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Pahlavi Texts, Part IV (SBE37), E.W. West, tr. [1892], at


dkar Nask.

1. Glorification for the Mazda-worshipping religion which is the ordinance of Aûharmazd opposed to the demons.

2. Of the Sûdkar 4 there are twenty-two fargards,

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and the first fargard is the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô 1, just as the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô formula is as it were the beginning (bûnîh) of the religion, and from it is the formation of the Nasks which, though about the first six sciences (dânisnŏ), have also demonstrated the existence of the highest of other sciences in its own place.

3. And here it speaks about the power and success owing to uttering the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô formula 2 at the beginning of actions. 4. One utterance when one wishes to say anything to any one; one when he wishes to beg of any one; and one when he goes to work. 5. Two when he wishes to confer his blessing. 6. Four when it is for the homage of the chiefs of creation (radŏ-franâmisnîh), or the ceremony of a season-festival. 7. Five when it is for carrying off the fiend. 8. Six when it is for power; and six when it is for the success of a battle. 9. Seven when it is for the ceremonial of

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the archangels, or when one wishes to perform the ceremonial of the archangels. 10. Eight when it is for the ceremonial of a guardian spirit of the righteous. 11. Nine when one wishes to cast seed into his land. 12. Ten when one wishes to allow procreation. 13. Eleven when one goes to ask for a wife. 14. Twelve when one expects to go up on a mountain. 15. Thirteen when one wishes to go to an inhabited district (rûdastâk-1); twelve 1 when he goes out pathless; and one 2 when he wishes to proceed by a ford through the water.

16. About the place where one has to utter the first Yathâ-ahû-vairyô for smiting the demons. 17. About the good results (dahisnân) of a suitable recital of the words of the Ahunavair, the summary of everything for Zaratûst to utter. 18. And about the fact that, through chanting forth every single word of the Ahunavair with a virtuous intention, a demon is disabled, and there is protection of person and property from the adversary.

19. About the division of the twenty-one Nasks, likewise, according to the first, second, and third lines (gâs) of the Ahunavair 3. 20. About the increase of the creatures owing to the liberal thought, word, and deed of a righteous person; owing to the priests having become numerous, and the reverence of him who is making them numerous, and owing to the perpetual meditation of righteousness and the existence of its recompense.

21. Righteousness is perfect excellence.


172:4 The first of the Nasks and second of the Gâthic division (see Bk. VIII, Chap. I, 9, 12). As the Stôd-yast (the first of the Gâthic p. 173 division, but the last of the general list of Nasks) contained the text of the Gâthas, so the next three of the Gâthic division contained commentaries, or homilies, upon that text, written with different objects in view. The purpose of the Sûdkar was apparently (as its name imports) to extract useful instruction from the text, and to illustrate it with legends and remarks. A separate fargard is devoted to each hâ of the Gâthas, beginning with the three sacred formulas, and including the united Yasna Haptanghâiti and the Aîryaman. The connection between the commentary and text, though usually traceable, is not always very clear; but that is a common characteristic of homilies in general.

173:1 The Ahunavair (see Bk. VIII, Chap. I, 7). This fargard explains the use made of this formula, and the benefits derived from it.

173:2 As a spell, or appeal for success. The text of §§ 4-15 has been independently handed down by tradition, with a few variations, in Sls. XIX and the Persian Rivâyat of Bahman Pûngyah.

174:1 Sls. XIX, 14 has 'thirteen.'

174:2 So in both MSS., but ayôv, 'or,' is more probable than aêvakŏ, 'and one.'

174:3 See Bk. VIII, Chap. I, 7.

Next: Chapter III