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Pahlavi Texts, Part III (SBE24), E.W. West, tr. [1885], at

p. 308


1. The forty-fifth subject is this, that it is continually necessary that people should keep in remembrance the accomplishment of repentance (taûbat). 2. Every time that a sin leaps from control it is necessary to act so that they go before the priests, high-priests, and spiritual chiefs, and accomplish repentance.

3. And 1 in accordance with the sin should be the good work, just as though the good work were due to that occasion when they accomplish it. 4. While mankind are living, it becomes every year a further benefit. 5. Sin is also, in like manner, going on to a head every year; and when they accomplish repentance, so that it may not increase further, it is just like a tree that becomes withered, and they extirpate its further growth.

6. And that repentance is better which they accomplish before high-priests and spiritual chiefs, and when they accomplish the retribution that the high-priest orders every sin that exists departs from them. 7. The repentance that high-priests accomplish they likewise call repentance 2. 8. If there be no high-priest it is necessary to go before some persons who are commissioned by high-priests; and if those, also, do not exist, it is necessary to go to a man who is a friend of the soul, and to accomplish the repentance.

p. 309

9. At the time when one shall depart from the world it is incumbent on sons and daughters and relations, that they give repentance into the mouth of the afflicted one, and that they give the Ashem-vohû 1 into his mouth. 10. For the high-priests have said that, when they have accomplished repentance because they have committed many sins, they do not arrive in hell, but they administer punishment to them at the head of the Kinvad bridge, and afterwards conduct them to their own place.

11. Repentance is that when they accomplish repentance of the sin which they have committed, and do not commit that sin a second time; if they do commit it, that first sin then comes back 2.


308:1 Lp, B29 have 'for.'

308:2 Here and throughout the rest of the chapter B29 has patit, 'renunciation of sin,' instead of taûbat. The outward form of repentance consists of the recitation of the patit, in which all imaginable sins are mentioned and renounced.

309:1 See Chap. VII, 1 n.

309:2 That is, repentance is not a mere penance, but requires a change of will, a veritable renunciation of that sin for the future; otherwise it is useless.

Next: Chapter XLVI