Zoroastrianism

So what do you Christians make of Zarathustra and his religion?

He predated Jesus by some 1200 years, but basically had the same message - One good god with his angels in heaven, one evil spirit with his demons in hell, and how you live your life determines which one you go to when the last trump sounds and the final battle is fought.

Secular Hisorians believe that Judism went from a pagan religion to a monotheistic one under the competition from Zoasterism, and that Christianity is basically a rip off of it. What do those of you who believe in Christianity make of this guy? Is it coincidence that he had the religion almost identical to yours? Was he a prophet? etc......

Where is the evidence that he existed?

The evidence he existed is accually about the same as that for Jesus, a number of writings and parables gathered into a holy book, and a few mentions of him in the histories of the time.

It was the dominant religion of the Persian Empire, just to the west of Isreal. It was well known in Babylon when Jerimiah and Ezekial were there, which coincides with when the Satan figure entered into Judism.

I went to highschool with a real live Zoroastrian.

Thats really rare in case you guys didn't know. You can't convert to Zoroastrianism, you have to be born into it. Im pretty sure his family is the only one in Michigan.

His parents would constantly take him to India to look for a wife (she too has to be Zoroastrian).

But like any good Indian he's now in Med school in Detroit picking up white girls. Im not sure if he literally believes in his religion, but he follows it out of family tradition and custom.

Okay, here we go again.........

My (guess) is that you've seen this claim made at the infidel's site or some other such place and didn't bother to look up any of the facts yourself.

This is an area that I have tinkered around in for a few years now. I have yet to find any previous (God /God's) that predate Christ who trully "fit the bill". Let's look at the Zoroaster and Christ claims that are must often stated. I don't want to spent alot of time on this though.

Zoroaster was born of a virgin - no he wasn't, he was infused with wisdom while still in the womb, but not a virgin birth.

He was baptized in a river - no, this one is completely made up.

He was tempted by the devil, in the wilderness - well....maybe. It wasn't the wilderness, it wasn't the devil, or even the head bad guy and there is no record of it being in the religion until the 2nd century....after Christ.

He healed a blind man - Didn't become part of the religion until the 10th century.

Ect. ect,. ect. ect. ect. ect.

actually that wouldnt be zoroaster, but the soashyant who is the 'savior' of zoroastrianism....he is the one who would come to the earth and rid it of ahriman

soashyant, or literally Son Of Man. Right?

I find it most interesting that Zoroaster never made any claims of miracles or even any real connection with God (Ahura Mazda) and that his religion was a result of Mithra, which predated it and is yet another religion that some claim incorrectly that the Christ story was stolen from.

In fact a quick read of history will clearly show that all similarities to the Christ story were added after Christ had lived. They were added, surprisingly enough, due to pressure placed on the Zoroastrians by invading Arabs who insisted that the religion show miracles.

The clear inference here being that they stole from the Christ story, not the other way around.

Just to set the record straight on the date. The consensus among historians is a birth date of about 628 B.C. Not 1200 years before Christ.

Well, I'm not claiming the Christ story is stolen from it, I'm claiming its Theology is almost identical to Christian Theology, more than a millinium before Jesus. You cannot rationally deny that the idea of heaven and hell, angels and demons, eternal reward for actions, and discounting of other Gods was present in Zoasterism before Christianity existed.

And there is no consensus about his birth date, anywhere from 600-1600 B.C. is considered possible, but most evidence now points to about 1200 B.C. or earlier.

I have only seen one or two sources give a date as far back 1200 B.C.

I really don't see a strong resemblance. Actions rather than salvation are the source for eternal rewards. There is no separation of body and soul.

There is no hell. Some account give a three day period of torment and then all is forgiven, another is simple limitation of the wicked.

Salvation is decided by committee, which includes Mithra.

Any mention of a "purgatory" is again 5th century. It's a stretch.

I believe you are thinking of a different religion. One of the holy texts in the Pahlavi is about trips of a mortal to see heaven and hell, so it is obviously part of the religion. Mention of purgatory is also common throughout the texts.

The myths that Zarathustra was around in 600 B.C. are based upon the myth that Darius's father met Zarathustra and converted, which there is no evidence of. Evedince of Zarathustra's writtings predates this time. Indeed most of the Persian Empire followed his teachings by the time of Darius 50 years later, so it is highly improbable that he lived that late.

No, we're talking about the same thing here.

Here is a good unbiassed look at Zoroaster:


http://sangha.net/messengers/zoroaster.htm

Doesn't agree with everything I've said or all of your positions either.

"and that his religion was a result of Mithra, which predated it and is yet another religion that some claim incorrectly that the Christ story was stolen from. "

mithra came much later...but thats true about how the christ stories 'supposedly' came from mithra

"Secular Hisorians believe that Judism went from a pagan religion to a monotheistic one under the competition from Zoasterism, and that Christianity is basically a rip off of it."

It depends upon who you speak with. Much of judaism was taken from the pre-caananite peoples that lived there before them. Entire psalms are pretty much word for word. Much of the philosophy behind it came down from the Sumerians and Babylonians. The whole idea of the "covenant" with god, so essential to judaism, was taken from those cultures.

Christianity isn't a revelation from a supreme being, it's a product of man struggling with the unseen and freely uses what came before it. That makes it more interesting in my estimation, just as the obvious blending early christians did with european paganism.

I didn't think I was wrong on the order Mithra / Zoroaster. This is from a site about Zoroaster:

"Considering that Darius the Great, was affiliated with Zoroastrianism, in his petrographies is written that Zarathustra praised Ahura Mazda (God) as the creator of heaven and earth. Herodotus, the Greek historian also testifies that the Iranian religion at that time has been monotheism and they had been blaming idolatry. This is a good reason, why Zarathustra, revolted against Mithra, that was the Iranian religion before him. Because, in Mithra, the oneness of God was not known to the people, plus the fact that in Mithra, sacrificing animals and also consumption of narcotics and intoxicating beverages (called Haoma) that desist the people from good reflection, were prevalent in Mithra and Zarathustra was against them. For such reasons Zarathustra, rose against the Mithra belief system."

there was a contact btwn mithra and the zoroastrians...but that occured at a much more recent date

the timing of mithra's origins is much closer to that of christ...where as Zarathustra's is closer to the time of abraham