Farewell To Iran

Here is the story of the bittersweet goodbyes of Iranian Baha’is leaving Iran by train, travelling through Turkey to escape the stifling and oppressive Islamic regime.

Every Thursday at dusk, members of one of Iran’s most beleaguered religious minorities gather at Tehran’s railway station. With anxious, teary eyes, they are there to see off relatives and fellow Baha’is who have decided to pull up stakes forever and take the 8 p.m. train to a new life in Turkey and beyond.

Click on any picture to launch gallery view (then click right/left edge for next/previous):

Travellers at Tehran railway station Boarding the train to Turkey Tehrans train station sees dozens of Bahais leave each week in search of a better life abroad. Some Bahai travelers are carrying all they own and have no plans to return to Iran, where they face persecution. Others make the three-day journey just to visit relatives who emigrated before them, often bringing food or money. The train is bound for Istanbul, but many stop at Kayseri, a city with a growing emigre Bahai community. The decision to emigrate divides some families. "Even now all my heart and soul belongs to Iran," says one woman.

One of the travelers says:

For the next five or six months I kept trying to talk her out of it, but in the end it was I who gave up, because I realized she was right in coming to this decision. But believe me, even now all my heart and soul belongs to Iran.

While I do not mean to diminish the sadness that is understandable for anyone who leaves their homeland, family and friends behind, I find such extreme sentiments a little bit surprising from a fellow Baha’i.

After all, didn’t Baha’u’llah say:

Let not a man glory in this, that he loves his country; let him rather glory in this, that he loves his kind.

From the account of Professor Edward G. Browne, of the University of Cambridge.

With thanks to Sen McGlinn for the article.

  • p

    The difference is that these individuals feel forced to leave. They are not leaving as pioneers who must embrace whatever culture they are placed into. Being Iranian but brought up mostly in the West, I can comment more on this. The priorities that are given to certain “principles” of the Bahai Faith among Iranians are very different from Western Bahais. For instance, racism (or ignorance of other races, especially Blacks) is VERY prominent among Iranians who come straight from Iran. Why? Because the whole concept of racial harmony is not an issue that Iranian Bahais are really taught or have to deal with in their lives in Iran. Yet in among American Bahais- it is the number one issue. So in the same way- Iranian Bahais may take more note of Bahaullah’s words in regard to love of one country vs. the quote you shared. Just my thoughts.

  • p

    The difference is that these individuals feel forced to leave. They are not leaving as pioneers who must embrace whatever culture they are placed into. Being Iranian but brought up mostly in the West, I can comment more on this. The priorities that are given to certain “principles” of the Bahai Faith among Iranians are very different from Western Bahais. For instance, racism (or ignorance of other races, especially Blacks) is VERY prominent among Iranians who come straight from Iran. Why? Because the whole concept of racial harmony is not an issue that Iranian Bahais are really taught or have to deal with in their lives in Iran. Yet in among American Bahais- it is the number one issue. So in the same way- Iranian Bahais may take more note of Bahaullah’s words in regard to love of one country vs. the quote you shared. Just my thoughts.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Yes, good point. Again, I don’t want to come across as if I’m attacking them for that. I know it is an emotional time to leave your country, especially when you prefer not to. And God knows that none of us is mindful of all of Bahau’llah revealed all of the time. That’s just not possible. Perhaps by thinking about it in this way, as Bahau’llah said, it would be less painful for them. That is, if they see it as not that they are leaving Iran behind, or that they are forsaking it but rather that they are doing as Baha’u’llah said and “loving their kind” by going and living among other people.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Yes, good point. Again, I don’t want to come across as if I’m attacking them for that. I know it is an emotional time to leave your country, especially when you prefer not to. And God knows that none of us is mindful of all of Bahau’llah revealed all of the time. That’s just not possible. Perhaps by thinking about it in this way, as Bahau’llah said, it would be less painful for them. That is, if they see it as not that they are leaving Iran behind, or that they are forsaking it but rather that they are doing as Baha’u’llah said and “loving their kind” by going and living among other people.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    The numbers leaving surprises me. Let’s just take the numbers quoted in the article:

    [quote]“The Tehran-Istanbul line has been running weekly for 12 years now, with every trip carrying Baha’is away from the discrimination they live with in Iran.”

    “The surge in persecution and harassment led many of Iran’s 300,000 Baha’is to consider their options, and for the past 30 years a great number of them have chosen to leave.”

    “Poor boy, he feels really lonely now,” she says. “If he had his passport, he would have come with me, but now he might have to leave the country in an unauthorized, illegal way.”

    “During the journey, a number of the more than 80 Baha’is on the train agree to speak anonymously about their reasons for leaving Iran.”

    “This is the fifth time we have been on this train to Turkey to visit our daughters to take them some money and foodstuffs.”[/quote]

    Let’s assume that 60 of the more than 80 Baha’is have one-way tickets, and that this is the usual number who leave each week by train. That’s 3,120 Baha’is. Let’s round it down to 3,000. So 1% of the Baha’i population (reported as being 300,000) is leaving Iran each year by this particular route. Others go by plane, perhaps a different train, or are smuggled out.

    …And this exodus has been going on for 30 years. Theocracy has a lot to answer for.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    The numbers leaving surprises me. Let’s just take the numbers quoted in the article:

    [quote]“The Tehran-Istanbul line has been running weekly for 12 years now, with every trip carrying Baha’is away from the discrimination they live with in Iran.”

    “The surge in persecution and harassment led many of Iran’s 300,000 Baha’is to consider their options, and for the past 30 years a great number of them have chosen to leave.”

    “Poor boy, he feels really lonely now,” she says. “If he had his passport, he would have come with me, but now he might have to leave the country in an unauthorized, illegal way.”

    “During the journey, a number of the more than 80 Baha’is on the train agree to speak anonymously about their reasons for leaving Iran.”

    “This is the fifth time we have been on this train to Turkey to visit our daughters to take them some money and foodstuffs.”[/quote]

    Let’s assume that 60 of the more than 80 Baha’is have one-way tickets, and that this is the usual number who leave each week by train. That’s 3,120 Baha’is. Let’s round it down to 3,000. So 1% of the Baha’i population (reported as being 300,000) is leaving Iran each year by this particular route. Others go by plane, perhaps a different train, or are smuggled out.

    …And this exodus has been going on for 30 years. Theocracy has a lot to answer for.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    I forgot to say:

    Tehran railway station – what a hideous place that is, judging by the photo in row 1, column 3.

  • http://bahaisonline.net/tcb Steve Marshall

    I forgot to say:

    Tehran railway station – what a hideous place that is, judging by the photo in row 1, column 3.

  • p

    What I also don’t understand about all this is how then do some Iranian Bahais that I know go back and forth to Iran like it was a vacation destination? Maybe there is a black list of some Bahais who can’t get out unless they escape like above? But I’ve known a few that just get on a plane and go, then come back.
    I’m not downplaying the suffering that does exist in Iran for Bahais, but I don’t understand why it’s so hard for some to leave and for others not that bad.

  • p

    What I also don’t understand about all this is how then do some Iranian Bahais that I know go back and forth to Iran like it was a vacation destination? Maybe there is a black list of some Bahais who can’t get out unless they escape like above? But I’ve known a few that just get on a plane and go, then come back.
    I’m not downplaying the suffering that does exist in Iran for Bahais, but I don’t understand why it’s so hard for some to leave and for others not that bad.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Steve, judging from informal information that I’ve gathered my estimate would be around 2-4% of the population each year. Or about 6000 Baha’is each year. Of course, we’re talking about a live population, which has births, deaths, marriages, etc. So not sure if we can say that the numbers inside Iran are shrinking. But there is no hard data to back that up, just extrapolating from personal knowledge, so take it with a truckload of salt.

