Freedom for all

The Bahais and higher education in Iran


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Freedom for all
by Ahmad Batebi
04-Sep-2008
 

Ahmad Batebi (b. 1977) came to international notice through his appearance on the 17 July, 1999, cover of The Economist magazine, holding up a shirt splattered with the blood of a fellow protester. This photo, which has been called “an icon for Iran’s student reform movement”, was taken during the Iranian student protests of July 1999 in Tehran. Following its publication, Batebi was arrested, tried in closed-door proceedings, found guilty of “creating street unrest”, and sentenced to death. After seven years of torture and imprisonment, he managed to escape, and it is believed that he now lives in the United States. Mr. Batebi is not associated with the Bahai community.(1) The following essay was first published on Tuesday, 2 September 2008, in Persian in RoozOnline. All footnotes were contributed by the translator. -- Ahang Rabbani.

From the first hours of 27 July 2008, the results of the nationwide university entrance examination(2) were available on the official website of the National Organization for Educational Assessment.(3)

However, after entering their personal data on the registration website, most of the Bahai applicants were confronted with the strange system response, “incomplete file”. At present there are no exact statistics on how many Bahai applicants have been rejected on the base of “incomplete file”; in light of the imprisonment of the leaders of the Bahai community in Iran, perhaps such statistics will never become available through official means.

However, “incomplete file” is the most perplexing response to student applicants in place of an actual diploma. This is because if the file of a student is indeed missing some important piece of information such that that he is disqualified from receiving a diploma, then according to the regulations of the Organization for Assessment that student is disbarred from participation in the national examination, and under no circumstances would a permit card be issued for him to attend such an entrance exam.

Interestingly enough, alleging that the file is incomplete means that Bahai applicants can no longer appeal to the country’s judiciary for recourse or to outside sources, because under such conditions it is impossible to show that the file has actually been completed.

The same situation for the Bahai students occurred last year as well, but unfortunately repeated and extensive appeals yielded no action and no investigation by the government, the parliament, the judiciary, or any of the oversight agencies. It is understood that the same pattern will be repeated again this year and that once more, a large contingent of the brightest students of Iran will be deprived of higher education – the most natural right of every citizen.

Even if the Bahai youth of Iran were allowed to participate and pass college entrance examinations, they would still not be immune from the menace of a vengeful ideological government. To illustrate this point, I draw the attention of the esteemed readers to a letter of suffering by Hesam Mithaqi – a student deprived of the right to education:

"In 1385 Sh [2006] I participated in the nationwide college entrance examination and was accepted in the bachelor program for English translation in the Sanai Institute of Advanced Studies in Isfahan.

"Early in the first semester, our professor in the Islamic studies class inquired, 'Do we have any religious minorities in the class?' Miss Rezai [a Bahai], a Christian student and I declared that we were among the religious minorities. I also added that I intended to minor in Islamic studies. The instructor then asked me to name my religion, but since I knew that mentioning the word 'Bahai' would not be prudent, I avoided a direct answer. However, the instructor insisted and I stated that I followed the Bahai Faith.

"After that session, Miss Rezai and I together went to the instructor and suggested that in view of the pervasive circumstances it would be best for him to avoid a discussion of the Bahai Faith in the class and university, since it might result in complications for us, and even for him. He accepted and from that date no such discussion took place in our sessions.

"At the conclusion of the second semester and after we had received our transcripts, we were notified on 14/4/86 [5 July 2007] that back in Farvardin [March 2007] the university had received official instructions for our expulsion. In response, the school authorities had written to their superiors explaining their unwillingness to expel any student in the middle of a semester, and requesting a reconsideration of the original decision. However, they had been confronted with a hostile response. Consequently, they decided to send us along with a letter to the Organization for Assessment so they could determine our status.(4)

"After we had gone to the aforesaid Organization and some time had passed, we were told to refer back to the university as their decision would be communicated to the school. However, we stated, 'We must return to school with your decision.' We were then delivered into the custody of the Organization and told to refer to the Organization’s office in Tehran, on Karim-Khan Zand Avenue, for a response. Also, the reference number of a letter was given to us (86/4/18, m/1/270) and we were informed that the letter had already been sent to the Organization for Assessment’s office in Tehran.

