FACTOID # 21: 15% of Army recruits from South Dakota are Native American, which is roughly the same percentage for female Army recruits in the state.
 
 Home   Encyclopedia   Statistics   States A-Z   Flags   Maps   FAQ   About 
 
WHAT'S NEW
RELATED ARTICLES
People who viewed "Haoma" also viewed:
 

SEARCH ALL

FACTS & STATISTICS    Advanced view

Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 

 

(* = Graphable)

 

 


Encyclopedia > Haoma
Part of a series on

Zoroastrianism

Portal
Zoroastrianism (Avestan Daênâ Vañuhi the good religion)[1][2] is the religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). ... Faravahar, The depiction of the Human soul before birth and after death. ...

Primary Topics

Zoroastrianism / Mazdaism
Ahura Mazda
Zarathustra (Zoroaster) Zoroastrianism (Avestan Daênâ Vañuhi the good religion)[1][2] is the religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). ... Ahura Mazda is the Avestan language name for an exalted divinity of ancient proto-Indo-Iranian religion that was subsequently declared by Zarathustra (Zoroaster) to be the one uncreated creator of all (God). ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...

Angels and Demons

Overview of the Angels
Amesha Spentas · Yazatas
Ahuras · Daevas
Angra Mainyu Zoroastrian angelology is branch of Zoroastrian doctrine that deals with the hierarchical system of divinities introduced by the reforms of Zarathustra (Zoroaster). ... In Zoroastrianism, Amesha Spentas are the Holy Immortals, the equivalent of Archangels in Christian theology. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Zoroastrian angelology. ... Ahura is the Avestan language designation for a class of divinity, adopted by Zarathustra (Zoroaster) from prehistoric proto-Indo-Iranian religion. ... The Daeva are a fictional clan of vampires in the role-playing game Vampire: The Requiem, published by White Wolf Game Studio . ... Angra Mainyu (Avestan) or Ahriman (Middle Persian اهريمن) is the evil counterpart of the deity Ahura Mazda in Zoroastrianism. ...

Scripture and Worship

Avesta · Gathas
Vendidad
The Ahuna Vairya Invocation
Fire Temples
See Avesta Municipality for the Swedish town Yasna 28. ... The Gathas (Gāθās) are the most sacred of the texts of the Zoroastrian faith, and are traditionally believed to have been composed by Zarathushtra (Zoroaster) himself. ... See Avesta Municipality for the Swedish town Faravahar, believed to be a depiction of a Farvashi, as mentioned in the Yasna, Yashts and Vendidad The Avesta is a collection of the sacred texts of the Mazdaist (Zoroastrian) religion. ... Ahuna Vairya is the Avestan language name of the most sacred of the Gathic hymns of the Avesta, the revered texts of Zoroastrianism. ... A Zoroastrian Fire Temple is a place of worship for Zoroastrians. ...

Accounts and Legends

Dēnkard · Bundahišn
Book of Arda Viraf
Book of Jamasp
Story of Sanjan
The Denkard is the largest encyclopedia of Zoroastrianism written in 9th century. ... Category: ... The Book of Arda Viraf is a Zoroastrian religious text which describes the dream-journey of a devout Zoroastrian through the next world. ... The Jamasp Nameh (var: Jāmāsp Nāmag, Jāmāsp Nāmeh, Story of Jamasp) is a Middle Persian book of revelations. ... The Qissa-i Sanjan (or Kisse-i Sanjan, the Story of Sanjan) is an account of the early years of Zoroastrian settlers on the Indian subcontinent. ...

History and Culture

Zurvanism
Calendar · Festivals
Marriage
Eschatology
Zurvan is the Persian god of infinite time, space and fate. ... The Zoroastrian calendar is a religious calendar used by members of the Zoroastrian faith, and it is an approximation of the (tropical) solar calendar. ... Zoroastrianism has numerous festivals and holy days, all of which are bound to the Zoroastrian calendar. ... In the Zoroastrian faith marriage is encouraged, an institution greatly favoured by the religious texts[1]. As of such, a Zoroastrian Wedding is a cause for celebration. ... Zoroastrianism eschatology is the oldest eschatology in recorded history. ...

