Edition 3 - Welcome to Zoroastrian Association of Victoria by abstraks

VIEWS: 101 PAGES: 20

									PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE                                                Page   2
ERVAD ASPHANDIAR DADACHANJI'S VISIT                                Page   5
YOUTH TALK - ZAV CRICKET MATCH                                     Page   6
GHAMBAR/JASHAN                              ZAV COMING EVENT       Page   7
PARSA MARKET                                ZAV COMING EVENT       Page   8
SIR JIVANJI JAMSHEDJI MODI                                         Page   9
NOTICEBOARD                                                        Page   11
KNOW YOUR ZOROASTRIAN IQ                                           Page   12
FROM PARSI TO PAST-SI                                              Page   13
TSUNAMI UNCOVERS ANCIENT CITY IN INDIA                             Page   14
REPORT FROM UN                                                     Page   15
PASANDE KARDUM KE HASANDE KARDAM                                   Page   15
SANJAN                                                             Page   16
A PARSI IN KING ARTHUR'S COURT                                     Page   17
PARSI 'SCHNOZ'                                                     Page   17

                PLEASE NOTE
                   FOR OUR
         Date:         Saturday 26th March at 7pm
         Venue:        Glen Waverley Snr. Ctzn. Community Centre
                       700 Waverley Rd, Glen Waverley, Mel 71 C5

Cover Design:           Doug Hendry     ZOROASTRIAN ASSOCIATION OF VICTORIA
Design Style:           Adil Dubash                   PO Box 807
Editor:                 Perviz Dubash                  Kew 3101
Asst. Editor:           Arnavaz Chubb            Victoria AUSTRALIA
Research Editor:        Kamal Khan
Youth Correspondent:    KRZ                FOR PRIVATE CIRCULATION
                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


Recently I came across an old Indian parable:

A father and son walked home by the side of the horse.
And the town people wondered, “What fools, what fools, why walk by the horse why not ride it”.
So the father rode the horse while his son walked by.
And the town people exclaimed, “Rama, Rama! What a selfish old man, he rides the horse while
his young son walks by his side”.
So he let his son ride the horse, while he walked beside them.
And the town people expostulated, “Shame, shame, what an inconsiderate young man, he lets
his old father walk while he enjoys the ride”.
So they both rode together.
And the town people denounced them, “How cruel, how cruel, how they load the poor beast”.

Is this the fate of all ZAV Presidents!!
Don’t worry, I’m not depressed. It's only a little bit of tongue-in-cheek humour.

This Rathaeshtar format was sparked by a lady (bless her sparkling soul), who said “Bawa your
Rathaeshtar issues are excellent pun jara kai hasvu ave tevu lakho ni…”.

So here’s our Jamshedji Navroze Rathaeshtar – Special ‘ Haso ne Hasavo ’ issue.
We promise you at least a “Un rire une page" (English translation: Laugh a page).

Enjoy, or throw it in the waste bin.

Perviz Dubash


Perviz Dubash

There was a rumble in the air.
Tonight was the night, "Jets" would fight the "Sharks”, tonight, tonight.
Young Kobad Bhavnagri, will play the part of Bernardo in the Rockdale (Sydney) Musical
Society's production of Leonard Bernstein's famous Broadway musical WEST SIDE STORY.
It’s difficult to imagine mild mannered Kobad as the leader of the "Sharks" involved in a street
gang war with the "Jets". Good luck Bernado.
Kobad's sister Simonil, plays the violin in the accompanying orchestra.
One more shining feather in both their caps. Congrats!
It's great to see our youths blooming in different fields.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


Dastur Faramroze Ardeshir Bode

Man is essentially a spiritual and moral being. Modern man is not satisfied with the present
dogmatic conditions of religions. He is in search of some spiritual and ethical philosophy of life,
which will satisfy his inner self needs in search of truth and reality of his spiritual potentialities.
Man cannot live by bread and material things alone, he is a thinking, feeling, willing being who
needs spiritual nourishment. In the name of religion man is kept in a state of separation.
Religion was intended to be the binding adhesive force but it has become disruptive. The basic
urge of man is to know himself by spiritual science of the soul to bring forth the divine impulse
operating in a new higher consciousness. Modern man needs a new perspective a restatement,
a regeneration of an enlightened faith in which he can experience the divine truth and attain
happiness and joy.

Now, some of the fundamental, pristine, pure, spiritual, philosophical, ethical and practical
teachings of Zarathushtra satisfy modern man in his need of an enlightened faith in which he can
experience the divine truth and reality. The advent of Zarathushtra was Cosmic manifestation of
the divine plan for the new cycle of evolution of mankind. Zarathushtra was the prophet of
ancient Iran, a world teacher whose mission was to give spiritual illumination to all mankind.
He yearned to inspire abiding faith in Ahura Mazda, in the hearts of all living beings.