    About the hideousness of the station, you should see the rest of Tehran. Apart from the affluent northern portion, the place is basically a hell-hole. The mountains which check its growth to the North have created a cauldron and trapped the smog and pollution to such a degree that people that are not used to the air get sick when they visit.

    p, It is a widely known fact that Baha’is are completely free to leave Iran. Baha’is outside who are not on a “black list” can also freely visit. There was so many Baha’is visiting that the UHJ a few years ago sent a letter for them to cool it. Apparently they were going there and flashing their ipods, rolexes, and making the Baha’is inside Iran want to leave.

    Every Baha’i that wants to leave Iran can. For some it is easier because they have more money but for those that don’t, there is support offered by the UN office in Turkey. This is why I’ve continuously implored my fellow Baha’is to leave Iran for a better life elsewhere.

    There are many countries which will welcome them with open arms, an open society, rule of law and freedom of religion. As well as a much better economy and therefore, a better chance to make a living.

    I fail to see the glory inherent in remaining in the hell that is modern Iran and being persecuted when there is a choice. I do not consider it “martyrdom” when people choose to remain and be persecuted because they love their country. Especially when we as Baha’is are to love all of the world.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Steve, judging from informal information that I’ve gathered my estimate would be around 2-4% of the population each year. Or about 6000 Baha’is each year. Of course, we’re talking about a live population, which has births, deaths, marriages, etc. So not sure if we can say that the numbers inside Iran are shrinking. But there is no hard data to back that up, just extrapolating from personal knowledge, so take it with a truckload of salt.

    About the hideousness of the station, you should see the rest of Tehran. Apart from the affluent northern portion, the place is basically a hell-hole. The mountains which check its growth to the North have created a cauldron and trapped the smog and pollution to such a degree that people that are not used to the air get sick when they visit.

    p, It is a widely known fact that Baha’is are completely free to leave Iran. Baha’is outside who are not on a “black list” can also freely visit. There was so many Baha’is visiting that the UHJ a few years ago sent a letter for them to cool it. Apparently they were going there and flashing their ipods, rolexes, and making the Baha’is inside Iran want to leave.

    Every Baha’i that wants to leave Iran can. For some it is easier because they have more money but for those that don’t, there is support offered by the UN office in Turkey. This is why I’ve continuously implored my fellow Baha’is to leave Iran for a better life elsewhere.

    There are many countries which will welcome them with open arms, an open society, rule of law and freedom of religion. As well as a much better economy and therefore, a better chance to make a living.

    I fail to see the glory inherent in remaining in the hell that is modern Iran and being persecuted when there is a choice. I do not consider it “martyrdom” when people choose to remain and be persecuted because they love their country. Especially when we as Baha’is are to love all of the world.

  • Tahereh

    I don’t know how fair it is to call Iran a “hell-hole.” I think it’s a rather mean comment to make, and I think it’s especially striking when you speak as if northern Tehran is something to be envied. I don’t know, for me the incredibly rich and Westernized section of the city is more the hell-hole than the rest of Tehran. The pollution you speak of is quite accurate; the mountains in the north of Tehran do block the winds from carrying the polluted air away.. so instead it stagnates directly above that rich, Westernized part of Northern Tehran. The further south you go, the poorer the population, the cleaner the air. Anyway, I don’t understand what exactly makes northern Tehran any better than the rest of the city? If you want to be judged, scoffed at, and experience what ridiculous effects Europe and globalization has had on Tehran, sure. Riding down Fereshteh Street is similar, I imagine, to strolling through a street in the high district in Paris, or Venice.. Designer brands and stores, Versace, Gucci, etc. How does corporate greed and capitalism seeping into northern Tehran make it any better than the rest of the city? It seems, just in my experiences, that the further south you go, the more you see how alive the cultures is.
    Anyway, that’s not really relevant to what I wanted to say, which is I don’t know how fair it is to use that quote to sum up the pain people feel when leaving Iran. Firstly, I don’t believe anyone leaves in ignorance. I don’t believe anyone leaves without some fears of how they will be treated in whatever country they end up in. I don’t believe that they’re not told horror stories from their families, like when I tell my bewildered family in Iran about how I’m called a “dirty Arab,” and a terrorist, and am constantly told to “go back home.” How I’ve been followed, verbally harassed, even had a note stuck under my windshield, simply because of the way I look (I am, if it’s not obvious by now :) Iranian). Secondly, it’s rather easy to look at that quote from Bah??’u’ll??h is easier to approach when you live in a society that doesn’t value the idea of “vatan,” or “motherland” in English I suppose, though it has a very different connotation in Persian than “motherland” in English. Anyway, when you live in a place that has no real connection to its land (like in America, where the land was stolen to begin with), the language (since “Americans” are all foreigners), or even a common culture, it’s hard, I believe, to imagine what it’s like to grow up in the opposite context. It’s not just leaving your home, that it’s hard but you get over it. It’s leaving your family, it’s leaving your life, it’s leaving a part of you behind. After twenty three years my mother misses Iran now more than she ever did. It’s not self-imposed martyrdom to stay, it’s survival. When your options are leave and go somewhere where you’re treated poorly, cannot communicate well, aren’t taken seriously when you do, are discriminated against, and are isolated from your family OR stay in your own home, are discriminated against but at least have basic tools like communication, and a support system, why would you choose the former? There is also a sense of obligation in staying for some, that I think should be considered. My great uncle was one of the members of the NSA that was martyred by the government after the revolution. The rest of my family has suffered heavily as well. When I was in Tehran this summer, I spoke with an aunt whose husband (also Baha’i) endured years of torture in Evin, simply for having married into our family. My aunt wanted to leave, she feels terrible for putting him through that, that he suffers simply because her uncle was on the NSA, that our family was targeted for being Baha’i, but HE refuses to leave. He says so humbly, though he does not like even discussing it, that “if everyone leaves, who will stay?” I think that strength deserves respect. It’s not martyrdom. He has the privilege of living in the home of the Faith, and the privilege of having the knowledge that all this suffering will indeed end.
    Sorry this comment is so long, but I sometimes feel as if Iranian Baha’is are treated unfairly in the community. In certain areas they’re revered in a way they shouldn’t be, and in others there is a definite disdain for some perceived “weakness” that I don’t believe exists. Living in diaspora is not easy. Not for Iranians, not for Iranian Baha’is, not for Armenians, not for Ethiopians … not for anyone. For me diaspora is the single hardest thing I deal with in general in life, and on a day-to-day basis as well. Quotes from Bah??’u’ll??h should be taken into consideration, of course, but there are, I believe, certain things in life that create and maintain a sort of unbearable pain that a line or two can’t lessen or heal.

