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Anthropos, Volume 115 (2020), Issue 1, ISSN: 0257-9774, ISSN online: 0257-9774, https://doi.org/10.5771/0257-9774-2020-1-9

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ANTHROPOS 113.2018: 395 – 422 Abstract. – The once more-or-less exclusively pastoral Todas of the Nilgiri Mountains in South India still retain vibrant beliefs in gods and goddesses they say once lived among them but thereafter became mountains; they tell also of ancestors who were once living Todas but subsequently became divinities. Beyond such indigenous convictions, Todas have absorbed a plethora of Hindu beliefs and ritual practices. Christian ideology has been propagated among Todas, with foreign-led Christian missionaries succeeded in establishing a breakaway Toda Christian community. But notwithstanding the many divergent sources of Toda religious ideology, the predominant and most public display of Toda ritual activity (apart from among Christian Todas) still centres on their unique sacred dairying cult, despite the rapid decline in the importance of buffaloes in the community’s modern-day economic life. This, together with their exclusively Toda deities and culture heroes seems to suggest a unique ethnic religion, frequently categorized as “non-Hindu.” But demonstrably Indic (therefore, if only loosely, “Hindu”) principles permeate Toda ritual activity. Most notable are the concepts of hierarchy and purity and those of prescribed ritual avoidance coupled with required ritual cooperation. In sum, Toda religion – like the Toda community itself – is at once unique and, at the same time, thoroughly Indic. [South India, Nilgiri Mountains, Toda] Anthony Walker, an Oxford-trained social anthropologist, retired as Professor of Anthropology at the University of Brunei Darussalam in 2011 and now lives in Kandy, Sri Lanka. His peripatetic career has included teaching positions at the Science University of Malaysia in Penang, the National University of Singapore, The Ohio State University, and the University of the South Pacific in Suva, Fiji. – He began his, still-ongoing, field studies with the Todas in 1962 and has also conducted long-term field research (since 1966) on the Tibeto-Burman speaking Lahu peoples of the Yunnan-Indochina borderlands. – For his major publications on the Todas see References Cited. The Todas believe in their Goddess Thekershi (Tö·kisy1). They worship Goddess Thekershi for protection during their eternal (perhaps “mortal” was intended) existence and they also worship God Ayan (Ö·n) to protect them after death. The Todas do not observe idol worship. Todas worship light, fire, mountains, trees, rivers, sky, sun, and moon, which are believed to be the major creations of their Goddess Thekershi.2 1 Introduction In his recent book “Religion. An Anthropological Perspective” (2015: 9), Professor Homayun Sidky, my much esteemed former PhD student at The Ohio State University, claims: “no single definition has been able to capture the entire picture” of the religious phenomenon. “For this reason”, Sidky writes, “some argue that religion is best thought of as a multifaceted phenomenon with many interpenetrating dimensions as opposed to being viewed as a unitary occurrence.” This indeed is my interpretation of religion as understood and practised by the once more-or-less exclusively pastoral Toda community 1 The orthography of Toda in this essay follows that of Murray Emeneau (1957: 19; 1984: 5–49), except that I have added hyphenation where I feel this might assist non-specialists with pronunciation, hence my To·r-θas and Töw-fił̣y, where Emeneau has To·rθas and Töwfił̣y. (Note, however, that I do not add hyphenation to Toda words when quoting directly – as I do frequently – from Emeneau’s various works. Further assistance with the pronunciation of Toda words rendered in Emeneau’s transcription can be had from Tarun Chhabra’s “A Guide for the Transliteration of Toda” in his 2015 book “The Toda Landscape,” pp. xxxvii–xliii. 2 From the pen of Pöḷ-xe·n, son of Mut-iŝky – his name anglicized as Pellican (n. d.) – a member of Ka·s patriclan, first president of the Nilgiri Toda Uplift Society, high school graduate and literate both in Tamil and English. The Diverse Faces of Toda Religion Anthony R. Walker ANTHROPOS 115.2020: 9–18 Contemporary Zoro strians Between Integrati n and Misunderstandings Paulina Niechciał Abstract. – The article shares the findings based on participant observation conducted during the 11th World Zoroastrian Congress as well as on the analysis of other resources linked to contemporary Zoroastrians. Paying attention to the internal dif‐ ferentiation of the Zoroastrian world community, it focuses on the components that stand in the way to its integration, as dis‐ agreements that refer to customs, religion, or the matter of who the “real” Zoroastrians are. It also discusses the boundaries be‐ tween those who believe to be Zoroastrians form generations and the outside world, as well as the ways these boundaries eventually can be crossed through conversion or intermar‐ riages. [Zoroastrians, Parsis, contemporary Zoroastrian com‐ munities, religious minorities, ethnoreligious groups] Paulina Niechciał, Assistant Professor in the Center for Com‐ parative Civilization Studies at Jagiellonian University, Kraków. – She completed a M.A. degree both in Ethnology (2006) and Iranian Studies (2008) and a PhD degree in Sociol‐ ogy (2012). – In her dissertation, based on field research con‐ ducted among contemporary Zoroastrians in Tehran, she ana‐ lyzed issues of identity and minority religion. – Her research interests focus on minority issues, anthropology and sociology of religion as well as contemporary cultures of Persianate soci‐ eties (including Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan). – She is the author of numerous articles published in scholarly journals, book chapters, and the book “Zoroastrian Minority in Modern Tehran. On Collective Identity in the Context of Shi’a Domina‐ tion” (in Polish – Kraków 2013). Email: paulina.niechcial@uj.edu.pl Introduction Every few years, followers of Zoroastrianism – perceived to be the oldest monotheistic religion in the world – gather to celebrate a worldwide congress. The first one took place in 1960, in Iran, the cradle of the religion. Most others were orga‐ nized in India and a few were held in other coun‐ tries inhabited by the Zoroastrian diaspora. The 11th World Zoroastrian Congress was organized by the Australian diaspora and took place in June 2018, in Perth, gathering a few hundred partici‐ pants under the slogan “Together, towards tomor‐ row.” The overwhelming majority originated from Iranian Zoroastrians and those from India, called the Parsis. After the Islamization of Iran, most Zoroastri‐ ans converted to Islam while others found a new homeland in India. Because of this geographical separation and life in various political, economic, and cultural contexts, the processes of identity construction have taken different shapes. Zoroas‐ trians in Muslim-dominated Iran had to struggle for their place in society and even their survival. Even though their situation