection between the Avestan Ameretát and the wine of immortality can also be seen very clearly in the poetic gathas at Yasna 34.11, 1st rhymed verse line.

Ameretát and Amrita or immortality is closely associated with the life-force within the plants and trees in ancient Aryan poetry. Such association between immortality and the unfading life-force within plants can also be traced back to the poetic gathas; See Yasna 51.7, 1st and 2nd rhymed verse line.

In Norse Mythology the wine of immortality inspires elegant Poetry. Old Norse skáldskapar mjaðar is a mythical wine that whoever drinks it becomes a skald or scholar, able to recite any knowledge/information and solve any question. Compare Norse mjaðar with Vedic máðú and Avestan myað/wine.

The celestial wine here becomes a metaphor for poetic inspiration. Mjaðar is the “Master of the house of Song,” the wellspring of poetry and song. Also, in the poetic gathas a clear relationship is established between Ameretát/Immortality, songs and inspired poetry; See Yasna 45.5, 3rd and 4th rhymed verse line.

Ameretát in the poetic gathas is said to be connected to higher understanding/awareness foresight and wisdom, See Yasna 44.18, 4th rhymed verse line.

Also in Yasna 32.15, 3rd rhymed verse line, it is the pair of Ameretát “Immortality” ”Indestructibility” and Haürvatát “every cure/remedy, healing formula;” that takes the seeker to the abode of music and songs.

In the Rig Veda also, the nectar of immortality/Sómá is also called the “master Poet” and inspires song and poetry.  Sómá, Avestan haömá is derived from the root sú/hü, “to extract the essence/nectar of. The extracted nectar is composed of “immortal drops” Rig Veda 9-64-17.

In the poetic gathas, the extracted essence, the purest nectar of life is paired with Ameretát “Immortality;” See Yasna 32.5, 1st rhymed verse line.

When we read of “hú-mata, hükhta, hvarshta,” translated commonly as good thoughts, good words and good deeds; the talk is in fact about “the purest nectar” in thoughts/mediation, “the purest nectar” in words /speech and “the purest nectar” in action/manifestation. Hvarsht is the purest nectar in actions that waves our destiny. Varsht/Verez is almost identical to the Old Norse rune wyrd/urðr, German werden; “to become, realize, manifest.”

For the gift of Gd is Every remedy and Every ingenious formula, Indestructibility and Immortality, See Yasna 31, 21, 1st rhymed verse line

Ameretát is to be god-like, to become one of the immortals with an ever renewed youth, to have every remedy and ingenious formula, weal and riches, See Yasna 33.8, 3rd rhymed verse line.

Immortality is “union, joining” with GD in enterprise, action and words, Yasna 34.1, 1st rhymed verse line.

To have superior wits, command/mastery over being, every solution and formula, immortality and indestructibility, See Yasna 44.17, 4th rhymed verse line.

To have the key to all the kingdoms, every cure and wisdom and an unfading life-force, See Yasna 45.10, 4th rhymed verse

For the Gd that Zarathushtra teaches about does not want servants and slaves but superior ahúrás and master creators, shapers of a fresh, new world and destiny, See Yasna 30.9. 2nd rhymed verse line and Yasna 31.4, 1st rhymed verse line.  

In the poetic gathas Haürvatát and Ameretát “every remedy/knowledge and indestructibility/ immortality;” are the prize of mortals, See Yasna 47.1, 3 rd rhymed verse line.

Even demons will convert to goodness at the end, become eternally progressive, immortal and god-like, See Yasna 48.1, 3rd rhymed verse line.

Since for Zarathushtra, every remedy and all cure lies in the formulas of consciousness, and Immortality in goodness, light and excellence, See Yasna 31.6, 2nd rhymed verse line.

Immortality is for the souls of the seekers, the seekers of excellence, See Yasna 45.7, 3rd rhymed line.

In the last occurrence of the word in the poetic gathas, the prophet asks for the gift of Immortality, All and Every knowledge/remedy, the most auspicious and brilliant spirit/mind of ma(n)zda, the Gd of Goodness and Genius.




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2 Responses to Ameretát “Immortality,” “Indestructibility,” in the poetic gathas

  1. zaneta garratt says:

    very refreshing reading,encouraging and enlightening

  2. Ton Jacobs says:

    Very informative and revealing!

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