  • Tahereh

    I don’t know how fair it is to call Iran a “hell-hole.” I think it’s a rather mean comment to make, and I think it’s especially striking when you speak as if northern Tehran is something to be envied. I don’t know, for me the incredibly rich and Westernized section of the city is more the hell-hole than the rest of Tehran. The pollution you speak of is quite accurate; the mountains in the north of Tehran do block the winds from carrying the polluted air away.. so instead it stagnates directly above that rich, Westernized part of Northern Tehran. The further south you go, the poorer the population, the cleaner the air. Anyway, I don’t understand what exactly makes northern Tehran any better than the rest of the city? If you want to be judged, scoffed at, and experience what ridiculous effects Europe and globalization has had on Tehran, sure. Riding down Fereshteh Street is similar, I imagine, to strolling through a street in the high district in Paris, or Venice.. Designer brands and stores, Versace, Gucci, etc. How does corporate greed and capitalism seeping into northern Tehran make it any better than the rest of the city? It seems, just in my experiences, that the further south you go, the more you see how alive the cultures is.
    Anyway, that’s not really relevant to what I wanted to say, which is I don’t know how fair it is to use that quote to sum up the pain people feel when leaving Iran. Firstly, I don’t believe anyone leaves in ignorance. I don’t believe anyone leaves without some fears of how they will be treated in whatever country they end up in. I don’t believe that they’re not told horror stories from their families, like when I tell my bewildered family in Iran about how I’m called a “dirty Arab,” and a terrorist, and am constantly told to “go back home.” How I’ve been followed, verbally harassed, even had a note stuck under my windshield, simply because of the way I look (I am, if it’s not obvious by now :) Iranian). Secondly, it’s rather easy to look at that quote from Bah??’u’ll??h is easier to approach when you live in a society that doesn’t value the idea of “vatan,” or “motherland” in English I suppose, though it has a very different connotation in Persian than “motherland” in English. Anyway, when you live in a place that has no real connection to its land (like in America, where the land was stolen to begin with), the language (since “Americans” are all foreigners), or even a common culture, it’s hard, I believe, to imagine what it’s like to grow up in the opposite context. It’s not just leaving your home, that it’s hard but you get over it. It’s leaving your family, it’s leaving your life, it’s leaving a part of you behind. After twenty three years my mother misses Iran now more than she ever did. It’s not self-imposed martyrdom to stay, it’s survival. When your options are leave and go somewhere where you’re treated poorly, cannot communicate well, aren’t taken seriously when you do, are discriminated against, and are isolated from your family OR stay in your own home, are discriminated against but at least have basic tools like communication, and a support system, why would you choose the former? There is also a sense of obligation in staying for some, that I think should be considered. My great uncle was one of the members of the NSA that was martyred by the government after the revolution. The rest of my family has suffered heavily as well. When I was in Tehran this summer, I spoke with an aunt whose husband (also Baha’i) endured years of torture in Evin, simply for having married into our family. My aunt wanted to leave, she feels terrible for putting him through that, that he suffers simply because her uncle was on the NSA, that our family was targeted for being Baha’i, but HE refuses to leave. He says so humbly, though he does not like even discussing it, that “if everyone leaves, who will stay?” I think that strength deserves respect. It’s not martyrdom. He has the privilege of living in the home of the Faith, and the privilege of having the knowledge that all this suffering will indeed end.
    Sorry this comment is so long, but I sometimes feel as if Iranian Baha’is are treated unfairly in the community. In certain areas they’re revered in a way they shouldn’t be, and in others there is a definite disdain for some perceived “weakness” that I don’t believe exists. Living in diaspora is not easy. Not for Iranians, not for Iranian Baha’is, not for Armenians, not for Ethiopians … not for anyone. For me diaspora is the single hardest thing I deal with in general in life, and on a day-to-day basis as well. Quotes from Bah??’u’ll??h should be taken into consideration, of course, but there are, I believe, certain things in life that create and maintain a sort of unbearable pain that a line or two can’t lessen or heal.

  • Craig Parke

    Tahereh,

    You seem to say that Americans have no connection to their land like Iranians do. What about this?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPU4p7UQOtU

    If you are here in a free country where you can teach the Faith, don’t thank a fellow Baha’i, thank a veteran like me. You are here on MY DIME and the DIME of my Father and Grandfather. And don’t ever forget it for a second as long as you are on American soil. I am sorry that you feel discriminated against here. But deal with it. Religious fundamentalist ass hole fanatics from the Middle East with their heads completely up their asses did this to us:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XELamUnF0EU

    I have been a Baha’i for 37 years so I am your Baha’i brother. I’ll gladly buy you dinner and try to comfort you. But the people of your homeland are clueless dolts as Baha’u’llah Himself pointed out in very clear eloquent language and the most marvelous Cosmic rants. The Faith had to get a hearing on this side of the water because the people of your homeland are clueless human beings who are prisoners of other people’s minds. So while you are here try to read more Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson and less of the hand-me-down-groupthink-lock-step Abrahamic religions of the Middle East including the Baha’i Faith. It may be good for your soul.

    The entire Middle East has no hope until it produces one decent rock guitarist. Until then ain’t nobody go’in nowhere in those lands of mind numbing lock step blind imitation where nobody can think for themselves with any critical thought whatsoever.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tWLw7nozO_U

    But, yes, by all means read the marvelous Rumi every single day!

  • Craig Parke

    Tahereh,

    You seem to say that Americans have no connection to their land like Iranians do. What about this?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPU4p7UQOtU

    If you are here in a free country where you can teach the Faith, don’t thank a fellow Baha’i, thank a veteran like me. You are here on MY DIME and the DIME of my Father and Grandfather. And don’t ever forget it for a second as long as you are on American soil. I am sorry that you feel discriminated against here. But deal with it. Religious fundamentalist ass hole fanatics from the Middle East with their heads completely up their asses did this to us:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XELamUnF0EU

    I have been a Baha’i for 37 years so I am your Baha’i brother. I’ll gladly buy you dinner and try to comfort you. But the people of your homeland are clueless dolts as Baha’u’llah Himself pointed out in very clear eloquent language and the most marvelous Cosmic rants. The Faith had to get a hearing on this side of the water because the people of your homeland are clueless human beings who are prisoners of other people’s minds. So while you are here try to read more Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson and less of the hand-me-down-groupthink-lock-step Abrahamic religions of the Middle East including the Baha’i Faith. It may be good for your soul.

    The entire Middle East has no hope until it produces one decent rock guitarist. Until then ain’t nobody go’in nowhere in those lands of mind numbing lock step blind imitation where nobody can think for themselves with any critical thought whatsoever.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tWLw7nozO_U

    But, yes, by all means read the marvelous Rumi every single day!

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    You object when I characterize Iran as a hell-hole? It is. It is one of the worst countries on earth right now by any measure. Human rights, women’s rights, wealth distribution, GDP, unemployment, inflation, environmental considerations, etc….. Take you pick! There are worst places like North Korea but that doesn’t mean that Iran today isn’t just horrible.

    [quote comment="57976"]Secondly, it’s rather easy to look at that quote from Bah??’u’ll??h is easier to approach when you live in a society that doesn’t value the idea of “vatan,” or “motherland” in English I suppose, though it has a very different connotation in Persian than “motherland” in English.[/quote]

    The difference is that societies which you think don’t value the “motherland” have grown to acknowledge what Baha’u’llah said to some degree. That we are all citizens of one home, earth. National boundaries are meaningless. I wish more Iranian Baha’is would realize that. Iran is just another country and right now, it is a hell-hole. Shoghi Effendi also wrote about the evils of nationalism. I’ll see if I can find a quote or two.

    I’m surprised to hear a fellow Baha’i speak like this. I’m used to Iranians who have drank the IRI nationalistic progaganda kool-aid to talk about “vatan” or “motherland” but someone who has the words of Baha’u’llah about “the world being one country and mankind its citizens”?