improved in the 19th and the 20th centuries, the Islamic Revolution of 1979 brought new challenges for them as a reli‐ gious minorit , which off ciall was accepted, but m rginalized and discriminated by t e Shi’a con‐ fessional state.1 On the other hand, those who had left Iran disconnected themselves from the trau‐ matic history of persecuti n and discr mination. In their wn way, the Parsis adapted themselves to the caste system. They replaced their mother tongue with Gujarati in the everyday communica‐ tion to some xtent succumbed to the influence of Hindu beliefs and practices and establish d their 1 cf. Niechci ł (2013, 2015); Stausberg (2015); Stewart (2016). Anthropos 115.2020 well-being and a stable position in the Indian soci‐ ety (cf. Axelrod 1980; Maneck 1997). The two communities not only did develop dif‐ ferently, but their relations were also marked by changes in mutual perception for centuries. Untill the beginning of the 18th century, Iranian Zoroas‐ trians were the authorities in religious matters, and sometimes the Parsis sent questions to Iran to make sure they were following the right version of religious practices or theology. Later, the former lost their position and were struggling to survive as the situation of non-Muslims in their country deteriorated (cf. Boyce 2001: 190–192). On the contrary, the Parsi community gained enough au‐ thority to inspire some religious changes among their co-believers in Iran and in the 19th century established ways to help them economically (cf. Hinnells 1985: 282ff.). That period witnessed more intense contacts between the two groups, which not always were free from suspicion or dis‐ approval. Iranian migrants, who arrived in India in the late 19th and early 20th century, to a certain degree integrated into the local Parsi community, whereby many still labeling themselves as “Iranis” in the first place. Over the course of time, the number of mixed marriages increased. Despite the Parsis’ ambivalent attitude towards Iranis, per‐ ceived as poorer, less educated, performing cus‐ toms in a different way, and sometimes caricatured as their “poor cousins,” they considered marriages with Iranis as a means for the community to sur‐ vive in view of a dramatic population decline and an increase of marriages with outsiders (Axelrod 1980: 157–160; Writer 1994: 55 f.). In Iran, Zoroastrians’ behavior towards the Parsis has been characterized by an admiration for the way those had adapted themselves to a life in India and, at the same time, maintaining some customs already abandoned by the Iranians, such as comprehensive training for priests or exposing the dead in desig‐ nated towers (dakhme). On the other hand, they are somewhat criticized for forsaking their mother tongue and some customs (Niechciał 2013: 225 f.). Meant to be a tool to provide integrity, the 2018 congress actually revealed how divided the Zoroastrians are, even though there is an aware‐ ness of the most current problems that need to be resolved together. Some time ago, inspired by the book of Rashna Writer “Contemporary Zoroastri‐ ans. An Unstructured Nation” (1994), Kłagisz and myself discussed the issues of contemporary Zoroastrian identity (Niechciał and Kłagisz 2016). Writer assumed the existence of a national identity linking Zoroastrians worldwide. Instead, we have argued that there were no visible traits of such an identity across the borders and have pointed to‐ wards some factors – varying in Iran and India – shaping a sense of belonging to local ethno-reli‐ gious communities (Niechciał and Kłagisz 2016). The congress provided me with observations in line with that contribution. The tensions and mis‐ understandings in the Zoroastrian environment re‐ fer not only to customs or religious matters but also to the question of who “real” Zoroastrians are today. In this article, I will share my findings based on participant observation conducted during the 11th World Zoroastrian Congress as well as on the analysis of resources obtained during my re‐ search on the contemporary Zoroastrian communi‐ ty. Treating Zoroastrians of Iranian and Indian ori‐ gin as two ethnic communities, this article offers a close look at the congress participants and their re‐ lations along with the indication of components complicating their integration, as well as the boundaries between Zoroastrians and the outside world. More than One Zoroastrianism The representatives of different Zoroastrian com‐ munities, having no central authorities, came to the congress in Perth with different expectations and objectives. Although difficult to estimate, the number of Zoroastrians worldwide is approxi‐ mately more than 100,000, albeit in decline, as their population decreased by 10 percent between 2004 and 2012. The largest population centers are in India (61,000 in 2012), North America (almost 21,000), Iran (15,000), and Great Britain (5,500). Zoroastrian communities are also present in other countries, e.g., of the Gulf Region, in Pakistan as well as in Australia and New Zealand (Rivetna 2013: 26; cf. Patel 2010). The diasporas, consisting of different groups of people originating from Iran and India, are not free from internal tensions. In the context of mi‐ gration, mutual prejudices and disagreements re‐ garding religious practices have gained signifi‐ cance. There is a variety of elements that compli‐ cates integration. Differences in traditional cloth‐ ing, music, or cuisine are accompanied by differ‐ ent perceptions of religious matters. Both groups – usually sharing temples or institutions – face the practical need for a consensus on the forms and dates of festivities performed according to differ‐ ent calendars. In some places, like the West Coast of the USA, they tend to live separately, establish‐ ing their own cultural institutions and celebrating their own religious life (cf. Rose 2011: 221 f.). In 10 Paulina Niechcial Anthropos 115.2020 other places, such as Chicago, they try to cooper‐ ate and join each other in the festivities imported from the two homelands. One of the key points of dispute among Zoroas‐ trians is the perception of religiosity. Parsis criti‐ cize Iranians for not being devoted enough to wearing sedre (special skirt) and kosti (belt), that means professing Zoroastrianism, and, vice versa, Iranians criticize Parsis for being too attached to such symbols and rituals like, e.g., the Hindus (Writer 1994: 64). During the congress, however, little emphasis was placed on religious matters, and the program included only a few speeches on this topic along with one ceremony (jashan). When I asked one of the organizers about the rea‐ son for that, he replied that there was no one with sufficient scholarly or theological authority to dis‐ cuss religious issues. A further point of contention is the perception of what constitutes the “real” religion. Iranian Zoroastrians, in particular, value the oldest textual tradition and tend to distance themselves from what might have been developed by priests over the course of time. At the congress, this difference was stressed by an Iranian mobed (priest), Kurosh Niknam, presently based in Paris.2 He criticized what he called the