Zarathushtra was the prophet who gave freedom and liberation to the then enslaved mankind
from ignorance, superstition, rituals and blood sacrifice. He does not demand blind following. On
the contrary he says: "give ear, listen, ponder with the light of your shining mind, decide,
discriminate, each man must chose his faith for himself. Thus he gave freedom and freedom of
choice in the matter of religion."

Zarathushtra gave to the world pure monotheism, a profound concept of the supreme God head -
Ahura Mazda. He contemplated with his pure mind, Vohu Manah over the nature of being and the
laws governing the universe. Ahura Mazda the Infinite Being, the Ever Present, Lord of all
wisdom, the Creator, eternally the same All Pervading Lord Father, Transcendent and Eminent.

Zarathushtra was the first world teacher who gave ethical conception to religion. Before him
primitive cultism was formalised propitiation, sacrifice, exteriorization. Without moral conduct in
life, no spiritual progress is possible. He applied religion to life and to him life was light and
illumination. The ethical philosophy of Zarathushtrianism lies in three jewels: good thought, good
words, good deeds.

Man being the thinker and the mind being its unique potentiality, Zarathushtra emphatically
propounded the philosophy of controlling and disciplining the ‘i’ mind and making it Vohu Manah -
Good mind, pure reason, reaching the deepest source of superior mind.

Zarathushtrianism teaches something, which is useful to modern man. Things happen in nature
and in man not by the whims of some hidden invisible dictator, but by the operation of the
immutable divine law of Asha, the law of harmony order, truth, concision and purity. Zarathushtra
gave a scientific teaching regarding the law of cause and effect-the law of Karma. At several
places in his Gathas he reiterates "as you sow so you must reap". With this law of Asha is tied up
the concept of happiness and misery, heaven and hell. Those who follow the law walk on the
path of truth, righteousness and goodness through which happiness comes. Those who break the
law punish themselves and suffer misery. Heaven and hell are not locations. They are the
subjective states of man's spiritual consciousness. God is a loving father he never punishes man
or hurls him into hell for eternal condemnation. The greatest good in life is Goodness itself which
brings happiness. Zarathushtra says "happiness to him who gives happiness to others".

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

The illustrious master of wisdom Zarathushtra solves the problem of evil and declares that evil is
not an entity or being, but rather only the twin mentality and relativity in the human mind.
Vohumana the positive constructive good mind and Ako mano the negative, destructive evil mind.
There is no cosmic dualism in the original fundamental pure monotheistic teachings of
Zarathushtra. He gave to humanity the spiritual philosophy of one supreme God head, eternally
the same.

It will be interesting for modern man to know that intellect is finite and it cannot reach the infinite.
Man must transcend limitation of intellect and enter into what Zarathushtra calls the region of
Sraosha - intuition which dispels darkness and confusion in the human mind. The relative light of
good and evil, right and wrong is transcended and the subject merged together in one flash of
intuitive light. Then truth draws upon the consciousness of man.

The concept of fire in Zarathushtrianism is a deep scientific philosophy. It does not mean the
worship of physical fire. Zarathushtra in his spiritual vision captured the experience of flaming
cosmic mystic fire of Ahura Mazda. "Athro Ahura Mazda Puthra". Athro means etheric energy,
the purifying energy of Ahura Mazda. Fire is the cosmic mystic symbol of Ahura Mazda. Through
this Fire of Spirit man can realize God and experience bliss. Breath is fire and fire is life. Thus, fire
worship is reverence for all life everywhere. Athro never means the physical fire of wood or
sandalwood. The association of Vohu Manah - pure Mind and Asha - the Divine Law indicates
that fire is a Divine Spark emanating from the Supreme Being illuminating the total mind with the
Radiance of Wisdom. This fire will ignite the Flame of Love in the heart and illuminate the soul. As
Athro is the purifier its prime function is to burn all impurities and cremate the dead body
according to an old Zarathushtrian custom. Fire can never be made impure by any means.

The Zarathushtrian spiritual philosophy of Self-unfoldment, Self-realization or God-realization is
practical. Realization means to be real in our life within and without. By cultivating four Divine
Attributes - Wisdom, Law, Will and Love, man is able to contact the Spenta Mainyu, the Holy
Spirit within and be aware of his own Perfection and Immortality.

Zarathushtra' s message is full of hope, optimism and cheer. The ultimate triumph of good and
transmutation of evil, and living a dynamic good life are assured.

In the light of all the above, we may say humanity today needs the true spirit of religion for
revitalizing itself, and shedding the restlessness and violence due to loss of spiritual and ethical
values. It might be said that the spiritual, philosophical rational psychological, universal and
practical teachings of Zarathushtra might satisfy the spiritual yearnings of man and inspire him
towards establishing a better world of brotherhood, humanity and love. We can sum up the
message in the Triple Yoga thus: Think creatively, constructively, rationally, originally and
independently with your head; love fully universally and joyously with your heart; and live
dynamically in total goodness, by using your hand to serve mankind's cause of unity and peace.