"When we visited the Organization’s office in Tehran, we met with Dr. Nurbakhsh. He said that he had worked diligently to secure the rights of the Bahais and was laboring to secure an avenue for our university attendance. He also suggested that we should not approach various governmental offices as it would bear no fruit.

"After visiting the above-mentioned office, we went to the Science Ministry and there learned that a letter sent by our university to that Ministry had gone missing! However, one of the officials indicated that the said letter was with Dr. Muslemi. When we approached Dr. Muslemi, he denied all knowledge and said that he had sent the file to the Organization for Assessment.

"At the same time, I wrote a letter to Isfahan’s representative to the Islamic Parliament, Dr. Kamran, although his secretary would not give me the letter’s reference number. I also wrote via email to many other members of the Parliament and the office of the President, all of which went unanswered.

"To this day, I continue visiting the offices of the Science Ministry, the Organization for Assessment, the Agency for Revolutionary Education, and offices of representatives of the Parliament and other governmental agencies. However, no logical response has been given to this date, and everyone pretends that they are uninvolved and refers me to other offices.

"Now that two semesters have passed since my dismissal from the university, I have not received an official letter of expulsion. In accordance with the regulations of the Science Ministry, if a student fails to attend two semesters his expulsion is issued automatically. Therefore, I am now considered an expelled student.

"Also, I have tried to receive exemption from military service and – unbelievably! – they have me recorded as a student in the Sanai Institute of Advanced Studies. Because of my exemption as a “student”, therefore they have refused to grant me a general exemption.

It is bizarre that Bahai youth are barred from attending universities, but must enlist for military service."

Article 30 of the Islamic Republic’s constitution requires the government to provide all citizens with free education up to secondary school, and to expand free higher education to the extent required by the country for attaining self-sufficiency.

However, after the Islamic Revolution we have persistently witnessed that nearly all Bahai students have been expelled from Iran’s institutions of higher learning because of their religion, and none were permitted to attend universities.(5)

Moreover, starting four years ago, outwardly permission was granted for Bahai students to enroll in universities. However, every year saw a large segment of these students prevented from enrolling in schools for various excuses, such as incompleteness of files, and those who were able to enroll were mostly expelled on the basis that they were Bahais.

Separate from these difficulties that the Bahai youth of Iran have been confronting, this summer has witnessed many diverse incidents of persecutions visited upon the Bahai communities in many cities of Iran.

Moreover, the leadership of the Bahai community was seized [on 14 May 2008] and to this date remains in Evin prison. These seven Bahais are: Mahvash Sabet; Fariba Kamalabadi; Afif Naeimi; Saeid Rezaie; Vahid Tizfahm; Jamaloddin Khanjani; and Behrouz Tavakkoli.(6)

Your browser may not support display of this image.

These individuals are incarcerated in section 209, administered by the Security and Intelligence Ministry. For the first time, on 20 June 2008 they were allowed a brief contact with their families; in more recent days they have been permitted a second brief contact with their loved ones. However, Behrouz Tavakkoli has been denied all communications with the outside world.

According to reports, the period of their imprisonment has been renewed, and they continue to languish in solitary confinement – despite the fact that Jamaloddin Khanjani and Behrouz Tavakkoli suffer from various ailments, including digestive and skin conditions.

In the course of these events, an interesting development is the proclamation of Ayatollah Montezeri regarding the civil rights of the Bahais of Iran. He, as one of the highest ranking clerics outside of government, openly proclaimed:

"In the Name of God,

"With greetings,

"The congregation of Bahaism not having the heavenly book like those of Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians in the constitution [of the Islamic republic of Iran], are not considered to be among the religious minorities. However, since they are citizens of this country, they have the rights of citizens and the right to live in this country. Furthermore, they must benefit from Islamic compassion, which is stressed in Quran and by the religious authorities."
(7)

The civil rights mentioned above should inevitably include all provisions enunciated in the constitution of the Islamic Republic. In this regard, Article 20 of that document proclaims:

All citizens of the country, both men and women, equally enjoy the protection of the law and enjoy all human, political, economic, social, and cultural rights, in conformity with Islamic criteria.

