Many years ago when I was paying my life’s due to the government as a private in military, on one of those trips that I was coming back home form the holyland of Kurdistan, I met a young student in the bus. He was sitting next to me in the row of seats closer to the dark end of the bus. I was drunk in the happiness of getting away from the smelly beds, disgusting food and suffocating military atmosphere heading towards the light, the feast, and the holly circle of friends.
After a couple of hours that the pleasure of dreaming about my hometown settled I started to notice my 3-hour-long companion next to me. It seemed he was too heading home. However he seemed down. He was not so friendly and seemed to be bothered by something. You know the kids they tend to be troubled by stupid things that makes them do stupid things again and possibly starting a vicious circle of eternal stupidity.
I don’t know why but I have been always, not always but often an optimistic person. I know it’s not my fault. It’s probably due to my IQ as you know psychologists suggest that smarter people are indeed sadder people. Look at our friend Sadegh Hedayat, he was one sad person. We don’t want to mention Freydoun Tonekaboni who went through a whole lot of ordeal, prison and torture but still managed to keep his sense of humor and optimism.
Thus here I am, someone, who is begging for the smell of a fresh Noon-Barbari sitting next to a kid who was a student of university away from the Kurdistan’s havoc at the time. So I slightly tapped on his knee and said, hey wassup?! He was shy but replied with a quiet voice, I’m fine and then dead silence.
It’s been many times that I regretted and wished done something to stop a disaster, an accident, a break up, an angry comment and other minuscule human drama. Back then in my time and scale I used to think if I could cheer up a kid I would be gladly drowned in the pool of pleasure for years. No I am not the follower of Jesus Christ nor a Sufi. But I believe that if you look carefully inside of a human being there is a universe with its vast space, stars, planets and who knows there might be some UFOs.
I tried again and this time asked for what he was there for and why he was there. He slowly opened up to me and said things about his life that I wanted to laugh at when compared it to the life that I was living on. But he was dead serious and was hurt by it.
I tried to give him something that he would never forget and would raise his self-esteem. I started with my recent encounter with Sufis in Sanandaj. I told him how scary it was for a new-comer like me having a face that stands out in a Kurdish crowd sitting amongst people who were sitting mustache by mustache, in a tight and strange crowd.
I forgot to tell you that earlier that year I heard about one well-known Sufi gathering in the city. I got the address and time and got there earlier and reserved myself a good panoramic spot. As the crowd was slowly bunching up I noticed that I was the only one who wasn’t carrying a gun or a knife. At the beginning the crowd was awfully quiet, just coming in and saluting their Sheikh and their Khaneghah with their weird and one of the kind salutations process. But after a good number of them gathered I saw two or three individuals stood up and started pounding on their musical instrument the majestic, all Iranian, all Kurdish, heavenly sounded Daf.
It was beyond any excitement I have ever had in my life. I literally saw my soul separated from my body and devilishly laughed at it. That sound did something to that crowd that no punk rocker could’ve ever dreamed of doing it. People who were in khalseh, the spiritual drunkenness, a moment ago were jumping up and down and screaming from where once their umbilical cord was attached. The sky seemed to be falling and people were ready to stab themselves with their own knives. It was the most ultimate super Khaneghah I have ever been in. This was the XXX rated Khaneghah where you could exercise your zero amendment right from the book of human constitutional right, first edition written by God himself.
After the dust settled and people started to fan out, I stood outside. I lit a cigarette and let the cold wind of Sanandaj’s night coddle my wet hair and sweaty neck. I could hear my ancient ancestors whom their spirits riding on the wind and flowing down from the mountain to whisper in my ears their prehistoric language. I’ve never felt that good in my life.
As I was approaching the end of my story I saw the spark of hope in his eyes. We were finally there. It was close to dawn and traffic in Tehran starting to pick up. I got to the side of the bus to get to my luggage. I saw him there too so I said good-bye. He stopped me and asked me if he could have my name and number. I denied him that. He insisted on just knowing my name but I didn’t give him that one either. I clearly saw that he was puzzled. I said hey bro I want you to know that what I said was true but if you get to know me you might not like me then you’ll think what I told you wasn’t true and that will hurt you even more. My name is not important so see what I am saying. But when I look back I still don’t have the answer to this question if the content is important or the shell, form or the function?