Roj Spendarmad Mah Spendarmad, 1378 Yz.
In his three and a half year stay at Demavand, the Abed Sahebs took Behramshah to various expeditions in the regions of Firdaus. Within the Kash, or spiritual boundary of Demavand there exist various regions protected by their own separate Kash, which remain out of bounds even for the residents of Firdaus. One such area situated in a remote and very high region of Firdaus is home to the Atash Behram of Demavand. The Padshah Saheb enthroned in this Atash Behram is of very old lineage, and has both a visible Fire as well as a hidden core. The Atash Behram, along with its accompanying Atash Adaran, Atash Dadgah, the Urvisgah (consecrated area for performance of Pav Mahel ceremonies) the Bareshnum Gah (where the nine-night long Bareshnum Nahn is administered) and other support areas are all part of a separate Kash within Demavand. The entrance to the Kebla of the Padshah Saheb is very low, making one bow before entering. There are strict rules for visiting and viewing the Padshah Saheb and only very advanced Yaozdathregars (qualified priests) are allowed to tend the Holy Fire. The entire complex is situated in a hilly region and the Atash Behram structure itself is hewn out of a single hill of black rock.
The structure is very high, with the Kebla of the Padshah Saheb itself being approximately five storeys tall. There is a separate science which gives detailed measurements for calculating the height of such structures. As is well known, the Padshah is made up of 16 different fires taken from various professions. However, behind this material process there exists a deeper spiritual rationale. There exist 16 different Fire Energies within the entire Cosmos of Hasti and Nisti. The stature of the Atash Behram is determined by the presence of a spiritual connection between each of these 16 Fire Energies, which work at different places and planes of the Cosmos and the Atash Padshah. The height of the Kebla of the Padshah is determined by accounting for the Paiwand which exists between the Padshah and the 16 Fire Energies. The spiritual entities known as Ram Yazata and Govad Yazata – normally associated with the functioning of the atmosphere, are entrusted with the task of maintaining this Paiwand between the Atash energies of the Cosmos and the Padshah Saheb. Such an enlightened and fully conscious Padshah is an important ally in the workings of Nature. The Aipi – or enlightened aura of the Padshah engulfs its Kebla and maintains its hold through the rough, yet beautiful walls of the Kebla. It is for this reason that the walls of the Kebla of any Atash Behram, Adaran or Dadgah should not be of smooth finished stone but roughly hewn, yet of an artistic nature.
The Atash Behram of Demavand is of the highest spiritual stature, and is the spiritual successor of the original Atash consecrated by Shah Jamshid thousands of years ago. The fires which were consecrated by King Jamshid are however different from the fires consecrated by the Prophet Zarathushtra, who was the first to introduce the Atash Behram level of Fire. The Fires consecrated by King Jamshid were also talismanic, working with the Yazatas Ram and Govad. However, the Fires consecrated by the Prophet Zarathushtra created the connection with the Pav Mahel within Nisti and the 16 Fire Energies, hence are called Atash-e-Varaharan. These consecrated fires of the most superior level are living entities having their own persona and environment. It is therefore also true that each such Padshah would have a specific life span. The time from when the 16 different physical fires are gathered, purified, consecrated, merged and the Padshah enshrined within its Kebla marks its birth. This is the time from when the Paiwand or spiritual connection between the Padshah and the 16 Fire Energies of Hasti and Nisti is established. The “life span” of the Padshah refers to that time when this Paiwand is properly maintained and active – which can extend over hundreds of years. When the Paiwand breaks, for whatever reason, the Padshah’s life span is over, the Padshah “dies”, or to put it in correct technical terms, the Padshah enters the state of ‘Samandar’, where the divine connection is lost, but the enlightened Aipi of the Padshah maintains its grandeur. In this state, Fireflies are visible around the Padshah. Even in this state however, the Padshah is able to perform its functions in a limited manner for a period of nearly two to three hundred years. After the Aipi or Khoreh of the Padshah also disintegrates, the Fire is said to be in complete Samandar. It is only at this time that the Padshah can be lifted from its Khuan – or seat and moved out of its Kebla. After this ‘demise’, certain ceremonies are performed on the Padshah, to create a new descendant. These intricate ceremonies, the details of which are known to only very few of the Sahebs result in the birth of the new Padshah who carries forward the work of the old Padshah. The current Atash Behram at Demavand is thus the spiritual successor of the thousands of years old Padshah created by King Jamshid, and then further consecrated by Prophet Zarathushtra.
This powerful Padshah consists of the visible Fire placed on the tray of the Fire Vase, as well as its spiritual counterpart or ‘Chaki’ kept under the tray of the Fire Vase. The Boi ceremony is performed on this Padshah by very highly advanced Yaozdathregars using fragrant wood from trees which grow within its vicinity. The Padshah gives off an amazing radiance which adequately lights up the Kebla as well as the hall where devotees gather to pray. The Khuan or throne of the Padshah is made of black stone and has a direct connection with Spenta Armaiti. The Fire Vase (Afarganyu) is made of pure gold, specially alchemised for this purpose. In the outer areas of the complex, light is radiated by the presence of specially crafted lamps. Specially pressed mineral oils are poured into small niches carved in the stone walls of the complex. These are then lit using a specific type of flint stones. The lamps however, require no wick and burn on their own, giving out a soft white light. At particular places within the complex, the lamps are made from cow’s ghee, whereas in other places specific mineral or vegetable oils are used.
Across the direction of the Padshah Saheb is situated the Atash Adaran. Between the Atash Behram and the Atash Adaran is situated the Atash Dadgah and the Urvisgah where the Pav Mahel ceremonies are performed. Thus the powerful Aipi of the Varaharan on one side and the Aipi of the Adaran Saheb on the other properly control the environment of the Urvisgah, maintaining its connection with the Pav Mahel and Gaas of Prophet Zarathushtra. Thus the powerful Manthras recited by the spiritually evolved Yaozdathregars in such a charged environment face no difficulty in reaching the soul of the deceased in whose honour the ceremonies are performed. Behramshah was fortunate to not only witness these ceremonies, but was also taken into the Sezda stage to see the final effect of the Manthras as they reached the soul of the deceased.
Ervad Marzban J. Hathiram