Creation in the Poetic Gathas, and Ancient Zoroastrianism


Unlike the Book of Genesis, which is the religious sourcebook of Judeo-Christian Civilization, in the Poetic Gathas of Zarathustra, the Cosmos has already been made, and consists of the world of “thoughts, imagination, mind energy” mainyü, and the world of “physical form” called literally the world of “bones and flesh” astvatö.

The process of “manifestation” into physical form involves: “power of thoughts/mind,” “focusing,” “establishing,” and “fitting into the right place.” This “perfect fitting, work of art” is called apa in the archaic Avestan, and is a cognate of Vedic ápas, Latin opus, Old Norse efna “work.”

In the Poetic Gathas, hvapa “Superb Artisan,” fashions Cosmos out of mind stuff, (See Yasna 37.2, 2nd rhymed verse line, Yasna 44.5, 2nd and third rhymed verse lines, Yasht 5.85.)

The supreme God Ahûrá Mazdá, at the primordial yasná “desire, yearning,” thinks the realms of light, and superb order (See 31.7, 1st rhymed verse, and Yasna 31.19, 1st rhymed verse line.)

The ahûrás “Artisan Gods” formulate the mind formulas (See Yasna 29.7, 1st rhymed verse line,) and set in place the pristine existence.

The word for “Creator” Avestan dátár, Vedic dhátár, comes from the ancient root dheh “to set, establish.” Cosmic Order is “set in place, established” through ašá/arthá “excellence, right fit, truth of the Immortals.”

In Zoroastrianism, this artistic power “to establish, set in the right place” is a splendid, wondrous God force, and universe is a battleground between the forces of Excellence/Order of the Brilliant Immortals, and chaos of the diabolic forces.

In this world of physical forms, the battle is fought between the warriors of light, and those who follow drûj “lies, darkness, deception” that distorts the cosmic quest for excellence/order.

The climatic battle is fought between those who bring out the invincible sun, the powers of light, virility and life, and the creatures of darkness who try to prevent the sun/dawn from rising, (See Yasna 32.10, 2nd rhymed verse line, Yasna 43.16, 4th rhymed verse line, Yasna 46.3, 1st rhymed verse line, Yasna 50.2, 3rd rhymed verse line, Yasna 50.10, 3rd rhymed verse line.)

The splendid remaking of the cosmic order after periods of chaos is according to ratü “right formulae” or “blueprint” of the pristine manifestation ahûna vairiia (will to become godlike.)

The “right formulas of mind/consciousness” are taught by Ármaiti, “Perfect Calm/Meditation,” (See Yasna 43.6, 4th rhymed verse line.) The marvelous regeneration of the worlds by Ahûrá Mazdá is achieved through the combined efforts of the Gods, and righteous men supporting the quest for eternal excellence, cosmic order, and truth.

In conclusion, it be shall emphasized that Creation in Zoroastrianism is NOT ex nihilo, or creation out of nothing. All the words that come in connection with “creation” refer to “cutting, sculpting, fashioning, forging, and fitting into the right place.”

Avestan thwöreštar “creator” is the superb artificer who cuts/hews, and creates works of art. Another common term for Creator tašan means “artisan, builder carpenter.” Avestan tašan combines the notion of “weaver” with that of “builder.” Greek tékton is a cognate. Cosmos has already been there, Godhood only fashions cosmos into ever more splendid excellence.

ardeshir

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