Adherents

Parsis · Iranis
Zoroastrians in Iran
• • •
Persecution of Zoroastrians A Parsi (Gujarati: Pārsī, IPA: ), sometimes spelled Parsee, is a member of the close-knit Zoroastrian community based in the Indian subcontinent. ... Irani is a term used to denote Indian Zoroastrians whose ancestors emigrated from Iran within the last two centuries, as opposed to the longer residing Parsis. ... Zoroastrian Fire Temple in Yazd Zoroastrians in Iran have had a long history, being the oldest religious community of that nation to survive to the present-day. ... The persecution of Zoroastrians has been common since the fall of the Sassanid Empire and the rule of Umayyad Arab empire that replaced it. ...

See Also

Index of Related Articles

This box: view  talk  edit

Haoma is the Avestan language name of a plant and its divinity, both of which play a role in Zoroastrian doctrine and in later Persian culture and mythology. The Middle Persian form of the name is hōm, which continues to be the name in Modern Persian and other living Iranian languages. Avestan is an Eastern Old Iranian language that was used to compose the sacred hymns and canon of the Zoroastrian Avesta. ... Zoroastrianism (Avestan Daênâ Vañuhi the good religion)[1][2] is the religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). ... Pahlavi is a term that refers: (1) to a script used in Iran derived from the Aramaic script, and (2) more broadly, to Middle Persian, the Middle Iranian language written in this script. ... Persian (Local names: فارسی Fârsi or پارسی Pârsi)* is an Indo-European language spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan as well as by minorities in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, India, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Southern Russia, neighboring countries, and elsewhere. ...


Sacred haoma has its origins in Indo-Iranian religion and is the cognate of Vedic soma. For haoma's relationship to Vedic soma, see comparison to soma. Veda redirects here. ... This article is about the Vedic plant and ritual. ...

Contents

Etymology

Both Avestan haoma and Sanskrit soma derived from proto-Indo-Iranian *sauma. The linguistic root of the word haoma, hu-, and of soma, su-, suggests 'press' or 'pound'. (Taillieu, 2002) The Sanskrit language ( , for short ) is an old Indo-Aryan language from the Indian Subcontinent, the classical literary language of the Hindus of India[1], a liturgical language of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism, and one of the 23 official languages of India. ... Proto-Indo-Iranian, the Indo-European language spoken by the Indo-Iranians in the late 3rd millennium BC was a Satem language still not removed very far from the Proto-Indo-European language, and in turn only removed by a few centuries from the Vedic Sanskrit of the Rigveda. ...


As a plant

In the Avesta

The physical attributes, as described in the texts of the Avesta, include: See Avesta Municipality for the Swedish town Yasna 28. ...

  • the plant has stems, roots and branches (Yasna 10.5).
  • it has a pliant asu (Yasna 9.16). The term asu is only used in conjunction with a description of haoma, and does not have an established translation. It refers to 'twigs' according to Dieter Taillieu, 'stalk' according to Robert Wasson, 'fibre' or 'flesh' according to Ilya Gershevitch, 'sprouts' according to Lawrence Heyworth Mills.
  • it is tall (Yasna 10.21, Vendidad 19.19)
  • it is fragrant (Yasna 10.4)
  • it is golden-green (standard appellation, Yasna 9.16 et al)
  • it can be pressed (Yasna 9.1, 9.2)
  • it grows on the mountains, 'swiftly spreading', 'apart on many paths' (Yasna 9.26, 10.3-4 et al) 'to the gorges and abysses' (Yasna 10-11) and 'on the ranges' (Yasna 10.12)

The indirect attributes (i.e. as effects of its consumption) include: See Avesta Municipality for the Swedish town Yasna 28. ... The Rev. ...

  • it furthers healing (Yasna 9.16-17, 9.19, 10.8, 10.9)
  • it furthers sexual arousal (Yasna 9.13-15, 9.22)
  • it is physically strengthening (Yasna 9.17, 9.22, 9.27)
  • it stimulates alertness and awareness (Yasna 9.17, 9.22, 10.13)
  • the mildly intoxicating extract can be consumed without negative side effects (Yasna 10.8).
  • it is nourishing (Yasna 9.4, 10.20) and 'most nutritious for the soul' (Yasna 9.16).

