Quotes on ARZ

ARZ has received tremendous response and support all around for its epoch-making action. ARZ serves the long overdue legitimate demand of the inter-married Zoroastrians and their families who were denied their legitimate religious right to follow the good religion of Zarathushtra, and who were being virtually forced to follow some other religion. Over the years it was repeatedly suggested by the so-called ‘orthodox’ groups, that the liberals set up their own place of worship. ARZ does not think that these ‘orthodox’ have any reason to grumble now that they have taken up this challenge. As a matter of fact the ARZ has met the demands of these ‘orthodox’. Quotes of various Zoroastrians, about the ARZ agenda, are enumerated hereunder:

Ervadsaheb Darius N. Sethna, on the TZML Website (his letter dt 4/1/2005 addressed to Parsiana, Jame, Mumbai Samachar, ARZ and others).

“The intermarried Parsi and their progeny have an equal right to worship Zoroastrianism, but without trying to destroy the original Zoroastrian Institutions. Like the Reformist Jewish community, they can build their own institutions and worship in accordance with their own rules and values.”

Ervadsaheb Khushroo Madon, in Jame Jamshed of 2/10/2005.

“In my humble opinion the work that is being done by ARZ is extraordinary and is most certainly for the revival of Zoroastrianism in India.”

Ervadsaheb Berjis Desai, in PTA, Mumbai Samachar of 15/5/2005.

“Mr. Wadia and his team (ARZ) have a quiet, professional calm about the manner in which they are proceeding. With a little bit of luck, ARZ can be the pivot around which an organized reformist movement can be built up.”

Ervadsaheb Framroze Mirza, in Parsiana of 7/9/2005.

“Construct a hall where such (intermarried) people can worship and where we can have ceremonies. I am ready to serve, to look after it. I don’t want any salary….”

Ervadsaheb Darius N. Sethna, in Jame Jamshed and PTA, Mumbai Samachar of 27/11/2005.

“This newly formed ‘Pseudo Zoroastrian Order’ should be welcomed by the orthodox and reformists alike. The Wadia brothers and their sponsors, should be complemented and thanked, for doing the right thing, at the right time and in the right place.”

Ervadsaheb Khushroo Madon, in Jame Jamshed of 4/12/2005.

“The orthodox Jews had done exactly the same by supporting and even financing the setting up of separate places of worship for the inter-married Jews and their family rather than forcing them to follow any other religion, so that both these groups would prosper and be followers of ‘Judaism’. I do not think we Zoroastrians can dispute an idea, whose time has come.”

Ervadsaheb Berjis Desai, in PTA, Mumbai Samachar of 28/8/2005.

“Is this the right move on the part of liberals? We think so… The difficulty of consecrating has not dampened the spirit of ARZ. The philosophy of ARZ is slightly different from the earlier liberal groups which suffer from a high rate of infant mortality.”

Mr. Noshir Dadrawalla, Orthodox religious scholar, in Mumbai Mirror of 30/8/2005.

“The existing fire temples are protected by trust deeds that allow entry only to Parsis; and since the constitution grants everyone the right to worship, nobody can be stopped from building a fire temple that could be open to converts.”

 Mr. Parvez Damania, Industrialist, in Mumbai Mirror of 24/8/2005.

“I think people should have the freedom to worship in any way they want. If the non-Parsi spouse wants to worship as a Zoroastrian, he or she should be allowed to do so. The community has to think in a less stringent manner if it wants to survive.”

Mr. Hafeez Contractor, Architect, in Mumbai Mirror of 24/8/2005.

“It is fine if a non-Parsi spouse feels the same way about the religion as the Parsi partner and wants to convert. Our prophet converted people to the religion. If Jadhav Rana were alive today, he would have approved of accepting non-Parsi spouses into the religion.”

Dr. Keky Grant of Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune and Trustee ARZ, in Mumbai Mirror of 24/8/2005 .

“We want to spread the gospel of Zoroastrianism. Our numbers are going down fast. We have to do something drastic to stop the trend.”

Mr. Jehangir Patel, Editor Parsiana, in Indian Express of 26/8/2005.

“It’s a welcome and long overdue event.”

Mr. Noshir Dadrawalla, Orthodox religious scholar, in Mumbai Samachar & Jame Jamshed of 8/1/2006.

“For years the orthodox lobby has recommended the reformists to set up their own places of worship and facilities for disposing their dead. And now when a certain reformist group has picked up the gauntlet the orthodox are once again feeling threatened. It’s about time the orthodox made up their mind.”

Ms. Meher Amersey, President, AIMZ in Mumbai Mirror of 26/8/2005.

