The Creation of the World

ACCORDING TO THE ZEND AVESTA

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After the Creation of the Universe, we have sixty-four squares divided between Light and Darkness, representing the Cosmos. These sixty-four squares are a kind of stage upon which the drama of Creation is enacted, as life on our planet is created. In the Zend Avesta, this event is told in the form of a dialogue between Ahura Mazda, the Creator, and Zarathustra. Through archeological reconstruction, we can present here this dialogue of creation, watching each of the sixteen forces of nature and the cosmos bring to life the Cosmic Order, ASHA, on the great stage of the universe.

Voice of Ahura Mazda:

I, Ahura Mazda, the CREATOR:

First I have made the Kingdom of Light.

Voice of Zarathustra:

You shall use your creative powers;

Your role on this planet

Is to continue the work of the CREATOR!

The second of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created, Was Ahura PRESERVER.

You shall PRESERVE all useful things

In the Kingdom of Ahura Mazda.

You shall prevent damage

To whatever has value; whether a tree,

Plant, house, love, or harmony in any form!

The third of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of ETERNAL LIFE.

To reach ETERNAL LIFE

You shall have sincerity in all you do

And with everyone you meet!

The fourth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of WISDOM.

Gain WISDOM

Through the Good Thoughts

of Ahura Mazda!

The fifth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of WORK.

You shall perform your daily WORK

With honesty and efficiency!

The sixth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of LOVE.

You shall speak

Only gentle and kind words

Through the LOVE of Ahura Mazda!

The seventh of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of PEACE.

You shall maintain PEACE,

Create it within yourself and around you.

Prevent inharmony, enmity and violence!

The eighth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Ahura of POWER.

You shall perform good deeds

Through the POWER of Ahura Mazda!

The ninth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of SUN.

You shall expose your body

To the Golden Rays of the SUN!

The tenth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of WATER.

You shall purify yourself with water

Every morning, and drink every day

The Life-giving WATER of Ahura Mazda!

The eleventh of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of AIR.

You shall be outdoors

And breathe the Life-giving AIR

Of Ahura Mazda!

The twelfth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of EARTH.

You shall create more abundant life

On this EARTH by growing plants

And begetting children!

The thirteenth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of FOOD.

You shall eat living FOOD

From the gardens of Ahura Mazda!

The fourteenth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of HEALTH.

You shall use all good forces:

Sun, Water, Air, Food, Man, Earth and Joy.

Harmony with all good forces

Will give you vibrant HEALTH!

The fifteenth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of MAN.

Oh, MAN!  You shall strive incessantly

On the ascending path toward the

Light of Ahura Mazda!

The sixteenth of the Good Kingdoms

Which I, Ahura Mazda, created,

Was the Fravashi of JOY.

Be always JOYOUS and happy

In the Service of the Law!

An Ancient Representation of the Art of Asha: Sun (right top) as Cosmic Fire, Fire on Altar (right bottom) as Planetary Fire, Zarathustra or Mazdean Priest (left bottom) as Internal Fire of Life Ahura Mazda, the Creator (center top) as Cosmic Ocean of Thought. The Whole represents Communion between Man and the Cosmos

As we will see in greater detail later, when we learn the rules of the Art of Asha, each of these sixteen natural and cosmic forces represents one source of energy, harmony and knowledge at our disposal, for us to use in our lives-one force in the field of forces surrounding man. The positive forces of nature were called Fravashis, and the positive forces of the cosmos were called Ahuras. Together they formed the Army of Light of Ahura Mazda, the Creator. Their opposites on the side of Darkness were the Khrafstras and the Devas, led by the Destroyer, Ahriman. But as the negative forces represent only the absence of Light, they are not included in this re-enactment of the Creation of Life on our planet, this powerful dialogue between Ahura Mazda and Zarathustra, between the Creator and Man, whose role it is to continue the work of creation on earth.

On the tapestry of ASHA, Man, one of the sixteen forces, stands directly in front of the Creator. This means that we have a duty and a right at the same time: a duty to establish harmony with all these sixteen forces, and the privilege to absorb these forces as sources of harmony, energy and knowledge. According to the Zend Avesta, we live in a dynamic universe, and we must know how to respond to these forces which permanently surround us and flow toward us.  Intelligence is the ability to adapt ourselves adequately to unexpected changes in our environment, and this parallelogram of forces which surrounds us is constantly changing. Therefore, we must learn to adapt our thoughts, our words and our deeds to each one of these forces, so we can learn to utilize their energy, harmony and knowledge.

The Art of Asha is a universe within itself, a collection of various methods employing music, drama, art, weaving, gardening, even self-analysis, in order to keep our attention fixed on the reality of these forces in every segment of our daily lives. For these forces are realities, not sterile meta­physical speculation, or dry scriptural abstractions. Every one of the sixteen forces is a tangible part of the world we live in, from the air we breathe and the food we eat, to the joy we feel and the wisdom we seek. "Good thoughts, good words, good deeds. . ." these words of Zarathustra are the most simple and direct of all moral codes. We will learn through the Art of Asha how to use them to further our own individual evolution, as well as that of our planet.

Ancient representation of two Mazdean Priests and Tree of Life with symbol of Ahura Mazda (Wings and Sun) above.

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