In present-day Zoroastrianism

Many of the physical attributes as described in the texts of the Avesta coincide with the choice of plant used in present-day Zoroastrian practice. Although it cannot be ruled out that the plant, as it is used today, is a surrogate of the plant that was revered by ancient Zoroastrians, the choice of such a surrogate would presumably have been made to suit ancient practice. In present-day preparation of parahaoma (for details, see Ab-Zohr), ... Ab-Zohr (āb-zōhr) is the culminating rite of the greater Yasna service, the principal Zoroastrian act of worship that accompanies the recitation of the Yasna liturgy. ...

  • the twigs are repeatedly pounded in the presence of a little water, which suggests ancient haoma was also water-soluble.
  • the twigs have to be imported by Indian-Zoroastrians, who believe that they are, for climatic reasons, not obtainable on the Indian subcontinent.
  • very small quantities are produced.

According to Falk, Parsi-Zoroastrians use a variant of Ephedra, usually Ephedra procera, imported from the Hari-rud valley in Afghanistan. (Falk, 1989) A Parsi (Gujarati: Pārsī, IPA: ), sometimes spelled Parsee, is a member of the close-knit Zoroastrian community based in the Indian subcontinent. ...


Botanic identification

Main article: botanic identity of Soma-Haoma

Since the late 1700s, when Anquetil-Duperron and others made portions of the Avesta available to western scholarship, several scholars have sought a representative botanical equivalent of the haoma as described in the texts and as used in living Zoroastrian practice. Most of the proposals concentrated on either linguistic evidence or comparative pharmacology or reflected ritual use. Rarely were all three considered together, which usually resulted in such proposals being quickly rejected. Since the late 1700s, when Anquetil-Duperron and others made portions of the Avesta available to western scholarship, several scholars have sought a representative botanical equivalent of the haoma as described in the texts and as used in living Zoroastrian practice. ... ...

A representative of the genus Ephedra.
A representative of the genus Ephedra.

In the late 19th century, the highly conservative Zoroastrians of Yazd (Iran) were found to use Ephedra (genus Ephedra), which was locally known as hum or homa and which they exported to the Indian Zoroastrians. (Aitchison, 1888) The plant, as Falk also established, requires a cool and dry climate, i.e. it does not grow in India (which is either too hot or too humid or both) but thrives in central Asia. Later, it was discovered that a number of Iranian languages and Persian dialects have hom or similar terms as the local name for some variant of Ephedra. Considered together, the linguistic and ritual evidence appeared to conclusively establish that haoma was some variant of Ephedra. Ephedra distachya from French Wiki fr:Image:Ephedra distachya-400. ... Ephedra distachya from French Wiki fr:Image:Ephedra distachya-400. ... Species This article is about the genus Ephedra Ephedra Ephedra is a genus of gymnosperm shrubs, the only genus in the family Ephedraceae and order Ephedrales. ... Yazd or Yezd (In Persian: یزد), is the capital of Yazd province, one of the most ancient and historic cities in Iran and a centre of Zoroastrian culture. ... Ephedra in medicine. ... Species This article is about the genus Ephedra Ephedra Ephedra is a genus of gymnosperm shrubs, the only genus in the family Ephedraceae and order Ephedrales. ... The Iranian languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family with an estimated 150-200 million native speakers today. ...


In the latter half of the 20th century, several studies attempted to establish haoma as a psychotropic substance, and based their arguments on the assumption that proto-Indo-Iranian *sauma was a hallucinogen. This assumption, which invariably relied on professed Vedic 'evidence' (one hymn of c. 120), was, as Falk (1989) and Houben (2003) would later establish, not supported by either the texts or by the observation of living practice. Moreover, the references to entheogenic properties were only in conjunction with a fermentation of the plant extract, which does not have enough time to occur in living custom. A psychoactive drug or psychotropic substance is a chemical that alters brain function, resulting in temporary changes in perception, mood, consciousness, or behaviour. ... Hallucinogenic drug - drugs that can alter sensory perceptions. ... An entheogen, in the strictest sense, is a psychoactive substance (most often some plant matter with hallucinogenic effects) that occasions an enlightening spiritual or mystical experience. ...


