The Ethical Religion of Zoroaster

By Miles Menander Dawson | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XI EVIL IS DELUSION

"THEY, who by their evil purpose, make an increase of violence and cruelty with their tongues, the foes of cattle-nurture among its friends; whose ill deeds prevail, not their good deeds; these (shall be) in the house of the Daëvas (the place for) the very self of the liar."

Thus the Gathas ( Yasna XLIX, 4) identify the maleficent, destroying spirit with the false faith, with the worship of evil spirits by the cruel, devastating enemies of peaceful, industrious herdsmere This evil deplores the prophet elsewhere, saying of it:

"The teacher of evil destroys the lore; he by his teachings destroys the design of life; he prevents the possession of the Good Mind from being prized. These words of my spirit I wall unto you, oh God ( Ahura Mazda) and to the Right" ( Yasna XXXII, 9).

In another place ( Yasna XXX, 6) the same selfdelusion is asserted of the evil spirits, themselves, thus: "Between these the demons also chose not aright, for infatuation came upon them as they took counsel together, so that they chose the worst mind."

And in the same connection ( Yasna XXX, 3) the prayer is uttered that this very thing may be true:

"Now the two primal spirits who revealed themselves in a vision as a twain, are the better and the worse in thought and word and action; and between

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