And Articles 22, 23, 28, and 30, respectively, state:

Article 22: The dignity, life, property, rights, residence, and occupation of the individual are inviolate, except in cases sanctioned by law.

Article 23: The investigation of an individual’s beliefs is forbidden, and no one may be molested or taken to task simply for holding a certain belief.

Article 28: (1) Everyone has the right to choose any occupation he wishes, if it is not contrary to Islam and the public interests, and does not infringe the rights of others. (2) The government has the duty, with due consideration of the need of society for different kinds of work, to provide every citizen with the opportunity to work, and to create equal conditions for obtaining it.

Article 30: The government must provide all citizens with free education up to secondary school, and must expand free higher education to the extent required by the country for attaining self-sufficiency.

Without doubt, the problem of the Islamic regime with the Bahai Faith is based in ideology. However, the question is: Why is the Shiite sect ruling over the people of Iran, despite the fact that the Bahai Faith believes and respects the foundation of all other religions, especially Islam, is solely attacking the Bahais when other religious minorities, such as the Christians, the Jews or the Zoroastrians are not under similar pressure? From the perspective of this writer, the Shiite persecution has two reasons:

* The appearance of this religion after Islam, as the last divine religion, which according to their belief, is sent by Almighty God for the salvation of the world of humanity.

* The close proximity of certain teachings of the Bahai Faith to key beliefs of the governmental authorities, such as the phenomenon of the Lord of the Age, or the doctrine of Mahdaviyat, or eschatological views.(8) The authorities firmly believe that these issues are the foremost foundation of the divine legitimacy of the Islamic regime, while simultaneously they are also the largest differences between this sect (namely, the Shiites) and all other sects of Islam.

The Bahais believe that the Qaim of the House of Muhammad(9) was manifested in 1844 and has left behind a copious body of writings. Further, the Qaim prophesized the imminent appearance of another Person and that Person is Baha’u’llah, the founder of the Bahai Faith. Also, the Bahais believe that the teachings and exhortations of the Bahai Faith are consistent with the needs of the present age of humanity, the current state of maturity and development of the world, and the requirements of the people over the course of the next several centuries, and that it is this religion that will prepare mankind for the next stage of its global civilization.

This belief of Bahais from the perspective of Shi‘i law is erroneous. This belief is also the principle foundation for the pressure on the followers of the Bahai Faith, and has caused the basic human rights and civil liberties of the vast majority of our Bahai fellow-citizens, despite being native Iranians, to be denied to this day.

In accordance with a certain traditional reading of Shi‘i law, in a society in which a majority are Muslim, the people of the Book are not permitted to proselytize their religion. Therefore, in accordance with the same understanding, in such a society discussion of Bahai beliefs is also forbidden. However, it is imperative to point out that the phenomena of understanding and discernment is personal, and is the sole prerogative of the individual. One person cannot think for another person.

Similarly, every belief is personal – and religious convictions are in like manner personal and not societal. Consequently, to attain to faith is a matter of personal conviction – one cannot order a society to accept or reject certain beliefs. Nor can a society be instructed through a public declaration or announcement to renew or change the beliefs of a people. Therefore, it should be evident that when it comes to matters of belief and religious persuasion, the views of a certain leader or a school of thought or even government cannot be overrule the will of individuals in that society.

Belief and convictions to any religion is a matter of faith and personal understanding. Therefore, it is illogical to expect that such an acceptance could be left to the judgment of others. It is absurd to think that some other person can act as the agent of belief of all others, and on behalf of other people he would be charged to study, to ponder, to doubt, to question, to meditate, to trust in God and to ask for His confirmations and eventually to come to believe. When it comes to gaining faith, one cannot accept a deputy or surrogate.

To recognize and come to faith requires the most personal and deepest exercise of one’s conscience. Each of us, in our own unique way, arrives at this recognition and acceptance which entails the innermost aspects of our spiritual and psychological commitment. How can such a thing be delegated to someone else?

From another direction this question can be raised: Are individual Muslims exempt from the duty to study, contemplate and decide on the validity or the falsehood of claims to Qaimiyyat? Or has God, His traditions, divine teachings and Islamic law left this matter exclusively for the inquiry of religious leaders and the jurists of the age?