'Whacky Warnings'
        A massage chair warning instructions read, "Do not use Massage Chair without clothing,
        and never force any body part into the backrest area while the rollers are moving”.

        A warning label on a baby stroller: "Remove child before folding".

        A cardboard car sunshield that keeps the sun off the dashboard warns, "Do not drive with
        sunshield in place".

        A sticker on a public toilet: "Recycled flush water unsafe for drinking".

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


Perviz Dubash

Sunday 23rd January 2005, the evening of Ervad Dadachanji’s talk was one of the best events in
ZAV’s tenure. The hall was packed to capacity. The mild mannered 'Distinguished Dastoorji' put
on his paddan, bowed before the Atash afarganyu and started the presentation in his own unique
way. The pre-taped lecture, interspersed with short prayer recitations and mildly worded
comments demonstrated the significance of the various rituals of the Jashan ceremony.
Asphandiar's dignified demeanor, enhanced by his tasteful humour, left the audience spellbound.
After the demonstration he answered the numerous questions put to him. The question answer
session was an education in itself.

Then came the showing of the video of “The Inauguration of the New Godrej Baug Agiari".
This was the magic moment which none of us will forget. There was not a single dry eye in the
audience. When the scene of ‘Atashpadsha’s’ march came with the hundreds of Mobeds walking
proudly in their immaculate white attire and the thousands of Parsees in the procession behind,
the hair on my arms stood up. (My family was lucky enough to be in Mumbai during that time and
witnessed the actual event). I am sure, all our hearts swelled with pride on being a Zoroastrian.

Then again the Dastoorji went up on the stage and answered more questions. Here I observed an
interesting fact: Most of the questions were asked by our eager youths. I could notice their eyes
sparkle with glee as the practicing priest imparted his practical experience.

The evening ended with the usual hugs and kisses and our long chats.
Most of the members came and congratulated our committee for organizing a ‘super event’,
and we had to remind them that we did nothing, except some technical arrangements and

Editor's Comments:                 MUTUAL EVENTS
This event was mutually coordinated by the respective Zoroastrian Associations of New South
Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia. ZAV will make a concerted effort in the
near future of building a special rapport between our sister organizations. We look forward to
many more mutual events in the future. Our sincere thanks to Sam Kerr of Sydney for initiating
this endeavor.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition



    ZAV Cricket Match                                                  The Winners

            Happy Members                                              More Cricket

Hi folks,

Cricket has long been a tradition for our Zoro boys and young adults. This year we decided to do
it slightly different. We played 2 games, instead of the traditional one. We also encouraged our
Zoro girls to get involved and have a shot at the game. Although some were hesitant at the
beginning, all of them got involved and had a great time. When asked whether they would do it
next year, everyone said “Absolutely” with a big smile on their face. A big thankyou to everyone
that helped organise this event, and congratulations to Zarbux Karkaria and Farhan Khodabux for
being awarded Men of the Match. I would like to gather some feedback for future cricket matches,
so please ring or e-mail.

Cheers, Kurush

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


                       and ghambar
                   Yazad Sazad                 Khurad Dehad
                      (Pray)     (Perform)         (Eat)         (Give)

                             Come along …..
                        Participate in the prayers
                       Perform a voluntary service
                     Share our food with love and joy
                              Give your mite

                           Time: 11:30 am
                     Date: Sunday 29th May 2005
                Place: Mulgrave Community Centre
      355 Wellington Rd (off Wanda St), Mulgrave (Mel 80 C1)
                All ZAV Members/Non-members Free
                      RSVP: By 14th May 2005
         Nergish 9728
ZAV - COMING EVENTS3811                 Arnavaz 9560 3750

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

                 PARSA MARKET
                                                nursery (indian plants)         stall
                                                 fresh veggies & fruits         stall
                                                                achaar          stall
                                                         ravo & malido          stall
                                                daar ni pori & bhakhra          stall
                                               chaa & booroon maska             stall
                                              mawa na cakes & batasa            stall

                                                 and much much more……..