    [quote comment="57976"]Anyway, when you live in a place that has no real connection to its land (like in America, where the land was stolen to begin with), the language (since “Americans” are all foreigners), or even a common culture[/quote]

    wow! what condescension! no real connection to the land? stolen? no common culture? with that attitude, I’m not surprised that you think people perceive you as an outsider and tell you to go home!

    Sheesh… this is EXACTLY the attitude that Baha’u’llah wanted to eliminate by telling Baha’is to think of the world as our home, and to put aside such vapid patriotism and nationalism.

    [quote comment="57976"]“if everyone leaves, who will stay?” I think that strength deserves respect. It’s not martyrdom.[/quote]

    First, my sympathies for your families suffering. Second, I disagree. The statement above makes no sense and therefore I do not think it deserves respect. If your hand is in the fire, do you keep it there, saying “But if I remove my hand, who’s hand will burn?”

    This is illogical. As Baha’is we are directed to think rationally. Such a statement belies a total lack of rational thought.

    Thank you for your comments. My suggestion to you is that you change the way you think about your place in the world and your circumstances will accordingly change. I base this on Baha’u’llah’s counsel to love all and to be part of humanity, not just the Baha’i Faith or Iran or any other country.

    And please don’t take my disagreement with your relative to mean that I do not empathize with their pain. I do. However, I draw the line when pain and suffering is a choice they make rather than circumstances which are imposed upon them. If a person can simply “remove their hand from the fire” and chooses not to, they do not have my respect nor sympathy because they have chosen to inflict pain and suffering upon themselves.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    You object when I characterize Iran as a hell-hole? It is. It is one of the worst countries on earth right now by any measure. Human rights, women’s rights, wealth distribution, GDP, unemployment, inflation, environmental considerations, etc….. Take you pick! There are worst places like North Korea but that doesn’t mean that Iran today isn’t just horrible.

    [quote comment="57976"]Secondly, it’s rather easy to look at that quote from Bah??’u’ll??h is easier to approach when you live in a society that doesn’t value the idea of “vatan,” or “motherland” in English I suppose, though it has a very different connotation in Persian than “motherland” in English.[/quote]

    The difference is that societies which you think don’t value the “motherland” have grown to acknowledge what Baha’u’llah said to some degree. That we are all citizens of one home, earth. National boundaries are meaningless. I wish more Iranian Baha’is would realize that. Iran is just another country and right now, it is a hell-hole. Shoghi Effendi also wrote about the evils of nationalism. I’ll see if I can find a quote or two.

    I’m surprised to hear a fellow Baha’i speak like this. I’m used to Iranians who have drank the IRI nationalistic progaganda kool-aid to talk about “vatan” or “motherland” but someone who has the words of Baha’u’llah about “the world being one country and mankind its citizens”?

    [quote comment="57976"]Anyway, when you live in a place that has no real connection to its land (like in America, where the land was stolen to begin with), the language (since “Americans” are all foreigners), or even a common culture[/quote]

    wow! what condescension! no real connection to the land? stolen? no common culture? with that attitude, I’m not surprised that you think people perceive you as an outsider and tell you to go home!

    Sheesh… this is EXACTLY the attitude that Baha’u’llah wanted to eliminate by telling Baha’is to think of the world as our home, and to put aside such vapid patriotism and nationalism.

    [quote comment="57976"]“if everyone leaves, who will stay?” I think that strength deserves respect. It’s not martyrdom.[/quote]

    First, my sympathies for your families suffering. Second, I disagree. The statement above makes no sense and therefore I do not think it deserves respect. If your hand is in the fire, do you keep it there, saying “But if I remove my hand, who’s hand will burn?”

    This is illogical. As Baha’is we are directed to think rationally. Such a statement belies a total lack of rational thought.

    Thank you for your comments. My suggestion to you is that you change the way you think about your place in the world and your circumstances will accordingly change. I base this on Baha’u’llah’s counsel to love all and to be part of humanity, not just the Baha’i Faith or Iran or any other country.

    And please don’t take my disagreement with your relative to mean that I do not empathize with their pain. I do. However, I draw the line when pain and suffering is a choice they make rather than circumstances which are imposed upon them. If a person can simply “remove their hand from the fire” and chooses not to, they do not have my respect nor sympathy because they have chosen to inflict pain and suffering upon themselves.

  • p

    Hi Tahereh. I hear what you are saying, but also hear a different perspective. I am Iranian by birth, but American in my heart. It bothers me when Iranians play the martyr card. If you had to deal with prejudices and prejudiced people in Iran, then why on earth would you expect to not deal with new prejudices in another country? That is the reality of the world. The way to deal with it is to embrace the culture that you are in and become a part of it. Novel idea huh? Unfortunately, Iranians find that difficult. The disdain that I have heard from some Iranians against American culture is so irritating that sometimes I find myself becoming one of those rednecks that wants to say “if you don’t like it, go back”. Whenver a person enters another culture, it is that person’s responsibility to become a part of that culture, to find those people they can trust and befriend, to share and truly become one with the adopted culture. The other choice is to isolate oneself and only see the worst in the society.

  • p

    Hi Tahereh. I hear what you are saying, but also hear a different perspective. I am Iranian by birth, but American in my heart. It bothers me when Iranians play the martyr card. If you had to deal with prejudices and prejudiced people in Iran, then why on earth would you expect to not deal with new prejudices in another country? That is the reality of the world. The way to deal with it is to embrace the culture that you are in and become a part of it. Novel idea huh? Unfortunately, Iranians find that difficult. The disdain that I have heard from some Iranians against American culture is so irritating that sometimes I find myself becoming one of those rednecks that wants to say “if you don’t like it, go back”. Whenver a person enters another culture, it is that person’s responsibility to become a part of that culture, to find those people they can trust and befriend, to share and truly become one with the adopted culture. The other choice is to isolate oneself and only see the worst in the society.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Craig, Iran has more than a handful of rockers although I’m not sure how good they are or if they can hold a candle to Hendrix or Clapton. Iranian youth are in love with American culture (oops! I forgot, according to Tahereh US doesn’t have culture!).

    You can see them breakdancing in this video and this one.

    They also love basketball and got in trouble when they emulated their favorite NBA stars by adorning their bodies with tatoos.

    Interesting that a country with a 5000+ year history and culture is stealing and adopting the “non-existent” culture of the US :)

    Could it be that it is morally, culturally, economically (and otherwise) bankrupt?

    Nah, couldn’t be that. I’m sure it is something else.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Craig, Iran has more than a handful of rockers although I’m not sure how good they are or if they can hold a candle to Hendrix or Clapton. Iranian youth are in love with American culture (oops! I forgot, according to Tahereh US doesn’t have culture!).

    You can see them breakdancing in this video and this one.

    They also love basketball and got in trouble when they emulated their favorite NBA stars by adorning their bodies with tatoos.

    Interesting that a country with a 5000+ year history and culture is stealing and adopting the “non-existent” culture of the US :)

    Could it be that it is morally, culturally, economically (and otherwise) bankrupt?

    Nah, couldn’t be that. I’m sure it is something else.

  • Craig Parke

    Baquia wrote:

    “Thank you for your comments. My suggestion to you is that you change the way you think about your place in the world and your circumstances will accordingly change. I base this on Baha’u’llah’s counsel to love all and to be part of humanity, not just the Baha’i Faith or Iran or any other country.”

    That’s right, Tahereh. You need to get less Abrahamicie more New Agey. You need to start reading more Shirley MacLaine.

    As an educated person I am sure and as a student of world literature I know you must understand the deep comsic understanding of the knowledge of World Ages in Homer’s “Ulysses”.

