The Spirit of Wisdom (selected chapters)
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Is wisdom good, or skill, or goodness?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'Wisdom with which there is no goodness, is not to be considered as wisdom; (5) and skill with which there is no wisdom, is not to be considered as skill.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: Wherefore is it when the treasure of the spiritual existence is allotted so truly, and that of the worldly existence so falsely?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'The treasure of the worldly existence was a allotted as truly, in the original creation, as that of the spiritual existence. 5. And the creator, Ohrmazd, provided the happiness of every kind, that is in these creatures and creation, for the use (bun) of the sun and moon and those twelve constellations which are called the twelve chieftains by revelation; (6) and they, too, accepted it in order to allot it truly and deservedly.
7. 'And, afterwards, Ahriman produced those seven planets, such as are called the seven chieftains of Ahriman, for dissipating and carrying off that happiness from the creatures of Ohrmazd, in opposition to the sun and moon and those twelve constellations. 8. And as to every happiness which those constellations bestow on the creatures of Ohrmazd, (9) those planets take away as much of it as it is possible for them (the constellations) to give, (10) and give it up to the power of the demons and fiends and the bad.
11. 'And the treasure of the spiritual existence is so true on this account, because Ohrmazd, the lord, with all the angels and archangels, is undisturbed, (12) and they make the struggle with Ahriman and the demons, and also the account of the souls of men, with justice. 13. And the place of him whose good work is more is in heaven, (14) the place of him whose good work and sin are equal is among the ever-stationary, (15) and when the crime is more, his path is then to hell.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Wherefore do people consider these very little, these four things which it is necessary for them to consider more, as warnings (dakhshak), (3) the changeableness of the things of the worldly existence, the death of the body, the account of the soul, and the fear of hell?'
4. The spirit of wisdom answered (5) thus: 'On account of the delusiveness (niyazanih) of the demon of greediness, and of discontent.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Is living in fear and falsehood worse, or death?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'To live in fear and falsehood is worse than death. 5. Because every one's life is necessary for the enjoyment and pleasure of the worldly existence, (6) and when the enjoyment and pleasure of the worldly existence are not his, and fear and even falsehood are with him, it is called worse than death.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'What is the end of the world-arranging and spirit-destroying man? 3. What is the end of him who is a scoffing man? 4-6. What is the end of the idle, the malicious, and the lazy man? 7. What is the end of a false-hearted one, (8) and the end of an arrogant one?'
9. The spirit of wisdom answered (10) thus: 'He who is a world-arranging and spirit-destroying man is as injured, in the punishment of the three nights [i.e. the final judgment], as a raging fire when water comes upon it.
11. 'Of him who is a scoffing man there is no glory in body and soul; (12) and every time when he opens his mouth his wickedness then increases. 13. All the fiends, too, become so lodged in his body, that they leave no goodness whatever for his body; (14) and he makes mockery of the good, and glorification of the vile. 15. Also in the worldly existence his body is infamous, and in the spiritual existence his soul is wicked. 16. And, for effecting his punishment in hell, they deliver him over to the scoffing fiend; (17) and that fiend inflicts a ridicule and a mockery upon him with every single punishment.
18. 'As to him who is an idle man, yet devoid of wickedness, mostly when death comes on in the worldly existence, he thereupon (ajash) begets pleasantly for the sake of another.
19. 'The bridge [Chinwad] which is for the soul of him who is a malicious man is more difficult than for the other wicked who are in hell. 20. For this reason, because malice proceeds by lineage; (21) and it is possible to manage every sin better than malice, (22) because malice will abide in a lineage. 23. There are instances when it adheres until the renovation of the universe; (24) for it is clearly declared by the pure revelation, (25) that the origin of the estrangement (aniranih) of the Arumans, and even the Turanians, from the Iranians, was owing to that malice which was generated by them through the slaughter of Airik; (26) as it always adheres until the renovation.
27. 'He who is a lazy man is said to be the most unworthy of men. 28. Because it is declared by revelation, (29) that the creator Ohrmazd produced no corn for him who is a lazy man; (30) for him who is a lazy man there is then no giving of anything in gifts and charity, (31) and lodging and entertainment are not to be provided for him. 32. For this reason, because that food which a lazy man eats, he eats through impropriety and injustice; (33) and, on account of his laziness and unjust eating, his body then becomes infamous and the soul wicked.
34. 'He who is a false-hearted man is as dubious in good things as in bad; (35) he is dubious as to the treasure of the spiritual and worldly existences, and also as to the ceremonial, invocation, and service of the sacred beings. 36. And, on account of these circumstances, the angels and archangels shall accept little of the ceremonial and invocations which he performs, (37) and give unto him little of the gain, too, which he seeks. 38. And in the mouth of the good man he is always infamous, (39) and his soul becomes wicked.
40. 'The friends of him who is an arrogant man are few, and his enemies many. 41. And even of the gifts which he gives to any one, and the ceremonial, too, which he performs for the sacred beings, they shall accept little, on account of his arrogance, (42) and give little of the gain, too, which he seeks. 43. And in hell they deliver him to the fiend of arrogance, in order to inflict punishment upon his soul; (44) and the fiend of arrogance inflicts punishment of various kinds upon it, and is not pacified.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Of the rich who is the poorer, and of the poor who is the richer?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'Of the rich he is the poorer who is not content with that which is his, (5) and suffers anxiety for the increase of anything.
6. 'And of the poor he is the richer who is content with that which has come, (7) and cares not for the increase of anything.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'How many kinds of man are there?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'There are three kinds of man, (5) one is man, one is demi-man, and one is demi-demon.
6. 'A man is he who is without doubt as to the creativeness of Ohrmazd, the destructiveness of Ahriman, and the existence of the resurrection and future existence; and also as regards every other happiness and misery, in the worldly and spiritual existences, (7) that its origin is from both of those beings, from Ohrmazd and Ahriman. 8. And his belief is in this one pure, good religion of the Mazda-worshippers; (9) and he does not believe in, and does not hearken unto, any heterodoxy.
10. 'A demi-man is he who performs the affairs of the worldly and spiritual existences according to his own opinion, self-conceitedly and obstinately; (11) be they duties and good works by the will of Ohrmazd, or be they by the will of Ahriman, they proceed from him.
12. 'A demi-demon is he in whom there is only as it were the name of man and the human race, but in his doing of every action he is then like unto a two-legged demon. 13. He understands no worldly and no spiritual existence, (14) he understands no good work and no sin, (15) he understands no heaven and no hell, (16) and even the account which is to be rendered by the soul he does not think of.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Wherefore is it when there are instances when a lazy, ignorant, and bad man attains to eminence and great welfare, (3) and there are instances when a worthy, wise, and good man attains to grievous misery, perplexity, and indigence?'
4. The spirit of wisdom answered (5) thus: 'As to him who is a lazy, ignorant, and bad man, when his destiny becomes a helper, that laziness of his then becomes like unto diligence, that ignorance unto knowledge, and that vileness unto a goodness. 6. And as to him who is a wise, worthy, and good man, when his destiny is an opponent, that wisdom of his then turns to stupidity and foolishness (alakih), and that worthiness to ignorance; (7) and his knowledge, skill, and worthiness become manifestly secluded.'
1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Which is that good work which is greater and better than all good works, and no trouble (anjinako) whatever is necessary for its performance?'
3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'To be grateful in the world, (5) and to wish happiness for every one. 6. This is greater and better than every good work, and no commotion (angejinako) whatever is necessary for its performance.'
End of The Spirit Of Wisdom (selected chapters)