The Zoroastrians and their religion are between perseverance and strict negligence
Dyab Ghanem – Ezidi 24 – Particular
Translation: Tahseen Alhaskany
Zoroastrianism is an old religion, it’s believers believe in the existence of one God, Who’s Ahura Mazda, and they have a book called (Avesta) and their prophet is so-called (Zoroaster).
This religion appeared, 1756 years before Jesus’ birth in the regions of Kurdistan (present Iran), (Aryan Fegg) and in the region of Urmia, the present Hawraman’ regions and the plains of Sharazur and Zamua, under the reign of Pasha-Kustassep in Balkh City. In the Balkh city (present Hauraman), the Prophet Zoroaster died at the age of 77. “His little daughter, Pourucista took his place” According to what the Zoroastrians are deliberated.
In Iran and India, the number of Zoroastrians approximates 200,000 , but in Kurdistan there are more than 200,000, thus making up the majority of the world’s Zoroastrians are in Kurdistan region of Iraq.
Shrines and holy places of Zoroastrian in Kurdistan,in general are a lot, in Kermanshah, Sulaymaniyah, Urmia, Erbil, Duhok, Sari kani, Afrin, Koy Sanjaq, Darbandikhan, Khanaqin, Halabja, kari, and many other regions. The most prominent of them is a temple so-called (Kesen Qaban) in Sulaimaniya and (Taq-e Bostan) in Kermanshah, and all the graves and temples that date back to Albier in Kurdistan, date back to Zoroastrians, In particular, (Kesen Qaban), where there are the Shrines of the three Medes gods (Diaku, Farfdch, Kikkhosro) and there are other temples, including the Temple of Darbandikhan.
Holidays and ceremonies for Zoroastrians depend on natural changes and calendar, the most important of the Zoroastrians’ holidays start on the first day of the year, Kurdish New year, Newroz. Zoroastrians consider Newroz a religious and nationalist holiday for Kurdish Zoroastrian, and the year begins in Newroz, the first day of the spring, as they believe.
The Forty and the hundred (the name goes back to one hundred year), and Canaheparian (ancient holidays related to agriculture and animal husbandry),the Benga, and the Covenant (payman) are the most prominent Zoroastrian holidays, in particular the Forty and Covenant (payman) holidays.
the Covenant (payman) is also so-called Khermanan holiday, and Zoroastrian celebrating in September 1, which they so-called (Khemanan), in (Kesen Qaban) temple in Dokan region which located near the Sulaymaniyah governorate.
According to their beliefs, the lives are the same as those that have died, People are being welcomed to the ground with set fire, cleaning their homes, wearing new clothes, celebration, and serving food.
“Pir Loqman”, the head of the Zoroastrian Supreme Council, spoke to “Ezidi 24,” and said, “the people of our religion have been subjected to many attacks and in the history of empires (Medes, Achaemeni, Kaccham, Huriya, Sassaniya). Even Muslim’ attacks targeted Zoroastrian religion, and, after the Islamic attack, those carrying the ideas of Zoroastrian religion were subjected to Genocides, including Kurdish nationalism.
“1437 years after the deny and prohibition of this religion, in February 2015 I revived it again, and four centuries later, I promoted and publicized this religion. Within five years, hundreds of thousands returned to their religion and grew it again”, he added.
“We celebrate some of our religious and nationalist observances publicly and others privately, this is because the Kurdish community in general has been influenced by Islam, and they could not keep their history and Kurdish religions humanely and their kurdish beliefs before that, On the contrary, they were deceived by an Arabic dictionary, they were not intelligent, aware of their history, and were removed from their ideas”, he contacted.
“If we notice that most Kurds have knowledge of the battles of Badr and Ahad, and know where and when they were, and they are, in fact, another national history that belongs to the Arabs, while the majority of Arabs do not know their language, history, battles, heritage and literature, which caused 78 Anfal and Genocide to us”, he said.
And he kept saying, “the Zoroastrian appear silent and show them signs of silence, this is due to the leadership and religion that has a Ministry of Endowments, more than 7,000 mosques, 35,000 clerics, Sharia’a University, thousands of religious schools and the state constitution allowed to do so, all of them are against Zoroastrians, and that is why our movement is few, and the parties are also looking for their interests and this is what does not allow us to move, for example, three Zoroastrian centers in Erbil and Sulaymaniyah were closed, and we did not speak about that for fear or were unable to claim the appointment of a representative, they chose a non-Zoroastrian partisan person without returning to us, after that they said that he was Zoroastrian and thus silenced the Zoroastrians in the government and the Ministry of Endowments, they were not willing to open a temple from our temples and that was what we were disturbed by”.
“We rented a house where to open a temple for Zoroastrians (a house of worship) and we pay the expenses of it and the ministry did not agree on that and in return they opened a temple for the representative who chosed by them, who had nothing to do with the Zoroastrians. We do not know why we are neglected by Kurdistan, and despite, we do our work in complete freedom”, he said.
“We are the ones who gave freedom to ourselves, for example, in 2015 and at the time we publicized, we met the Constitution writing Committee and proved in the fifth paragraph on civil and personal freedom and rights and in the religion section that religion is optional and we have included the Zoroastrian religion in the constitutional draft”, he mentioned.
“We have not supported any party and have paid all the costs of our jobs and holidays (feasts), so our work has become easier and we have been better accepted by the world but, we were attacked by Islamic clerics from the pulpits and media and spoke of dozens of lies about us, including insults and moral attacks, and so far continues”, he also added.
“Bir Ashna”, Zoroastrian temples’ responsible and the relations official also spoke to “Ezidi 24” and said, “We must have the right as Zoroastrians like other religions and have the right to propagate this ancient religion, we need the support of the Ministry of Endowments, as well as the Parliament, according to the law and the constitution, and we must have the same laws and legislations that they have enacted for other religions with regard to religious freedom.”
“So far, the government has not supported us in any way, however, we practice our own religious rites, and we have no problem with this by the government, and they have not prevented us from doing so”, She added.
“We ask the government and the Ministry of Endowments to open a (House of worship) to practice our religious ceremonies and to show the world the right of our existence, we have opened a small temple and asked to approve it several times, but the ministry did not care about it and did not give us approval”, She said.