Publication Date:October 31, 2011
‘Discovering Ashavan’ vividly portrays the era of superstition and irrationality that pervaded ancient Iran four millennia ago when Zarathushtra Spitama, the prophet of the first monotheistic religion of the world, preached his message based on free will and individual responsibility.
In this fictional account, Ashavan, an orphaned stable boy disparaged by his peers because of a deformed leg, gets into a midnight brawl to save a dying dog. This impulsive act snowballs into an alarming chain of events as he fights to clear his name of the charges of sorcery cast upon him by a vindictive man and a fearful community. As the story unfolds, we see how a young Zarathushtra befriends Ashavan, and gives him the courage to resolve the fears within himself and take a stand for what he believes.
Acclaimed author of Ice Candy Man and An American Brat, Bapsi Sidhwa writes:
“…excellently developed characters and adroit sense of place, Dinshaw gives immediacy to a distant time and brings the past vividly to life. She has also managed to bring Zarathushtra down to earth, and, in doing so, makes him accessible. At the same time, the narrative embodies some of the main principles of our faith. It is creditable that Dinshaw accomplishes this without adopting a high moral tone or sounding the least bit preachy.”
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