Friday, November 04, 2005

Amazing Parsees

I have always been fascinated by Parsi people, their loving demeanor, their lore, of how their ancestors landed on the coast of Gujrat and eventually got asylum here. This was when the arabs invaded Persia. Today people in Iran are considered 'arab' because of their religeon, but actually people of India and Iran, both are of the aryan race, which originated in southwestern steppes of present-day Russia, what was formerly a part of Persia (Iran). Infact people of Iran and northen India are the closest aryan decendants anywhere in the world. Also the pharsi language and other Indian languages are interrealted, as they come from the same family of languages. So when the irani people came to India, it was a sort of a homecoming for them.

Come to think of it Parsee people represent less than 1 % of India's population, yet their acheivments have been phenomenal. The leading corporates in India the Tata's are Parsee, their philantropic history is inspiring. Also Godrej the FMCG company, and Bombay Deing of the Wadias are Parsee owned company. Post Independence most of the cricketers in the 50s and 60s were parsees like Nari Contractor, Poli Umrigar, Farookh Engineer. The Parsis were infact the first Indians to play cricket, and to play it well. They promoted the first cricket clubs in India, and in 1886 and 1888 organised the first-ever cricket tours by Indians overseas. In the next decade, they comprehensively defeated several teams of visiting English cricketers!

Also leading Indian constitution expert Palkiwala and former attorney general of India Soli Sorabjee are parsees. Dadabhai Nawrojee known as the grand old man of India, Madam Cama, Phirojshah Mehta were prominent during the freedom strugle. Rajiv Gandhi, India's youngest prime minister,was half Parsi, also India's first and only field marshall Sam Manekshaw is a Parsi, and so is Zubin Mehta.

Zoroastrians call their God Ahura Mazda. Ahura means "Lord" and Mazda means "Wisdom". Zoroastrians believe that Ahura Mazda is their Friend. And their purpose in this world is to help God make the world a better place to live. Zoroastrianism is based on Good Thoughts, Good Deeds, and Good Words. However today their numbers are dwindling since offsprings of intercaste marraiges are not accepted as parsees, since orthodox priest want to preserve their race.

One Intresting fact about them, Fire temples where they pray, has a flame which consists of fire from 18 different sourse, one of them is a fire started on the earth due a lightning that has been witnessed by at least two parsees!!!

I would end the blog by quoting the bava from the movie munnabhai MBBS, ' carrom ramvanu, mango juice pivanu, majja ni life !!!'.


Adam Mohs said...

Interesting write up. I didn't know alot of that stuff. I didn't realize that group of people had any significant population in India.

Parsi Khabar said...


Nice write up. There are some factual errors, but you got the spirit of it.

We have linked to it on our blog here

pushpak said...

hey nice maths teacher mugat is also a bawa...and they r diff from the rest....ive never seen mr. mugat not laughing or crackin jokes on any day...never a frown or nethin...they r very cool


I think it should be Amazing India.
It has accepted the Parsis, loved and nurtured them. In her protective grasp they grew and prospered to phenomenal heights. Today, having migrated to Seattle, WA, USA at an early age I still have many vivid memories of my Motherland. It still draws me to her. Her magic lies in its people. I shall return home one day.
Porus Irani

zartosht espentman said...

“good reflection,” “good words,” and “good deed,”

Anonymous said...

Hey Mate, nice to know you're so fascinated by us. I think everything about india and everybody in india is just fantabulous. Being in Sydney as a foreign student, I really miss bombay and can't wait for return for good as soon as i finish my course here. And, I've learnt my lesson, can't ever leave bombay for anything. And indeed, India is as much of home to us as any of the other indians. We are indians.