                                        Date:         Sunday 24th April 2005
                                        Time:         6 pm
 *Pirates                               Place:        Mulgrave Community Centre
  of the                                              355 Wellington Rd (off Wanda St)
                                                      Mulgrave (Mel 80 C1)
Caribbean                               Movie:        7.30pm
*subject to availability
                                        Cost:         $3.00 entrance
                                        Eats:         Buy at stalls (very reasonable)

                                          Most of the proceeds will go to charity

 RSVP: Nergish 9728 3811 or Arnavaz 9560 3750 by 16th April 2005

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

ZOROASTRIAN HEROES SERIES (Contd.)                                                                      No. 3

                               [B.A; PH.D; CIE; LL.D; Litteris et Artibus (Sweden); Officier D’Academie, Officier
                               DeL’InstructionPublique, Chevalier De Legion d’Honneur (France); Officier Croix De
                               Merit (Hungary); Campbell Medalist B.B. Royal Asiatic Society. (1854 – 1933)]

Kamal Khan

There is a happy interconnectedness in our story so far. A contemporary of our two former
heroes, Dadabhai Navroji (1825-1917) and Madame Bhikaiji Cama (1861-1936), Sir Jivanji Modi
shared with them their unassuming simplicity in their personal lives, contrasted with high ideals in
their public lives, and their passion for truth, justice and the welfare of their communities. Bhikaiji
had helped Dadabhai with his political campaigning in England during the early 1900s. Dadabhai
when in Mumbai, visited Jivanji at his home in Andheri and the two men in their advanced years,
visiting other friends in Khandala, went for drives in a horse drawn carriage sharing long
discussions on matters of science, law, religion and politics.

Jivanji was a “straightforward... innocent man (but also) an all rounder, a genius” who loved
books, nature and scientific endeavour (Giara 2001). Hence his life was star-studded with titles,
awards, honours and medals. Jivanji was born on October 26th 1854 into a priestly family. His
father Ervad Jamshedji Modi was the first Mobed-Punthaky / Priest-Manager of the new Seth
Jejeebhoy Dadabhoy Colaba Agiary in 1836. Thus Jivanji grew up in a religious atmosphere,
being initiated a Navar at age eleven (1865), ordained a Navar at age seventeen (1871),
becoming a Martab (1876) at age twenty-two (Giara 2001). On his father’s death, in 1871 Jivanji
stepped into his father’s shoes as Mobed-Punthaky of the Colaba Agiary at age seventeen. He
served in this capacity till 1910, totaling more than forty years of service, probably as Punthaki
only, in his later years.

Jivanji’s non-religious education and life, kept pace with his priestly vocation. He completed
primary education in 1863, and like Dadabhai was married at age eleven (1865), the same year
as he was initiated a Navar. Jivanji joined Elphinstone High School in 1868, matriculating in 1871,
inspite of having lost his father five days before the examination. Jivanji entered the University of
Bombay, and in 1875 won the Natural Science Scholarship at Elphinstone College, graduating a
Bachelor of Arts in 1876, the same year as he became a Martab.

In 1881, Jivanji went on to study law and jurisprudence at the University of Bombay, but dropped
his interest in the law, soon after that. Many years later, in 1930, the University of Bombay, his old
Alma Mater, conferred an honorary Doctor of Laws in recognition of his erudition, especially in
Zarthustrian law.

As a young man, however, turning from the law, in 1882, Jivanji joined the Sir Jamsetjee
Jejeebhoy Avesta-Pahlavi Madressa and came under the influence of Khursetji Rustamji Cama
who encouraged Jivanji to take up Zarthustrian and Iranian studies in earnest. This then became
his mission in life, joining and serving religious Mandalis, studying deeply, writing prolifically,
traveling widely to Europe and Asia for his research, and delivering the fruits of his studies in
public lectures attended by the learned and august. He was appointed ‘Lady Avabai Fellow’ at the
Sir J.J. Madressa, and elected a member of Bombay’s Anthropological Society in 1886, serving
as its secretary for nearly thirty years. A year later (1887), he was appointed a fellow of the
University of Bombay. From 1888 to 1891 various elections to office, appointments, conference
presentations etc. culminated in the then (British) Government of India conferring on him the title
of Shams-ul-Ulama in 1893. Much later, in 1914, the University of Heidelberg, rewarded Jivanji’s
efforts in Zarathustrian and Iranian studies by conferring on him an honorary Doctor of
Philosophy. (Giara 2001; Godrej-Mistree eds. 2002).

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

While Ervad-Punthaki at Colaba, and student-savant at the University of Bombay and the J.J.
Madressa, he served also as Secretary of the Bombay Parsi Panchayat for 37 years (1893 –
1930), cycling or walking to work from Colaba to the Fort Area of Bombay, to the offices of the
Panchayat, or the Royal Asiatic Library, or the Cama Institute, or the University Library.

