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p. 214b

Chapter XVIII

1. I'HUA'MAZDA spake to Zarathustra, the All Pure, saying: Explain these things to my people, for they shall not dwell in darkness nor in fear. Zarathustra said: What shall I tell them, O I'hua'Mazda?

2. I'hua'Mazda said: My people are united; my people are delivered out of the evil city. To themselves, of themselves, and by themselves, have I delivered them, as a separate people.

3. I found an easy way to unite them; I went not by a dark road. This is no miracle, but the manifestation of Faith in the All Light.

4. Take them further away from Oas; far away in the forest. And since Asha is an old man, and learned above all other men, he shall be the ara'ba over them.

5. I'hua'Mazda said: But as for thee, O Zarathustra, thou art young and strong. Thou shalt choose fifty men from amongst my people, well learned and strong, full of vigor. And they shall be thy companions; and thou shalt visit the large cities of Jaffeth and Shem and Ham. For four years shalt thou travel, delivering the Zarathustrian law; but at the end of that time thou shalt return to Oas, and to this people, my first chosen.

6. And behold, after that, Asha shall go with thee to Oas, and thou shalt raise thy hand against the city, and it shall fall.

7. Zarathustra then explained these things to the people, and thereafter took them to the valley of Yan'she, by the river Witch'owitch; and he divided them into three large cities and four small ones, after the manner of the I'hins, the sacred people, white and yellow.

8. And he gave them fathers (rab'bahs), and made Asha chief father over all the others. Thus was founded the Zarathustrian religion; the I'hua'Mazdian law, the Ormazdian law, the Zarathustrian law.

9. And Zarathustra chose fifty men, well learned, and vigorous, not old; and they departed, to establish the Zarathustrian law in the cities of the east and south. I'hua'Mazda led them forth, speaking to Zarathustra, the All Pure, telling him whither to go, and directing him in the nearest roads, over the mountains and plains, and across the rivers. And wheresoever p. 215b they went, I'hua'Mazda provided them with beasts of burden, and beasts to ride on, converting their owners to the Ormazdian law, who gave them all things required.

10. The first large city Zarathustra came to was Tse'gow, on the plains of Jo'ab, high walled with wood and stone; and when he came to the gate thereof the keeper demanded his name and business, speaking in another language, and Zarathustra understood him not. Then came I'hua'Mazda, answering the keeper in his own tongue, saying:

11. I am a servant of the Creator, Ormazd; I come to prove immortal life before the king. Send, then, to thy king, and he will admit me and my people. So the keeper sent to the king, who commanded that Zarathustra come before him.

12. And when he and his attendants were thus before the king, the king said: Art thou he of whom the King of the Sun hath spoken? And what is thy business with me? Thy king, even the king of kings, is mad. Then answered I'hua'Mazda, saying:

13. Zarathustra, of whom the Sun king spake, is before thee. I am here to prove to thee many things pertaining to what is written in the Book of holies. But ere I utter many words, I pray thee, that thy son, Ha'sing, and thy wife, Hi'ti'us, and thy daughters, Peutu, Zoo, He'in and Zabee, be also present.

14. The king said: How knowest thou the names of my people? And I'hua'Mazda said: Here stand guardian spirits, ashars, and they speak to me. Chief amongst them is Ay'ay, thy grandfather, who slew himself; and next to him are thy kinspeople in spirit, Noa, Wess, Lut, Gan'ce, Mith'ce, Nim'och, Wo'huin, Ruks and Pa'stcue.

15. The king was concerned, for many of these had been slain in wars, nor knew he how Zarathustra discovered their names. So he sent for his wife and son and daughters, and they all went into an inner chamber, Zarathustra with them. Then spake I'hua'Mazda to the king, saying:

16. Think not that Asha is mad because he hath given up all he had and gone to live with the poor. The Gods call all men mad who do otherwise, especially rich men, and kings, and rulers. For such men set value on things that they cannot retain but during earth life at most. Asha setteth value on p. 216b that which will last forever. I would that all men would do as Asha hath done.

17. Because of unbelief in the Great Spirit, man hath set himself up as the All Highest, and his trade hath become war and destruction. I came not to persuade thee to give away thy kingdom nor thy riches, nor yet for any glory or profit to myself. I speak for the hosts being slain, tribe against tribe, city against city; I speak for the millions of spirits in darkness, who dwell on the battlefields.

18. I'hua'Mazda thus gained the attention of the king, and, meanwhile, the angels who accompanied him took on forms, looking like mortals; and presently, the king and his family looked about and saw them, and were frightened; and the king drew his sword, saying: Who have entered thus, uncalled! But as he advanced, behold, the spirits disappeared. The king was amazed. I'hua'Mazda continued, saying:

19. Concern not thyself because the spirits show themselves; neither call thou these appearances miracles. Spirits are always present; but because they thus clothed themselves with corporeal parts, thou hast for the first time seen them. Whilst thou was quiet, they came; with thy sudden passion they disappeared.