“It is a good beginning for us. It makes a difference that the organization (ARZ) is supported by community members who have not married outside.”

Mr. Naval Surty, in Mumbai Mirror of 26/8/2005.

“My daughter who has married a non-Parsi was upset when she was denied entrance to a fire temple once, after her marriage. She believes in the Zoroastrian religion. Denying religious rights to women who have married outside their faith and their children is discrimination.”

Mr. Bapoo Malcolm, in Mumbai Mirror of 26/8/2005.

“Non-Parsi spouses and children of such couples should be initiated into the Zoroastrian religion if they want to. There should be a freedom of choice. Zoroastrianism is a religion that gives freedom of choice.”

Ms. Katy Divecha, in Jame Jamshed of 4/9/2005.

“I congratulate the founders of ARZ. They have achieved what no other body of liberals has managed in all these years. What intrigues me is how come they were not intimidated by the ruffians who call themselves orthodox Parsis.”

Mr. Malcolm Anjirbag, in Jame Jamshed of 2/10/2005.

“…. Heartening to see so much goodwill and support being extended to the work done by ARZ. The ARZ now needs to consolidate and expedite the good work initiated by it….God speed ARZ.”

Mr. Vispy N. Wadia, Trustee ARZ, in India Today of 10/10/2005.

“Around 40 percent of youngsters are marrying outside the community. By debarring one Zoroastrian, you are throwing out (all successive) generations of that family.”

Dr. M. D. Disawalla, Banglore, in Parsiana of 21/10/2005.

“It is very gratifying to note that at last the above Association is formed in Mumbai (ARZ) with an objective to instill in our community members, the lurking danger of serious drop in our community member numbers and to throw light on the real spirit of Zoroastrianism which of late has been systematically undermined by rabid Orthodox Group…. misguiding the gullible members of our community.”

Ms. Sheraz Bhesania, Vancouver, British Columbia in Parsiana of 21/10/ 2005.

“I think the Wadia brothers and above all the two priests who performed the Jashan deserve our community’s heartiest congratulations for standing upto their beliefs and the wishes and dreams of hundreds of Zoroastrians across the globe. The time has finally come and they have opened the doors and minds of many who have only been thinking and wishing for this day.”

Ms. Bhicoo Manekshaw, New Delhi in Parsiana of 21/10/2005.

“The sensible way in which the Association for Revival of Zoroastrianism (ARZ) and Association of Inter Married Zoroastrians (AIMZ) are conducting themselves; with dignity. No snide comments, no rude remarks, no defamation of character, respecting others’ points of view. A handful of young people who have the courage of their conviction have acted. My heart is bursting with pride and I want to send you all my blessings and best wishes for your success.”

Capt. Dara E. Driver, in Parsiana of 7/11/2005.

“… if the Association for Revival of Zoroastrianism (ARZ) goes ahead and establishes a dadgah under a suitably constituted trust deed no power on earth can stop them from running it. So ARZ must not get scared but on the contrary start collecting funds and establish a fully consecrated dadgah as per Zoroastrian rites.”

Ms. Kimi Dangore, in India Today of 10/10/2005.

“….. the Wadia brothers are unfazed. Their motto is loud and dear: My religion must survive in my country.”

Mr. Kerssie N. Wadia, Trustee ARZ, in Jame Jamshed of 15/5/2005. .

“Our ancestors had left Iran to save our religion, not our race. They could have very easily saved the race by sacrificing the religion, by staying back in Iran. But to them our religion was more important. The survival of the message of the Prophet was paramount.”

Mr. Aspi Billimoria, Trustee ARZ, in Jame Jamshed of 2/10/2005.

“All our institutions like agiyaries, baugs, dokhmas, etc., are governed by trust deeds which clearly specifies that they are meant for Parsi Zoroastrians only. Therefore, other Zoroastrians have no right or claim over these.”

Mr. Vispy N. Wadia, Trustee ARZ, in Jame Jamshed of 2/10/2005.

“Show us one instance in the history of any religion, where the spread of religion has harmed the religion.”

Ms. Farah Baria, in The Indian Express of 26/8/2005.

“The Prophet encouraged conversion, but Parsi women who marry outside the fold are pariahs, debarred from fire temples, from converting their families.”

Mr. Sorab Ghaswalla, in Hindustan Times of 26/8/2005.

“Parsis seek brave new world of reform….Oxygen for a dying community.”

Ms. Zarin Amrolia, in Afternoon Despatch & Courier of 27/8/2005.

“Zoroastrianism should survive even if Parsis don’t. It’s with this credo that brothers Kerssie and Vispy Wadia founded the Association for Revival of Zoroastrianism (ARZ).”