A terrible ‘bubonic’ plague afflicted the residents of Bombay in 1896. Jivanji (alongside his mentor
and friend Khursetjee Cama) worked as a volunteer, at great risk to his personal health, with the
victims, tirelessly comforting, counselling and educating in matters of hygiene. As secretary of the
Bombay Parsi Panchayat, he agitated for and got constructed the Parsi Fever Hospital, with
several separate buildings to segregate infectious disease victims. His efforts were acknowledged
by the Parsi Panchayat which gifted him a splendid silver vase, now on display at the Cama

Jivanji was a founder of the K. R. Cama Oriental Institute (appropriately named after his mentor
and friend), and served there as Secretary, Chairman and Editor of its journal. Jivanji was
honoured by having some rooms at the Institute and elsewhere, named after him. Jivanji served
as secretary-treasurer and President of several Mundalis and Madressas. In 1920, guided by the
suggestion of Miss Mennant (Giara 2001), Jivanji Modi was instrumental in having a Memorial
Column a Stambh erected at Sanjan, to commemorate the Sanjan landing of Zarthustis on Indian

Jivanji’s most notable contribution to Oriental scholarship was that he wrote and read before the
Bombay Branch of the Royal Asiatic society, 127 learned papers on Zarathustrian, Iranian and
related anthropological / archeological subjects. He was one of the earliest Indian anthropologists
and while his Zarthustrian scholarship is world-renowned, his anthropological prowess is yet to be
recognised (Godrej-Mistree eds 2002). Moreover, Jivanji wrote 70 books, mostly in Gujerati,
many in English, and some in French, plus innumerable essays, articles, and research papers on
a very wide variety of subjects, touching on history, geography, anthropology, meteorology, wine,
natural history etc.

Over 45 years from 1888-1933 he gave 350 public lectures. Jivanji traveled extensively right into
his senior years in the service of his anthropological researches, and his public speaking
commitments. When awarding him the honorary LL.D. the Governor of Bombay and Chancellor of
the University of Bombay, Sir Ernest Hotson referred to Jivanji as his own particular friend and “..
world famous as a scholar of Sanskrit, Persian and Avesta ...unquestionably the greatest living
authority on the ancient history and customs of the Parsis...(with) ..so many marks of recognition
..and honour” .

Despite all these adulations Jivanji’s humility about his own efforts is embodied in his quote from
Sir Isaac Newton ‘I .. have been only like a boy playing on the sea shore, diverting myself in ..
finding a smoother pebble or prettier shell, ... while the great ocean of truth lay unobserved before
me.” Jivanji then relates similar sentiments in a story about Buzorg Meher the Prime Minister of
Shah Noshirwan. When taunted by his wife about saying he ‘did not know’ about something and
whether the Shah paid him so handsomely for ‘not knowing’, Buzorg Meher replied that were the
Shah to pay him for what he did not know, “the treasure of his entire kingdom would not suffice”.

Jivanji continued his indefatigable researches, journeying to far flung places, and the honours
continued to shower on him, including the Chevalier De Legion d’Honneur from the French
Government, and the Officier Croix De Merit, from the Government of Hungary, both in 1925. One
year before his death at age seventy-eight, he was made a member of London Branch of the
Royal Asiatic Society.

    1. Giara, M. J., Shams-Ul-Ulama Dr. Sir Ervad Jivanji Jamshedji Modi Kt., C.I.E., B.A., Ph.D., LL.D. Din
        Publications 2001.
    2. Godrej, P., & Punthaki-Mistree, F., Editors., Zoroastrian Tapestry, Mappin Publishing 2002.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


                                           FOR SALE

                GREETING CARDS (PACK OF 10) $ 6.00
             T-SHIRT IRON-ON-TRANSFERS (EACH) $ 2.00


                         FOR ORDERS PHONE NERGISH 9728 3811

             Thanks and Credits

                    1.   West Side Story – AZA Manashni
                    2.   Jokes from Indian Senior Citizen Association of Victoria newsletter
                    3.   SANJAN article from World Zarthusti Culture Foundation brochure
                    4.   Dastur Bode’s article from the internet
                    5.   Tsunami article from Associated Press


Births:       [Congratulations]
              Kiraan, baby boy born to Tanya and Rohinton Sanjana on 28th January 2005.

Marriages: [Congratulations]
              Jervis Bharucha to Anita Contractor on 4th December 2004 in Sydney.

Deaths:       [Condolences]
              Mrs. Homai Rustomji Billimoria, mother of Naval Billimoria, passed away on
              26th February 2005, in Mahableshwar, India.

              Mrs. Shirin Khambatta, mother of Soli & Cyrus Khambatta, passed away on
              24th February 2005, in Mumbai, India.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

Arnavaz Chubb
1. Persepolis was the capital city of which Achaemenian monarch
    1. Cyrus the Great.
    2. Darius the Great.
    3. Artaxerxes.
    4. Xerxes.

2. Alexander the Macedonian defeated Darius III in the battle of
    1. Gaugamela.
    2. Issus.
    3. Babylon.
    4. Hellespont.

3. Alexander the Macedonian is known to the Persians as
    1. The Accursed.
    2. The Great.
    3. The Valiant.
    4. The Plunderer.

4. The Greeks called him Cyrus, but the Persians knew him as
    1. Kavas.
    2. Kurush.
    3. Khsathrita.
    4. Kushru.

