ECMS European Centre for Mithraic Studies

European Centre for Mithraic Studies is dedicated to promoting the study and understanding of the great god Mithra. Mithra is an ancient Indo-European god, whose cult flourished in different times all throughout the Indo-European world.

The roots of the cult of Mithra go back to pre-Indo-Iranian times, perhaps even to the late Proto-Indo-European period. He was paired with Asura Varuna in Vedic India and was associated with Ahura Mazda in Zoroastrian Iran. The ancient Indo-Iranian cult of Mithra was incorporated early on into Zoroastrianism, as can be seen from the cult of the Achaemenid era (and subsequent eras as well). His cult also probably flourished even outside the boundaries of the Zoroastrian orthodoxy. It was probably this heterodox form (that either preserved pre-Zoroastrian elements or was somehow connected with the Zurvanite stream of Zoroastrianism, or perhaps both) that during the centuries around the birth of Christ translated from the East to the West. Thus the Roman Mysteria Mithrae were born. This occidental cult of Mithras lasted until the 4th Century AD and represents an archetypal Western fraternal organization. In the Near East this Mithraic stream influenced the development of so called Yazdânic religions.

It is our hope that through deeper study and understanding of great god Mithra and his cults, in their various forms and expressions, a profound realization of the noble Mithraic values might be achieved for modern men.