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Frankie Alvarez

on 3 December 2014

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Transcript of Zoroastrianism

By Anam Rahman and Frankie Alvarez

The Diffusion of Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism was diffused through
contagious diffusion

Contagious diffusion is the rapid, widespread diffusion of an idea throughout a population.

Zoroastrianism was at its peak during the Persian Empire under the rule of Cyrus the Great, Darius I, and King Xerxes. Cyrus the Great and Darius I did not force the religion onto their subjects but it proved to be popular when thousands converted.
Spatial Distribution
Distinctive Cultural Landscape
Holy shrines were created around Iran for Zoroastrians:
Chak Chak - most important Zoroastrian shrine
The shrine of Bibi Shahrbanu
The Origin of Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism is considered to be an
ethnic religion
because it is one of the world's smallest religions and is found mainly around modern day Iran and India.
Zoroastrianism was founded by the prophet Zoroaster in ancient Iran

It is one of the oldest monotheistic religions
Universalizing or Ethnic?
Hierarchical or Autonomous?
Zoroastrianism is a
hierarchical religion
. In the past a priestly class had been in charge of two or three lower classes consisting of warriors, professional producers, and artisans. Today, Zoroastrianism is divided into two classes - the Priests (called Mobeds or Athornans) and the Laity or Behdins (meaning "of the Good Religion").


Symbols of Zoroastrianism
- represents purity and God's light or wisdom and is associated with the Zoroastrian place of worship called the Agiary or "Fire Temple".
- one of the most common symbols in Zoroastrianism, it is used to depict a guardian angel, and is often interpreted as a reminder of a person's purpose in life and how to live in alignment with Ahura Mazda, the chief god.
Zoroastrian communities are usually very small and are often found near the mountains of Iran and parts of India.
of those who practice Zoroastrianism reside in
but due to this religion's small following and India's large population the Zoroastrians only make up around 0.006% of the population
India is followed by Iran with 25,000 Zoroastrians and the US with 11,000
Core Beliefs
Zoroastrianism is
meaning they believe in one god called
Ahura Mazda
. (Ahura Mazda means "wise lord")
It is said that their god is everywhere and is the source of all goodness and happiness

Because they believe everything Ahura Mazda creates is pure and should be respected Zoroastrians traditionally do not pollute.

As a result, many call Zoroastrianism the first ecological religion
Core Beliefs
The Prophet Zoraster and Amesha Spentas
At the age of thirty a man named Zoraster had a vision on the bank of a river. He saw a 'radiant being' made of light named Vohu Mana that led him to Ahura Mazda and 5 other shining beings called the Amesha Spentas

Amesha Spentas
are believed to be emanated by god but are not god

Vohu Manah - Good mind and good purpose.
Asha Vahishta - Truth and righteousness.
Spenta Ameraiti - Holy devotion, serenity and loving kindness.
Khashathra Vairya - Power and just rule.
Hauravatat - Wholeness and health.
Ameretat - Long life and immortality.
The Six Amesha Spentas are..
Full transcript