superstitions developed by the Sasanian priesthood,3 for having nothing to do with the message of Zoroaster, like, e.g., the “Book of Arda Wiraz” about a dream journey to the other world. Niknam also criticized the very expensive congress for not broadening the partici‐ pants’ knowledge about their own “dying” reli‐ gion, but repeating the legends as in the movie by Meher Bhesania entitled “Life and Time of Zarathushtra,” that instead of presenting the his‐ torical facts about the origins of the religion shows the myths surrounding Zoroaster. Other Iranian participants, asked for their opinion about the congress for the Zoroastrian weekly Amordad published in Iran, also mentioned that there was too little about the teachings of Zoroaster.4 And there was yet another point that divided the congress participants: the priestly education, which, in Iran, was greatly simplified in the 20th century, because of the reforms of ritual life as well as the drastic drop in the number of priests 2 This particular speech was not included in the program, but due to the short time of his scheduled presentation mobed Niknam was given additional time on the first day. 3 The time of the Sasanian Empire (224–651) was the period when Zoroastrianism became a state religion. 4 See, [13.09.2018]; [13.09.2018]. (mobeds) before the Islamic Revolution. Accord‐ ing to my own observations, sometimes Iranian priesthood is not particularly respected by the Par‐ sis. Moreover, in Iran there exists a category of mobed-yars (assistant priest) who – although not born in priestly families like every other priest – are allowed to perform some rituals. In 2011, Ira‐ nians opened this position to women, which, I be‐ lieve, was a response not only to the lack of priests but also to the need to emphasize the equal treat‐ ing of both sexes in order to underline their dis‐ tinctiveness from the Muslims. In India, the ordi‐ nation of female priests does not exist and it is very rare in diasporas. In Perth, for the first time in the congress history, a female mobed-yar joined a group of male priests for the prayers. This was severely criticized later on the Internet by conser‐ vative Parsi circles, calling the celebration “a fraudulent Jashan with a so-called female mobed.”5 The most visible difference between the two communities during the congress was a linguistic one. The main core of the religious texts is written in the extinct Avestan language, but there are also texts in Pahlavi, the Parsis’ prayers and songs in Gujarati and English as well as the Iranians’ texts in Persian. Some Iranian Zoroastrians communi‐ cate in an ethnolect called the Zoroastrian Dari. During the congress, Dr. Esfandyar Ekhtyari, a representative of the Zoroastrians in the Iranian Parliament, used Dari in his speech as “the mother tongue of the Zoroastrians” – and, of course, the Parsis needed a translation. The official congress language was English, understandable for the pre‐ dominantly bilingual Parsis and for Iranian mi‐ grants but not necessarily for Zoroastrians coming directly from Iran. As for the Iranian participants, as published by Amordad, one of the points of crit‐ icism of the congress was the language issue.6 One of them stated clearly that the Iranian Zoroastrians had come and then “did not understand any‐ thing.”7 The above-mentioned interesting speech by Niknam went almost unnoticed – the English translation of his speech was provided on a screen, but when he suddenly changed the subject of his lecture, it was only understood by a group of Ira‐ nians and myself, because the new text has not 5 Some comments appeared in the Facebook group “Parsi Irani Proud Zarathushtis” and others I received circulating as mobile messages. 6 See [13.09.2018]; [13.09.2018]. 7 See [13.09.2018]. Contemporary Zoroastrians 11 Anthropos 115.2020 been translated simultaneously. One Parsi lady told me that she had listened to his very interesting lecture, but when I pressed her on this, I discov‐ ered that she had been following the translation of his scheduled speech rather than the one he then actually gave. Differences not only exist between Iranian and Indian Zoroastrians but are also visible within the groups. The Parsis are known for a variety of in‐ terpretations of their tradition, but – as Kreyen‐ broek indicated on the basis of his fieldwork – their level of acceptance for this pluralism is rather low and the different fractions of the com‐ munity view each other as “exponents of the inad‐ equate” (Kreyenbroek 2001: 314; 306–314). There are fractions among Iranians that are linked to dif‐ ferent perceptions of the situation in Iran. Here, again, I ought to refer to mobed Niknam’s speech, where he complained that Zoroastrian representa‐ tives in parliament are not sufficiently active while Zoroastrians in their own homeland live as if in a cage. Moreover, the generation gap does not help in terms of integration. The majority of the congress participants were elderly people, so the perspective discussed there was mainly their per‐ spective. The representative of so-called young Zoroastrians mentioned the difficulties in commu‐ nication between the generations, i.e., that the ma‐ jority of the people there actually had no idea how the young generation lived. Born as Zoroastrians Regardless of the differences, tensions, and dis‐ agreements, the majority of the congress partici‐ pants had one common feature: they were born in‐ to Zoroastrian families. Ancient Zoroastrianism spread across the Persian Empire, but after Is‐ lamization – in the face of assimilation or extinc‐ tion – the ethnic boundaries of the Zoroastrian communities became crucial for their relations with others (cf. Niechciał 2019; Eriksen 2002: 59– 77). Such elements as a common homeland, local history and myths, specific languages, rites, ge‐ nealogy, and “race” are widely used in the con‐ struction of ethnic ties in the communities in Iran and India – although differently in each of them. From this perspective, Zoroastrianism is not a reli‐ gion of choice but one transferred through genera‐ tions. The boundary between the community and the outside world is seen as naturally given and, therefore, immovable. Outsiders, in principle, can‐ not generally be included in the community, nei‐ ther converted nor adopted. Conservative Parsis claim that “Parsis adopting a non-Parsi child will not make such a child a Parsi” (Desai 2018). Some “primordial” communities allow a limited crossing of the boundary through rites of passage such as marriage (Eisenstadt and Giesen 1995: 77 f.). Among Zoroastrians, however, there is no consensus about intermarriages and echoes of this issue were audible throughout the congress but did not led to any deeper discussion. In India, the en‐ dogamy practiced by the Parsis was a defense mechanism adopted to prevent their assimilation – in this respect the caste system worked to the ad‐ vantage of this small community (Writer 1994: 58). A great debate erupted at the beginning of the 20th century, when one member of a respected wealthy Parsi family, R. D. Tata, married a French lady, and was followed by others who also inter‐ married. The Parsi leaders undertook