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Pahlavi Texts, Part III (SBE24), E.W. West, tr. [1885], at


1. The eighth subject is this, that it is necessary to maintain the religion by rule (dastûr), and to practise obedience to the commands of the high-priests; and every duty that people perform they should perform by their authority.

2. For it is declared in the good religion, that, if they accomplish as many good works as the leaves of the trees, or the sand-grains of the desert, or the drops (qatrah) of rain, which they do not perform by command of the high-priests, or to their satisfaction, no merit whatever attains to their souls, and for the good works they have done they obtain sin as a recompense. 3. While such a one is living it is not proper to call him righteous, and when he dies he does not attain to heaven, and not a single archangel comes 4 near him. 4. He does not make his escape from the hands of the demons and Aharman, and he

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does not obtain a release from hell. 5. Because duties and good works 1 attain to the soul on those occasions when they perform them with the authority of the high-priests and those acquainted with the religion, and when they give them one-tenth of those good works 2.


266:4 Lp, B29 have 'goes.'

267:1 That is, the merit of performing them.

267:2 The principles of blind submission of the laity to the priesthood, and complete abnegation of private judgment, which pervade the whole of the Sad Dar, are especially conspicuous in this chapter. They are the ideas prevalent in the darkest ages of the religion, which have now nearly disappeared with the spread of true knowledge as in other faiths.

Next: Chapter IX