The great prophets were described as madmen.
Isn’t the essential doctrine of Zoroastrianism one of balance between good and evil? Actually, more of an almost alchemical transformation.
Alchemy arose as a science from the same observations that Zoroastrianism makes about the world. The view that everything is working toward and will inevitably reach perfection. So their practices were based on efforts to help nature along in its process of growth and purification.
Like the three Wise Men, or Zarathustra? The three wise men came after Zarathustra’s time, but yes, they were examples of that faith.
In fact, Zarathustra reformed the original faith that did view things from a point of balance. The role of humanity in the teachings of Zarathustra was not to withdraw from the world or its ways, but by action and personal development shifting the ultimate balance of outcomes, leading closer and closer to the ultimate purification of the world. Zoroastrianism parallels Judaism, Christianity and Islam in many ways, though in all likelihood it’s the last three that parallel it, even to the point of a prophesied savior born of the line of Zarathustra who would be instrumental in the final work of purification.
As I said earlier, the Zoroastrian cosmology is rather more “physical” than contemporary Christianity, say. So the reasoning behind their doctrines and predictions differs from the currently held strictly moralistic views, more pragmatic perhaps. They do believe in a heaven and a hell, and one entered into heaven simply if their overall character and actions were more good than evil. They actually focus on good works. In this they do differ from Christianity. The reason for heaven and hell in their belief system is to give rest to those whose work was good in the world, and to temporarily isolate those who didn’t display the wisdom to do good works in life.
No rest for the wicked? Isolation for the wicked until the time of Ahrimans end, in which all souls will be united in the spirit of Ahura Mazda. All, no exceptions. This is why Zoroastrianism doesn’t proselytize. If you don’t spare yourself, then that’s just the consequence of your choices and not any form of ultimate or eternal damnation.
So the wicked should actually want his reign to end so that they can get paroled? Not so much paroled. With the elimination of Ahriman, they will cease to have any evil in their nature. Likewise in Zoroastrianism, humanity has the potential to do good due to the indwelling presence of Ahura Mazda in them.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.