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Pahlavi Texts, Part II (SBE18), E.W. West, tr. [1882], at


1. The third question is that you ask thus: For what reason does this greatness 1 of a righteous man exist?

2. The reply is this, that it is for the performance of what is desirable for the creator by the Mazda-worshipper; because he strives unhesitatingly that the way for the performance of what is desirable for the creator may be the propitiation 2 which is his, desire, and that desired propitiation 2 becomes perfect through sound wisdom. 3. The wisdom by which he understands about the desire of the heavenly angels is not appointed (vakht), but is the true, pure religion which is knowledge of 3 the spirits, the science of sciences, the teacher of the

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teaching of the angels, and the source of all knowledge.

4. And the progress, too, of the pure religion of the Mazda-worshippers is through the righteous man, as is shown of him in revelation thus: 'I created, O Zaratûst the Spîtamân! the righteous man who is very active 1, and I will guard his hands from evil deeds; I will also have him conveyed unto those who are afterwards righteous and more actively wise 2. 5. And at the same time the religion of me who created him is his desire, and it is the obtainment of a ruler which is to be changed by the well-organised renovation of the universe 3.'

6. As through wisdom is created the world of righteousness, through wisdom is subjugated every evil, and through wisdom is perfected every good; and the best wisdom is the pure religion whose progress is that achieved by the upholders of religion, the greatness of the best men of the righteous, in whose destiny it is, such as that which was shown about Gâyômard, Zaratûst, and Sôshâns 4.


20:1 Referring to Chap. II, 1, and not to Chap. III, 20; otherwise it might be supposed that the questions were contrived to suit the replies.

20:2 Or, perhaps, 'understanding.'

20:3 K35 has 'obedience to' by inserting a medial stroke in dânisnŏ, which converts it into sinvisnô, but is probably a mistake.

21:1 M14 and J here insert 'I will guard his mind from evil thoughts, his tongue from evil-speaking.'

21:2 In the future existence.

21:3 M4 and J have 'and it is the obtainment of a ruler who is a wise upholder of religion, from time to time, even unto the change of the last existences by the well-organised renovation of the universe.' But the additional words appear to have been suggested by the word 'ruler' being taken literally, whereas it seems to have been figuratively applied to the religion which is to rule the righteous till the future existence.

21:4 In Chap. II, 9-13.

Next: Chapter V