Zoroastrian exegesis consists basically of the interpretation of the Avesta . However, the closest equivalent Iranian concept, zand, generally includes Pahlavi texts which were believed to derive from commentaries upon Avestan scripture, but whose extant form contains no Avestan passages. Zoroastrian exegesis differs from similar phenomena in many other religions in that it developed as part of a religious tradition which made little or no use of writing until well into the Sasanian era. This lengthy period of oral transmission has clearly helped to give the Middle Persian Zand its characteristic shape and has, in a sense, limited its scope. Although the later tradition makes a formal distinction between “Gathic” (gāhānīg), “legal” (dādīg), and perhaps “ritual” (hādag-mānsrīg) Avestan texts, there appear to be no significant differences in approach between the Pahlavi commentary on the Gathas and those on dādīg texts, such as the Vendīdād , the Hērbedestān and the Nērangestān . Since many 19th and 20th century works by Zoroastrians contain an element of exegesis, while on the other hand no exegetical literature in the strict sense of the word can be said to exist, the phenomenon of modern Zoroastrian exegesis as such will be discussed here, without detailed reference to individual texts. 
Again, when Faustus expresses skepticism that any afterlife exists, Mephastophilis assures him that hell is real and terrible. These odd complications in Mephastophilis’s character serve a twofold purpose. First, they highlight Faustus’s willful blindness, since he dismisses the warning of the very demon with whom he is bartering over his soul. In this regard, his remark that hell is a myth seems particularly delusional. At the same time, these complications inspire a kind of pity for Mephastophilis and his fellow devils, who are damned to hell just as surely as Faustus or any other sinful, unrepentant human. These devils may be villains, but they are tragic figures, separated forever from the bliss of God’s presence by their pride. Indeed, Mephastophilis and Faust are similar figures: both reject God out of pride, and both suffer for it eternally.