But if and when we do have to translate "asha", if merely to explain the term, then "constructive mentality" remains the best explanation I know of in English. Even if even that is too limited and inadequate.
The thing is that asha and druj are both seen as external (like forces of nature, or rather forces of existence) and internal (mentalities, states of the mind etc). To live within asha (another meaning of asha) is therefore to make the different aspects of asha synchronize with each other. So most of all, asha is a mentality in the sense that is an ambition, a desire, even a drive, in life.
Asha is not a negation of druj but druj is a negation of asha. So the terms must not be regarded as opposites. Asha can exist perfectly well without druj, but druj only becomes druj as a negation of asha. Druj doesn't really have any substance, it should be rather be seen as a lack of asha. Asha is something, it is that which has substance, druj is the nothingness of nothingness, not so much a will as a will to not will.
I find your order/disorder translation to be way too limiting. As I meditate, pray and read, I simply can't find any word that can adequately convey "Asha" into English. I find it as elusive to explain as "Dharma" or "Tao" or even "Logos", and further that "Asha" has a commonality with many of the shades of meaning of all three of the above terms. It is all of those things, and the fruits of following/experiencing those things, and yet something else too, but above all a very wonderful word. Certainly a person is righteous, but also way more than this by heeding/following/experiencing/getting to know Asha. Like the Dharma, Asha leads to Ushta, and can be at least somewhat learned and practiced, but there is an almost gnostic experientialism like that of learning the Tao that seems to be important and not to be ignored. I could go on and on...how wonderful!
--- In Ushta@yahoogroups.com, "roryyoung15"
> Regarding Asha and Druj, what about order/disorder which a lot of Zs refer to?
> Ushta, Rory
> --- In Ushta@yahoogroups.com, Special Kain
> > Please add your corrections!
> > What or who is Ahura Mazda?
> > Ahura stems from the root "ahu" which literally means "conscious life". Mazda literally means "wisdom", our mental faculties. Ahura Mazda, then, is self-aware life that actually can discuss and examine the conditions of its existence. Philosophically speaking, we're amazed by the fact that there is something rather than nothing. And we're obsessed with our capacity to think.
> > What is Mazdayasna?
> > It's the original name of our faith. It literally means "worshipping (or, alternatively, celebrating) wisdom" (remember that philosophy literally means "love of wisdom"). We are therefore celebrating the fact we can discuss and examine the conditions of existence, so we're also celebrating science and philosophy. As Mazdayasni we're ethically obliged to pursue the truth relentlessly.
> > What is Asha and what is Druj?
> > Asha is whatever is true (science), right (ethics) and genuine (art). Druj is whatever is false (science), wrong (ethics) and fake (art). As Mazdayasni we're ethically obliged to live in accordance with Asha.
> > Isn't Zoroastrianism the world's first monotheistic religion?
> > Depends. There are Zoroastrian pantheists and panentheists. Panentheism is pantheism-plus: God is not only within the forces and workings of nature (immanence), but also The Greater Force beyond the physical world as we know it (transcendence). But since Asha applies to everything that is, we don't make up hierarchical relationship between this world and (allegedly) existent astral amusement parks. And since Ahura Mazda is any self-aware lifeform that is potentially able to examine the conditions of its existence, it's rather difficult to turn this concept into The Almighty Creator that is sitting above the clouds far, far away.
> > Do you follow any codex?
> > Depends. Zoroastrianism is not a moralizing religion, it's pure ethics! Ethics is about who we are to ourselves. There are three ideals: good thoughts, good words, good deeds. Thoughts precede words precede deeds. Making wise choices, protecting the environment, supporting equal rights and defeating intolerance are sacred activities in Zoroastrianism.