    The most recent film on the story of Ulysses and, therefore, on the topic of World Ages and, therefore, the theme of Manifestations and Divine Cycles was the great Coen Brother’s “O Brother Where Art Thou”.

    “The Man of Constant of Sorrow” = The Christ = the Manifestation (wink! wink! get it?)

    Things really start cook’in when the Divine Message for the new World Age “gets on the radio”.

    You just need to get more “Old Timey” babe, and things will start to pick up for ya!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfTUvFj6kvc

    TRY to look through the DISGUISES and get the Christ symbolism here! You’re in America now. Try to see with your own eyes and get on the “Pappy Flour Hour”! This is a marvelous film about spiritual archetypes in the passage of world age, just like the great work of world literature “Ulysses”. Man, did these people have some fun making this movie that was completely over the heads of everyone! the screenwriters in Hollywood are really, really smart people. What a job to have!

    And, man, did I enjoy this Hindu and Buddhist riff on maya!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPjhEsZr8Nw

    Goodnight all!

  • Craig Parke

    Baquia wrote:

    “Thank you for your comments. My suggestion to you is that you change the way you think about your place in the world and your circumstances will accordingly change. I base this on Baha’u’llah’s counsel to love all and to be part of humanity, not just the Baha’i Faith or Iran or any other country.”

    That’s right, Tahereh. You need to get less Abrahamicie more New Agey. You need to start reading more Shirley MacLaine.

    As an educated person I am sure and as a student of world literature I know you must understand the deep comsic understanding of the knowledge of World Ages in Homer’s “Ulysses”.

    The most recent film on the story of Ulysses and, therefore, on the topic of World Ages and, therefore, the theme of Manifestations and Divine Cycles was the great Coen Brother’s “O Brother Where Art Thou”.

    “The Man of Constant of Sorrow” = The Christ = the Manifestation (wink! wink! get it?)

    Things really start cook’in when the Divine Message for the new World Age “gets on the radio”.

    You just need to get more “Old Timey” babe, and things will start to pick up for ya!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfTUvFj6kvc

    TRY to look through the DISGUISES and get the Christ symbolism here! You’re in America now. Try to see with your own eyes and get on the “Pappy Flour Hour”! This is a marvelous film about spiritual archetypes in the passage of world age, just like the great work of world literature “Ulysses”. Man, did these people have some fun making this movie that was completely over the heads of everyone! the screenwriters in Hollywood are really, really smart people. What a job to have!

    And, man, did I enjoy this Hindu and Buddhist riff on maya!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPjhEsZr8Nw

    Goodnight all!

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Hot Dang! The Soggy Bottom Boys!

    I dare you to not move when you hear this song!

    Now I’ve got a hankerin’ for steak fried chicken and greens.

  • http://www.bahairants.com Baquia

    Hot Dang! The Soggy Bottom Boys!

    I dare you to not move when you hear this song!

    Now I’ve got a hankerin’ for steak fried chicken and greens.

  • http://www.wahidazal.com wahidazal66@gmail.com

    For the cacophony chorus of Iran haters here, beginning with the two New Zealanders who have absolutely no connection to Iranian culture or her people and yet dare to pontificate on things they know nothing of, I dare you to listen to this interview:
    http://www.wnyc.org/shows/lopate/episodes/2008/09/30

    Apparently, Comrade Marshall, the Iranian Theocracy is more and more having to answer to no one, least of all Bahaim or her international collage of paid lobbyists, thanks to certain Western governments who allowed these Theocrats to play the chess match of a lifetime in a clash of Civilizations with the West and actually win. And with rising petroleum costs they even have more money to show for it.

    It’s the economy, stupid…

    Wahid

  • http://www.wahidazal.com wahidazal66@gmail.com

    For the cacophony chorus of Iran haters here, beginning with the two New Zealanders who have absolutely no connection to Iranian culture or her people and yet dare to pontificate on things they know nothing of, I dare you to listen to this interview:
    http://www.wnyc.org/shows/lopate/episodes/2008/09/30

    Apparently, Comrade Marshall, the Iranian Theocracy is more and more having to answer to no one, least of all Bahaim or her international collage of paid lobbyists, thanks to certain Western governments who allowed these Theocrats to play the chess match of a lifetime in a clash of Civilizations with the West and actually win. And with rising petroleum costs they even have more money to show for it.

    It’s the economy, stupid…

    Wahid

  • http://www.wahidazal.com wahidazal66@gmail.com

    Craig Parke,

    I once recommended the Alsatian metaphysician and Egyptologist Rene Schwaller de Lubicz to you. I see you have learned nothing from the man, and maybe even haven’t read him at all. Schwaller and his wife Isha were not New Agers, and in fact belong to a sub-culture of politically Synarchist and culturally Neo-Traditionalist European intellectuals that are doggedly anti-Atlantean (meaning, North American) and against its pretentious and totally empty counter-spiritual culture that is now embodied in the New Age you are so (ignorantly) vociferous to champion everywhere.

    More and more such Schwallerian resonating voices, whether openly or otherwise – as admirers of Schwaller himself or as outright Evolian-Guenion-Corbians such as I – are tout court rejecting wholesale the empty and cancerous disease which is your capitalist pseudo-democratic (rule of the sudra) Western society with its hypocritical, soul-less and totally malefic underpinnings, directions and motivations. If they hail from Traditional cultures, such as Iran, more and more they are also realizing the complete farce that is the secular West’s cultural propaganda against the East, and how such propaganda has always been in the service of agendas of hegemony against these Traditional civilizations.

    I have news for you and your type, Mr Parke. The pendulum of the West and its corrosive secular, materialist civilization has swung for the very last time and your counter-civilization has finally been exposed for what it is in this time of its long overdue collapse. So let me recommend you prepare yourself accordingly and also tell you that you ought to consider that you have no idea what you are talking about. As such I challenge you – as well as those self-styled literati such as Sen McGlinn – to get your head around the writings of one of few Europeans in the past 100 years who actually fully understood what your counter-civilization was all about, the forces intrinsic and extrinsic to its movement, and who wrote the most sweeping and unassailable indictments of it ever penned – and that is Rene Guenon. I dare you to read attentively his THE REIGN OF QUANTITY AND THE SIGN OF THE TIMES and come back with the kind of ignorant (and all too typically American know-nothing triumphalist) dismissal of Tahareh above.

    Here is a link to said book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Reign-Quantity-Signs-Times/dp/0900588675

    I also invite you to look into the following documentary currently airing on Australian television:
    http://www.sbs.com.au/firstaustralians/

    Wahid

  • http://www.wahidazal.com wahidazal66@gmail.com

    Craig Parke,

    I once recommended the Alsatian metaphysician and Egyptologist Rene Schwaller de Lubicz to you. I see you have learned nothing from the man, and maybe even haven’t read him at all. Schwaller and his wife Isha were not New Agers, and in fact belong to a sub-culture of politically Synarchist and culturally Neo-Traditionalist European intellectuals that are doggedly anti-Atlantean (meaning, North American) and against its pretentious and totally empty counter-spiritual culture that is now embodied in the New Age you are so (ignorantly) vociferous to champion everywhere.

    More and more such Schwallerian resonating voices, whether openly or otherwise – as admirers of Schwaller himself or as outright Evolian-Guenion-Corbians such as I – are tout court rejecting wholesale the empty and cancerous disease which is your capitalist pseudo-democratic (rule of the sudra) Western society with its hypocritical, soul-less and totally malefic underpinnings, directions and motivations. If they hail from Traditional cultures, such as Iran, more and more they are also realizing the complete farce that is the secular West’s cultural propaganda against the East, and how such propaganda has always been in the service of agendas of hegemony against these Traditional civilizations.

