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Yasna

Yasna (from yaz, ‘sacrifice, worship’). Worship among Zoroastrians (the word is akin to yajña). Yasna is an obligation in general, originally undertaken in close proximity to the creations of Ahura Mazda, in conditions of great purity, and only later in temples. Yasna is also the daily ritual of Zoroastrians, with offerings to fire and water (zaothra). The offering is made by a zaotar/zot, and is not congregational. The offering to fire, which initially involved blood sacrifice, creates a sense of bonding between animals and humans, in which the souls of humans, and of domestic and wild animals, are equally reverenced. Yasna is also the name of the liturgical text recited during the ritual, the central section of which, Staota yesna, is believed to be the most powerful manthra (cf. Skt., mantra). Of central importance are the Gāthās.

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