20. The king said: Will they come again? Then answered I'hua'Mazda, saying: Since thy wife and thy daughters are frightened, why should they appear again? Yet hear thou me, O king! Since thy youth up thou hast been prepared for this. Thy wife is half-breed with the I'hins, the sacred people. The I'hins were preserved by the Gods to this end, for they are as the leaven, prepared for the resurrection of all the races of men. Because of this great virtue in thy wife, the spirits of the dead can show themselves before thee.

21. Whilst I'hua'Mazda thus spake, the angels again assumed sar'gis, and there were present several spirits whose mortal lives had been cut short by the king's own sword. Chief of these was Awetakeytha, one time king of the city of Tse'gow.

22. The sar'gis spake to the king, saying: Think not that I am dead, O king! I am not dead, save in the corporeal part. As by thy sword thou didst cut me off, so by the sword shalt p. 217b thou be pierced through. Next spake Too'Sain, another sar'gis, saying: Till thou art dead, O king, and thy soul cast into hell, I will not cease to torment thee! Next spake Ghon, another sar'gis, saying: Before yesterday I brought venom from rotten flesh, and inoculated thee in the breath of thy mouth! Thou shalt cough blood and foul-smelling corruption! Next spake Owd, saying: I am come from the land of the dead, O king, with the torments of hell for thee! Then spake We'Seay, a sar'gis, saying: I am thy first wife; why slewest thou me? Was not the world wide enough?

23. Thus the spirits continued to speak, suffered by I'hua'Mazda to manifest their evil desires and passions in their own way; nor did one spirit appear who had a single good word of cheer for the king. Then the king spake, saying:

24. Go away, spirits, or devils! I will see no more! And, with that, he swung his sword about fiercely; but when he quieted a little, I'hua'Mazda spake to him, saying:

25. I declare to thee, O king, the air is filled with the spirits of the dead; and because they were slain by thee, they lie in wait for thy soul, when thou shalt die. Think not that by slaying a man thou art rid of him; only the corporeal part is within thy power. The soul never dieth. Ormazd is just. Whom thou hast injured, thou shalt restore.

26. The king said: If a man be a bad man, and I kill him, is it not a great good? I'hua'Mazda said: To kill him is a great evil. Thou shouldst convert him to good. The king said: But if he belong to me? Then I'hua'Mazda said: No man belongeth to thee. The same Creator created all men; from Him are all men created; and they belong to Him.

27. The king said: But I have possession of them. They are mine. If thy Creator is stronger than I, let Him take them. I'hua'Mazda said: To take them from thee would be no honor; but for thou to deliver them is thine own honor.

28. Now whilst the king's mind was thus engaged, the angels fell to work to demonstrate their presence and power, in some unusual way; and, accordingly, they cut loose the tapestry about the walls, and let it fall to the floor, and with great explosion. The queen and her daughters rose up and fled.

p. 218b

29. The king was angered, and thrust his sword at Zarathustra; but, lo, it broke into a hundred pieces, and yet no part touched Zarathustra. I'hua'Mazda said: Save thou repent of thy evil ways, I will withdraw my holy angels from this house, and thou shalt bear witness that ere the morning sun appears, this palace shall not be left standing.

30. But the king was hardened. So, when I'hua'Mazda perceived there was no repentance in the king, he withdrew the Lord and his ashars, abandoning the palace to evil spirits, but he sent guardian spirits to inspire the queen and her daughters to flee from the house that night, and they so fled. And the spirits of darkness went to the king's enemies and inspired them to go against the palace; and they so went, and destroyed it.

31. The next day, Zarathustra went about in the city, which was in great tumult, and I'hua'Mazda spake through him to the people. And in one day he received more than a thousand followers; and when the king saw this, he decreed Zarathustra to death, offering a reward to whoever would slay him.

32. The next day he preached again before the people, and received great addition to his followers; and then the king ordered his soldiers, of whom there were ten thousand, to fall upon Zarathustra and his people, and destroy them. But I'hua'Mazda had prophesied this to his adherents beforehand, and had advised them to flee. And many escaped before morning; but there were also many who were still within the walls when the soldiers came upon them.

33. I'hua'Mazda stretched his hand upward, saying: Fire of Thy fire, O Father! Give me here a wall of fire! And there rose up a wall of fire betwixt them and the soldiers; and the latter, seeing this, turned and fled, crying out: Shri! shri! --signifying spirit.

34. Thus Zarathustra led them out of the city, and not one man or woman or child was injured. But it came to pass that the deeds done through Zarathustra were greatly exaggerated in relating them, so that people who had not yet seen him believed the world was about to come to an end.

35. Thus the king lost all discipline over the city; and the people lived without law or order; robbing one another, or destroying whatever stood before them.

Next: Chapter XIX