steps to pre‐ vent such practices, putting restrictions on mar‐ riage outside the community (Writer 1994: 111; cf. Vimadalal 1979). Parsi women who married out of the community were considered excommunicated and deprived of their community rights, even if they were still professing the Zoroastrian religion. In 1981, the case of such a deprivation reached its conclusion in the Bombay High Court that decreed that women marrying exogamously but continuing to profess Zoroastrianism should retain their right to vote in the assembly of Parsi elections (Writer 1994: 112–115). The position of such women and their children, however, is still controversial. For those who perceive the community as linked by “blood ties,” intermarriages are still “racial sui‐ cides” (Davar n. d.; cf. Rose 2011: 210 f.). There was a talk given on the congress by the Parsi jour‐ nalist Berjis Desai (2018), who – claiming to rep‐ resent “intelligent conservatism” – recommended the acceptance of children of Parsi women and non-Parsi men as Parsis and openness to marriages between Parsi and non-Parsi Zoroastrian as a way to prevent the community from shrinking. How‐ ever, research on Parsi demography in India shows that the declining tendency is caused by the dra‐ matically low fertility, and, therefore, the accep‐ tance of children of intermarriage will not revert the trend (Shroff and Castro 2011: 560). One of the problems children of exogamously married women are faced with is the ban on visit‐ ing Parsi temples in India,8 because many Parsis believe that non-Zoroastrians are ritually impure and, therefore, should not enter the temple (cf. Mistree 1982: 102). Occasionally, even Iranian 8 The exception from this rule is the temple in Pune, opened by the reformists in 2017. 12 Paulina Niechcial Anthropos 115.2020 Zoroastrians were not admitted to do so, for not wearing the sedre and kosti (Rose 2011: 7). This contrasts with the contemporary openness prac‐ ticed by Iranian Zoroastrians: at the congress, I talked to a Parsi lady who was disappointed when I mentioned that I had visited Zoroastrian temples in Iran and seen the fire inside. During the “Global Working and Group Meeting” (GWG)9 at the congress, one of the Parsi speakers suggested that a cancellation of the visiting ban for children from mixed marriages, could resolve to some extent the problem of the temples in India being unattended due to the drastic decline in the Zoroastrian popu‐ lation. Even though this seems to be a far less rev‐ olutionary idea than letting other outsiders in, it was not discussed in any depth – in my opinion, the conservative circles in Bombay are strong enough to prevent such reforms. For those who treat Parsis as connected by blood ties, the words of ervad (priest) Jal R. Vimadalal are still relevant: “in civilised society, race is not determined by ma‐ trilineal descent” (1979: 13). Historically, divided by religious affiliation Zoroastrians in the Muslim-dominated Iranian so‐ ciety were discouraged to contract interreligious marriages in order not to lose community mem‐ bers to the Muslims and to keep them away from the community, as we know from the Pahlavi writ‐ ings (Writer 1994: 109). In the 20th century, the number of marriages with outsiders increased, in‐ cluding those with foreigners or Iranians of other religions, such as Muslims or Baha’is. However, even a relatively secularized pre-Revolutionary Zoroastrian community like that in Tehran was generally reluctant to integrate others in the space of family life, and most non-Zoroastrian wives did not participate in the ritual life of extended fami‐ lies and, sometimes, families who accepted the ex‐ ogamous marriages faced disapproval or even in‐ stitutional ostracism (Kestenberg Amighi 1990: 283–289). After the Islamic Revolution, the state categorically began to enforce the prohibition of apostasy from Islam. On the one hand, this results in the necessity to renounce one’s own religion in favor of Islam by those who want to marry a Mus‐ lim and, on the other hand, in the decline of the non-Muslim population of Iran. Zoroastrian lead‐ ers promote endogamy, for example, the Priests’ 9 Established in 2005 as the “Coming Together Round Table” at the 8th World Zoroastrian Congress in London, GWG is a body comprising the representatives of a variety of Zoroas‐ trian associations all over the world. Council of Teheran (Anjoman-e Mobedan-e) gave the following recommendations to emigrants: “Protect your language and customs and do not marry strangers, and – to sum up – do not sell at any price yourself, your own identity, personality and wonderful past” (Anonymous 2008/1387: 5). Even though many Zoroastrians – of both Irani‐ an and Indian origin – still consider interreligious marriages as negative, the number of such mar‐ riages is increasing drastically. At the congress, Roshan Rivetna, a Parsi activist from Chicago, gave a speech about demographic issues indicat‐ ing that intermarriages – estimated to be as many as 60% of all marriages – are among the most ur‐ gent concerns Zoroastrians are faced with, along with the decline in religious practices and customs or disinterest in community issues. According to her data, more than one fourth of the children of mixed marriages do not follow the Zoroastrian re‐ ligion. This is not surprising, since many of them feel excluded. Actually, the recognition of these trends is noth‐ ing new to the community. Exactly forty years ago, Parsi activist Shiavax D. Nargolwala had re‐ ferred to such problems as “demographic and eco‐ nomic trends, ignorance of religion, priestly class and their amelioration, inter-communal marriages, legal reforms, problems relating to the disposal of the dead, leadership of the community and the need for appropriate organisation at national and international levels” (Third World Zoroastrian Congress 1981: 36). Most Zoroastrians still wait for the solutions. Zoroastrians by Choice Whilst the 2018 congress has been primarily set up for those born into the Zoroastrian community, to the surprise of some, the congress also hosted a small group of Iraqi Kurds who considered them‐ selves as Zoroastrians. This leads us to the question of conversion that – like intermarriage – by Zoroastrians is seen as ambivalent and with no consensus, which was also visible during the congress. The discussion about conversions to Zoroastrianism involves arguments regarding the interpretation of religious writings as well as those referring to ethnicity. Historically, in Muslim Iran such a discussion had been of no significance, be‐ cause until the beginning of the 20th century the Zoroastrians were a poor and persecuted commu‐ nity and not appealing to outsiders. A formalized objection to conversion was not expressed and, moreover, the historical texts of “Persian Rivay‐ Contemporary Zoroastrians 13 Anthropos 115.2020 ats”10 indicated that conversion was considered possible, at least in theory.11 In the 20th century, a few conversions of foreign non-Zoroastrian spous‐ es were formally accepted. The Zoroastrian Coun‐ cil of Tehran refused to accept Muslim converts in line with the Iranian law that forbids apostasy from Islam, but