The Influence of Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism is known for its influence on religion. It is famous for replacing polytheistic religion, worship of many gods, to monotheistic religion, worship of one supreme god. Zoroastrianism is based on the teachings of a prophet by the name Zarathustra who talked to a supreme being named Ahura Mazda. It is believed Ahura Mazda gave him instructions on worship (Craig et al. 2011).
Zoroastrianism was adopted by Persian empires including the reigns of Darius one and King Cyrus. Because of their contacts with many religions, the Zoroastrianism is believed to have influenced many religions of the East. Zoroastrianism brought a message of moral reform. The teachings of Zarathustra were that there would be a day of final reckoning where the right would go to future glory while the wicked would go to everlasting darkness. These teachings are similar to Christianity and Islam teachings (Craig et al. 2011, youtube).
Zoroastrianism had a priesthood order known as the Magi. These are mentioned in the Christian’s Bible as being among the first people to witness the birth of Jesus. It is believed that Zoroastrianism influenced the beliefs of Jews, Christians and Muslims about angels, devils, Messiah, last judgment and afterlife. It is also thought to have influenced some of Buddhists concepts of life (Craig et al. 2011). The belief adopted by Judeo-Christian religions and Islam on the worship of one supreme God is probably influenced by Zoroastrianism, who taught the worship of Ahura Mazda, the wise Lord who hold supremacy over all deities. The world was regarded as being controlled by two forces, namely, good and evil. These forces are represented by the twin spirits created by Ahura Mazda. These spirits are given freedom to choose the Truth or the Lie. The Holy Spirit chose the truth while the evil spirit chose the lie. These teachings sound similar to teachings of Christianity and Islam and some of the Eastern religions (Craig et al. 2011).