Iran, a Faith: Imam


Iran, a Faith: Imam
by rosie is roxy is roshan

In 1989, when I was in my twenties, like a good American, I didn’t know much about geopolitics, or even geography, except that I wanted a better world Geopolitically, it was a cataclysmic year. And I wrote a poem about three cataclysmic events that had rocked my view of the world, and which seemed both very remote and very near. The poem had no title. Much later I titled it “1989”. This was the poem:


in Poland people vote

in China people die

in iran the man with the eyebrows

meets his turbaned god in his mosque in the sky

the agitated crowd flocks to the rooftops

in iran maybe people will vote

in iran maybe people will die

probably people will vote and die

the angry crowd rocks the rooftops

and I am troubled

by a great desperate and dictatorial love

for the poles the chinese

and the man with the eyebrows

saying save us we are drowining

to his turbaned god in his mosque in the sky

if I love you can i kill you

ayatollah ayatollah

i am drowning i am drowning


Almost two decades later I found Iran and Iran found me. And then we lost each other again. And then for some reason, part destiny, part choice, and part accident (as I have come to feel that most really important things in a person's life are), we found each other again here. What a strange place this is, isn't it?

When I joined this blogging community two years ago, at its inception, I did it because of a particular blog, where I saw how much you loved each other, and how dictatorial that love was on all sides. And so I thought well it can’t hurt, I’ll give it a shot. And I was very shy but I decided to try to mediate. And surprisingly I had some success, so I stayed. At that time I was Rose T. (the T. stood for Tapurestaan, a place, I felt, that both exists and does not exist, in the Persian imagination, just like Rosie, and Iran for me and for the expat community, and C-space itself).

Rosie T. was a peacemaker, and not a bad one at that. But then things happened here, as things will do, and Rosie is Roxy is not a peacemaker. This is clear. And Rosie is troubled by a great, desperate and dictatorial love within herself as much as the one she still sees in you. Rosie is also deeply by what Obama, who she campaigned for, said yesterday. And by the trials and the murders and what may be of the fate of Iran and the fate of the world. Rosie believes Iran’s historical imperative is to be a light that leads the way for the world. Rosie is very troubled indeed.

But most of all Rosie is troubled with Rosie. This great desperate and dictatorial love exists in us all. It is our individual and historical imperative to transcend the dictatorial part and make the love part pure. Accept it all, embrace it all, and purify it all. Rosie T. always used to say, 'the war begins and ends in oneslef', and now I know better than ever that she was right.

I have to think about it.

There is a concept in Ismaili Shiism, the ‘Imam of One’s Own Being’. It means to have mastery over oneself, over the darker part of oneself. To have mastery over something means first to understand it, then to embrace it, then if necessary to dissolve it. All the great spiritual traditions, at their greatest level, except this concept each in their own way (including the best, btw, of atheism). It means the mastery of oneself, of the best part of oneself over one’s lower self. In Mazdaism, it is called ‘Good thoughts, good words, good deeds’. In Mayahana Buddhism the heart of compassion.

Rosie has a lot to think about. Mousavi has a lot to think about. Khatami, Obama, Ahmadinejad, all have a lot to think about. And so do you.

So let's all try to think about it, shall we?


I wrote that poem exactly two decades ago. I’ve learned a decent bit about and China and certainly Iran, and I myself am going to turn fifty this month I have to think about what I've learned about me. My sign is Leo. The lion and the sun.

Nothing can be mastered until it is understood. Nothing can dissolve until it is understood and embraced.

Vive le roi. Imam of one's own being.

Sing it from the rooftops.



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rosie is roxy is roshan

I want to thank you all for your lovely comments.

by rosie is roxy is roshan on

I have a lot to say and I wanted to say it but I am going to defer. I think the comments on this thread touch on the things that really matter, and that underly the conflicts that are going now on these threads. We are missing the root and the real meaning and it is getting too ugly. I realized, like I said in this blog, that I have been part of all this, and I need to think about it and I mean that. So I don't think right now a conversation here would be helpful to this process. Or anywhere on the site.

I just wanted you to know though that I read you very carefully and I am thinking about that too.



There are no accidents

by Mehdi on

Although we like to think that there is such a thing called accident, the fact is accident is just another one of those mythical creatures like luck. It simply indicates lack of knowledge. We don't know what causes something and we say it was an accident! It is as if we feel ashamed of saying, instead, that we don't know what caused it. There is a feeling of insecurity when we want to admit lack of knowledge. In reality, there is a reason why you keep coming in contact with Iran - maybe deep down you know why. Truth is we are all Iranian, American, Chinese, Mongolian, South African, Israelis, Palestinians, Egyptioans and we are all also members of all the long lost civilizations. 

David ET


by David ET on

Good one, you should post it as a poem 

Multiple Personality Disorder

Green Allah-o-Akbar with ham (Will mullahs ever eat ham?)

by Multiple Personality Disorder on


I am Leo, Leo I Am
I don't like green Allah-o-Akbar with ham
I don't like it here.
I don't like it there.
I don't like it anywhere.
I don't like it in my house.
I don't like it in the mosques.
I don't like it on the rooftops.
I don't like it at night.
I don’t like it recite.
I don't like it in the street.
I don't like in the heat.
I don't like it, I repeat.

if green Allah-o-Akbar can make mullahs go away
I must waive.
You can carve it on my grave.

Leo I Am

David ET

Thanks for sharing Rosie

by David ET on

It is interesting that at a time that Iranians have come together and found unity and common voice 

They also see betrayals 

When some draw lines, the color of blood can not be ignored or denied and people have to chose where to stand and things are more black and white  and easier to recognize who is who and who was whom all along 

Yes , there is always hope 

maziar 58


by maziar 58 on

and I turned half century + 1 today as I told it to my kids. god bless you and your intuitions.  Maziar

rosie is roxy is roshan

I see I left.

by rosie is roxy is roshan on

my notorious typos again. I tend to do it most when I'm feeling...well, when  get a little carried away. Anyway...

please don't try to analyze it too much. It won't work.