sometimes priests in villages of the Yazd Province performed Zoroastrian mar‐ riages for Zoroastrian-Muslim couples (Kesten‐ berg Amighi 1990: 283–286). Some Muslims had their sedre-pushi performed (the rite of initiation, equivalent of Parsi navjote) under the slogan of “returning” to the faith of their ancestors (Niech‐ ciał 2013: 198). The post-Revolutionary political system definitely repealed the possibility of for‐ mal conversion and even though many Iranians sympathize with Zoroastrianism, there are restric‐ tions that limit their possibility of taking part in Zoroastrian religious and cultural life. Among the Parsis, the ideological discussions about conversions were and continue to be notice‐ able. Despite the remarks coming from Iran, over the course of time, for many Parsis “race” became the most integral part of their cultural identity, separating them from others (Maneck 1997: 37 f.). The first recorded act of conversion to Zoroastri‐ anism in India was the navjote of R. D. Tata’s French wife. Performed in 1903, it deepened the tensions regarding these issues in the community and was impulse for a legal definition of a Parsi Zoroastrian based on both race and religion (Writ‐ er 1994: 111; cf. Vimadalal 1979). The assembly of Parsis approved the resolution that “it will be incorrect to convert people from other religions, as such a move would be damaging to the communi‐ ty, and shatter its ancestry and unity” (Dhalla 1999: 124). This did not end the discussions and, over time, it also spread into the Parsi diasporas, especially triggered by the navjote of an American Christian, Joseph Petersen, in 1983 in New York. Parsi religious leaders from Bombay referred to his navjote in the following words: “The so-called Naojot is an insult, mockery and a cruel joke per‐ petrated against both the Zoroastrian and Christian religions” (Mirza et al. 1983: 1). These are no sur‐ prising words of those who perceive their commu‐ nity identity as built on “race.” The Priests’ Coun‐ cil of Tehran commented on this in another way, stating that “if we Zoroastrians believe that our re‐ ligion is one of the great living religions of the 10 A collection of letters in Persian from Iranian priests in re‐ sponse to questions by their Indian counterparts on a vari‐ ety of religious topics, written between 1478 and 1773 C.E. 11 Boyce (1984: 153); Rose (2011: 201); Saati (2002). world and that it is beneficial to all the peoples of our world, we must persevere to propagate it” (quoted after Writer 1994: 127). In North America itself, some of the communities also expressed their disagreement while others favored the idea of conversion – 80% of the members of the Zoroas‐ trian Association of Greater New York (ZAGNY) supported the report, stating that a Zoroastrian is either the offspring of a Zoroastrian or one who has performed the navjote ceremony (Writer 1994: 125). In spite of the controversies about conversions so-called Neo-Zarthushtis all over the world are stressing belief and not birth, and those who have converted to Zoroastrianism are difficult to esti‐ mate in numbers (cf. Rose 2011: 226–228). The process is extending. Recently I took part in the sedre-pushi ceremony of two Polish people, held in Poland for the first time and performed by a priest of Iranian origin. Shockingly for many par‐ ticipants of the congress, mobed Niknam per‐ formed a sedre-pushi for a young Iranian migrant, who by some was perceived as one who “reverts” to the ancestor’s religion. Such conversions may be politically motivated, which is the case of some Iranians, Tajiks, and Kurds, who in Zoroastrianism find an element that strengthens their cultural identity with regard to the political order dominant in their countries. The current Zoroastrian move‐ ment in Kurdistan, made known by a group of Kurds at the congress, is an interesting case that I encountered for the first time during my fieldwork in Iran in 2008. One of the mobeds (priests) had told me, that about half a year before our conver‐ sation, the Priests’ Council of Tehran had been visited by three Kurds, accompanied by a Persian interpreter. They claimed to be Zoroastrians and my interviewee called them zartoshtiyan-e novin, the Persian equivalent of neo-Zarthushtis. He mentioned that this would be an interesting case for a researcher, but distanced himself from what in the Islamic Republic of Iran would be perceived as a punishable apostasy from Islam (Niechciał 2013: 197). Considering the recent interest of Kurds in Zoroastrianism, Foltz stated that there exists no documented historical evidence of any Zoroastri‐ ans of Kurdish origins, and the claims, that in an‐ cient times Kurds had practiced a form of Zoroas‐ trianism for the first time appeared in the 1930 s, in the Kurdish nationalist press (2017: 91). In Kur‐ distan, the main centre of the Zoroastrian move‐ ment is Sulaymaniyah, but there are also others abroad. In Sweden, the converts assert that their number include thousands of people and, in 2012, 14 Paulina Niechcial Anthropos 115.2020 they opened a temple there. The fuel for this phe‐ nomenon in its present shape – as a part of nation‐ alistic Kurdish identity of those disappointed by Islam – was the rise of ISIS, in 2014. According to Szanto’s filed observations, Kurdish converts ac‐ tually are not interested in studying religious texts or following the rituals being practiced in Iran or India. Instead, they focus on stressing the differ‐ ence from Islam that manifests itself in such Zoroastrian values as freedom of religion, wom‐ en’s rights, and opposition to slavery and im‐ morality (2018: 102–104). The Kurdish conversions are highly controver‐ sial issues within Zoroastrian communities. The ultra-conservative Parsi leadership in India is op‐ posed to accepting anyone new into the religion (Foltz 2017: 96). However, the claim to be “re‐ verts” gives Kurds access to the more liberal cir‐ cles of Zoroastrians, as, e.g., those connected to FEZANA, the coordinating body for 27 Zoroastri‐ an Associations of North America. In spring 2013, in an article in FEZANA Journal, with a focus on Kurds and their Zoroastrian Roots, Dastoor (2013: 57) commented: “Whether we like it or not, there are people in this world who want to revert back to their ancestral religion and practice the faith. This would include the Kurds … They do not seek or need anybody’s permission to do so.” Finally, Kurds were invited to Perth where their represen‐ tative Awat Darya passionately talked about the persecutions of Zoroastrians in Kurdistan, who for ages had to hide their religion, but finally now can talk about it. She shouted: “Let’s be one, there is one God and one Zoroaster, one Gathas.”12 The delegation talked about the thousands of Zoroas‐ trians in Kurdistan, but I was told that there was some controversy behind the scenes about the large numbers of Kurdish converts they wanted to present and the length of time they wanted to be given to speak. In line with what Szanto wrote, the political as‐ pect of this case was revealed during the first day of the congress. The participants and their respec‐ tive countries were presented by means of a slide. The