Lectionary Readings for Saturday, March 30th, 2019

Lectionary Readings for Saturday, March 30th, 2019

Seventh-Day Sabbath

Book of God’s Word Chapters XV and XVI

Chapter XV

1. When Asha, the king, had thus completed the labor of making the books, and of
sending them as commanded by I’hua’Mazda, he sent for Zarathustra, for further counsel
as to how he should abdicate the throne according to the Highest Light. And when
I’hua’Mazda was before him, even before Zarathustra had yet come, Asha said: Here
cometh that quickened thought again! Behold, I sent for Zarathustra in order to ask
certain questions, and lo, my heart answereth me!

2. Yea, I have nothing to do with what is not mine own! Now, whilst he thus framed his
own answer, Zarathustra came and said unto him: Thou desirest counsel in regard to
abdicating thy throne? Behold thou, I’hua’Mazda hath been to thee even now, saying:
What hast thou to do with that which is not thine own!

3. Asha said: I have heretofore said: That that speaketh to my heart, what is it? Now
according to thy wisdom, that that speaketh to my heart is I’hua’Mazda? How shall one
know it to be so! Zarathustra said: If a man ask the All Light in reference to his own
affairs, and for his own concerns, then receiveth he an answer from the tetracts; but if he
ask the All Light in reference to what he shall do for others, to render the highest good
unto them, then is the answer from I’hua’Mazda. I declare unto thee, O Asha, he is a dark
man indeed to whom the Creator speaketh not every day.

4. Asha said: What, then, shall I do in a matter like this? As yet, all the world belongeth
to me. Presently I shall deliver it to itself; shall I not provide a ruler for them?

5. Zarathustra said: Why, then, thou wilt be bound to give them one as good and wise as
thyself, otherwise thou wilt cheat them! Furthermore, doth not the Ormazdian law say:
Thou shalt not have any king but thy Creator?

6. Asha said: I so perceive. What then, shall I go away saying nothing? Then answered
I’hua’Mazda, saying: Thou shalt do more than this; for thou shalt give liberty to all men,
and proclaim unto them, commanding that they shall obey the doctrines of the Holy
Book, serving no master but the Creator. And when the people are completely broken up
by thy decree, thou shalt go away, leaving thy throne and thy capital to whatsoever may
come to them.

7. Asha said: I perceive. That which hath been given me to do, I will do. Behold, I
will bestow freedom on all the world; and with my alms-bowl go about begging. Heaven
must be just, and it is right that I should have the experience of the poor as well as

of the rich. How else would I ever become sufficiently wise to be a God in heaven?

8. Yet one thing, O Zarathustra, and I will ask thee no more questions; thou hast said I
must pray to Ormazd: Now, behold, I never prayed in my life! Who will teach me to
pray?

9. I’hua’Mazda said: Let thy lips utter thy holiest desires, and let thy soul seek constantly
for new expressions magnifying the wisdom, love and power of Ormazd, the Creator.

10. Neither shalt thou take a thought in regard to rules of prayer; the rules are for the
unlearned. He who inventeth a new prayer to Ormazd every day of his life hath done
wisely indeed. For the glory of prayer is the strengthening of one’s own soul to perceive
the Higher Light.

11. Prayer is not given in order to change the decrees of Ormazd, but to change one’s own
self for the better. Yet he who repeateth words of prayer as a parrot repeateth, improveth
himself but little.

12. Asha said: If a man think a prayer, and use no words, is it well with him?

13. I’hua’Mazda said: It is well with him; but it is better to add words also. It is well for
Ormazd to think a universe, but better to create it. To begin to learn creating, thou shalt
use spoken words; the perfection of creating is to have the words bear fruit. He who
omitteth words of prayer will in time omit prayer also, and his soul tendeth to barrenness.

14. A vain man saith: I have no need to pray; Ormazd knoweth my soul! Why, then, shall
not the field say: I shall produce no harvest, because Ormazd knoweth my capacity!
I declare unto thee, O Asha, the secret of all spiritual growth lieth in giving out the
spirit: He who would grow in wisdom, must give wisdom; he who would grow in love,
must give love; he who would grow in power of spirit, must give out power of spirit.

15. Bethink thee, then; if thou prayest silently, thy power goeth weakly to thy audience;
but if thou prayest with words, openly, thou givest to thine audience of thy fruit; and, for
this glory, Ormazd provideth thee abundantly.

