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


1. The thirteenth question is that which you ask thus: 'Who should prepare the account of the soul as to sin and good works, and in what place should they make it up? And when punishment is inflicted by them, where is their place then?

2. The reply is this, that the account about the doers of actions, as to good works and sin, three times every day whilst the doer of the actions is living, Vohûman the archangel should prepare; because taking account of the thoughts, words, and deeds of all material existences is among his duties. 3. And about the sin which affects accusers 1, which

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is committed by (val) breakers of promises, even in the world Mitrô 1 is said to be over the bodies, words, and fortunes (hû-bakhtakŏ) of the promise-breakers; and as to the amount, and also as to being more than the stipulation when there is a period of time 2, Mitrô is the account-keeper. 4. In the three nights' account (satûîh) Srôsh the righteous and Rashnû the just 3 are over the estimate of the limits of the good works and sin of righteousness and wickedness. 5. In the future existence, on the completion of every account, the creator Aûharmazd himself takes account 4, by whom both the former account of the three nights and all the thoughts, words, and deeds of the creatures are known through his omniscient wisdom.

6. The punishment for a soul of the sinners comes from that spirit 5 with whom the sin, which was committed by it, is connected; fostered by the iniquity practised, that punishment comes upon the souls of the sinful and wicked, first on earth, afterwards in hell, and lastly at the organisation of the

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future existence 1. 7. When the punishment of the three nights is undergone 2 the soul of the righteous attains to heaven and the best existence, and the soul of the wicked to hell and the worst existence. 8. When they have undergone their punishment at the renovation of the universe they attain, by complete purification from every sin, unto the everlasting progress, happy progress, and perfect progress of the best and undisturbed existence.


32:1 Sins are divided into two classes, hamêmâlân or those which affect 'accusers,' and rûbânîk or those which affect only one's own soul. In the first class are included all evil actions which injure our fellow-creatures or any good animal or thing, and for which the injured party (the 'accuser') must receive satisfaction before the sinner can be pardoned (see Sls. VIII, I).

33:1 The angel of the sun's light; he is a personification of friendship and good faith, and is, therefore, specially aggrieved by breaches of promise and fraudulent debtors, but assists righteous souls in their passage to the other world (see AV. V, 3, Mkh. II, 118).

33:2 Referring to debts and promises to pay.

33:3 The angels of obedience and justice; the duty of the former is to protect the righteous, and that of the latter is to weigh the good works and sins in his golden scales, when the soul's account is balanced after the third night after death (see AV. V, 2-5, Mkh. II, 115-122).

33:4 Referring, perhaps, to the future temporary separation of the wicked from the righteous, after the assembly of the Sadvâstarân (see Bd. XXX, 10-16).

33:5 The demon who is supposed to have occasioned the sin.

Next: Chapter XV