organizers of the congress also had prepared fabric banners and national anthems of each dele‐ gate’s country, even for myself – the only person from Poland and a non-Zoroastrian. But when the Kurds protested against their classification as members from Iraq, the information on a large screed was changed. They printed out a few copies 12 Gathas - religious hymns in the Avestan language, which are believed by Zoroastrians to be composed by the Prophet Zoroaster. of the flag of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and played their own anthem. Some congress participants with whom I spoke were very interested in the Kurdish case. I also heard a voice of surprise asking why some Kurds were presented as converts of Iranian origin who, more than any other, had “gone back” to the reli‐ gion of the ancestors. There were voices of criti‐ cism regarding the Kurdish presence, followed by Internet posts written by conservative Parsis, who stressed that Muslim Kurds had “bulldozed their way into the programme” supported by liberals of the FEZANA circle. A Parsi activist from a diaspo‐ ra with whom I talked mentioned that even though change is at hand, people like him are not ready to accept the Kurds. Parsism The congress triggered criticism from conserva‐ tive Parsi circles regarding the prayers offered by the female mobed-yar, the sedre-pushi of an Irani‐ an migrant, and the presence of the Kurds. The Parsi singer Mani Rao from the USA also fell vic‐ tim to criticism. She performed the so-called Parsi Anthem – the Gujarati song “Chhaiye Ame Jarthosti,” composed at the beginning of the 20th century – that begins with the stanza “We are all Zoroastrians” and in the refrain, the community is referred to as the Parsis. Knowing that people would sing with her, Rao proposed replacing the word “Parsis” with “Zoroastrians,” in order to bring all the congress participants together and also to include non-Parsi Zoroastrians. This was generally applauded by the audience. However, Internet posts, circulating also as private mes‐ sages, criticized this as an example for the fact that “Parsism is being deliberately wiped out” and that “under the pretext of doing our Iranian Zarathustis a favour, these reformists are making way for all those round the globe, who call them‐ selves Zoroastrians.”13 Although it is difficult to guess how many par‐ ticipants of the congress shared this perspective, I have to admit that the event generally was Parsicentric, even though the organizers from the Aus‐ tralian Parsi diaspora took pains to stress that it was a Zoroastrian event. The Parsi-centrism was visible in the program which to a great extent fo‐ cused on both historical and contemporary Parsi achievements in business, science, and other fields. As stated on the website, “We are a proud 13 From author’s private archive. Contemporary Zoroastrians 15 Anthropos 115.2020 community with honest business ethics that is highly respected by those who have known us. Fa‐ miliar names like Tatas, Godrejs, Wadias, Jeejeb‐ hoys, Masters, Petits, Camas are household names who have exemplified the community and the world for generations. We salute them all and take their name with Pride. But there are lots of Un‐ sung Heroes who have also left their mark or will – in the History of our times and we would like to acknowledge them also.”14 The families men‐ tioned here as well as the majority of activists in‐ troduced during the congress, the nominees and those awarded at the Award Ceremony were of Parsi origin. Mobed Niknam in his speech criticized the atti‐ tude of the Parsis, who live in their own bubble, marrying their own people, while the religion is dying out. The decidedly less numerous Iranian Zoroastrians had reasons to say that their concerns were not given sufficient consideration15 and that they wished there would have been more delegates from Iran to present their problems.16 A major ob‐ stacle were the visa issues. Many Iranians, until the last minute, were not sure if they would be able to attend the congress, and especially young people finally were not allowed to leave Iran, as the government feared they would not return. Ad‐ ditionally, the costs of the congress for Iranian citizens were particularly high, considering the current economic difficulties in their country and the low value of the Iranian currency. The lack of an Iranian perspective was visible during the GWG Meeting, to which Dr. Ekhtyari was expect‐ ed to come, but then did not attend. At the last mo‐ ment, a person living for decades in the exile was put in the chair of the Iranian representative, and even as the problems of Zoroastrians in Iran were mentioned, there was no one to report about the actual situation. Conclusion The 11th World Zoroastrian Congress provided details of the problems contemporary Zoroastrians were faced with. These included the ageing of the population and its shrinking due to a low fertility rate and intermarriages, the decline in priests and 14 Quoted from [13.09.2018]. 15 See [13.09.2018]. 16 See [13.09.2018]. the low level of attraction of priesthood for the younger generation, lack of agreement on conver‐ sion, intermarriages, raising children from mixed families, or female priesthood. For an anthropolo‐ gist, however, the relations and tensions between the congress participants were of more interest. As stated on the official website, the congress aimed to “unite our Zoroastrian community together to secure a future we can be proud of.”17 Seen from a distance, Parsi and Iranian Zoroastrians think of each other as fellow believers, but tensions arise when they meet. I remember when I showed my Parsi friend a recording of a performance made by female Zoroastrian singers from Iran, she was sur‐ prised, that, except for the picture of Zoroaster on the wall behind the singers, nothing was familiar to her, neither the clothes nor the songs nor the language. I felt as if I had opened up a new cultur‐ al window to her. When seen from close up, Zoroastrians find out that they not only speak a different language or eat different food, but that they also think differently about their religion, its textual tradition, and its rituals. Moreover, the tensions occur not only between communities from two “homelands” but also with‐ in them. There are Parsis with very conservative opinions, Parsis sharing liberal views, and Iranians sympathizing with different authorities. When they meet in the diasporas, they need to adapt themselves not only to the new social context but also to coexistence with fellow believers that may be culturally very distant. Faced with the demo‐ graphic decline of the community and the religios‐ ity of the younger generation, as well as the need to adapt themselves to the reality of the host coun‐ tries, the conflicting issues become an urgent chal‐ lenge for the community. The main Zoroastrian communities define their identity in ethnic categories, although differently – by putting stress on different values and behavior. What makes them similar in this respect is their sense of belonging to a community of common origins, and such a congress gives them the chance not only to establish new business or social con‐ nections but also rekindle old ones. Table talks concerned ties and family links, the discoveries of long-lost friends and relatives. The participants were like two huge tribes, and I also felt accepted among them. Zoroastrians value academic work, but they were also very interested in how it hap‐ pened that I had come from Poland to participate. To some extent, many people treated me as a part 17 See [13.09.2018]. 