16. When thou shalt go with thy bowl to feed the feeble, and old, and helpless,
and blind, thou shalt teach them prayer and confessions; and thou shalt absolve
them that are depressed because of their sins, that they may rejoice in their own lives

Chapter XVI

1. So Asha, being converted, gave up all he had on earth, and went and lived with the
poor, carrying the alms-bowl for one year, preaching and praying for the poor. And it
came to pass that at the end of the year he had thousands of followers.

2. And he built altars for them, teaching them to worship the Creator; to restore the
mark of circumcision; to be upright before men; to labor for the helpless and distressed,
and to do not to any man that which they desired not to be done unto themselves.

3. And these people took the name of Zarathustrians, in contradistinction from the
Parsi’e’ans. Nevertheless, they were the I’huan race, and the Ghans.

4. And because of their religion, they could not own property, neither houses, nor lands,
nor cattle, nor beasts of burden. Many of them gave themselves into servitude to the
Parsi’e’ans, but many of them lived on the contributions brought by converts who had had
great possessions.

5. Now it so turned out, that when Asha abdicated the throne, there were many aspirants
to his place, and the COUNCIL OF THE SUN was puzzled to know whom to select, that
peace might remain in Oas; but they finally made Hi’ya’tseing king, because he was
a great warrior, having bestowed to the city’s walls and gates more than ten thousand
skulls, from the refractory tribes adjacent.

6. Hi’ya’tseing assumed the titles of his predecessors, chief of which were KING OF THE
SUN, KING OF KINGS, AND KING OF OAS, the central city of all the world; and sent his
proclamations to the chief cities of Jaffeth and Shem and Ham, commanding earth, water
and fruit to be sent to him from every place under the sun. And he stipulated certain
presents that must be sent to him every year, amongst which were thousands of subjects
(slaves).

7. Hi’ya’tseing was a man of great learning, and had traveled far and near, and he knew
the people and the lands of the earth, and he knew the different products of the different
lands, and the number of peoples in the great cities of the world, and the number of
warriors belonging to the different sub-kings under him. Besides these things he knew the
stars and their places, and the groups of cows, and horses, and bulls, and bears, and lions,
and fishes, and serpents, even as they had been taught in the Hyartien period amongst the
ancients.

8. Hi’ya’tseing said: The Fete hath made me king of all the world; hence, it is right that I
am king. He said: It is evident, because Asha abdicated the throne, that man must have a
religion. He said: Because I know all the rites and ceremonies of the ancients, I will give
man a religion on my own account. He said: Because Asha commanded the Zarathustrian
religion unto the far-off kingdoms, then are Asha and Zarathustra my enemies. He said:
Let my officers arrest Asha and Zarathustra and bring them before me. I will make an
example of them.

9. And on the day that Asha was arrested, behold, the year of his carrying the almsbowl was ended. Asha and Hi’ya’tseing had known each other for many years. When
Asha was before the king, he said: I have nothing in all this world; why, then, hast
thou arrested me? The king said: Because thou gavest away thy possessions, thou art
the most dangerous of men. I have decreed thee to be put to death. Art thou prepared?

10. Asha said: Yea, O king. And yet, because of our long acquaintance, I ask of thee one
boon, which is, that I may be put to death according to the Panic rites which were before
the flood? And if, perchance, it be proved to thee there is a God with power to release me,
and he so doeth it, then shall not thy hand be raised against me? The king said: Thy boon
is granted.

11. Accordingly, a wheel of uh’ga was built and Asha was bound upon it, the king having
appointed a guard to watch him till he should die. But because of the king’s fear that the
test might be tampered with, he caused the yogernot (jaugernot) to be set up in his private
piazza, with the uh’ga facing the Gate of Lyons, so that his private attendants might also
watch. (See plate 11.)

12. Great was the wailing and crying of the people when it was known that Asha had been
decreed to death. The city of Oas became as a house of mourning and madness, and it was
divided against itself, some for Asha and some for the king.

13. Because Asha was old, and thus in view of the king all day, the king repented, but
he had no power under the laws to set aside his own decree. And when the sun went
down, the king went before Asha, saying: Behold, thou hast been six hours on the

wheel, and yet thy God hath not come to release thee. This is a great torture, and I weep
for thee. If thou wilt, therefore, slay thyself with a sword, I will have thee taken down?

