A Nirangdin in Navsari at the Vadi Dar-E-Mehr

Published on Parsi Khabar | Article by Marzban J. Giara

ASW_20140105-122830_thumbA sacred nirangdin ceremony was held at the historic 874 years old Vadi Daremeher, Navsari on Roz Aspandarmad Mah Tir Yezdezerdi 1385 Friday midnight of 20th November 2015. The ceremony which lasted 18 days was performed by two yozdathregar mobeds Ervad Aspandiar Rustomji Dadachanji and Ervad Darayus Parvez Bajan under the guidance of Vada Dasturji Kaikhushroo Navroji Dastoor Meherjirana and Dasturji Dr. Firoze Meherji Kotwal. The ceremony was in memory of the late Edulji Rustomji Adajania at the instance of his wife Najoo and son Kaizad. Explanation of nirangdin ceremony was given at 4 p.m. for the benefit of the audience. A jashan was held at the hall of Navsari Atash Behram on Saturday 21st November at 10 a.m. It is a unique occasion as both the Dasturji sahebs, both the mobeds and the family which requested the ceremony all hail from Navsari.

The nirangdin ceremony is very important as nirang (= consecrated bull’s urine) is produced by transforming bull’s urine into consecrated nirang by the power of prayers which makes it free from bacteria. It is used in our rituals such as nahn, navar, navjote, wedding, death. The alat (apparatus) consists of twigs of hom plant, havanim and lalo (mortar and pestle), varasni viti a ring of varasiaji’s hair, two metal pots with lid one filled with water and the other with taro (bull’s urine), sangrez (pebbles), tashto (metal plates), khajurini patri (leaf of palm tree). Fire is kept burning all the time in an afarganyu. Varasyaji, a sacred white bull is brought from his enclosure barsingo. Two mobeds are required – one jyoti performs the ritual, the other rathvi tends the fire. The mobed sahebs have to maintain strict discipline for all the 18 days. This ceremony costs about Rs. Three lakhs.

According to Dasturji Kotwal there was a time when there were so many many yozdathregar mobeds in Navsari. They were so eager to perform this ceremony that out of Rs.18 they would offer one rupee to another priest for the favour of stepping aside and allowing the other to perform this ceremony. Some years ago WZO India felicitated yozdathregar mobeds at a function at Allbless Baug. Ervad Jehangirji Turel of Surat had the distinction of performing as many as 168 nirangdin ceremonies and was publicly felicitated at Wadiaji Atash Behram when he completed 150 nirangdins in 1994.

Unlike some other communities where the priests remain bachelors, both our dedicated mobed sahebs lead a good family life. Both hail from illustrious priestly families of Navsari. Both are students of Dadar Athornan Madressa where they underwent rigorous training. Both are blessed with supporting wives and two sons each. Both are humble and very courteous. It would not be out of place to mention some of their achievements.

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