Zoroastrianism

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Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism is a religion from ancient Iran whose theology has been up to much debate over the years by historians. Many saw this religion as a bridge between Eastern and Western religions. Zoroastrianism has been said to been practiced in Ancient Iran around 6th century B.C.E. This was one of the first monotheistic religions shining out among the clutter of polytheistic religions in the east and west. The worship was to maintain the natural order, truth, and righteousness of the universe. Zoroastrianism was founded by Zarathushtra a Persian prophet, would said he had a vision of a God named Ahura Mazda. He was known as the great reformer and lived about 1100 to 550 B.C.E. He was a trained priest in the Indo-Iranian tradition. Zarathushtra was a mystical speaker who spent many years in spiritual retreat. All throughout Iran he was know as Mazdayasna to the people who met and heard of his teachings. Zarathushtra believed in Ahura Mazda as the creator God. He believed he was pulled up to heaven and had a conversation with Ahura Mazda. Zarathushtra denounced all forms of cruelty, destruction, and hypocrisy. Ahura Mazda was said to create only good and should be worshipped by good thoughts and good deeds only. Adoration was showed to “the supreme” by rhythmic verses called Gathas. These have been the main source into the inside of Zoroastrian theology. Zoroastrianism was first spread and accepted by King Vishtapa in his state and has the required religion for 50 years until his death. Over the years the spread of Zoroastrianism has been a very difficult process and faced many threats to it existence. Many Jews adapted beliefs of the religion to the Jewish principles practiced over the years in the Jewish religion. In 331 B.C.E. spiritual devotion to Ahura Mazda was threatened by invasion of Alexander in Iran. He destroyed temples, burned libraries and holy scriptures, and killed man Zoroastrian priests. The religion was re-established in an Iranian empire by the Pathians, but many things were added and changed in the religion. As time continued the number of Zoroastrians dwindled under Muslim dominance in India. When the prophet Zarathushtra died the beliefs of Zoroastrianism seemed to merge with polytheistic religions and uncertainty about his teachings arose. Zoroastrianism was focused on only one divine being who creates and orders the universe. Their God was called Ahura Mazda, by masculine gender and was said to have six divine powers. Zarathushtra believed that Ahura Mazda’s six divine powers were The Goal Mind, Righteousness, Absolute Power, Devotion, Perfection, and Immortality. As time passed and Zarathushtra died these attributes began to be worshiped as beings. They were described as Ameshta Spenta, a luminous deity or guardians of Ahura Mazda’s creation, the chief among angels. Zarathushtra believed in cosmic dualism which was where Ahura Mazda was opposed by a dark force of equal power. Mazda was the good creator who created only perfection and purity. The battle between god and evil spirits was between Spenta Mainyu and Angra Mainyu. Spenta was the good spirit who stood for life order, perfection, health, happiness, and increase. Angra the evil spirit stood for chaos, imperfection, disease, sorrow, and destruction. Like many western religions Zoroastrianism believed that humans must dedicate themselves as spiritual warriors in order to fight against the Angra Mainyu. Zarathushtra believed that humans had enough free will and mental capacity to choose what they wanted to do. He believed that non-loving acts in the name of religion aided the cause of evil. It was thought that all acts must be good and loving so to praise Ahura Mazda. In Zoroastrianism it was believed that each of us is judged in the end according to the total of goodness or evilness of our thoughts, words, and deeds. Where you ended up after life was all about what you did here on earth. As a Zoroastrian the greater the goodness...
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