The Parsi community is known to be extremely food-loving. Unlike a majority of religions in India, the Parsis do not have the concept of fasting. They are known, on every possible occasion, to enjoy a hot meal of Dhansak, Sali Gosh, chicken farcha and the list goes on…
But few people outside the community know that the community has a month in their calendar during which they abstain from eating meat. This month, known as Bahman Mahino, is dedicated to the Bahman Ameshaspand (angel) who is the guardian of the animal kingdom. “So, as a way of respect to this divinity, the community abstains from eating meat,” said Dr. Firoze Kotwal, one of the high priests of the community.
The Bahman Mahino started last Friday and will last for 30 days. But not all the people in the community refrain from consuming non-vegetarian food. “Most of the community just follow four important days in the month. The Bahman roj (day), Mohor roj, Gosh roj and the Ram roj,” informed Dr Kotwal.
While Bahman roj is dedicated to the Bahman Ameshaspand, the other three are dedicated to his co-workers. “Mohor, Gosh and Ram are the co-workers of the Bahman Ameshaspand, which is why these three days are important too,” said Dr. Kotwal.
The Bahman roj fell on Saturday, and on this day, there was a jashan (prayer ceremony) to invoke the divinity.
Originally printed in the Afternoon and Dispatch.