In the conclusion of his observations on a 1999 Haoma-Soma workshop in Leiden, Jan E. M. Houben writes: "despite strong attempts to do away with Ephedra by those who are eager to see *sauma as a hallucinogen, its status as a serious candidate for the Rigvedic Soma and Avestan Haoma still stands" (Houben, 2003, 9/1a). This supports Falk, who in his summary noted that "there is no need to look for a plant other than Ephedra, the one plant used to this day by the Parsis." (Falk, 1989) A Parsi (Gujarati: Pārsī, IPA: ), sometimes spelled Parsee, is a member of the close-knit Zoroastrian community based in the Indian subcontinent. ...


As a divinity

The Yazata Haoma, also known by the middle Persian name Hōm Yazad, is the epitome of the quintessence of the haoma plant, venerated in the Hōm Yašt, the hymns of Yasna 9-11. It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Zoroastrian angelology. ...


In those hymns, Haoma is said to appear before Zoroaster in the form of a "beautiful man" (this is the only anthropomorphic reference), who prompts him to gather and press haoma for the purification of the waters (see Aban). Haoma is 'righteous' and 'furthers righteousness', is 'wise' and 'gives insight' (Yasna 9.22). Haoma was the first priest, installed by Ahura Mazda with the sacred girdle aiwiyanghana (Yasna 9.26) and serves the Amesha Spentas in this capacity (Yasht 10.89). "Golden-green eyed" Haoma was the first to offer up haoma, with a "star-adorned, spirit-fashioned mortar," and is the guardian of "mountain plants upon the highest mountain peak." (Yasht 10.90) In Persian mythology, Aban is the name of an angel who presides over iron. ... Ahura Mazda is the Avestan language name for an exalted divinity of ancient proto-Indo-Iranian religion that was subsequently declared by Zarathustra (Zoroaster) to be the one uncreated creator of all (God). ... In Zoroastrianism, Amesha Spentas are the Holy Immortals, the equivalent of Archangels in Christian theology. ... See Avesta Municipality for the Swedish town Yasna 28. ...


Haoma is associated with the Amesha Spenta Vohu Manah (Avestan, middle Persian Vahman or Bahman), the guardian of all animal creation. Haoma is the only divinity with a Yasht who is not also represented by a day-name dedication in the Zoroastrian calendar. Without such a dedication, Haoma has ceased to be of any great importance within the Zoroastrian hierarchy of angels. In Zoroastrianism, Amesha Spentas are the Holy Immortals, the equivalent of Archangels in Christian theology. ... The Zoroastrian calendar is a religious calendar used by members of the Zoroastrian faith, and it is an approximation of the (tropical) solar calendar. ...


In tradition and folklore

In Ferdowsi's Shahnameh, which incorporates stories from the Avesta (with due acknowledgement), Hom appears as a hermit, dweller of the mountains, incredibly strong. He binds Afrasiab (middle Persian, Avestan: "the fell Turanian Frangrasyan", Yasna 11.7) with the sacred girdle, and drags him from deep within the earth (named the hankana in Avestan, hang-e-Afrasiab in middle Persian) where Afrasaib has his "metal-encircled" kingdom that is immune to mortal attack. Ferdowsi Tousi (فردوسی طوسی in Persian) (more commonly transliterated Firdausi, Ferdosi or Ferdusi) (935–1020) is considered to be one of the greatest Persian poets to have ever lived. ... Shahnameh Scenes from the Shahnameh carved into reliefs at Tus, where Ferdowsi is buried. ...


