Wednesday 4 June 2003
Contrary to common connotation of Pirs, being understood as muslim shrines, these Pirs are of Zarthosti origin and they commemorate the memory of the family members of the last Zarthosti king of the Sassanian Dynasty.
The story common to all Pirs is that when the Arab invaders were persuing the members of the king’s family, who had fled in different directions, they prayed to Ahura Mazda, as a last resort to save them. There-upon the mountain or the earth opened up and took them in, thus saving them from the Arab invaders.
Mullahs used to harass Zarthostis on the pretext. that they did not have any pir or place of pilgrimage, as the other People of the Book have. So, the learned Dasturs and others, thought of establishing some place where people would come for pilgrimage and thus be united. Besides, we would also have a place of pilgrimage like other minority religions (Jews & Christians) have. Thus was established the Pirs, the place where the last king’s family members had been sheltered from the chasing Arabs.
Nature has its own ways, although 6 Pirs were established for the family members of the king. The place where the King himself was killed is not known, nor has it been a place of pilgrimage.
I. SETI PIR
It is about 2 km from Yazd. Yazdegard’s wife Shahbanoo Hastbadan was hiding here from Arabs. The Arabs surrounded the mountain for many days. Finally when they went up, they did not find anything except a piece of her dress on the mountain.
A Zarthoshti of Yazd, went to Mashad to pay homage to Shahveer, Shah Khorassan. There he entered a room next to harem of Imam Reza and prayed in the Zoroastrian way. A muslim saw him and took him to the Mulla, who sentenced him to be hanged the next morning.
During the night, he desparately prayed to Ahura Mazda for assistance. Suddenly there appeared a young man and asked him to go near the gate, where a hotte was waiting. He closed his eyes and they were later both in Yazd at this place on the mountain. The man told him that it was a sacred place and to build a structure so that more people could come here to piy homage to this holy place. He was also told to go to the city of Yazd to show bis face to the local residents. Thus he was saved from prosecution and established this place as a holy place for pilgrimage.
Prince Shahveer, disappeared in the fire temple of Azar Khordad in the city of Toos and is believed to be appearing now and then to help the poor people.
II. PIR-E-SABZ OR CHAK CHAK
It is 72 kms from Yazd and is the resting place of Princess Hayat Banoo, the eldest daughter of King Yazdegard.
Once when she was fleeing from the Arab armies, she reached a mountain and pleaded to Ahura Mazda, to save her honour. Soon a crack appeared in the mountain and was closed immediately after she entered it.
Latera spring of water started trickling down and soon greenery was developed, giving an impression of tears flowing down the cheek of a lady. It is known by the locals as Aab-e-Hayat (water of life).
Here the music and Avesta prayers has tremendous effect on the flow the of spring water. The more the people gather, pray or play music, the flow of water increases to be sufficient enough for all of them.
Once a shephered lost some of his goats from his flock of cattle and began to search for them on this mountaim He drank the water and fell asleep. He dreamt that a beautiful lady is looking after his goats and told him that this is a sacred place and to build a structure here for fulfilling the desire of the people visiting it. When he woke up, he found all his goats and he did as he was told to do.
Roz Astad, Mah Bahman is the Anniversary Day.
Chak Chak is the sound created by the dripping of the tears, spring water from the leaves into the water tank below.
III. PIR-E-BANOO PARS
It is the resting place of last daughter Sherbanoo. Also called Khatari Banoo.
When the Arabs invaded Pars she fled away towards Yazd, enemies followed her. She reached Aghda mountain and felt thirsty. She asked a farmer to give hersome water but the farmer recognised her and started milking the cow to give her some milk instead of water. But as luck would have it, the cow kicked the container of milk and she had to leave without satisfying her thirst.
She then pleaded to the mountain to protect her from the arab enemies following her. The mountain engulfed her but the scan which was touched by the enemies remained outside the mountain slit.
Years later a blind man was resting near this mountain and soon fell asleep. He dreamt that a lady told him to build a structure on this mountain and make it a place of pilgrimage. When he woke up, his eyesight were restored and he build the structure as he was told to do. Thus it became a holy place for pilgrims, People also call it Mazreh e-MeherYazd.
Roz Meher, Mah Esfand is the Anniversary Day.
It is 41 kms from the city of Yazd. King Yazdegard’s son Ardeshirwas running away from arab prosecution. But when the Arabs came very near he prayed to Ahura Mazda to save him from their hands. God granted his wish and he disappeared from the eyes of the enemies. The Arabs saw this wonder and also prayed to God. Some years later, a hunter was running after a deer but when he reached the spot, he saw a handsome man instead of the deer.
The man told the hunter that this was his place of residence and told him to build up the place and light candles and fire. The hunter did what he was told and got his wishes fulfilled. So now people from all over Iran come to visit this sacred place and get their wishes fulfilled.
Roz Daep adar, Mah Esfand is the Anniversary Day.
It is 50 kms from Yazd and 14 kms from a village called Sharifabad.
It is in the memory of maid servant Murvarid, with one of the princess of Yazdegard. She also had to flee into the mountains and deserts and finally when she was unable to go any further, she prayed to Ahura Mazda for help and the mountain opened up to engulf her. Even today slight formation of a woman with 2 children can be seen on the floor of this holy place.
Later, a traveller lost his child, in mid winter on this mountain. He kept on looking for her but could not find her until he came to this mountain spot and found her standing comfortable and fit, without even getting wet, although it was snowing then. The child replied, that she was taken care of by a good lady who had just disappeared and told her to build a structure on this place as it was a holy place and if people would come here and pay their respect, their wishes would be fulfilled.
Roz Astad, Mah Aban is the Anniversary Day.
This is the holy resting place of Nazbanoo, daughter in law of the Pars governor.
As the arabs were after her, she left her home, crossing deserts and mountains on her way, till she climbed a mountain near Taft village known as Dar-e-Zanjeer. She prayed to Ahura Mazda for help and protection, so the mountain opened up and she was saved. Later a spring of water started flowing . here and greenery developed. A traveller who was resting here fell asleep and dreamt of constructing a building structure for other visitors also to come, rest and get their wishes fulfilled.
Roz Sarosh, Mah Farvardin is the Anniversary Day.
It is 68 miles away from Yazd near a village called Akda. She was killed by the Arabs in this place. 10 miles away was a city with 7 Atash Behrams, but now it is in ruins, only a cypress tree stands in lone testimony to its previous glory.