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Pahlavi Texts, Part I (SBE05), E.W. West, tr. [1880], at

p. 155




THEY call these memoranda and writings the Selections (kîdakîhâ) of Zâd-sparam, son of Yûdân-Yim.


0. In propitiation of the creator Aûharmazd and all the angels—who are the whole of the heavenly and earthly sacred beings (yazdân)—are the sayings of Herbad Zâd-sparam, son of Yûdân-Yim, who is of the south 1, about the meeting of the beneficent spirit and the evil spirit.

1. It is in scripture thus declared, that light was above and darkness below, and between those two was open space. 2. Aûharmazd was in the light, and Aharman in the darkness 2; Aûharmazd was aware of the existence of Aharman and of his coming for strife; Aharman was not aware of the existence of light and of Aûharmazd 3. 3. It happened to Aharman, in the gloom and darkness, that

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he was walking humbly (frô-tanû) on the borders, and meditating other things he came up to the top, and a ray of light was seen by him; and because of its antagonistic nature to him he strove that he might reach it, so that it might also be within his absolute power. 4. And as he came forth to the boundary, accompanied by certain others 1, Aûharmazd came forth to the struggle for keeping Aharman away from His territory; and He did it through pure words, confounding witchcraft, and cast him back to the gloom.

5. For protection from the fiend (drûg,) the spirits rushed in, the spirits of the sky, water, earth, plants, animals, mankind, and fire He had appointed, and they maintained it (the protection) three thousand years. 6. Aharman, also, ever collected means in the gloom; and at the end of the three thousand years he, came back to the boundary, blustered (patîstâd), and exclaimed thus: 'I will smite thee, I will smite the creatures which thou thinkest have produced fame for thee—thee who art the beneficent spirit—I will destroy everything about them.'

7. Aûharmazd answered thus: 'Thou art not a doer of everything, O fiend 2!'

8. And, again, Aharman retorted thus: 'I will seduce all material life into disaffection to thee and affection to myself 3.'

9. Aûharmazd perceived, through the spirit of wisdom, thus: 'Even the blustering of Aharman is capable of performance, if I do not allow disunion

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[paragraph continues] (lâ barînînam) during a period of struggle.' 10. And he demanded of him a period for friendship 1, for it was seen by him that Aharman does not rely upon the intervention of any vigorous ones, and the existence of a period is obtaining the benefit of the mutual friendship and just arrangement of both; and he formed it into three periods, each period being three millenniums. 11. Aharman relied upon it, and Aûharmazd perceived that, though it is not possible to have Aharman sent down, ever when he wants he goes back to his own requisite, which is darkness; and from the poison which is much diffused endless strife arises 2.

12. And after the period was appointed by him, he brought forward the Ahûnavar formula 3; and in his Ahûnavar these 4 kinds of benefit were shown:—13. The first is that, of all things, that is proper which is something declared as the will of Aûharmazd; so that, whereas that is proper which is declared the will of Aûharmazd, where anything exists which is not within the will of Aûharmazd, it is created injurious from the beginning, a sin of a distinct nature. 14. The second is this, that whoever shall do that which is the will of Aûharmazd, his reward and recompense are his own; and of him who shall not do that which is the will of Aûharmazd, the punishment at the bridge, 5 owing thereto

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is his own; which is shown from this 1 formula; and the reward of doers of good works, the punishment of sinners, and the tales of heaven and hell are from it. 15. Thirdly, it is shown that the sovereignty of Aûharmazd increases that which is for the poor, and adversity is removed; by which it is shown that there are treasures for the needy one, and treasures are to be his friends; as the intelligent creations are to the unintelligent, so also are the treasures of a wealthy person to a needy one, treasures liberally given which are his own. 16. And the creatures of the trained hand of Aûharmazd are contending and angry (ârdîk), one with the other, as the renovation of the universe must occur through these three things. 17. That is, first, true religiousness in one self, and reliance upon a man's original hold on the truly glad tidings (nav-barhâm), that Aûharmazd is all goodness without vileness, and his will is a will altogether excellent; and Aharman is all vileness without goodness. 18. Secondly, hope of the reward and recompense of good works, serious fear of the bridge and the punishment of crime, strenuous perseverance in good works, and abstaining from sin. 19. Thirdly, the existence of the mutual assistance of the creatures, or along with and owing to mutual assistance, their collective warfare; it is the triumph of warfare over the enemy which is one's own renovation 2.