In another episode, Vivaŋhat is the first of the humans to press haoma, for which Hom rewards him with a son, Jamshid. Yasna 9.3-11 has Zoroaster asking the divinity who (first) prepared haoma and for what reward, to which Haoma recalls Vivahngvant (Persian: Vivaŋhat) to whom Yima Xshaeta (Jamshid) is born; Athwya (Abtin) to whom Thraetaona (Feredon) is born; and Thrita to whom Urvaxshaya and Keresaspa (Karshasp and Garshasp) are born. The latter two are also characters in priestly heroic tradition, and among conservative Zoroastrians of the hereditary priesthood, Haoma is still prayed to by those wanting children (in particular, honorable sons who will also become priests). The account given in the Indian Vedas closely agrees with that of the Iranian Avesta. The first preparers of Soma are listed as Vivasvat, who is the father of Yama and Manu, and Trita Aptya. Jamshid (in Persian: ‎) is a common Persian male first name. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Jamshid (in Persian: ‎) is a common Persian male first name. ...


A legendary 'White Hom' grows at the junction of the "great gathering place of the waters" and a mighty river. . According to the Zadspram, at the end of time, when Ormuzd triumphs over Ahriman, the followers of the good religion will share a parahom made from the 'White Hom', and so attain immortality for their resurrected bodies. (Zadspram 35.15) Ahura Mazda is the Avestan language name for an exalted divinity of ancient proto-Indo-Iranian religion that was subsequently declared by Zarathustra (Zoroaster) to be the one uncreated creator of all (God). ... Angra Mainyu (Avestan) or Ahriman (Middle Persian اهريمن) is the evil counterpart of the deity Ahura Mazda in Zoroastrianism. ...


James Darmesteter, in his 1875 thesis on the mythology of the Avesta, speculating on the Parsi belief that Ephedra twigs do not decay, wrote: "it comprises the power of life of all the vegetable kingdom... both the ved and the avesta call it the 'king of healing herbs'... the zarathustri scriptures say that homa is of two kinds, the white haoma and the painless tree (no doubt the source of the 'tree of knowledge' and 'the tree of life' in the biblical paradise)... could it be that soma is the tree of life? the giver of immortality?" James Darmesteter (March 28, 1849 - October 10, 1894), French author and antiquarian, was born of Jewish parents at Chateau Salins, in Alsace. ... A Parsi (Gujarati: Pārsī, IPA: ), sometimes spelled Parsee, is a member of the close-knit Zoroastrian community based in the Indian subcontinent. ... The Tree-of-Life is a fictional plant (the ancestor of yams, with similar appearance and taste) in Larry Nivens Known Space universe, for which all Hominids have an in-built genetic craving. ...


The Indian-Zoroastrian belief mentioned above also manifests itself in the present-day Zoroastrian practice of administering a few drops of parahaoma to the new-born or dying (see Ab-Zohr). The belief also appears to be very old, and be cross-cultural. As Falk, recalling Aurel Stein discovery of Ephedra plants interred at 1st century CE Tarim Basin burial sites, notes: "an imperishable plant, representing or symbolizing the continuity of life, is most appropriate to burial rites" (Falk, 1998). Ab-Zohr (āb-zōhr) is the culminating rite of the greater Yasna service, the principal Zoroastrian act of worship that accompanies the recitation of the Yasna liturgy. ... Image:AurelStein. ... Taklamakan Desert in the Tarim Basin. ...


It is possible that the barsom (Var. Avestan baresman) bundle of twigs was originally a bundle of Haoma stalks. The Haoma divinity is identified with priesthood (see Haoma as a divinity), while the barsom stalks "cut for the bundles bound by women" (Yasna 10.17) is the symbol and an instrument of the Zoroastrian priesthood. Today the barsom is made from pomegranate twigs (cf: preparation of parahaoma for the Ab-Zohr). Ab-Zohr (āb-zōhr) is the culminating rite of the greater Yasna service, the principal Zoroastrian act of worship that accompanies the recitation of the Yasna liturgy. ...


The Haoma plant is a central element in the legend surrounding the conception of Zoroaster. In the story, his father Pouroshaspa took a piece of the Haoma plant and mixed it with milk. He gave his wife Dugdhova one half of the mixture and he consumed the other. They then conceived Zoroaster who was instilled with the spirit of the plant. This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...


