Happiness and suffering are both subjective emotions, not objective facts. There may be objective facts underlying these experiences (say a lottery jackpot underlying an emotion of goodness, or an earthquake underlying an emotion of badness) but the mere fact that one man's fortune is another man's loss proves that objective goodness and evil do not exist, what we are left with are the subjective emotions. Asha and druj are in this sense, scientifically speaking, mental and not cosmic realities.
The things is that these emotions are experienced by YOU, in your mind, as a subject. Not perceived by the outside surrounding world as objective facts. The outside world will only view your emotions as chemical reactions in a brain.
This is where we in Mazdayasna refer to an imperative to SEE the world as good in itself (rather than as an evil place for suffering or a sinful destroyed world which needs to be replaced by another world). It is an imperative directed to us as subjects, to see the world subjectively in this way. The thing is that Zarathushtra was totally preoccupied with the power of the mind (as we should be). He understood that the experience of the mind is what is of interest to us as human beings, and that the capacity to have mind to begin with is absolutely essential to the human experience, and is therefore what should be celebrated in our religion.
I hope this clarifies the issue for you.
- Dölj citerad text -
I'm completely lost with your latest posts!
Surely there is objective good and bad - happiness and suffering.
Happiness represented by 'ushta'.
Arta is 'Rightness' (not Good exactly) - and 'Dreg' is deviation from
When we respect the law of Arta and choose to follow a course which
is Spenta (Life-promoting) then we reach Harverty (Health/Harmony).
In a state of Harverty we feel Ushta (Happiness) - the ultimate good.
--- In Ushta@yahoogroups.com, "Alexander Bard"
> I agree with Mehran but I would express this belief differently:
> While there is nothing OBJECTIVELY good or bad but rather just asha
> opposed to that which does not exist), we SUBJECTIVELY construct
> good (asha) and bad (druj) for ourselves. Asha is indeed what is
> constructive and druj that which is harmful for us and the world.
> I believe this is precisely what Mehran means (and this is radically
> different from the concepts of good and evil in the Abrahamic
> But perhaps this is a better way of describing this Mazdayasna
> We are concerned here with the INNER truths of existence, with the
> within ourselves, with our minds which we celebrate.
Dear Ron and Mehran
I believe Zarathushtra's whole point is that the laws of the
universe - which at first appear neutral to us - for him and for us
as Zoroastrians are GOOD simply because we celebrate that which
EXISTS. This is the primary point of being a Mazdayasni, this is at
the core of our faith: The fact that something exists, the fact that
something gives substance to asha (rather than something which does
not exist outside of our mere imagination) adds a quality to it and
this quality is the attribute of asha and should be celebrated. So
consequently Zoroastrians hold the material and immanent world as
Just imagine how radically different this worldview is from the
degrading view of the world we find in both eastern and western
thinking, with their aims to reach extinction or wait for another
better world to come. Zarathushtra's ethical imperative is therefore
to live within this world, love this world as much as we can (which
will in turn make us behave well towards the world) and hold it as
sacred. This is not - prinarily - a world of neither suffering nor
sin, this is a world we are compelled to positively interact with.
What Zarathushtra THEN adds is the fact that within this world of
asha, the capacity to reflect on the world af asha has arisen. This
capacity, which we as human beings collectively give substance to, is
the other second element of the Zoroastrian celebration. This is why
Ahura Mazda has both the Ahura and the Mazda component, used
seperately and together. Asha is spread thorughout, our minds also
operate within the realm of asha. But Ahura as that which exists and
Mazda as the wisdom of that which exists does cover all angles quite
nicely, don't you agree? And it also makes Mazdayasna truly unique
among religions as it celebrates both that which exists and the
capacity to reflect and enjoy that which exists.