Exhibition gives city a peek into the Parsi way of life


April 23, 2010

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Bombay | Events | Mumbai

Curious about how a Fire Temple looks from the inside, what goes into the making of an Agiary, the ceremonies and the procedures at the Tower of Silence where the dead are laid and much more, here is your chance to get an inside look into Parsi culture.

Frohar Foundation, a charitable trust, is organising a four-day exhibition showcasing the history of the Zoroastrian religion from the ancient Iranian empire up to the landing of the Parsis in India. It will be held at the Albless Baug, Charni Road, beginning 6.30 pm today. The exhibition will be from 11am onwards from tomorrow. Entry is free.

“Not much is known about Parsis. The religion started before Prophet Zarathushtra came to save the world. It will have topics that will be of interest to Zoroastrians and non-Zoroastrians alike,” said Cyrus Dastoor, creative director of the exhibition, ‘A Zoroastrian Panorama’.

On display at the exhibition will be charts, posters, diagrams, power point presentations, cultural and entertainment programmes, audio-visual and film shows and demonstrations. “For the first time there will be 2D and 3 D miniature models. These will help people have an understanding of what an Agiary looks like from the inside,” said Jennifer Dinshaw who has worked on the design and layout.

Also, for the first time there will be movies on the dynasties of Zoroastrians shown on the last and second last day at 7 pm. “These will show the five dynasties around that the religion spread over,” added Dastoor. The five dynasties — Peshdadian (10,000-7,500 BC), Kayanian (7,500-6,500), Achaemenian/Hakha Manish (556-33 BC), Parthian/Arshkanian (247-224 AD), and Sassanian (224-651 AD) will have stories of heroic deeds of emperors and the painful narration of a father-son battle.

“We will also be putting up the first declaration of human rights during the period of King Cyrus the Great. The clay cylinder is in a British Museum and a replica of the same stands at the UN, New York,” said Dastoor. Among the other highlights will be the way ceremonies are conducted of Agiary, Jashan, Navjote, marriages, charts made by scholars on Zoroastrian culture and customs, Shahanama – poetry recitals of Iranian Kings, and all the rites and rituals along with inner liturgical and high ceremonies of the religion. Stories of prominent Parsis who made it big will also be featured.

The Zoroastrian Saga – a pictorial overview, a book by Evard Ramiyar Karanjia will be released on this day. It will cover almost all that the exhibition talks about.

“Stalls of different Zoroastrian culture and food items will be an added attraction along with the song and dance, games and music for the youth. A talent hunt will be held to encourage youth participation,” said Dr Arnavaz Havewala, project co-coordinator.

School students who want to visit can contact Frohan Foundation on 65069313.


  1. dr arnavaz havewala

    i saw the article on our exhibition. i tried to put up an announcement on this exhibition, and i emailed an announcement but did not see this put up by you.
    its a lovely exhibition and a must-see.