Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Aredvi Sura Anahita & Aban

Ardvisura is short for Aredvi Sura Anahita, a compound name that came to be applied to the spiritual guardian of the waters, i.e. the natural bodies of water (as different from the primordial element water) is mentioned in Aban Yasht 5 (also Yasna 65), a hymn to the waters. As with haoma, Aredvi Sura Anahita is associated with fertility, healing and wisdom.

The Avestan word Aredvi appears to be the name of a famed river in ancient Zoroastrian Aryan history. Sura means powerful, mighty, and strong. Anahita meaning pure (without impurity), immaculate, and undefiled, is used as an epithet of Aredvi-Sura.

The spring Ardvi Sura Anahita from which all rivers flow down to the earth, is celebrated in the fifth Yasht of the Avesta as life-increasing, herd-increasing, fold-increasing - who makes prosperity for all countries. Anahita runs powerfully down to the sea Vourukasha, and all its shores are boiling over when she plunges foaming down; she, Ardvi Sura, who has a thousand gulfs and a thousand outlets.

Aban / Avan is the modern derivative of the Avestan apas (cf. Vedic Sanskrit apas) or apam which in turn stem from ape (cf. ab in modern Persian), meaning water.

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