16 Paulina Niechcial Anthropos 115.2020 of their tribe, when they discovered that I had met or was in touch with their friends or relatives from Iran. The relations between the Iranian and Indian “tribes” are complex, and often their members are interconnected. I talked to a young man who lived in a Parsi-dominated community in the USA, a grandson of a renowned Iranian mobed and who had been trained for a mobed position in India. I talked to an Iranian lady whose family had moved to India for a period of time and who now was liv‐ ing abroad, and at the congress she recognized her old school in a presentation on Parsi history. Under the congress slogan “Together, towards tomorrow” the participants sought to build an identity consensus and to achieve the same level of complementarity marked by a common reli‐ gion, even though mutual prejudices, long-term lack of regular interactions or of any central reli‐ gious authority made such a consensus difficult. The presence of Kurds clearly showed that in the face of population decline and growing number of Neo-Zoroastrians, the self-definitions and the community boundaries need reinterpretation. References Cited Anonymous Pishgoftar. Peyk-e Anjoman-e Mobedan-e Tehran 4: 4–5. Axelrod, Paul Myth and Identity in the Indian Zoroastrian Communi‐ ty. Journal of Mithraic Studies 3/1–2: 150–165. Boyce, Mary Textual Sources for the Study of Zoroastrianism. Chica‐ go: The University of Chicago Press. Zoroastrians. Their Religious Beliefs and Practices. London: Routledge. Dastoor, Dolly Zarathushtis in Europe and Central Asia. FEZANA Journal 3: 54–57. Davar, Firoze C. Parsis and Racial Suicide. Bombay: Dinar Printery. [About 1980] Desai, Berjis Intelligent Conservatism Can Improve Parsi Survival Prospects. Parsi Khabar (02.08.1981). [01.08.2019] Dhalla, Homi B. Contra Conversion. The Case of the Zoroastrians of In‐ dia. In: C. Lamb and M. D. Bryant (eds.), Religious Conversion. Contemporary Practices and Controver‐ sies; pp. 115–135. London: Bloomsbury Publishing. 2008/1387 1980 1984 2001 2013 n. d. 2018 1999 Eisenstadt, Shmuel N., and Bernhard Giesen The Construction of Collective Identity. European Journal of Sociology / Archives Européennes de Socio‐ logie / Europäisches Archiv für Soziologie 36/1: 72– 102. Eriksen, Thomas H. Ethnicity and Nationalism. Anthropological Perspec‐ tives. London: Pluto Press. Foltz, Richard The “Original” Kurdish Religion? Kurdish Nationalism and the False Conflation of the Yezidi and Zoroastrian Traditions. Journal of Persianate Studies 10/1: 87–106. Hinnells, John R. The Flowering of Zoroastrian Benevolence. Parsi Char‐ ities in the 19th and 20th Centuries. In: A. D. H. Bivar and J. R. Hinnells (eds.), Papers in Honour of Professor Mary Boyce. Vol. 1; pp. 261–326. Leiden: Brill. Kestenberg Amighi, Janet The Zoroastrians of Iran. Conversion, Assimilation, or Persistence. New York: AMS Press. Kreyenbroek, Philip G. Living Zoroastrianism. Urban Parsis Speak about Their Religion. London: Routledge. Maneck, Susan S. The Death of Ahriman. Culture, Identity, and Theologi‐ cal Change among the Parsis of India. Bombay: K. R. Cama Oriental Institute. Mirza, Hormuzdiar K., Kaikhushroo M. JamaspAsa, and Firoz M. Kotwal Conversion in Zoroastrianism. A Myth Exploded. [01.08.2019] Mistree, Khojeste P. Zoroastrianism. An Ethnic Perspective. Bombay: Good Impressions. Niechciał, Paulina Mniejszość zaratusztriańska we współczesnym Teheranie. O tożsamości zbiorowej w kontekście domi‐ nacji szyickiej. Kraków: Nomos. The Key Content of Contemporary Zoroastrian Identity in the Islamic Republic of Iran. A Socio-Anthropologi‐ cal Approach. In: A. Krasnowolska and R. Rusek- Kowalska (eds.), Studies on the Iranian World. Vol 2: Medieval and Modern; pp. 149–156. Krakow: Jagiel‐ lonian University Press. Sacred Homeland, Glorious Ancestors and Old-time Language. Ethnic Elements in the Identity of the Zoroastrian Religious Minority in Modern Tehran. In: G. D. Chryssides (ed.), Minority Religions in Europe and the Middle East: Mapping and Monitoring; pp. 65-77. New York: Routledge Niechciał, Paulina, and Mateusz M. Kłagisz Are Zoroastrians a Nation? Different Identity Forma‐ tions/Patterns of Iranian and Indian Zoroastrians. Iran and the Caucasus 20/3–4: 277–296. Patel, Dinyar Jaago/Bidaari. Rescuing Our Community from a Demo‐ graphic Crisis. Paper Presented at the North American Zarathushti Congress, Houston, 30 December 2010. [01.08.2019] 1995 2002 2017 1985 1990 2001 1997 1983 1982 2013 2015 2019 2016 2010 Contemporary Zoroastrians 17 Anthropos 115.2020 Rivetna, Roshan The Zarathushti World. A 2012 Demographic Picture. FEZANA Journal 3: 26–35. Rose, Jenny Zoroastrianism. An Introduction. London: I. B. Tauris. Saati, Pargol Conversion. In: E. Yarshater (ed.), Encyclopaedia Irani‐ ca. Vol. 6: Coffeehouse – Dārā; pp. 242–243. New York: Bibliotheca Persica Press. Shroff, Zubin, and Márcia C. Castro The Potential Impact of Intermarriage on the Population Decline of the Parsis of Mumbai, India. Demographic Research 25 (Art. 17): 545–564. Stausberg, Michael Zoroastrians in Modern Iran. In: M. Stausberg and Y. S.-D. Vevaina (eds.), The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism; pp. 173–190. New York: John Wiley. Stewart, Sarah Ideas of Self-Definition among Zoroastrians of Post- Revolutionary Iran. In: A. V. Williams, S. Stewart, and 2013 2011 2002 2011 2015 2016 A. Hintze (eds.), The Zoroastrian Flame. Exploring Re‐ ligion, History, and Tradition; pp. 353–370. London: I. B. Tauris. Szanto, Edith “Zoroaster Was a Kurd!” Neo-Zoroastrianism among the Iraqi Kurds. Iran and the Caucasus 22/1: 96–110. Third World Zoroastrian Congress Third World Zoroastrian Congress. Report and Recom‐ mendations. [12.09.2019] Vimadalal, Jal R. Who Is Parsee-Zoroastrian? Bombay: Godrej Memorial Printing Press. Writer, Rashna Contemporary Zoroastrians. An Unstructured Nation. Lanham: University Press of America. 2018 1981 1979 1994 18 Paulina Niechcial Anthropos 115.2020

Abstract

The article shares the findings based on participant observation conducted during the 11th World Zoroastrian Congress as well as on the analysis of other resources linked to contemporary Zoroastrians. Paying attention to the internal differentiation of the Zoroastrian world community, it focuses on the components that stand in the way to its integration, as disagreements that refer to customs, religion, or the matter of who the “real” Zoroastrians are. It also discusses the boundaries between those who believe to be Zoroastrians form generations and the outside world, as well as the ways these boundaries eventually can be crossed through conversion or intermarriages.

References
Anonymous
2008/1387 Pishgoftar. Peyk-e Anjoman-e Mobedan-e Tehran 4: 4–5.