5. A canal linking the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea was first constructed by
    1. Darius the Great.
    2. Alexander the Great.
    3. Ramses.
    4. The exiled Jews of Egypt.

6. A speedy, efficient and reliable postal service, also the world’s first postal system, networking the
length and breadth of the Persian Empire was established by which Achaemenian king
    1. Cyrus the Great.
    2. Cambyses.
    3. Xerxes.
    4. Bardiya.

7. Alexander the Great invaded Persia because
    1. He lusted after the fabled Persian wealth.
    2. He wanted to revenge the sacking of Athens.
    3. He was fascinated by Persian culture and learning.
    4. He wanted to marry Roxanne but the Persian king would not permit it.

8. What was the outcome of the decisive battle of Thermopylae
   1. The Persians defeated the Greeks.
   2. The Greeks defeated the Persians.
   3. Athens was destroyed.
   4. Persepolis was destroyed.

9. Cyrus the Great was killed during
    1. The battle with Egyptian queen Nefertiti.
    2. The war with Philip of Macedonia.
    3. A skirmish with the Massegatae tribes.
    4. A power struggle with his son Cambyses.

                      [ANSWERS: Q1 - 2, Q2 - 1, Q3 - 1, Q4 - 2, Q5 - 1, Q6 - 1, Q7 - 2, Q8 - 1, Q9 - 3]

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

FROM PARSI TO PAST- SI                             [Source: THE TIMES OF INDIA - September 12, 2004]

Bachi Karkaria

Soli Solicitor shuddered at the Census sentence, knowing there was no reprieve.
Nusli had an asli aneurysm at the prospect of the makers of Bombay dying out.
Jimmy Gymkhanawalla went into a paroxysm of population push up.

Home-for-the-Aged Homi's thoughts strayed far from his hernia.
Kawas clutched on to his Kawasaki bike, trying not to fall off the seat and the map.
But it was of no use.

The writing on the wall was as clear as a fire-temple bell. The latest Census had confirmed the continuous
demographic decline of the Parsis; now they were down to a critical 69,601. How soon would the world say
Ta-ta to the grand old community?

For a long time already, Mumbai's Dadar Parsi Colony had looked like a museum-piece, preserving what
had disappeared elsewhere in Mumbai -low-slung houses, leafy lanes, table manners, and the increasingly
rare species of Homo sapienwalla.

But now a pall of gloom enveloped the enclave like an old shawl swathing Ivory Ava's shoulders. In
deference to the decline, ‘Benaifer Boobs’ raised her notorious neckline, and ‘Jabri Jer’ lowered her shrill
haranguing of Docile Dinsu, the dhobhi and the neighbour's Doberman.

As they huddled over their lunch of crisp-fried bumla, the Parsis in baugs and colonies trembled at the
prospect of being out for a Bombay duck themselves.
What would apro Nari, Polly and Rusi say!

As they dipped their RTI bhakras into their afternoon mint tea, Bachelor Bomi and Spinster Spenta rued the
fact that they were among the large segment that startled sociologists and Shata-bens alike.

The 'Never Marrieds' had created the uniquely Parsi phenomenon of most of their flats being occupied by
adults who weren't spouses. Brother-sister, mother-daughter, and uncle-nephew lived under one roof,
bound by blood, RBI bonds and bickering.
Spenta, 68, said, "I sacrificed marriage because I had to look after Pappa."
Bomi, 70, said, "I couldn't get married because Mamma, bless her departed soul, wouldn't give me a

Kekoo Kaka, 83, ambled in humming the Parsi song, ‘Bachelor Boy’. That jolly gentleman, with a gleam in
his eye and glaucoma, was determined to uphold the community's philosophy of 'Eat, drink and be merry, for
tomorrow we die out'.
No, Sir, they wouldn't just wither away: they would go out in a burst of farce and murghi na farcha. Kekoo
Kaka decided right then that on the New Year's Eve at the Willingdon Club, he would not sing something as
depressing as ‘Auld Lang Syne-off'.

Instead, he pulled out his father's gold-nibbed Mont Blank, and composed an adaptation of a more cheerful
song of the season. To Rudolph's jaunty tune, he would belt out:

  "Rustom, the hook-nosed Parsi,                               Then one stormy Census eve,
  Had a very distinct nose.                                    Banthia came to say,
  And if you ever saw it,                                      "Rustom with your numbers, plight
  You might even think it growed.                              I will spell your doom tonight."

  All of the other Indians                                     So all the other Parsis jumped
  Used to laugh and call him names.                            up and down with glee
  They never let poor Rustom                                   They said to long-nosed Rustom,
  Join in any desi games.                                      "We'll pass into his-to-ry!"

