Two very valuable books added on the Frashogard SkyDrive

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Roj Govad Mah Ava, 1381 Yz.

I am happy to present before readers two new and extremely valuable books on the Frashogard Ilm-e-Khshnoom SkyDrive. These two books have long been out of print. In fact even physical copies are very rarely available, since the books are nearly over 100 years old. But both books contain such a wealth of information that they deserve to be digitized and presented before the community. Hence, even though these are not Khshnoom books, I have stored them on the SkyDrive so that members of our community can download the same and go through them to realize what greatness lies in our community and religion.

The first book I would like to introduce to you is called“Parsi Dharmasthalo”, i.e. Parsi religious places, authored by late Bomanji Behramji Patel. It is necessary to say a few words about this most unsung man in our community. Late B.B. Patel was a tireless researcher of our ancient history, from the landing in Sanjan to the British days. In around 1860, Mr. Patel began to think of an idea of chronicling all the important events which had happened in our community since our arrival in India. With this objective, Mr. Patel approached the British Administration of that time, where he was allowed free access to all the Gazettes and archives of the Government. In addition, Mr. Patel went from village to village where the Parsi population had resided and began to copy down all the marble plaques (Takhti) which are generally installed in our religious institutions like Daremehers, Dokhmas, Dharamshalas etc. He consulted the learned priests of that time and was given access to their own personal hand written records and documents.

With this wealth of information, Mr. Patel began his great odyssey of chronicling our community’s events and listing our assets in various places around India and abroad. Thus was born the monumental Parsi Prakash, published in several volumes from 1878, right upto about 1940. After Mr. Patel’s death, his sons carried on the work for some time.

From these massive Parsi Prakash files, Mr. Patel extracted all the notes relating to establishment of religious assets like Agiaries, Atash Behrams, Dokhmas, Sagdis etc. and published the monumental word called Parsi Dharmasthalo, in 1906. As per his foreword, the book contains the list, along with a great many details of 8 Atash Behrams, 169 Fire Temples, 111 Dokhmas, 44 Sagdis, 62 religious halls, 14 Nasakhanas, 32 cemeteries, 15 ceremonial halls, bridges, roads etc. In addition 132 different letters written with regard to these assets have also been included.

For those who cannot read Gujarati, a great many newspaper clippings of the Times of India of those days will provide excellent reading material and give an idea of the importance of the Parsi community in those days. I would specially recommend the English reports of the establishment of the Iranshah’s new building on page 452, and other reports in the pages following thereafter of numerous events in different cities where Parsi religious institutions were established.

This great work of Mr. B.B.Patel can be accessed on the SkyDrive here.

The second work I am putting on the SkyDrive is a very unique Khordeh Avesta, perhaps the only one written by a lady, Mrs. Meherbai Sorabji Engineer of Ahmedabad in 1917. This amazing lady was probably in contact with some advanced soul of our religion, from whom she was able to extract information regarding our prayers and certain Nirangs and Taveej which are not available any where else. This is a difficult book to read and understand. I would specially draw attention to the later part of the book, (see page 1000 onwards) where Mrs. Engineer has given several Nirangs, as well as remedies for common ills as well as psychic illnesses.

This valuable book should be read in conjunction with the excellent book “Pazend Nirangs” by Er. Phiroze Masani.

I am thankful to Mr. Kersi Kapadia for lending me his copy of the Khordeh Avesta for scanning.

I do hope readers of Frashogard will make good use of these two priceless resources of our community.

Ervad Marzban J. Hathiram

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Comments

  1. Ruby Percy Sanjana  April 7, 2012

    Thank you for these two jewels, specially Khordeh Avesta. Difficult but truly valuable book.
    Tandarosti,
    Ruby

  2. Ervad Aspi Keki Rao  April 9, 2012

    Dear Ervad Marzban,

    Hats off to your magnificent achievement. We all pray for your excellent future articles from Kshnoomic literatures you possess. May Dadaar Ahura Mazda bless you in your religious endeavours. Let the whole community know who was our Ustad Saheb and Chiniwalla brothers the real PRECIOUS GEMS in Zoroastrian community.

    `

  3. Percy  April 12, 2012

    YES! This book with taveez and the “key” (Chaavi) prayers with ardibesht yasht is extermely precious. My neighbour has this book with very brittle pages and some of them are not even readable. But is it advisable to put such books on the net? it could be used otherwise?. I had requested help for its revival, but very few people answered.

  4. Mahrukh Dadabhoy  July 15, 2013

    Dear Respected Ervad Saheb Marzban Hathiram
    Excellent. May God bless you for all the effort you are putting in to enlighten us all. Our best wishes to you & your family.
    With respectful regards
    Mahrukh Dadabhoy

  5. Stella H Howell  November 8, 2013

    Approximately six months ago I had contacted your good selves by email, informing you of my dream/vision wherein I was informed that two important ancient books were stored in rusty tin box & were slightly greenish in colour. These books were to be made available to all who sought.

    I am very grateful to read the article ‘Two very valuable books added on the Frashogard SkyDrive’.

    I have no idea as to my first para has any bearing on the second.

    Having downloaded the books I find that they are not in English.
    PLEASE PLEASE,can anybody kindly help.

    Should there be no English version, is there anyone in the UK who can spend time in explaining the contents to me for which I will be ever grateful.

    Peace to you!!

  6. raiomond doctor  September 9, 2014

    Many thanks for the valuable parsi dharamsthalo. I had an old copy which unfortunately was practically unreadable.
    One suggestion: could you put up a list of books available on SkyDriveThis would help.

  7. Sanjana Dastur  October 29, 2014

    Dear Marzban, There is also 1 more very unique Khordeh avesta dated in 1914 by Ratanji Antia with nirangs as well. Iam looking for this edition but unable to find it. Incase you come across this book i kindly request you to make it available for the laity . The cover page for this book is from the website below:
    http://zoroastriansnet.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/001-old-khordeh-avesta-with-nirangs.jpg

    This is very valuable book with great information taken from professor westguard and geldner
    Please do upload this book if you come across.

    Thank you.

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