14. Asha said: I declare unto thee, O king, I have no pain. Whether it be my madness, or
whether it be the Gods favor me, what mattereth it, since I suffer not? Nor have I a right
to slay myself, since I created not myself alive. Moreover, if it be the will of my Creator,
Ormazd, that I die on the wheel, then it is just. If it be not His will, then will He release
me. Therefore, O king, I am content.

15. The king said: This indifference cometh of madness. And thy madness hath affected
the City of the Sun. Have thy way, then, and die!

16. The king returned into his palace, but on the next morning he came again, making the
same proposal, and receiving similar answers. And at night he came again, repeating his
offer, and again being refused, determined to come no more.

17. Now on the night of the third day, Asha felt the power of I’hua’Mazda coming upon
him, and he said unto the guard: Behold, this night I shall be released! See to it, therefore,
as to whether the thongs are well fastened. For, if it so turn out that the Father release me,
then will ye stand before the king accused of conniving at my release. Accordingly, the
guard re-examined the fastenings, and sent word to the king of what Asha had said. And
the king replied: Nay, if he be released, then will I know of a truth there is a God; neither
shall one man of my guardsmen stand accused.

18. This they told to Asha, and Asha said: I say unto you, not only one shall stand
accused, but all of you. And there were of them one hundred, being two watches of
fifty each; but it being the change of watch, they all heard, and they laughed in derision.

19. And behold, in that same moment of time, the thongs fell off, and I’hua’Mazda
delivered Asha down from the uh’ga. And the spirit of I’hua’Mazda was in Asha, nor was
Asha himself, though knowing to the things done through him.

20. I’hua’Mazda said: Go ye and say to the king: Behold, Asha is delivered by the
power of his God. Then the guardsmen said: It is not morning; the king sleepeth.

21. I’hua’Mazda said: I say unto you, the king sleepeth not, but is joyful in drinking
wine with his courtiers. They went, then, and told the king, finding, of a truth, he
slept not. And the king commanded them to bring Asha before him, which they did.

22. Hi’ya’tseing said: What profit have my guardsmen in releasing this old man?
Behold, it hath been said that thou, Asha, hadst gold and silver hidden away. I know
now of a truth thou hast bribed these guardsmen to set thee free. For which reason,
every man of these guardsmen shall be put to death, and their skulls mounted on the
walls of Oas, and their skins tanned for leather. Away with them, ye marshals; bind
them till the rising sun, and at that hour hew off their heads, as I have decreed.

23. And now as for thee, thou old hypocrite and destroyer of liberty! What sayest thou?

24. Asha said: According to thy promise I should now be free. There was no stipulation in
thy decree that I should not bribe thy guardsmen. Behold, then, my wisdom! Have I not
revealed to thee that thou canst not trust any man?

25. The king said: Thou art the wisest of men. I had hoped to hear thee say thy God
released thee, and I had here twelve swordsmen to hew off thy head. But because thou
hast shown me great craft, thou shalt live for a season, but only on condition that thou
shalt leave Oas and never return.

26. Then spake I’hua’Mazda through Asha, saying: Thou hast decreed the guardsmen to
death at sunrise! Now I declare unto thee, O king, not one of them shall die as thou
hast decreed. But I, I’hua’Mazda, will deliver them. Think not that I am Asha; I am not
Asha, but a spirit, the God of the I’huans. Neither will I spirit away thy guardsmen by
a miracle, but by natural means, and will I show thee that I am mightier than all kings.

27. The king said: It cannot be that there are Gods or spirits. Is man’s judgment nothing?
These things were suited to the dark ages. They affrighted men to justice, and so far
served a purpose. But in this enlightened age man shall know justice and wisdom of
himself.

28. Whilst the king yet spake, I’hua’Mazda caused the attending spirits to assume mortal
form by the curtains of Arizzi, back of the king, and they made a noise, so that the king
turned to look, and lo and behold, he saw them. He feared, not knowing but they were
evil persons concealed, and he said: Robbers! murders! And he drew his sword and thrust
at them; but they vanished! He said:

29. Verily art thou a devil, O Asha! And he thrust his sword at Asha, but it fell from the
handle. He said: Ye Fetes! Kill him! kill him! And whilst he was thus puzzled,
Asha walked forth out of the palace, nor would the king’s guards lay hands on him.

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