    I have news for you and your type, Mr Parke. The pendulum of the West and its corrosive secular, materialist civilization has swung for the very last time and your counter-civilization has finally been exposed for what it is in this time of its long overdue collapse. So let me recommend you prepare yourself accordingly and also tell you that you ought to consider that you have no idea what you are talking about. As such I challenge you – as well as those self-styled literati such as Sen McGlinn – to get your head around the writings of one of few Europeans in the past 100 years who actually fully understood what your counter-civilization was all about, the forces intrinsic and extrinsic to its movement, and who wrote the most sweeping and unassailable indictments of it ever penned – and that is Rene Guenon. I dare you to read attentively his THE REIGN OF QUANTITY AND THE SIGN OF THE TIMES and come back with the kind of ignorant (and all too typically American know-nothing triumphalist) dismissal of Tahareh above.

    Here is a link to said book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Reign-Quantity-Signs-Times/dp/0900588675

    I also invite you to look into the following documentary currently airing on Australian television:
    http://www.sbs.com.au/firstaustralians/

    Wahid

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="58094"]Craig Parke,

    I once recommended the Alsatian metaphysician and Egyptologist Rene Schwaller de Lubicz to you. I see you have learned nothing from the man, and maybe even haven’t read him at all. Schwaller and his wife Isha were not New Agers, and in fact belong to a sub-culture of politically Synarchist and culturally Neo-Traditionalist European intellectuals that are doggedly anti-Atlantean (meaning, North American) and against its pretentious and totally empty counter-spiritual culture that is now embodied in the New Age you are so (ignorantly) vociferous to champion everywhere.

    Wahid[/quote]

    Wahid,

    I have read five of Rene Schwaller de Lubicz books by now. I sincerely thank you for that very important knowledge tip! The man’s writings are supernal. If you are referring to my comment about Shirley MacLaine in your diatribe, IT WAS A JOKE. You do know what a joke is, don’t you?

    After all, as I have said, I met Kurt Vonnegut face to face in NYC back in 1983 and by my reckoning that gives me the right by Cosmic Divine Geometry (see Schwaller de Lubicz) to make jokes for the rest of my life. Or are your Islamic genes kicking in and you want to get at the controls of an American built Boeing 767 (can they build airplanes of THAT technical magnitude with the down town Julie Brown crack engineers of Iran?) and kill yourself and as many other people as possible with you in a fit of self hating cultural rage? Mohammad Atta, who refused to shake hands with women, didn’t have a secret career as a stand up comedian now did he? Didn’t Ayahtollah Koehmeni say that “There is no fun in Islam” or something to that effect? He was right. There isn’t.

    Actually the writings of Zachariah Sitchin are starting to make some kind of perfect sense to me. The epicenter people seem to be the most disturbed in the genetic experiment gone terribly wrong.

    Along with the Neocon ideology and the incredible financial crisis we are facing, both were caused largely from the unfortunate genes from the Middle East too. Wink. Wink.

    The only long range solution is this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izYTskwE0As

    The day will come on this planet when every woman on Earth will realize that it is her duty to stop f****** men from the Middle East.

    What a great day that will be and I look forward to it!

    Take your “Traditional Societies” from the impaired Middle East and jam them where the sun don’t shine.

    I got a lot of inspiration from Baha’u’llah and I love to read Rumi but I’ll take my chances on the road of life with Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson.

    Have a nice day!

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="58094"]Craig Parke,

    I once recommended the Alsatian metaphysician and Egyptologist Rene Schwaller de Lubicz to you. I see you have learned nothing from the man, and maybe even haven’t read him at all. Schwaller and his wife Isha were not New Agers, and in fact belong to a sub-culture of politically Synarchist and culturally Neo-Traditionalist European intellectuals that are doggedly anti-Atlantean (meaning, North American) and against its pretentious and totally empty counter-spiritual culture that is now embodied in the New Age you are so (ignorantly) vociferous to champion everywhere.

    Wahid[/quote]

    Wahid,

    I have read five of Rene Schwaller de Lubicz books by now. I sincerely thank you for that very important knowledge tip! The man’s writings are supernal. If you are referring to my comment about Shirley MacLaine in your diatribe, IT WAS A JOKE. You do know what a joke is, don’t you?

    After all, as I have said, I met Kurt Vonnegut face to face in NYC back in 1983 and by my reckoning that gives me the right by Cosmic Divine Geometry (see Schwaller de Lubicz) to make jokes for the rest of my life. Or are your Islamic genes kicking in and you want to get at the controls of an American built Boeing 767 (can they build airplanes of THAT technical magnitude with the down town Julie Brown crack engineers of Iran?) and kill yourself and as many other people as possible with you in a fit of self hating cultural rage? Mohammad Atta, who refused to shake hands with women, didn’t have a secret career as a stand up comedian now did he? Didn’t Ayahtollah Koehmeni say that “There is no fun in Islam” or something to that effect? He was right. There isn’t.

    Actually the writings of Zachariah Sitchin are starting to make some kind of perfect sense to me. The epicenter people seem to be the most disturbed in the genetic experiment gone terribly wrong.

    Along with the Neocon ideology and the incredible financial crisis we are facing, both were caused largely from the unfortunate genes from the Middle East too. Wink. Wink.

    The only long range solution is this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izYTskwE0As

    The day will come on this planet when every woman on Earth will realize that it is her duty to stop f****** men from the Middle East.

    What a great day that will be and I look forward to it!

    Take your “Traditional Societies” from the impaired Middle East and jam them where the sun don’t shine.

    I got a lot of inspiration from Baha’u’llah and I love to read Rumi but I’ll take my chances on the road of life with Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson.

    Have a nice day!

  • http://www.wahidazal66.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment="58094"]Craig Parke,

    Take your “Traditional Societies” from the impaired Middle East and jam them where the sun don’t shine.

    Have a nice day![/quote]

    At the moment it appears our “Traditional societies” and impairment have taken your Counter-Traditional modern American civilizational cancer for the ride of a lifetime and are fast shoving it where your sun don’t shine, in case you’ve been asleep lately. So whatever your white yankee patriotic indignation be at the fact that you are a racist hypocrite, it changes nothing that a nation and a people you consider “inferior” and “backward” have veritably check-mated your almighty military together with its so-called economic prowess and political power BIG TIME in a matter of a few short years. You are losing everywhere.

    Let’s recap: You are presently losing in Afghanistan the same way you got whupped badly in Vietnam. In Latin and South America your country and its values and its dirty politics and presence are universally hated and despised across board. Viva Hugo Chavez! The Iraqis – including those same puppets you helped install – cannot wait to get rid of you (and they will, shortly). And, finally, to add salt to your open wound: you’re about to get an African with a Muslim father as your 44th President who will graciously bow to the invevitable coup de grace, viz. the end of American power in the Middle East and the rise of Iran as the regional super-power.

    As for 9/11: no none with even half a brain in their head believes the tall tale about a group of 19 disorganized individuals with no extensive aircraft piloting experience could direct two planes bullseye into the Word Trade Center – twice! -, and thereby structurally take down those two buildings both perfectly in a matter of an hour and a half whilst another one (#7) would be taken down later which hadn’t even been hit or severely impacted. You want to believe that story, go ahead! Chumphood is an all time American virtue and pastime.