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


[Source: The Associated Press, 18 February 2005]

(Receding waters revealed animal carvings, temple)

                                                   Local visitors look at a lion head monument
                                                   which was uncovered by the Dec.26 tsunami
                                                   near the Shore Temple at Mahabalipuram, 45
                                                   kms south of Madras, India.

                                                   MAHABALIPURAM, India - Archaeologists
                                                   have begun underwater excavations of what is
                                                   believed to be an ancient city and parts of a
                                                   temple uncovered by the tsunami off the coast
                                                   of a centuries-old pilgrimage town.

                                                   Three rocky structures with elaborate carvings
                                                   of animals have emerged near the coastal town
                                                   of Mahabalipuram, which was battered by the
                                                   Dec.26 tsunami.

As the waves receded, the force of the water removed sand deposits that had covered the
structures, which appear to belong to a port city built in the seventh century, said T. Satyamurthy,
a senior archaeologist with the Archaeological Survey of India.

Mahabalipuram is already well known for its ancient, intricately carved shore temples that have
been declared a World Heritage site and are visited each year by thousands of Hindu pilgrims
and tourists. According to descriptions by early British travel writers, the area was also home to
seven pagodas, six of which were submerged by the sea.

The government-run archaeological society and navy divers began underwater excavations of the
area on Thursday. "The tsunami has exposed a bas relief which appears to be part of a temple
wall or a portion of the ancient port city. Our excavations will throw more light on these,"
Satyamurthy told The Associated Press by telephone from Madras, the capital of Tamil Nadu

The six-foot rocky structures that have emerged in Mahabalipuram, 30 miles south of Madras,
include an elaborately carved head of an elephant and a horse in flight. Above the elephant's
head is a small square-shaped niche with a carved statue of a deity. Another structure
uncovered by the tsunami has a reclining lion sculptured on it.

According to archaeologists, lions, elephants and peacocks were commonly used to decorate
walls and temples during the Pallava period in the seventh and eighth centuries. "These
structures could be part of the legendary seven pagodas. With the waters receding and the
coastline changing, we expect some more edifices to be exposed," Satyamurthy said.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


Kayzad Namdarian

Had an amazing day today ... went into NYC during peak time ... MAD HOUSE!! ... signed into
the UN ... took an hour!! (security very tight - strict rules enforced always) … got to see KOFI
ANNAN speak LIVE!! ... if you don’t know he is my idol ... pretty much the only one ... and just
being in the General Assembly room for the Opening ceremony nearly made me cry, because its
essentially the head of the world!! Its where all the countries come and talk about world issues!!
anyway, it started snowing!! had an amazing experience in the snow ... first time!! this city is

I have been attending the Beijing + 10 Conference, or CSW (Commission for the Status of
Women) Conference. It is essentially one of only five or six world conferences on Gender Equality
ever held in Human History. It is now 10 years since a ground breaking conference in Beijing
where a Platform of Guidance was created for Countries and NGOs to promote gender equality
and reduce discrimination against women. [Before that, the very first one in 1975 was held in

This conference is essentially about finding out what the countries and NGOs have done so far,
and if they are on track to achieve their stated goals. Gender equality and gender anti-
discrimination is linked to all MDGs (Millenium Development Goals) of the UN, which need to be
achieved by 2015. For instance, poverty and disease are now being realised to be feminised, and
similarly, gender equality is linked to the other goals.

At the conference which lasts for 2 weeks, there are three tiers of events or sessions. The first tier
are the high level events where ministers, first ladies and even a princess have spoken on behalf
of their country. They talked about how their country has been improving gender equality and
women’s rights. This is done through programs and legal, constitutional and institutional reforms.
These events generally occur in the huge General Assembly Hall. The second tier events are
presented by UN agencies or larger NGOs, in medium sized conference rooms. The third tier
events are held in small more intimate rooms. This is where FEZANA will be presenting. Two
other speakers and I will be presenting on the 8th. March from 10am-11:15am USEST.

My heartfelt thanks to my very kind and generous hosts the Cama Family.


Marriage is an institution in which a man looses his Batchelor's Degree and
his wife acquires a Masters.

A wife is a person who stands by her husband through all his troubles he
would not have had if he had stayed single.

While love is blind, marriage is an eye-opener.

"For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer in illness or in health, till
divorce do us apart."

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition

SANJAN - Conservation of Parsi Heritage

Sanjan ranks among the earliest settlements of the Zoroastrians who fled from Iran in the 7th-8th
centuries A.D. Zoroastrians settled and prospered here till the end of the 14th century when it
was invaded by Alafkhan, a general of Mahmud Tughlaq in 1393. What proof have we of all this
except the Kisseh-I-Sanjan? The WZCF team with the Archaeological Survey of India is
attempting to unravel facts of our past.