In accordance with Shi‘i jurisprudence, is every Muslim not duty bound to first consider the claim of every claimant with his own eyes, mind and discernment, and to look for the right signs and evidences, and only afterwards, in case it is needed, to consult with ecclesiastics and ask for their views? Is each and every Muslim not obligated to carefully consider, read and assess with his own mind the writings of such claimants to Qaimiyyat, and only then, if necessary, to consult with others, perhaps even ranking clerics?

Based on what principle or judgment should Muslims make their beliefs, or disbeliefs, the same, and dependent on the views of religious clerics and mullahs? Every Muslim has the spiritual and religious duty to fully investigate the truth or the falsehood of the claim to Qaimiyyat by himself. The right to come to a conclusion regarding the genuineness or fabrication of a claim to the Qaimiyyat by its various claimants belongs to all people.

Divine tradition has always been that the Messengers of God have addressed each and every person directly, and not merely the religious clerics of the age (such as the absurd claim of the Islamic Republic to have exclusive contact with the Lord of the Age). Therefore, the acceptance or rejection of the claim to Qaimiyyat is a matter for all people and not the sole domain of the ‘ulama. The divine message is for all and not just for a few.

Whether to accept or reject the Bahai Faith and all its exhortations and teachings, like any other spiritual doctrine, requires deep contemplation, study and research.

For what reason then is the Islamic Republic, having thorough command over all financial and media resources of the nation, and maintaining belief and insistence on its own divine and absolutely unquestioned mandate and ideology (which is a belief in Islam through the Rule of the Religious Jurists) and its persistent injection of this belief into all elements of the nation, so afraid of any contact between the people and not only the Bahais but every religious minority group?

Is it not the case that the government believes that Islam (its version of the Rule of the Religious Jurists) is the most complete, unadulterated and precious religious thought, and no other religion enshrines the same truth and validity? Therefore, why are the authorities so afraid of the followers of other religions, particularly the Bahais?

Is it not true that a Muslim should be able to ask his questions from others in complete liberty, and that others are also enjoined to have the freedom to share and expound without any restriction or constraint their beliefs and religious convictions? Given this fact, then the Bahais in all Islamic societies must be given complete and unhindered freedom of expression.

NOTES
(1) For further details on Ahmad Batebi see here and related links.

(2) Since university seats are limited in Iran, a nationwide examination is administered to identify the best candidates for higher education. This examination is typically given once a year and is known as the National Entrance Examination [Konkúr].

(3) The National Organization for Educational Assessment and Evaluation is a division of Iran’s Ministry of Science, Research and Technology. This organization is responsible for administering nationwide tests which identify candidates for college entrance.

(4) The letters given to the students are numbered: 86/391/4, 86/390/4 and 86/390/4.

(5) For the entire period of 1980-2004, no Bahai was admitted to any institution of higher education in Iran. Since 2004, a handful of Bahais have gained admittance. In order to educate its youth, the Bahai community of Iran has formed its own university, where a worldwide network of instructors provide lectures through electronic and internet means. This university has now been forced to suspend its operations as well at the demand of authorities in Tehran.

(6) For details of the arrest and imprisonment of these Bahai leaders, see here.

(7) This decree was issued on 14 May 2008. The Persian original can be found here.

(8) Islam teaches that at the end of time, the Promised Mahdi will appear and will right all wrongs. The Bahais believe that this promise was fulfilled in the Person of Baha’u’llah, the Founder of their religion.

(9) Qaim means the One Who will arise. For the Muslims He represents the Promised One, and for the Shi‘is He also represents the Twelfth Imam, Who went into hiding in 873 AD, and is expected to reappear at the “end of time” to bring justice and equity to the world.


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fyazhari

Freedom for all

by fyazhari on

It is refreshing to see that freedom of religion in the Iranian society is being explored and examined.


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Who is stronger?

by Cheryl.An (not verified) on

Who is stronger: one man who knows the truth or thousands who know it not?

The one is stronger than the thousands.

