October 12 marks the thanksgiving festival of ayáthrim when the cows/cattle decorated in flowers, are brought back home to their warm shelters. The ayáthrim is a festive time to lead cattle from their summer meadows back to their shelters and to breed livestock! The festival lasts 5 days like the rest of the thanksgiving festivals and is concluded on October 16. The end of the ayáthrim marks the end of the month of Mithrá. The conclusion of ayáthrim marks the beginning of the month of waters in the Zoroastrian sacred calendar.
Looking at the Zoroastrian religious calendar and festivals, one cannot help but to notice the paramount importance of temporal time and space in Zoroastrianism! But why all this emphasis on sacred points of the day, month, seasons and the year in Zoroastrian sacred liturgy and ritual?
Ancient Zoroastrianism teaches that temporal time and material universe were and still are the best trap for the broken/evil spirit “ahriman” (Old Avestan angrá) and his host of diabolic deities/daævás!
The Mindful, Wise Lord, Ahûrá Mazdá, masterfully fashioned the limitations of spacetime to be the FINAL DOOM of all cruelty, malice and evil. From the very moment that the “broken spirit/ahriman” and his demon gods/daævás” entered the material manifestation, they infested it, mixed with it (gumîzišn), and contaminated the pristine creation! But at the same time all evil and flaws got confined within the limits of temporal time and physical universe.
Ahûrá Mazdá wisely foresaw that by restraining the diabolic forces to spatial and temporal dimensions, the cosmic battle against the forces of darkness will not be transposed to a transcendental, meta-temporal, meta-spatial, spiritual dimension of boundless mind/spirit (mainyü) wherein the conflict would never finish and will have no end.
The Luminous Lord of Mind, Ahûrá Mazdá is the Master of Eternity, (See Yasna 30.4, 3rdrhymed verse line, ancient commentary.) From his Boundless Time (Zarván- a.karnæ literally time without shores,) the Mindful Lord has carved out the Long Ages of History, our limited Cycles of Time, (See Yasna 44.17, 2nd and 3rd rhymed verse lines.)
Through the fading of each age, the villainy of the cruel deities and the evil, broken ahriman becomes more suicidal. It is so because the demon gods/daævás and their gloomy, dark lord, ahriman (Old Avestan angrá) lack any imagination or genuine, creative powers.
Diabolic deities are born out of doubt and fear, (See Yasna 32.16, 2nd rhymed verse line,) they are sterile and incapable of producing results. They are undead vampires that can only spoil, infest and cause ruin, (See Yasna 30.4, 2nd Rhymed verse line,)
According to ancient Zoroastrian Cosmology, ahriman and his ghost army, first entered the physical universe by piercing a hole on the northern side of the galactic sphere. The constellations and stars immediately closed that infernal hole/gate, creating an impassable barrier around the physical universe and imprisoning the diabolic forces in it.
Hence, the key points in time and space must be reinvigorated through
god songs or gathas, most powerful mind formulas or manthrás, and devotional rituals. According to the Váršt-mánsar commentary of Yasna 32, the ratü-s “wise masters” of time and creation are to be invoked at dawn, dusk and noon, during different phases of the moon,throughout days of the month, seasonal festivals, equinoxes and all other sacred points in space and time.
Ratü-s are literally “role models/prototypes who articulate the correct formula/algorithm, precise order, right fit.” The whole idea behind the concept of ratü is that real godhood comes from imagination, luminous vision, discovery of new horizons, creativity and finding of wondrous solutions, (See ahün-var, the most sacred charm/manthrá of Zoroastrianism.)
It is the duty of mortals to invoke the ratü-s “wise masters of time and creation” and emulate their superb, godly example to assures the triumph of spirit/mind-power over doubt and fear throughout cycles of each age and human experience.