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20. By this formula he (Aharman) was confounded, and he fell back to the gloom 1; and Aûharmazd produced the creatures bodily for the world; first, the sky; the second, water; the third, earth; the fourth, plants; the fifth, animals; the sixth, mankind 2. 21. Fire was in all, diffused originally through the six substances, of which it was as much the confiner of each single substance in which it was established, it is said, as an eyelid when they lay one down upon the other.

22. Three thousand years the creatures were possessed of bodies and not walking on their navels; and the sun, moon, and stars stood still. 23. In the mischievous incursion, at the end of the period, Aûharmazd observed thus: 'What advantage is there from the creation of a creature, although thirstless, which is unmoving or mischievous?'

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[paragraph continues] 24. And in aid of the celestial sphere he produced the creature Time (zôrvan) 1; and Time is unrestricted, so that he made the creatures of Aûharmazd moving, distinct from the motion of Aharman's creatures, for the shedders of perfume (bôi-dâdân) were standing one opposite to the other while emitting it. 25. And, observantly of the end, he brought forward to Aharman a means out of himself, the property of darkness, with which the extreme limits (vîrûnakŏ) of Time were connected by him, an envelope (pôstô) of the black-pated and ash-coloured kind. 26. And in bringing it forward he spoke thus: 'Through their weapons the co-operation of the serpent (azŏ) dies away, and this which is thine, indeed thy own daughter, dies through religion; and if at the end of nine thousand years, as it is said and written, is a time of upheaval (madam kardanŏ), she is upheaved, not ended.'

27. At the same time Aharman came from accompanying Time out to the front, out to the star station; the connection of the sky with the star station was open, which showed, since it hung down into empty space, the strong communication of the lights and glooms, the place of strife in which is the pursuit of both. 28. And having darkness with himself he brought it into the sky, and left the sky so to gloom that the internal deficiency in the sky extends as much as one-third 2 over the star station.


155:1d-sparam appears to have been dastûr of Sîrkân, about thirty parasangs south of Kirmân, and one of the most southern districts in Persia (see Ouseley's Oriental Geography, pp. 138, 139, 141, 143-145).

155:2 See Bund. I, 2-4.

155:3 Or 'of the light of Aûharmazd' (compare Bund. I, 8, 9).

156:1 Reading pavan katârânŏ ham-tanû, but the phrase is somewhat doubtful, and rather inconsistent with Bund. I, 10.

156:2 Bund. I, 0.

156:3 Bund. I, 14.

157:1 Bund. I, 17, 18.

157:2 Or 'the poison of the serpent, which is much diffused, becomes endless strife.'

157:3 Bund. I, 21.

157:4 The word ân, 'those,' however, is probably a miswriting of the cipher for 'three.'

157:5 The Kînvad or Kînvar bridge (see Bund. XII, 7).

158:1 The MS. has hûman, 'well-meditating,' instead of denman, 'this;' but the two words are much alike in Pahlavi writing.

158:2 This commentary on the Ahûnavar, or Yathâ-ahû-vairyô formula, is rather clumsily interpolated by Zâd-sparam, and is much more elaborate than the usual Pahlavi translation and explanation of this formula, which may be translated as follows:—p. 159

'As is the will of the living spirit (as is the will of Aûharmazd) so should be the pastor (so excellent should he be) owing to whatsoever are the duties and good works of righteousness (the duties and good works should be as excellent as the will of Aûharmazd). Whose is the gift of good thought (that is, the reward and recompense good thought gives, it gives also unto him) which among living spirits is the work of Aûharmazd (that is, they would do that which Aûharmazd requires); there are some who say it is thus: Whose gift is through good thought (that is, the reward and recompense which they will give to good thought, they would give also unto him); Âtarô-pâd son of Zaratûst said that by the gift of good thought, when among living spirits, they comprehend the doing of deeds. The sovereignty is for Aûharmazd (that is, the sovereignty which is his, Aûharmazd has kept with advantage) who gives necessaries [or comfort, or clothing] to the poor (that is, they would make intercession for them).'

Additional phrases are sometimes inserted, and some words altered, but the above is the usual form of this commentary.

159:1 Bund. I, 22.

159:2 Bund. I, 28.

160:1 This is the Av. zrvâna akarana, 'boundless time or antiquity,' of Vend. XIX, 33, 44. He is a personification of duration and age, and is here distinctly stated to be a creature of Aûharmazd. This throws some doubt upon the statements of Armenian writers, who assert that the two spirits sprang from Zrvâna.

160:2 Compare Bund. III, 11.

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