Mr. Batebi is such a strong man. For one man, a Manifestation of God, arose and revealed His truth and five million arose from the one. They seem to be doubling in numbers every quarter of a century. It will not be long until they are a billion strong, united and not divided. It will come about with just the simple telling of truths from one heart to many others. That is how I came to be a Baha'i. No one beat me on the head or on the soles of my feet or locked me up. I read the most beautiful words ever uttered to this world and I arose with those millions and all because of one man. Just one.

Cheryl An


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For "The Friends"

by scb (not verified) on

For "The Friends"

They have appear again
on my screen;
Seven mild figures
Known as "The Friends"

I see them each day
Meet their fathers
Mothers, cousins,
Aunts

We do not speak of the place where they are . . .

In my town
There are more Friends
Who chant beautiful prayers,
Serve fragrant rice and
Scented tea

We speak softly of
Unity, Peace
And Infinite Love

And ponder the world
The difficult odds
With unbearable pain
With bogali poulo

We contemplate
The aroma that rises from
Attars of rose on our wrists

This is how
The gray, grim nights will finally end
How prison doors will fly open

Stay with me, Friend
This is the place where they are
Speak to me
From your heart


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Discrimination

by shivan (not verified) on

Very interesting article. I would recommend it to my friends.


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What Happened Mr. Batebi?

by ./. (not verified) on

It appears that your crusade to save Iranian students have hit snags. Is that becuase you were discredited by them inside Iran?


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Thank you Mr. Batebi

by Anonymous on

Wonderful artice Mr. Batebi. What you are demanding is justice. Bahá'u'lláh says: "The best beloved of all things in My sight is Justice; turn not away therefrom.... By its aid thou shalt see with thine own eyes and not through the eyes of others, and shalt know of thine own konwledge and not through the knowledge of thy neighbour. Ponder this in thy heart; how it behoveth thee to be."

Best regards from Norway


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Great article... "The only

by Cyrus Parsa (not verified) on

Great article... "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." I'm glad Ahmad Batebi is doing something. God bless him!


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Thank you Ahmed Batebi

by SWF Durham NC (not verified) on

Thank you, Ahmed Batebi, for your courageous support of human rights.


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Dear Reader, The purpose of

by Arash Kamangir (not verified) on

Dear Reader,

The purpose of this article isn’t to advertise the Baha’i Faith, nor is it to make people interested in it. The article, with its mentioning of different types of discrimination against Baha’is, shows that not only does Iranian government deny the very basic right of an individual to freely believe in what he likes, but also it denies other basic civic rights (the right to higher education, work for government, etc.) to its citizens. A democratic government respects individual’s right to believe, as a personal choice, and offers civic rights to all its citizens regardless of their personal believes (such as one’s religious belief). Iranian citizens’ consensus is that Islamic government, unlike what it claims in its motto (Esteghlal, AZADI …), is far from being a democracy. And this non democratic ruling behavior of Iranian regime, not only the discrimination against Baha’is (although that too), is what Iranian citizens want to change.


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Thank you Ahmed Batebi

by Shayda (not verified) on

Thank you, Ahmed Batebi, for being a defendor of all of the human race. I appreciate your article and all you have gone through. May peace bless your life.


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Why Advertise Bahaism? Why not?!

by Ramin007 (not verified) on

Dear Iranian friend,

do you prefer your religion forced on you by invading armies and on pain of death?

Do you prefer a sword to your throat or a hefty tax to encourage you to choose a religion?!

The Baha'i Faith is more widespread than Islam in little more than 150 years, without anyone ever being killed or forced into it.

"An invasion of armies can be resisted,
but not an idea whose time has come."
Victor Hugo

regards
Ramin


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Re: Why advertise Bahaism

by Baha19 (not verified) on

Batebi is not "advertising" the Baha'i Faith so much as he is speaking out against the injustice dealt towards it in Iran. The religion is by far the most oppressed in Iran and has been ever since Falsafi and Borujerdi began their ordeals to crush the Faith after doing so with the Tudeh party in the 50s - it's like a dark cloud over that part of Iran's history. Batebi is simply trying to dissipate that dark cloud and help spread the knowledge of that unjust oppression. It's not about sympathy or pity: it's about trying to make a wrong right.


