Files - Zoroastrianism
person who abstains from food, or takes insufficient
food, has neither enough strength to practice
active virtues, nor can he till the earth, nor
beget children, nor is he able to withstand hardship
Vendidad Chapter 3 Verse
Main food beliefs
Eating in restaurants
Feasting and fasting
About the writer
The Faithandfood Fact
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ingredients are forbidden?
There are no forbidden food products in Zoroastrianism.
are the main laws or beliefs relating to food?
Prophet Zarathushtra also known as Zoroaster
lived in a pastoral society, where cooked meat
was eaten. From the earliest times, the Iranians
ate the flesh of domesticated animals and birds.
Meat, poultry and fish was either roasted or cooked
or fried before eating and eaten with various
kinds of vegetables fruits, and dry fruits and
consumed with milk, yogurt drink and alcohol.
Animal food was used in the sacred feasts and
festivals or in funeral repasts.
To be constantly alert
against evil, excess – gluttony, and deficiency
– fasting is forbidden. Zoroastrianism has
no food products that are forbidden and consuming
alcohol, especially wine, is considered a religious
there a link with vegetarianism?
No, eating meat is perfectly ok. Eating
anything in excess – gluttony – is forbidden
because of the importance of being constantly alert
general, will people of this faith eat in a food
outlet that serves food or drink that does not
conform to their beliefs?
No food products are forbidden, but Zoroastrians
are extremely finicky about cleanliness, especially
the kitchen and toilets. To a Zoroastrian, cleanliness
is not next to Godliness, it is Godliness!
and why do people of this faith feast and fast?
Fasting is forbidden as deficiency diminishes
our ability to be constantly alert against evil
and our strength to practice active virtues.
Zoroastrianism feasting is a vital part of the
religion, especially celebrating birthdays with
the family, initiations and weddings. It is important
for the person whose birthday it is to wear new
clothes, eat nice food, including home made sweets
specially made for the auspicious occasion and
drinking nice wine.
month in the Zoroastrian religious calendar is
dedicated to a divinity and therefore a festival
and therefore feasting. The most important festival
in the Zoroastrian year is the Iranian New Year
known as Navroze or NoRuz, which is celebrated
on the day of the Spring Equinox. On the day of
Navroze / NoRuz, Zoroastrians wear new clothes,
visit families and friends, visit the fire temple,
then go home or to the community centre for the
New Year feast, which consist of a thank giving
prayer ceremony known as the Jashan, followed
by eating, drinking, dancing and merriment.
Navroze, it is important for Zoroastrians to celebrate
the six seasonal festivals, the autumnal equinox,
summer and winter solstices.
to websites with further information:
For Zoroastrian Cookery
Books, visit www.ztfe.com,
click on Library, followed by Books on Sale.
you have any question about the dietary practises
or beliefs in this faith, you may contact:
Information Officer & Librarian
Zoroastrian Centre For Europe
440 Alexandra Avenue
Telephone: 020 7328 6018 / 020 8866 0765
Fax: 020 7625 1685
by Malcolm Minoo Deboo
Minoo Deboo has been the Librarian and Information
Officer at the Zoroastrian Trust Funds of Europe.
Malcolm is the first point of reference at the
ZTFE in disseminating information on the Zoroastrian
religion, heritage and culture to anybody who
is interested, including educational and interfaith
establishments, local and national government
agencies. He has represented Zoroastrians in many
interfaith events, most recently the Parliament
of the World Religions in Barcelona. At the ZTFE,
Malcolm manages the Zoroastrian Book Stall, which
stocks over 350 titles on Zoroastrian religion,
history and culture including cookery books.
Some people who are Zoroastrians may not observe
the dietary laws stated above. Prohibitions and
restrictions even within a particular faith may
change between denominations or branches Please
do not take this as an authoritative list. This
page is meant as a guide only and are the beliefs
of the writer.