Rereading of Jamshid's Story on Base of Discourses Mithraism-Zoroastrian
IntroductionAmong institutionalized Narrative and discourses in Shahnameh, the presence of both Mithraism and zoroastrian discourses is the most considerable. Mithraism is one of the largest pre-zoroastrian religions. Zoroastrian religion, in addition to contrast with traditional Mithraism and trying to de-mark and its ommition, finally has absorbed the Mithra and most of Mithraism elements in the Avesta. Regarding the wide relations between Mithraism and zoroastrian discourses during history, the relations of both discourses is observable in different parts of Shahnameh. One of the most important Shahnameh stories, which is organized based on these both discourses, is "Jamshid" story.
MethodologyThis study tries to reread and deconstruct Jamshid story and investigate constituted evidences of him and reveal secrets behinds conventional narratives using critical approaches, particularly, discourses analysis, foucauldian and post-foucauldian approaches to discourse and its concepts and idioms.
DiscussionConsidering abundant similarities between Mithra and Jamshid, among Iran mythologic characteristics, Jamshid has had the deepest relationship with Mithra and Mithraism pattern. The appearance of zoroastrian religion, it's contrast with Mithraism, and it's focal characteristics resulted in Jamshid being rejected and denied. Such denial starts with attribution of guilt to Jamshid and his criticism and continues with confiscation of his attributes and functions for kiomars. Althogh in zoroastrian discourse regarding the nature of Jamshid guilt, there are various narratives and even inconsistencies, Jamshid's guilt was confirmed as a proposition in center of this discourse; such an issue has been re-narrated in contexts of Islamic era including Shahnameh and historical resources. However, investigations show the confusion of zoroastrian traditions about Jamshid guilt, because the guilt that has been attributed to him was balanced, deleted or returned into other guilt. Training sarcophagi to people, lies and claiming "God", rejecting religion and intercourse with Perry are the most famous guilties attributed to Jamshid in zoroastrian narratives.
Jamshid as Mithra ground representative, that repeats the traditional "cow" slaughter by him, is criticized in 32-Gahan yasna due to training sarcophagi to people. In terms of discourse genealogy, zoroaster criticism of Jamshid in this yasna is the origin of all narratives about his guilt. Attributing "divinity" claims to Jamshid in zoroastrian discourses and following that in Shahnameh, relates to his relation with Mithra because this issue can be considered as a reflection of Mithra greatness and his competition with Ahooramazda for God top status. Ferdowsi, also follows zoroastrian discourses in this part of Jamshid desting (honour and ingratitude and "divinity" claiming). The guilt of rejecting religion may be due to Jamshid's belonging to a pattern other than zoroastrian pattern. Intercourse with Perry is one of the important ideologic lables in zoroastrian discourse attributed although it is mediated to Jamshid. This label has also been applied to other great Mithraism characters like Garshasb.
In direction with contrasting zoroastrian discourse with Jamshid, most of his functions including being the first human, solar descent, relation with dead watch dog, optional death and relation with Nowrooz are attributed to Kiomars and in fact has confiscated for him. This fact has a tensional meaning, because although zoroastrian discourse is apparently defeating Mithraism discourse and Jamshid, it is considered as "being beaten" because confiscating a sign represents the domination of that sign and it's greatness in view of vital discourse.
Despite contrasting zoroastrian discourse with Jamshid, his rejection and complete deletion for such discourse was not easy, his deletion process that started in initial Zoroastrianism remained unfinished. Thus, finally, important dimensions of his dutifulness and characteristics were absorbed in this discourse. Important factors were effective in this absorption. Firstly, two elements of the most focal elements of Mithraism discourse namely slaughter and Hoom tradition were included in zoroastrian tradition, and Jamshid, was also included in the same absorption due to deep traditional relation with both elements. The other factor of this absorption has been the deep influence of Mithra and Jamshid among the crowds and traditional verbal influences on zoroastrian written tradition. Signs including accepting the golden era of Jamshid governance, dutifulness of preserving Peyman, his resurrection role and being majesty in zoroastrian narratives as well as trying some zoroastrian references to negate the guilt of Jamshid and his repentance, prosperity and reaching to master purgatory, all demonstrate Jamshid's absorption in zoroastrian discourse whose reflection is observed in Shahnameh.
ResultReconstructing Zoroastrian narratives demonstrates that such a discourse is accompanied by numerous inconsistencies about Jamshid. Because from one hand zoroastrian discourse had applied a confrontational approach against Jamshid due to his belonging to Mithraism discourse and his criticism by Zoroaster and initial Zoroastrianism contrast with Mithraism. On the other hand, such a discourse absorbed Jamshid and his dutifulness in itself due to influence of Mithraism discourse and Jamshid on the crowds and absorbing most of Mithraism elements in Zoroastrian religion.
Inconsistencies available inn zoroastrian references concerning Jamshid demonstrate that such a discourse could not provide a coherent configuration of Jamshid story. Investigating Shanameh, historical context of Islamic era and Pahlavi resources show that Jamshid story were configured in zoroastrian discourse considering both light and dark poles for his character in both different era from his life. The light pole of Jamshid's character is the result of definitive absorption of some elements of Mithraism discourse in zoroastrianism after Zoroaster; and dark pole of his character, is generally considered as the result of initial Zoroastrianism contrasting with Mithraism discourse. Accordingly, relation of both Mithraism and zoroastrian discourses should be known as confrontational-interactive relationship.
Literary Studies, Volume:48 Issue: 3, 2015
33 - 62
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