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Thank you Mr Batebi for your

by may (not verified) on

Thank you Mr Batebi for your article, I have been reading about this reliogion and I so far come to this conclusion that the clergymen in iran know that if the Bahai's teach their believes in Iran, there would be no free ride for them,so the easy way is to blame Bahai's for everything for the last few decades and keep people in the dark


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Why advertise Bahaism

by Anonymous iranian (not verified) on

Why there is a need for Baha'is to advertise their faith or give others the notion that they are victims so they can gain sympathy .If people are interested in their religion they would do their own research and chose Baha'i as their religion.


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Response to Baha20

by Baha19 (not verified) on

Baha20, as a matter of fact I wrote that article with the help of a non-Baha'i, and if you will look at the ACTUAL NOTES AND REFERENCES cited in almost EVERY OTHER SENTENCE of that ENTIRE article, you will see that there are several Baha'i as well as non-Baha'i sources, which means that the entire article itself is a compilation of HOLISTIC viewpoints. Not just from one side, but from both a Baha'i and non-Baha'i perspective. That means there can be no bias.

Allow me to elaborate: Wikipedia is only unreliable IF the information found in one of its articles is UNSOURCED, and you should know that IF an article lacks sources, a stamp will be placed on the Wikipedia article. There are over 60 notes and citations to be found in the article I showed you - NOT TO MENTION articles on Wikipedia HAVE to be *neutral*, otherwise an unneutral tag is stamped on the article, and that article and be removed if not taken care of. Therefore, it is both a wholly sourced and neutral article - perfect for the world's largest online encyclopedia.

You may find it interesting that at one point, both the unneutral and unsourced stamps WERE placed on that Wikipedia article regarding "ties to other powers," but they were automatically removed accordingly by the English Wikipedia staff after the co-author and myself of the article took the time to make it both more objective and more reliable as a source by listing a vast amount of references as well as a bibliography.

Thanks.


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Re: Bahaism (To Dr Pouran Rostamian) (To: Baha19)

by Baha20 (not verified) on

Baha19,
Learn from me. I am Baha20!. Wikipedia that you have cited is not a reliable source, although more reliable than "anti-iranian parasite's web sites".

Thanks


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Great article!

by Dorothy (not verified) on

Great article!


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Baha'is during the Pahlavi regime

by Homa Irandust (not verified) on

The ill-informed individuals who suggest that the Baha'i community enjoyed ease during the Pahlavi regime, or that some Baha'is had a role in the Shah's government, will do well to read the following article posted right here on Iranian.com, by a great non-Baha'i scholar:

http://iranian.com/main/2008/sacrificing-innoc...


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Islamic Shah!

by Persian (not verified) on

پوران خانم

من هیچ دینی ندارم.

مگر محمد رضا شاه پهلوی نبود که برای دلشاد کردن علمای شیعه جلوی فلسفی را ازاد گذاشت که هر کاری بر ضد بهاییان بکند و هر دروغی در مورد بهاییان در رادیو و کلیه جراید بگوید??
حتی در زمان محمد رضا شاه در زمان فلسفی تعداد زیادی از بهاییان به هند و پاکستان پناهنده شدند.

مگر اقای تیموری و بسیاری دیگر از بهاییان را در شاهرود در زمان پهلوی به بدترین وضعی نکشتن??و دست اندرکاران در زمان شاه هیچ کاری نکردند!!!
مگر رضا شاه نبود که دکتر ایادی را که بهایی بود او را به خاطر بهایی بودن به زندان انداخت و مجبور شد او را ازاد کند چون هیچ دکتر دیگر نتوانست دخترش را معالجه کند??

پوران خانم شما که اینقدر "کم حافظه" هستی چطور دکتر شدی??!!

میگن سیب زمینی در ایران گران شده.چی فکر میکنی این یکی را هم گردن بهایی ها بندازیم??

شاه بد بود.این حضرات که خوبند! شوهر شما هم که از راه بدر شده!میگم چطوره شما به ایران برگردید?

ایام به کام


Maral

Short memory, Dr. Rostamian!

by Maral on

It was during the reign of Mohammad Reza Shah when  a mulla called Falsafi started beoadcasting against Bahais on radio and eventually some Batmanghelij occupied the Bahai centre in Teheran and destroyd the dome. All the job ads were conditioned upon belonging to one of the official religions of Iran, and Bahai was not one of them.