According to tradition, Zoroaster received his revelation on a riverbank while preparing parahaoma for the Ab-Zohr (Zatspram 21.1), that is, for the symbolic purification of Aban ("the waters"). This symbolic purification is also evident in Yasna 68.1, where the celebrant makes good for the damage done to water by humanity: "These offerings, possessing haoma, possessing milk, possessing pomegranate, shall compensate thee". Ab-Zohr (āb-zōhr) is the culminating rite of the greater Yasna service, the principal Zoroastrian act of worship that accompanies the recitation of the Yasna liturgy. ... In Persian mythology, Aban is the name of an angel who presides over iron. ...


Comparison of haoma/soma

Beyond the establishment of a common origin of haoma and soma and numerous attempts to give that common origin a botanic identity, little has been done to compare the two. As Indologist Jan Houben also noted in the proceedings of a 1999 workshop on Haoma-Soma, "apart from occasional and dispersed remarks on similarities in structure and detail of Vedic and Zoroastrian rituals, little has been done on the systematic comparison of the two" (Houben, 2003, 9/1a).


Houben's observation is also significant in that, as of 2003, no significant comparative review of cultural/sacred Haoma/Soma had extended beyond Alfred Hillebrandt's 1891 comparison of the Vedic deity and the Zoroastrian divinity. (Hillebrandt, Alfred (1891). Vedische Mythologie. I: Soma und verwandte Goetter. Breslau: Koebner. ) Year 1891 (MDCCCXCI) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ...


All more recent studies that address commonality have dealt only with botanic identification of proto-Indo-Iranian *sauma. Houben's workshop, the first of its kind, dealt with "the nature of the Soma/Haoma plant and the juice pressed from it" and that "the main topic of the workshop (was) the identity of the Soma/Haoma." (Houben, 2003, 9/1b)


See also

  • preparation and use of parahaoma in the Ab-Zohr, "offering to waters".
  • Soma, the Vedic equivalent of Haoma.
  • other Tree of life concepts.

Ab-Zohr (āb-zōhr) is the culminating rite of the greater Yasna service, the principal Zoroastrian act of worship that accompanies the recitation of the Yasna liturgy. ... This article is about the Vedic plant and ritual. ... The Tree-of-Life is a fictional plant (the ancestor of yams, with similar appearance and taste) in Larry Nivens Known Space universe, for which all Hominids have an in-built genetic craving. ...

Bibliography

  • Boyce, Mary (1979). Zoroastrians: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices. London: Routledge. ISBN 0-415-23903-6. 
  • Dhalla, Maneckji Nusserwanji (1938). History of Zoroastrianism. New York: OUP. 
  • Falk, Harry (1989). "Soma I and II". Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies (BSOAS) 52/1. 
  • Houben, Jan E. M. (May 4, 2003). "The Soma-Haoma problem". Electronic Journal of Vedic Studies 9/1a. 
  • Houben, Jan E. M. (May 4, 2003). "Report of the Workshop". Electronic Journal of Vedic Studies 9/1b. 
  • Mills, Lawrence Heyworth (trans.). Yasna 9-11 (Hom Yasht).  In Müller, Friedrich Max (ed.) (1887). SBE. Oxford: OUP. 
  • Taillieu, Dieter and Boyce, Mary. (2002). "Haoma". Encyclopaedia Iranica. New York: Mazda Pub.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Haoma (69 words)
It is associated with the purification of fire, and believed to have the power of providing husbands for unmarried women.
Haoma is similar to the Vedic Soma herb.
Article "Haoma" created on 03 March 1997; last modified on 30 November 1997 (Revision 2).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

COMMENTARY     


Share your thoughts, questions and commentary here
Your name
Your comments

Want to know more?
Search encyclopedia, statistics and forums:

 


Press Releases |  Feeds | Contact
The Wikipedia article included on this page is licensed under the GFDL.
Images may be subject to relevant owners' copyright.
All other elements are (c) copyright NationMaster.com 2003-5. All Rights Reserved.
Usage implies agreement with terms, 1022, m