When I speak of druj as "nothingness", I indeed mean this not literally but symbolically.
Or rather than a nothingness in itself, druj is a willingness towards nothingness. The ambition to nullify!!!
Druj is the drive towards the destructive, which in itself is a pleasure born out of bitterness, the enjoyment of bitterness, druj is driven by a hatred towards the new, towards the multiplying, towards growth and expansion, it is a willingness to stop creativity in its tracks, to silence creativity and the enjoyment of life in its fullness.
As with all metaphysics, poetry is perhaps a much better to get at what we are after here than logical reasoning. Which is of course another reason why Zarathushtra was a poet of truth rather than a logician of truth. And therefore a better philosopher and theologian than the thinkers that followed him!
Which in turn is why most attempts to "logicalize" The Gathas so often misses the mark.
As for the "monastery", yes, this is indeed very me. Mazdayasna does not propose any life of abstinence per se - which I believe is absolutely correct. But to have a set of buildings which can serve as ashrams for us when we need to isolate ourselves from the busy modern world would indeed by a good thing for the community. And such a place could of course also serve as a center for learning. I hope we can have many such "Mazdayasna learning and meditation centers" in the future, around the world.
A "mazdayasna monastery"?!? I have to confess, a monastery is something I never associated with you. Could you help me to understand this wish of yours? What would be the mazdayasna monastery which so appeals to you? But only answer if you wish to. I do not want to invade your privacy.
On the subject of evil, I agree that it is negative and destructive, but I have a hard time seeing it as nothingness, or non-existence. Historically, we have too many instances of the reality of evil -- the tortures of the Inquisition in the Middle Ages, the concentration camps of Hitler. These were very real. I just don't see them as "nothingness or non-existence" (perhaps the non-existence of good, but that is a different thing).
I guess what I see in the Gathas, is that both good and evil, in and of themselves, are just concepts, inclinations, preferences. They are both made real, given substance, through our choices in thought, word and action.
I agree with you, Alexander, when you pointed out in an earlier post the profoundly inclusive reality that thoughts, words and actions encompass. Today, too many folks tend to blow them off as simplistic. But like you, I think they are deeply profound -- encompassing the full spectrum of human expression -- one might almost say, of human existence (setting aside sleep and comas).
Wishing you the best
Dina G. McIntyre