Axelrod, Paul
1980 Myth and Identity in the Indian Zoroastrian Community. Journal of Mithraic Studies 3/1–2: 150–165.
Boyce, Mary
1984 Textual Sources for the Study of Zoroastrianism. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
2001 Zoroastrians. Their Religious Beliefs and Practices. London: Routledge.
Dastoor, Dolly
2013 Zarathushtis in Europe and Central Asia. FEZANA Journal 3: 54–57.
Davar, Firoze C.
n. d. Parsis and Racial Suicide. Bombay: Dinar Printery. [About 1980]
Desai, Berjis
2018 Intelligent Conservatism Can Improve Parsi Survival Prospects. Parsi Khabar (02.08.1981). <https://parsikhabar.net/opinion/intelligent-conservatism-can-improve-parsi-survival-prospects/18229/> [01.08.2019]
Dhalla, Homi B.
1999 Contra Conversion. The Case of the Zoroastrians of India. In: C. Lamb and M. D. Bryant (eds.), Religious Conversion. Contemporary Practices and Controversies; pp. 115–135. London: Bloomsbury Publishing.
Eisenstadt, Shmuel N., and Bernhard Giesen
1995 The Construction of Collective Identity. European Journal of Sociology / Ar-chives Européennes de Sociologie / Europäisches Archiv für Soziologie 36/1: 72–102.
Eriksen, Thomas H.
2002 Ethnicity and Nationalism. Anthropological Perspectives. London: Pluto Press.
Foltz, Richard
2017 The “Original” Kurdish Religion? Kurdish Nationalism and the False Conflation of the Yezidi and Zoroastrian Traditions. Journal of Persianate Studies 10/1: 87–106.
Hinnells, John R.
1985 The Flowering of Zoroastrian Benevolence. Parsi Charities in the 19th and 20th Centuries. In: A. D. H. Bivar and J. R. Hinnells (eds.), Papers in Honour of Professor Mary Boyce. Vol. 1; pp. 261–326. Leiden: Brill.
Kestenberg Amighi, Janet
1990 The Zoroastrians of Iran. Conversion, Assimilation, or Persistence. New York: AMS Press.
Kreyenbroek, Philip G.
2001 Living Zoroastrianism. Urban Parsis Speak about Their Religion. London: Routledge.
Maneck, Susan S.
1997 The Death of Ahriman. Culture, Identity, and Theological Change among the Parsis of India. Bombay: K. R. Cama Oriental Institute.
Mirza, Hormuzdiar K., Kaikhushroo M. JamaspAsa, and Firoz M. Kotwal
1983 Conversion in Zoroastrianism. A Myth Exploded. <http://tenets.parsizoroastrianism.com/Conversion_in_Zorastrianism_A_Myth_exploded.pdf> [01.08.2019]
Mistree, Khojeste P.
1982 Zoroastrianism. An Ethnic Perspective. Bombay: Good Impressions.
Niechciał, Paulina
2013 Mniejszość zaratusztriańska we współczesnym Teheranie. O tożsamości zbiorowej w kontekście dominacji szyickiej. Kraków: Nomos.
2015 The Key Content of Contemporary Zoroastrian Identity in the Islamic Republic of Iran. A Socio-Anthropological Approach. In: A. Krasnowolska and R. Rusek-Kowalska (eds.), Studies on the Iranian World. Vol 2: Medieval and Modern; pp. 149–156. Krakow: Jagiellonian University Press.
2019 Sacred Homeland, Glorious Ancestors and Old-time Language. Ethnic Elements in the Identity of the Zoroastrian Religious Minority in Modern Tehran. In: G. D. Chryssides (ed.), Minority Religions in Europe and the Middle East: Mapping and Mo-nitoring; pp. 65-77. New York: Routledge
Niechciał, Paulina, and Mateusz M. Kłagisz
2016 Are Zoroastrians a Nation? Different Identity Formations/Patterns of Iranian and Indian Zoroastrians. Iran and the Caucasus 20/3–4: 277–296.
Patel, Dinyar
2010 Jaago/Bidaari. Rescuing Our Community from a Demographic Crisis. Paper Pre-sented at the North American Zarathushti Congress, Houston, 30 December 2010. <https://www.heritageinstitute.com/zoroastrianism/pdf/patelDemographics.pdf> [01.08.2019]
Rivetna, Roshan
2013 The Zarathushti World. A 2012 Demographic Picture. FEZANA Journal 3: 26–35.
Rose, Jenny
2011 Zoroastrianism. An Introduction. London: I. B. Tauris.
Saati, Pargol
2002 Conversion. In: E. Yarshater (ed.), Encyclopaedia Iranica. Vol. 6: Coffeehouse – Dārā; pp. 242–243. New York: Bibliotheca Persica Press.
Shroff, Zubin, and Márcia C. Castro
2011 The Potential Impact of Intermarriage on the Population Decline of the Parsis of Mumbai, India. Demographic Research 25 (Art. 17): 545–564.
Stausberg, Michael
2015 Zoroastrians in Modern Iran. In: M. Stausberg and Y. S.-D. Vevaina (eds.), The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism; pp. 173–190. New York: John Wiley.
Stewart, Sarah
2016 Ideas of Self-Definition among Zoroastrians of Post-Revolutionary Iran. In: A. V. Williams, S. Stewart, and A. Hintze (eds.), The Zoroastrian Flame. Exploring Reli-gion, History, and Tradition; pp. 353–370. London: I. B. Tauris.
Szanto, Edith
2018 “Zoroaster Was a Kurd!” Neo-Zoroastrianism among the Iraqi Kurds. Iran and the Caucasus 22/1: 96–110.
Third World Zoroastrian Congress
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Vimadalal, Jal R.
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Writer, Rashna
1994 Contemporary Zoroastrians. An Unstructured Nation. Lanham: University Press of America.

Abstract

Anthropos is the international journal of anthropology and linguistics, founded in 1906 by Wilhelm Schmidt, missonary and member of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD). Its main purpose is the study of human societies in their cultural dimension. In honor of Wilhelm Schmidt‘s legacy, the cultivation of anthropology, ethnology, linguistics, and religious studies remain an essential component oft he Anthropos Institute – the organizational carrier of the journal.

Zusammenfassung

Anthropos - internationale Zeitschrift für Völkerkunde wird vom Anthropos Institut St. Augustin seit 1906 zweimal jährlich herausgegeben. Ursprünglich als Sprachrohr für katholische Missionarsarbeit geplant, gilt sie heute als wichtige Fachzeitschrift der allgemeinen Ethnologie. Sie behandelt sowohl kulturelle als auch sprachliche Themen in mehreren Sprachen, mit Schwerpunkt auf den Völkern des gesamtamerikanischen und afrikanischen Kontinents.