    As for your purported humor: sadly, after your public fantasy play-act qua dream about murdering a “black man” (not a white uhj member but a black one), I think the only humor here is to see you without your white sheets.

    “The chickens have come home to roost” – Malcolm X

    “No, no, no. Not God bless America. God damn America!” – Rev. Jeremiah Wright

  • http://www.wahidazal66.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment="58094"]Craig Parke,

    Take your “Traditional Societies” from the impaired Middle East and jam them where the sun don’t shine.

    Have a nice day![/quote]

    At the moment it appears our “Traditional societies” and impairment have taken your Counter-Traditional modern American civilizational cancer for the ride of a lifetime and are fast shoving it where your sun don’t shine, in case you’ve been asleep lately. So whatever your white yankee patriotic indignation be at the fact that you are a racist hypocrite, it changes nothing that a nation and a people you consider “inferior” and “backward” have veritably check-mated your almighty military together with its so-called economic prowess and political power BIG TIME in a matter of a few short years. You are losing everywhere.

    Let’s recap: You are presently losing in Afghanistan the same way you got whupped badly in Vietnam. In Latin and South America your country and its values and its dirty politics and presence are universally hated and despised across board. Viva Hugo Chavez! The Iraqis – including those same puppets you helped install – cannot wait to get rid of you (and they will, shortly). And, finally, to add salt to your open wound: you’re about to get an African with a Muslim father as your 44th President who will graciously bow to the invevitable coup de grace, viz. the end of American power in the Middle East and the rise of Iran as the regional super-power.

    As for 9/11: no none with even half a brain in their head believes the tall tale about a group of 19 disorganized individuals with no extensive aircraft piloting experience could direct two planes bullseye into the Word Trade Center – twice! -, and thereby structurally take down those two buildings both perfectly in a matter of an hour and a half whilst another one (#7) would be taken down later which hadn’t even been hit or severely impacted. You want to believe that story, go ahead! Chumphood is an all time American virtue and pastime.

    As for your purported humor: sadly, after your public fantasy play-act qua dream about murdering a “black man” (not a white uhj member but a black one), I think the only humor here is to see you without your white sheets.

    “The chickens have come home to roost” – Malcolm X

    “No, no, no. Not God bless America. God damn America!” – Rev. Jeremiah Wright

  • Pingback: “Let him rather glory in this, that he loves his kind” at Baha’i Rants

  • ep

    Among the Bourgeoisophobes – Why the Europeans and Arabs, each in their own way, hate America and Israel.
    by David Brooks
    04/15/2002, Volume 007, Issue 30

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/content/public/articles/000/000/001/102gwtnf.asp

    AROUND 1830, a group of French artists and intellectuals looked around and noticed that people who were their spiritual inferiors were running the world. Suddenly a large crowd of merchants, managers, and traders were making lots of money, living in the big houses, and holding the key posts. They had none of the high style of the aristocracy, or even the earthy integrity of the peasants. Instead, they were gross. They were vulgar materialists, shallow conformists, and self-absorbed philistines, who half the time failed even to acknowledge their moral and spiritual inferiority to the artists and intellectuals. What’s more, it was their very mediocrity that accounted for their success. Through some screw-up in the great scheme of the universe, their narrow-minded greed had brought them vast wealth, unstoppable power, and growing social prestige.

    Naturally, the artists and intellectuals were outraged. Hatred of the bourgeoisie became the official emotion of the French intelligentsia. Stendhal said traders and merchants made him want to “weep and vomit at the same time.” Flaubert thought they were “plodding and avaricious.” Hatred of the bourgeoisie, he wrote, “is the beginning of all virtue.” He signed his letters “Bourgeoisophobus” to show how much he despised “stupid grocers and their ilk.”

    Of all the great creeds of the 19th century, pretty much the only one still thriving is this one, bourgeoisophobia. Marxism is dead. Freudianism is dead. Social Darwinism is dead, along with all those theories about racial purity that grew up around it. But the emotions and reactions that Flaubert,
    Stendhal, and all the others articulated in the 1830s are still with us, bigger than ever. In fact, bourgeoisophobia, which has flowered variously and spread to places as diverse as Baghdad, Ramallah, and Beijing, is the major reactionary creed of our age.

    This is because today, in much of the world’s eyes, two peoples–the Americans and the Jews–have emerged as the great exemplars of undeserved success. Americans and Israelis, in this view, are the money-mad molochs of the earth, the vulgarizers of morals, corrupters of culture, and proselytizers of idolatrous values. These two nations, it is said, practice conquest capitalism, overrunning poorer nations and exploiting weaker neighbors in their endless desire for more and more. These two peoples, the Americans and the Jews, in the view of the bourgeoisophobes, thrive precisely because they are spiritually stunted. It is their obliviousness to the holy things in life, their feverish energy, their injustice, their shallow pursuit of power and gain, that allow them to build fortunes, construct weapons, and play the role of hyperpower.

    And so just as the French intellectuals of the 1830s rose up to despise the traders and bankers, certain people today rise up to shock, humiliate, and dream of destroying America and Israel. Today’s bourgeoisophobes burn with the same sense of unjust inferiority. They experience the same humiliation because there is nothing they can do to thwart the growing might of their enemies. They rage and rage. Only today’s bourgeoisophobes are not just artists and intellectuals. They are as likely to be terrorists and suicide bombers. They teach in madrassas, where they are careful not to instruct their students in the sort of practical knowledge that dominates bourgeois schools. They are Muslim clerics who incite hatred and violence. They are erudite Europeans who burn with humiliation because they know, deep down, that both America and Israel possess a vitality and heroism that their nations once had but no longer do.
    . . .

  • ep

    Among the Bourgeoisophobes – Why the Europeans and Arabs, each in their own way, hate America and Israel.
    by David Brooks
    04/15/2002, Volume 007, Issue 30

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/content/public/articles/000/000/001/102gwtnf.asp

    AROUND 1830, a group of French artists and intellectuals looked around and noticed that people who were their spiritual inferiors were running the world. Suddenly a large crowd of merchants, managers, and traders were making lots of money, living in the big houses, and holding the key posts. They had none of the high style of the aristocracy, or even the earthy integrity of the peasants. Instead, they were gross. They were vulgar materialists, shallow conformists, and self-absorbed philistines, who half the time failed even to acknowledge their moral and spiritual inferiority to the artists and intellectuals. What’s more, it was their very mediocrity that accounted for their success. Through some screw-up in the great scheme of the universe, their narrow-minded greed had brought them vast wealth, unstoppable power, and growing social prestige.

    Naturally, the artists and intellectuals were outraged. Hatred of the bourgeoisie became the official emotion of the French intelligentsia. Stendhal said traders and merchants made him want to “weep and vomit at the same time.” Flaubert thought they were “plodding and avaricious.” Hatred of the bourgeoisie, he wrote, “is the beginning of all virtue.” He signed his letters “Bourgeoisophobus” to show how much he despised “stupid grocers and their ilk.”

    Of all the great creeds of the 19th century, pretty much the only one still thriving is this one, bourgeoisophobia. Marxism is dead. Freudianism is dead. Social Darwinism is dead, along with all those theories about racial purity that grew up around it. But the emotions and reactions that Flaubert,
    Stendhal, and all the others articulated in the 1830s are still with us, bigger than ever. In fact, bourgeoisophobia, which has flowered variously and spread to places as diverse as Baghdad, Ramallah, and Beijing, is the major reactionary creed of our age.

