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The Yasna

The Yasna is a subdivision of the Avesta, containing texts directly attributed to Zoroaster the book, YASNA IX. THE HÔM YAST. begins the Persian Haoma Ceramony.

The birth of the founder of the Mazda religion, Zoroaster or Zarathushtra, is variously dated from 6000 BC (Greek) to 600 BC (Sassnian). The later date seems more reasonable to me, yet there are many valid questions about the real age when Zoroaster lived. The theology developed by Zoroaster had a profound impact on the much later religions of Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism and Islam.

Beliefs found in Christianity today such as, heaven and hell, the resurrection of the dead, a last judgment, the coming of various saviors and an apocalyptic end of times are all found in the teachings of Zoroaster before they show up in any other religions. As the state religion of the Persian Empire, the influence this religion wielded in the ancient world was immense.

The Indo-European peoples who invaded Iran were closely related to the Indo-Europeans that continued on and invaded India. The Rig Veda’s Soma cult was established in Iran at an early date.

Zoroaster did not create a new religion as many may think, he simply reformed this existing Vedic religion by doing away with the Vedic animal sacrifices, which he considered both cruel and wasteful and replacing it with the Fire Ceremony, while the ancient Vedic Soma/Haoma Sacrifice ceremony was elevated to the highest act of worship.

The use of Haoma (Soma) was integral to this religion, the concepts of the Mazda religion concerning Haoma’s place in the universe are identical to early Christian concepts of the Christ.

The following is from the Encyclopedia Britannica (1991, vol. 26, pg. 789, Rites & Ceremonies):
“In Zoroastrianism haoma (Sanskrit soma, from the root su or bu, “to squeeze” or pound”) is the name given to the yellow plant, from which a juice was extracted and consumed in the Yasna ceremony, the general sacrifice in honor of all the deities. The liturgy of the Yasna was a remarkable anticipation of the mass in Christianity.” “Haoma was regarded by Zoroaster as the son of the Wise Lord and Creator (Ahura Mazda) and the chief priest of the Yasna cult. He was believed to be incarnate in the sacred plant that was pounded to death in order to extract its life-giving juice so that those who consumed it might be given immortality. He was regarded as both victim and priest in a sacrificial-sacramental offering in worship. As the intermediary between God and man, Haoma acquired a place and sacramental significance in the worship of Mithra (an Indo-Iranian god of light) in his capacity as the immaculate priest of Ahura Mazda with whom he was coequal. The Mithraic sacramental banquet was derived from the Yasna ceremony, wine taking the place of the haoma and Mithra that of Ahura Mazda. In the Mithraic initiation rites, it was not until one attained the status of the initiatory degree known as “Lion” that the neophyte could partake of the oblation of bread, wine, and water, which was the earthly counterpart of the celestial mystical sacramental banquet. The sacred wine gave vigor to the body, prosperity, wisdom, and the power to combat malignant spirits and to obtain immortality.”

As you can see, the theology of the Haoma is identical to that of the Christ/Eucharist.

Sacred-texts Zoroastrianism

Sacred-texts Zend Avesta 1

Sacred-texts Zend Avesta 2

Sacred-texts Zend Avesta 3

Sacred-texts Yasna IX Hom Yast

Wikipedia Zoroastrianism

Zoroastrian Archives Avesta

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