Zoroastrian Traditions: Common Questions


Whether you are planning a Zoroastrian funeral or attending a ceremony, we understand that you may have questions. O’Connor Mortuary is here for you: below, you’ll find answers to common queries regarding various Zoroastrian funeral customs.

Additionally, our friendly, experienced staff is here for any other information you may need: it is our priority to provide you with answers and peace of mind.

1What type of ceremony options do I have for my loved one's funeral?
Our mortuary is committed to honoring cultural traditions and helping your family create the ceremony that would best honor your loved one’s life. Whether your family wants a cremation, funeral ceremony or both, our staff will be available to help make the appropriate selections and care for the details.
2What are appropriate behaviors and customs for Zoroastrian funerals in the United States?
While Zoroastrian funerals are famous for disposal of the body via elemental exposure, this practice is not permitted in western countries. Instead, Zoroastrian families often opt for a burial or cremation as quickly as possible after death.

After death, the body is deemed impure-so there are no open-casket viewings or visitations. A funeral ceremony may be held within three days of the death, as friends and family generally mourn and pray heavily for the deceased’s soul during this time. On the fourth day, it is believed that the soul and its guardian, Fravashi ascend to Chinvat, the bridge of judgment.

During this three-day mourning period, family and friends generally avoid eating meat, and no food is cooked in the house where the body was prepared. For this reason, it is acceptable for loved ones to prepare food in their own homes and bring it to the mourning family.