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):
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.