Iranian forms of dating

Their origin is unclear, but, according to Classical sources, they presided at all religious ceremonies, where they chanted “theogonies.” That they were deeply involved in politics is seen from the attempt of the magus Gaumāta to seize the throne upon the death of persecuted the magi, they remained powerful and eventually became the official priesthood of the empire.They were probably responsible for articulating a thoroughly dualist ideology and contributing to Zoroastrianism its zealous preoccupation with ritual purity.Unfortunately, there is little agreement as to when Zarathustra lived, though most scholars agree that he lived sometime between about 1200 and 600 ) are indispensable for making historical reconstructions of the development of Iranian religion.The Rigveda, a collection of more than 1,000 hymns to various deities, can be dated to a period from approximately 1300 to 900 .By the Achaemenian period there developed a more rigid division of society into four basic classes: priests, nobles, farmers/herdsmen, and artisans.Society generally was patriarchal, and male dominance was strongly reflected in the religion.

Because all the sources for Iranian myths, whether those of Classical authors or indigenous texts, are post-Zoroastrian, it is often difficult to discern what elements of the myths are Zoroastrian innovations and what elements are inherited.

It will also treat ancient Iranian religion, insofar as possible, apart from , is that the information they contain is not always very reliable, either because it is outright erroneous or because it is based on misunderstandings.

The main indigenous sources are the Achaemenian royal inscriptions in the Old ), for the most part eloquent pieces of propaganda, are rich in references to religion.

Owing to their common origin, Iranian and Indo-Aryan religions are very similar.

From a comparative study of both groups, it is possible to reconstruct, in general features, the early forms of Iranian religion for which there is no direct documentation.

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