The luminous vision, the eye, and the sun in the gathic poetry

The Váršt.mánsar commentary of Yasna 28 talks about the “eyes of excellence,” and “luminous vision of higher truth” ašəm through the “sublime words of the Brilliant, Auspicious Immortals.” 

Áiš in the Avestan original is understood/read as a variant of ašî “eyes, vision.” The ancient commentary connects the word for “eyes, vision” in verse 11 with ərəšuuáiš uxδáiš “sublime, truthful words” of the Omniscient Godhood in verse 6.

(Tocharian ak/ašãm, Vedic ákśî, Lithuanian akis, Old Norse auga, German auge, English eye are cognates.) 

Our lives are a reflection of our held beliefs, and perceptions. In many ways, our perceptions create our reality. In the Poetic Gathas, we shall see the worlds entire through the luminous vision, and the fiery eye of “excellence, higher truth, and superb order of Immortals.” 

In the Zoroastrian sacred lore or Avesta, Sun is the eye of Ahura Mazda. The fiery eye not only see everything, but gives life to, and creates anew the worlds entire in boundless light, and wondrous truth. It is the wisdom, and inspiring words of the Mindful Lord, Mazda, and his Brilliant Immortals that endow us with the gift of foresight, luminous vision, and powers of a higher, marvelous perception.   

The analogy of sun and eye finds various expression in Indo-European languages. In Norse skaldic verse “suns of the forehead” (ennis sólir) is a kenning for the eyes. The Armenian aregakn “sun” means literally “eye of the sun.” a compound of the genitive of arew ‘sun’ with akn “eye” harkening to a time that Armenian were Zoroastrians. 

Euripides, a tragedian of classical Athens propounds a cosmogonic theory by which the divine Aither created living creatures, endowed them with sight, and made the eyes in imitation of “the sun wheel.”  

A Homeric epithet of Zeus is ε􏰘ρ􏰙οπα, “with wide vision.” The Greek poet Hesiod whose works describe the genealogies of the gods, warns unjust rulers of Zeus immortal watchers, clothed in darkness, traveling about the land on every road, who watch over mortal men every ruling, judgment, and wickedness. In the Iliad it is the Sun who oversees everything, and for that reason the Sun is invoked, together with Zeus, as a witness to oaths and treaties. 

In the Vedas, the eye, the wide vision, and the myriad immortal watchers that the ancient Greeks ascribe to Zeus, are ascribed to Varuna, or the pair Mitra–Varuna, that are wide of eye (urucáksas-, 1. 25. 5, al,) and who have watchers who come hither from heaven.  


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