    This is because today, in much of the world’s eyes, two peoples–the Americans and the Jews–have emerged as the great exemplars of undeserved success. Americans and Israelis, in this view, are the money-mad molochs of the earth, the vulgarizers of morals, corrupters of culture, and proselytizers of idolatrous values. These two nations, it is said, practice conquest capitalism, overrunning poorer nations and exploiting weaker neighbors in their endless desire for more and more. These two peoples, the Americans and the Jews, in the view of the bourgeoisophobes, thrive precisely because they are spiritually stunted. It is their obliviousness to the holy things in life, their feverish energy, their injustice, their shallow pursuit of power and gain, that allow them to build fortunes, construct weapons, and play the role of hyperpower.

    And so just as the French intellectuals of the 1830s rose up to despise the traders and bankers, certain people today rise up to shock, humiliate, and dream of destroying America and Israel. Today’s bourgeoisophobes burn with the same sense of unjust inferiority. They experience the same humiliation because there is nothing they can do to thwart the growing might of their enemies. They rage and rage. Only today’s bourgeoisophobes are not just artists and intellectuals. They are as likely to be terrorists and suicide bombers. They teach in madrassas, where they are careful not to instruct their students in the sort of practical knowledge that dominates bourgeois schools. They are Muslim clerics who incite hatred and violence. They are erudite Europeans who burn with humiliation because they know, deep down, that both America and Israel possess a vitality and heroism that their nations once had but no longer do.
    . . .

  • http://www.wahidazal.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment=""][...] sadly, I’ve noticed this tendency in other Baha’is from Iran to boast about being [...][/quote]

    And the answer to that typpically myopic rightwing American propagandistic drivel and bassakwards analysis posted by Eric Pierce is,
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jan/13/joe-plumber-war-correspondent-israel-gaza

    Joe the Plumber berates Israeli press for not being patriotic enough

    Fledgling war correspondent Samuel Wurzelbacher visits Israel’s frontline city of Sderot but says he can’t think of the right question

    Joe the Plumber – aka Samuel Wurzelbacher, made famous by challenging Barack Obama’s tax plans – has begun his new job as a reporter covering the Gaza war by berating the Israeli press for not being patriotic enough.

    The fledgling war correspondent for Pajamas Media website spent his first day on the job in the frontline Israeli city of Sderot, which has borne the brunt of Hamas rocket attacks. He said he had rarely seen such suffering.

    “The people of Sderot can’t do normal things day to day, like get soap in their eyes in the shower, for fear a rocket might come in,” he said. “I’m sure they’re taking quick showers. I know I would.”

    Wurzelbacher said he thought foreign criticism of Israel’s actions in Gaza was misplaced.

    “When someone hits me, I’m going to unload on the boy. And if the rest of the world doesn’t understand that, then I’m sorry,” he said.

    And then he rounded on the Israeli reporters whose newspapers have been criticised by some as no better than cheerleaders for the war. Wurzelbacher thought they hadn’t been supportive enough.

    “It makes me sick to see the way you behave. You guys need to be protective of your homes, your children, your family,” he said.

    Having answered a few questions himself, Joe the Plumber was suddenly called on to get back to being a reporter.

    “I have thousands of questions but I can’t think of the right one,” he said.

    No wonder the rest of the world thinks of Americans as dangerous retards!

  • http://www.wahidazal.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment=""][...] sadly, I’ve noticed this tendency in other Baha’is from Iran to boast about being [...][/quote]

    And the answer to that typpically myopic rightwing American propagandistic drivel and bassakwards analysis posted by Eric Pierce is,
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jan/13/joe-plumber-war-correspondent-israel-gaza

    Joe the Plumber berates Israeli press for not being patriotic enough

    Fledgling war correspondent Samuel Wurzelbacher visits Israel’s frontline city of Sderot but says he can’t think of the right question

    Joe the Plumber – aka Samuel Wurzelbacher, made famous by challenging Barack Obama’s tax plans – has begun his new job as a reporter covering the Gaza war by berating the Israeli press for not being patriotic enough.

    The fledgling war correspondent for Pajamas Media website spent his first day on the job in the frontline Israeli city of Sderot, which has borne the brunt of Hamas rocket attacks. He said he had rarely seen such suffering.

    “The people of Sderot can’t do normal things day to day, like get soap in their eyes in the shower, for fear a rocket might come in,” he said. “I’m sure they’re taking quick showers. I know I would.”

    Wurzelbacher said he thought foreign criticism of Israel’s actions in Gaza was misplaced.

    “When someone hits me, I’m going to unload on the boy. And if the rest of the world doesn’t understand that, then I’m sorry,” he said.

    And then he rounded on the Israeli reporters whose newspapers have been criticised by some as no better than cheerleaders for the war. Wurzelbacher thought they hadn’t been supportive enough.

    “It makes me sick to see the way you behave. You guys need to be protective of your homes, your children, your family,” he said.

    Having answered a few questions himself, Joe the Plumber was suddenly called on to get back to being a reporter.

    “I have thousands of questions but I can’t think of the right one,” he said.

    No wonder the rest of the world thinks of Americans as dangerous retards!

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="60971"]

    Wahid wrote:

    No wonder the rest of the world thinks of Americans as dangerous retards![/quote]

    Wahid,

    As an American, I must say that with “Joe the Plumber” you really DO have a point. The man is an utter moron. An absolutely clueless human being. Not even the Ruhi Full Sequence of Courses taken over and over with strobe lights whirling in a sleep deprived North Korean Communist Party hypnotic induced haze could save him from his own mentality. His mind and how it works is indeed a cosmic mystery.

  • Craig Parke

    [quote comment="60971"]

    Wahid wrote:

    No wonder the rest of the world thinks of Americans as dangerous retards![/quote]

    Wahid,

    As an American, I must say that with “Joe the Plumber” you really DO have a point. The man is an utter moron. An absolutely clueless human being. Not even the Ruhi Full Sequence of Courses taken over and over with strobe lights whirling in a sleep deprived North Korean Communist Party hypnotic induced haze could save him from his own mentality. His mind and how it works is indeed a cosmic mystery.

  • http://www.wahidazal.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment=""][...] sadly, I’ve noticed this tendency in other Baha’is from Iran to boast about being [...][/quote]

    Craig,

    Consider that article with its “bourgeois-phobia” thesis no different than an intellectualized version of Joe the Plumber via the medium of print. The argument is thoroughly moronic and ahistorical; but it is the typical nonsense churned out endlessly from clueless conservative American (pseudo-)intellectuals. The rest of the world has no “bourgeois-phobia” in the manner which that articles stipulates simply because the whole edifice of the Amero-Israeli bourgeois state and economy subsists in large measure on the looting and plundering of the resources of other nations. This is not envy. This is simply justified rage at blatant and inexusable theft.

  • http://www.wahidazal.com Wahid Azal

    [quote comment=""][...] sadly, I’ve noticed this tendency in other Baha’is from Iran to boast about being [...][/quote]

    Craig,

    Consider that article with its “bourgeois-phobia” thesis no different than an intellectualized version of Joe the Plumber via the medium of print. The argument is thoroughly moronic and ahistorical; but it is the typical nonsense churned out endlessly from clueless conservative American (pseudo-)intellectuals. The rest of the world has no “bourgeois-phobia” in the manner which that articles stipulates simply because the whole edifice of the Amero-Israeli bourgeois state and economy subsists in large measure on the looting and plundering of the resources of other nations. This is not envy. This is simply justified rage at blatant and inexusable theft.

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