In the name of Allāh,
the Beneficent, the Merciful.
Peace and Blessings of Allāh on Mohammad.
Allāh–the Glorious and the High,
Lord of the worlds
Mohammad–who brought the world
to our feet and eternity to our arms.
“It is a fact,” Abdul Haque Vidyarthi points out “that there is no idol-worship in Zoroastrianism, but a sort of nature worship is, of course, present.”1
Zoroastrians or Parsi or Magians believe in two Creators –Yazdan or Ahura Mazda or Ormuzd– the God of light, who creates all the things that are good and useful –and Ahriman– the God of darkness who creates all the things that are evil and bad.
But Zoroaster taught One God: “Behold me O Lord,” “I explain to you…the wisdom of the All-Wise God”–(Yasht 44:3, 5; Gatha Yasht 30:1-2).2 (As noted, Zoroaster spoke of Lord and God, singular, not Lords and Gods).
AHV notes that Islam regards Zoroaster as a prophet of Allāh God. And that: “A considerable part of the Zoroastrian teachings is also in conformity with the teachings of the Bible and the Qur’an.”3 (AHV gave examples). “When the Companions of the Holy Prophet, invading Persia came in contact with the Zoro-astrian people and learned these teachings, they at once came to the conclusion that Zoroaster was really a Divinely inspired prophet”4 –he was one of those unnamed prophets spoken of in Qur’an 40:78.
Why this contradiction between Zoroaster –teaching One God– and Parsis –belief in two Creators? AHV explains:
“The present history of the Parsi religion shows that some time after Zoroaster, the Parsi abandoned their religious laws and that “Covenant of Fire,” which was then reduced to mere worship of Fire, was totally forsaken by them (Epistles of Sasan I and Sasan V in Dasatir). Their religious scriptures having been thrown in the background were either destroyed by the sacking of Parsis by the Greeks or were tampered with so that today they are regarded only as the ruins of a religion.
“As the Parsis are a ruin of a people so are their sacred books the ruins of a religion” (Sacred Books of the East. Vol, IV, Introduction page, 11-12).”5
Allāh reveals that He is the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and He “made darkness and light. Yet those who disbelieve set up equals to their Lord”–(Qur’an 6:1). Having independent Creators of light and darkness has the possibility of sending the world into chaos, should one Creator decide to be Lord over the other.
“The idea of two Gods in the creation of this universe is incongruous and is due to an ignorance of the properties of the things created. Everything, though apparently it may seem harmful or injurious, is possessed of several advantages and hidden utilities and when used properly exhibits extreme wisdom of the All-Wise God. Day time seems to be more advantageous for man, but night too is equally essential and useful. The Holy Qur’an says:
“And We made your sleep for rest (to you), And We made the night a covering, And We made the day for seeking livelihood” –(Qur’an 78:9-11).
How dreadful death appears, yet death is the way to future progress and development. How rightly did the Qur’an remark:
“He (Allāh, God) created death and life”–(Qur’an 67:2).
Had there been different creators of these things, there would have been great clash and conflict between them and life in this world would have been impossible.
Again, the idea that fire was created by Hormuzd and darkness by Ahriman is also unsubstantial. The real fact is that neither fire is all good nor darkness is total evil. The proper use or misuse of a thing makes it good or bad. If fire is all good, and really a pure and sacred thing, why does it so often burn men and their properties? Similarly, is not darkness, which is regarded as an evil creation, very essential for the development of our faculties and for the life and sustenance of vegetables and animals? Disease, of course, is a bad and painful thing, but it was not created by God. How truly Abraham had said:
“When I am sick He heals me”–(Qur’an 26:80).
Disease is the result of man’s own actions and is mostly due to violation of the laws of health. In a word, all those things that have been regarded as evil and attributed to Ahriman, are not without their uses and advantages. Everything that is properly used is good and the same thing if misused becomes bad. Thus, the verdict of the Holy Qur’an–
“He created everything”–(Qur’an 6:102), carries the point.
The Qur’an and the Holy Prophet Muhammad have corrected many flaws and defects in the Zoroastrian religion. Ours is the age of science and reason and no absurdity in the name of religion can appeal to anyone in this age. The intelligentsia of every community are rather getting averse to religion, on account of so many unreasonable and ridiculous things named as religion. And all those defects which strike the Parsi youth today, were corrected by the Holy Prophet Muhammad thirteen hundred years ago. We give below a brief account of some of the points:
1. It is said that Hormuzd granted prophethood to Yim (Noah), but he refused to take the responsibility. Similar actions of disobedience to God are ascribed to Vakhshur (prophets), which are contrary to reason and common sense. Did not God know beforehand that such and such person was not fit for the onerous work of a prophet? Vakhshur or prophets come into the world as models and exemplaries, and if they themselves begin to disregard God’s commandments, what guidance will they give to others?
2. It is believed that a dead body makes unclean the earth, the air and the men who carry it and that the wards of hell enter into a dead body and on seeing a dog they leave the body and fly away (Vendidad 8:14-21). All this is nothing but old superstitions.
3. Women are considered to be so unclean and dirty, during their days of menstruation that even their meals are not properly served to them. Food can not be handed over to these unclean women, but is thrown away from a distance in a pan or pot. They cannot eat to their fill nor can they drink such a pure thing as water, except when they begin to die of thirst (Fargard, 5:45, 7:70).
4. Killing a dog is regarded a more heinous offence than a man’s murder. Even giving bad food to a dog is visited with greater punishment than killing a man. Ninety lashes is the punishment for a murder and two hundred lashes for improperly feeding a dog. If a woman drinks water after giving birth to a child, she is punishable with two hundred lashes; and the penalty for an unclean man’s touching water or a tree is four hundred lashes. Burying a dead body or burning it is an offence that cannot be atoned or pardoned at all. (Fargard 4:49, 7:20, 6:5, 5:39-44, 6:47, and 8:22-29).
Many base and indecent things regarding women were introduced by Mazda in the Zoroastrian faith. But Anushirvan the Just, being influenced by the teachings of Islam, removed these abuses.”6
1. Abdul Haque Vidyarthi, Muhammad in World Scriptures, Vol. 1, p. 130.
2. Ibid; 119, 127.
3. Ibid; p.121.
4. Ibid; p.125.
5. Ibid; p. 128.
6. Ibid; pp. 130-132.