Excavations carried out recently have revealed that Sanjan was a thriving urban port having close
trade connections with Iran and the Persian Gulf area. The pottery and glassware are distinctly of
Sassanian origin. This proved the historical premise that traders from coastal Gujarat and Iran
were familiar with each other and therefore the Zoroastrians fleeing Iran chose to land on the
Gujarat coast and for the same reason were made welcome. Further excavations will be carried
out to unearth more evidence about the Zoroastrians. There is a proposal to set up an
archaeological museum of Parsi heritage at Sanjan.

'Un rire une page'

“Lil' Pesu” finished his English examination and came out.
"How was the exam Pesu?” asked his friend Piloo.
"The exam was OK, but for the past tense of THINK, I thought and thought and thought
and at last wrote THUNK”.

                          ZAV Rathaeshtar 2005 - March Edition


Perviz Dubash

Did you see the movie ‘ A Yankee in King Arthur’s Court '?
Well I felt the same way on my recent trip to Sydney.
I had booked myself into a modern 40 storey apartment building for a few nights.
The Concierge, with a smirk handed me about half a dozen coloured electronic cards with a
thirteen-and-a-half seconds tutorial on how to use them. Before I could say “but Sir, sir, I did not
comprehend what you said Sir …” he was firmly re-ensconced at his executive desk, thumping at
his Logitech keyboard starring at his 19 inch Plasma screen and voicing a message on his
miniscule mike. The message blared through the loudspeaker to some client. Lo and behold the
message was for me. There I was on the 20 feet screen with my daglo pagri attire with my trusted
Akbarally umbrella tucked under my armpits, and the voice declaring “will the gentleman at the
main desk in the white attire proceed to the security door”. So I did approach the security door
only to be confounded with a shrieking siren flashing red light and a hefty security guard with his
hands on his Magnum rushing towards me. Without any warning he shoved his hand in my pant
pocket, snatched an electronic card turned it right side up and pushed it back in my pocket. The
blaring, flashing stopped; he pushed me in the inner foyer and the elegant glass door slid back
just in time. With the grace of a matador, I secured my trusty Akbarali umbrella in a deft fencing
manoeuvre. That was the purple card.
I was now in front of the elevator and pushed the up button but nothing happened. Ah, I thought
the secret is embedded in the electronic cards, but which one - red, pink, yellow, grey or
magenta? I decided on magenta but alas there was no slot to push it in. I wasted a few minutes
but no luck. Finally a distinguished looking Chinese man walked in waved the magenta card in a
clockwise direction and the elevator came down. He helped me in with a bow and a Chini grin
(a grin that is not only on the lips but also in the mysterious oriental eyes).
So eventually I reached the door of my apartment No. 13. I took out my bundle of cards and
pulled, pushed, shoved, slid, turned, twisted but to no avail. Finally a ring on the help phone
solved my crisis. I was in.
I thought my troubles had ended. But nay, they were all ahead of me. How do I raise the
Parisiene curtains? How do I have a cup of chai in the modern Mega Tech microwave? How will
an induction heated akoori taste? Will the electronic toilet roll and flush work? Will the bidet spurt!!
The list went on and on, but I am not a Bombay Bawaji for nothing. I will conquer all !!
Pardon my typing or my spelling mistakes, I am thumping this article with my laptop on my tummy
relaxed on my vibrating bed and…. I don’t have the slightest idea how to turn this darn vibrating
thing off.
Goo..goo…goo…good night…slee…slee…sleep tight.

Parsi's are known for their prominent schnoz' s………..here are some sneezy facts:

Bawa sambhalo, if you sneeze too hard you can fracture a rib, if you try to suppress a sneeze you
can rupture a blood vessel in the back of your neck and die.

But the khoosh khabar is: you can't kill yourself by holding your breath.

Jivta rejo !! they say when you sneeze, because at that time your heart stops for a millisecond.
To pachi hawe jara roomal lai ne taiyar rehvo.' …………….. Aachooo, sor-reee!!!

                                                      SALUTE TO
                                                ‘ZOROASTRIAN HEROES’
                                                   SKIT (starts 7:30pm)

                                                   SPECIAL WELCOME
                                                        TO OUR
                                                  INTERSTATE GUESTS

                                                INTRODUCTION OF OUR
                                                  'EXQUISITE MENU'

                                               DANCE TO THE MUSIC OF
                                                   THE SIX PIECE
                                                 'NIGHTLIFE' BAND

                                                    THE EXQUISITE
                                               ‘DINNER XTRAVAGANZAV’

                                                  'NIGHTLIFE' MUSIC

                                              ‘DESSERT XTRAVAGANZAV’

                                       Date:   Saturday 26th March at 7pm
                                       Venue: Glen Waverley Community
                                              Senior Citizens Centre
                                              700 Waverley Rd
                                              Glen Waverley              NOTE
                                              (Mel: 71 C5)              CHANGE

Dress Code: Gents - Coat and Tie, Ladies - Your Best Dress   Drinks: BYO

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