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  • Asha Vahishta Seminar #5

Asha Vahishta Seminar #5

  • 08 Apr 2017
  • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • OZCF

Asha Vahishta Seminar/Colloquium: #5

Performative Aspects of Faith, Lost in Translation?


We remain dedicated to exploring the core themes of the seminar series, and their intersection within each colloquium. The core themes are Faith and Fellowship, their identity, their purpose, and their maintenance. 

In the fifth colloquium, we will interrogate the performative aspects of Zoroastrian faith, in order to discern their relevance, and to determine whether they have been lost in translation. 


Recalling the issues from the fourth colloquium, inheriting and bequeathing faith, we will continue to examine the role of transmission and communication.  We will accomplish this via a discussion of the notion and role of priest, prayer, and ritual.  Many contemporary issues surrounding the performative aspects of religion will surface within this colloquium session. The purpose of shaping this session around three main foci is to present case-studies where participants may present their opinions with reference to our previous discussions. 


Do we require priests?  What makes a priest? Should there be an exclusive all-Male and hereditary priesthood?

Why do we pray?  In which language should we pray? How often and when should we pray?

Should we maintain traditions of jashans, navjote, sudreh/kusti? Do we require a ritualistic aspect to prayer?  Should we cleanse Zoroastrianism by returning it to pure form?

Should converts be accepted?  Should menstruating women be denied participation? Should we still use taro?


These are some of the questions which will arise in the coming session.  It is anticipated that our prior discussions will be the foundations for the opinions expressed. 

This is because the ‘answers’ to these and other questions regarding contemporary Zoroastrianism emanate from an understanding of the goal, core messaging, and mission statement of faith and fellowship.


Please note that our discussions have gradually been evolving in both scope and audacity.  This is part of the design plan, and fully intentional. 

The purpose of the Asha Vahishta Seminar Series is to challenge participant belief in order to strengthen faith and fellowship.  This is accomplished by rousing your emotional intelligence and forcing you not to be complacent with your preconceived logic.

Participants may feel un-settled by the tone and direct nature of the presenter.  However, by creating a sense of discomfort, one’s opinions are challenged.  It is the purpose of each colloquium in this series, to unsettle you, not to make you feel vindicated.  A clear commitment to faith and fellowship is the desire. 

Nevertheless, the space for discussion and its facilitation remain ‘safe’ and moderated with a vigilance so as to provide each participant their right to speak, and the respect to be heard.


The 5th Seminar is being held at the OZCF:

Title            - Performative Aspects of Faith, Lost in                             Translation?

Date            - April 8, 2017

Time           - 1:00 pm onwards for 2-3 hours. 

Refreshments provided

If you plan to attend please contact Ervad Nozer Kotwal at (905) 820-0461.

For those who would like to join in via Skype, please contact Ervad Xerxes Madan at xerxes_madan@hotmail.com

A gentle reminder to participants to bring with them a pen. Paper shall be provided.

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