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Re: Bahaism (To Dr Pouran Rostamian)

by Baha19 (not verified) on

Dr Rostamian, that information is incorrect as I have already stated. Please see the section on the Shah and SAVAK in the following article, which has accurate sources rather than hearsay, an element on which many Iranians rely for their information:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegations_of_Bahá'í_involvement_with_other_powers


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Rumors, false

by no name (not verified) on

Rumors, false accusations
Why you guys spend your time achieving someting positive. Spreading rumors like an old lady. GET A LIFE!!!


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Thanks

by Portlander (not verified) on

Thanks for the article! It's so refreshing to hear someone with the courage to speak the truth concerning the plight of the Baha'is in Iran. You've done a great service to humanity!

God bless you and your brothers and sisters...

JMH
Portland, OR


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To Soufi: About Baha'u'llah

by Baha19 (not verified) on

"Thanks to Baha"ollah for creating you !"

We do not believe Baha'u'llah is God. We believe he is a Manifestation of God's divine attributes (virtues like kindness, generosity, etc) - basically a man animated by the Holy Spirit, like Christ, Muhammad, Moses, and others who preceded Baha'u'llah. So basically, those people are as close to God as you can get on this earth, but they are *not* God *himself*. Then we wouldn't really be monotheistic. ;)


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Bahaism

by Dr Pouran Rostamian (not verified) on

Dear All,
During the reign of the Shah the Bahais were in cohoots with him. The Shah favoured the Bahais and most of Savak and the other security apparatus used by the Shah was full of Bahais. Important security positions both inside Iran and in Iranian embassies were held by the Bahais. But then the Shah had to rely on some group whom he could trust and who were loyal to him. The Bahais were this group.
This is one of the reason the Islamic regime hates the Bahais.
My husband Hoshang Salamati is an ardent follower of Bahaism and has read and is reading many books on Bahaism. While working in the Pars Oil and Gas Company in Iran he was propagating Bahaism among his co workers.
Now he is in North Vancouver and together with our sons Babak and Arash they are contemplating of joining the Bahai faith, and if they do then I will be the only non Bahai member of our family.
Doctor Pouran Rostamian
N Van BC Canada


Souri

Thanks yourself

by Souri on

Not Bahaullah. As long as you are able to see "beauty" in a human being, it means you are still a good person. You should level up your positive essence and attitude. Believe me it is possible to make this world a wonderful place. No need to be or become a Bahai for this, just trust your inner goodness and beauty .

PS: Not sure if you know that I am not a Bahai, my friend.


soufi

Re: Soufi (To: souri)

by soufi on

You are too beautiful that I wordsmith a  sentence for you in your response..

 

Thanks to  Baha"ollah for creating you !


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same poster?!! Same truth, different people

by Seagull (not verified) on

Every breath of a sufi must be a ray of light and every word of his mouth an usher-er of universal brotherhood and peace and his every gaze an impulse from that source of universal love.
Sufi you must likewise engage in positive ideals, and be a promoter of good will towards humanity. Like Essa Massih your breath should fulfil the longing souls and your tongue must continually speak the truth.
Engaging in an idle and treacherous discussion such as yours is far from where you may aspire to BE.
Indeed Mr Batebi has attained in my view a degree of enlightenment that is far out of the reach of your envious, slanderous, and paranoid assertions. His qualification, a prisoner of the EVIN, a free child of Iran both in body and spirit. Sir your words at this point only qualify you to be a small time DAJJAL of this thread.
I hope you will reconsider your actions and rise up to the basics of the title you may have rightfully chosen for yourself.
It is time to replace the misgivings, the ill-acquired antagonistic nature and the misguided instinct with a free conscience that follows only the mandates of Truth. We all must strive to take POSITIVE steps.


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We love the Bahais!

by Shamse Vazir (not verified) on

If this the only language you understand then let it be. We are not racists nor are we evil. I am not a religious person but I shall not stand for the persecution of minorities. So why don't fanatics just go away.Go back to the dark ages where you are more comfortable in but leave our beloved Iran alone.My home; my beloved Iran is a place where all people of all persuasions are welcome.


ebi amirhosseini

Batebi's weblog

by ebi amirhosseini on