Individual vs. State

Iranian cultural heritage and human rights

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Individual vs. State
by Majid Baradar
19-Jun-2011
 

The last prime minister under the Shah of Iran, Shahpour Bakhtiar, in Persian poetry tenor eloquently said, “Iran Harghez Nakhahad Mord“ (Iran will never die). This was about thirty two years ago when the democratic aspiration of Iranians was highly prevalent and he forewarned Iranians to the peril of the Islamic clerical despotic rule. Ironically, Iran fell to a Shi’a Islamic clerical fundamentalist dictatorial ruling. Today, freedom-loving Iranians everywhere are supplementing his word of counsel by their actions that not only the Iranians’ aspiration for a free, tolerant, modern and secular democratic Iran will never die but, it will be ultimately triumphant.

Undoubtedly, thus far the Iran’s state of affairs has failed to create the capacity to securely place Iran on the road to modernity and democracy. This failing theme has been detrimental for Iranians individually, collectively, and as a nation. Subsequently, a deep-rooted shared anguish, uneasiness, and boldness are apparent among Iranians.

In order to claim a rightful and equitable place among civilized and peaceful democratic nations of the world, Iranians need to overcome major internal and external impediments. There is no assurance that Iranians will not receive heart targeting stabs from every direction. Despair and failure will keep overwhelmingly showing their horrid heads at every turn of their attempt to establish rationality, humanity and harmony, and the creation of a peaceful state. However, giving up when despair and failure appear is not part of this spirited Iranian DNA structure and that is a very positive and promising sign. Iranians’ essence was and is to keep contributing to the goodness of humankind and human civilization.

On the path to recovery, we are witnessing endless efforts of Iranians everywhere in and out of Iran. Their constructive and encouraging words and actions for Iran, Iranians, and more explicitly for all of humanity warm everyone’s hearts. In addition, Iranians have used their words and actions against the brutal Islamic fundamentalist dictatorial oppression. Both Iranians and non-Iranians are grateful for their genuine efforts. Iranians wish to preserve Iran as a motherland to Iranians and as an influential contributor to civilization, as well as crave for non-Iranians to safeguard Iran as a historical contributor to the world civilization. In addition, Iranians have come to recognize that stressing upon all Iranian people, regardless of race and/or ethnicity, that being a lawful entity entitled equally as full beneficiary of this geographic articulation is a must. Moreover, Iranians are genuinely attempting to discern fundamental principles that unite them. As a result, the present state of Iranians psyche appears bewildered to some extent. The unity that connects Iranians to each other currently appears to be in need of a different nature. For achieving a harmonious and indispensable unity, the revolutionary route can also be simultaneously and intensely evolutional and cultural action. (Freire, 2007, p. 175)

To rectify past and existing wrongs and tribulations and leap into the 21st century, the pressing challenge is to collectively and so thoroughly define what would Iran’s national principles be that no one would think of arguing otherwise. What would Iranians revere the most as a nation so as to every Iranian mother will verse them merrily into the ears of her newly born Iranian sons and daughters, prattling on her comforting lap? (Jones, 2008)

One premise Iranians can agree on is that Persia (Iran) was founded upon the principle of acknowledging the individual rights. Certain rights (for example: religion and customs) have been essential parts of traditional Persian/Iranian customary laws and practices. Cyrus of Persia (please note that glorification of Iran’s past leader or Persian race is not the intent) perceived his relationship with the people inhabiting his empire to involve mutual obligations and freedoms. Therefore, it is fair to say that Iran’s underpinning accord was a social contract based on ideals that are now considered essential to democracy. What is remarkable about the Iranian history is the ideal of so many people coexisting in harmony and knowledge of that such harmonious coexistence is possible when “rights” of individuals are honored and protected.

Embedded into the Persian/Iranian psyche, therefore, is a great and valuable historical and traditional understanding: one must not sacrifice individual rights and autonomy for the benefit of the state. To date, re-establishing pride and faith in these rights is a legacy and birthright that Iranians appear striving for. One principle appears carved into Iranians’ collective memory and passed from one generation to the next is the necessity of not losing the sight of the primacy of individual and human rights.

Our foremothers and forefathers wished us all well and it will be prudent to heed their wisdoms accordingly. Cherishing and upholding the principles of the Iranian traditional rights, tolerance, freedom, rule of law, equality before the law, Universal Declaration of human rights and responsibilities, democratic participatory governance, diversity, interdependence, and modernity can help Iranians to rectify the wrongs and thrust into the 21st century. Furthermore, a modern perspective of our ancient mindset “Faravahar” for this century can be collectively developed and be heeded by us Iranians so that the future generations will be served well. Certainly, Iranians will progress well by deeming the well-being of current and future Iranian and worldwide generations.

In this spirit, here on this page, you will find an attempt to offer a contemporary perspective on the “Faravahar” (Iranians’ ancient secular wisdom) in favor of preserving this knowledge for future generations. Faravahar is perceived as a humanistic, tolerant, secular, inclusive, non-racial, non- religious, progressive, utilitarian, and forward looking mindset. This undertaking should be considered as another stepping stone towards the direction of our collective efforts to find our lost wisdom so that a new bright, free, advanced, democratic, interdependent, and peaceful Iran can be developed.

AUTHOR
Majid Baradar founded 12Petals Media Group and currently serves as its Development Executive. Majid's vision was to develop a community-production based media group with an emphasis on the "culture of human rights and responsibilities" philosophy >>> 12petals.org
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REFERENCES
1) Jones, Malcom. “Who Was More Important: Lincoln or Darwin?”, Newsweek (June 2008): Print

2) Freire, Paulo. “Pedagogy of the Oppressed”, Continuum International Publishing Group Inc: New York, 2007

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Iranian cultural heritage & human rights -- Individual vs. State

by Majid Baradar on

Dear Iran 2050 – This writing here and the associating page link referenced are all about ideals. This paragraph, for example, states that “One premise Iranians can agree on is that Persia (Iran) was founded upon the principle of acknowledging the individual rights. Certain rights (for example: religion and customs) have been essential parts of traditional Persian/Iranian customary laws and practices. Cyrus of Persia (please note that glorification of Iran’s past leader or Persian race is not the intent) perceived his relationship with the people inhabiting his empire to involve mutual obligations and freedoms. Therefore, it is fair to say that Iran’s underpinning accord was a social contract based on ideals that are now considered essential to democracy. What is remarkable about the Iranian history is the ideal of so many people coexisting in harmony and knowledge of that such harmonious coexistence is possible when “rights” of individuals are honored and protected.”

These writings both clearly stress on the Iranian’s fine cultural heritage and the integration of our ancient cultural wisdom with modern rational thought.

All the best,


Iran 2050

Too much nationalism as

by Iran 2050 on

Too much nationalism as always! Worshipping “Koroush”!! when are we going to wake up?

 

The rest of my posting is copied from another posting I made, please read below: this is regarding Korush and Dariush

“Why do we worship these two? They were kings just like any other kings. They murdered, invaded others and millions of Iranians lives were lost because of their imperialistic ambitions. What did they ever do for Iran? If invading other countries should make us proud, then Mongolians need to be as proud as it can be for Genghis Khan? And Americans of George W!

 

Folks, they were kings like all others. Let’s stop thinking they were saints just because Iran’s territory was widest during their time. That’s a MEDIEVAL way of thinking. This is NOT the mentality of a civilized 21st century individual. It’s funny that we worship Cyrus because he freed the Jews, but we ignore the fact that he enslaved Babylonians during that same campaigns!

 

Worshipping these two and this whole “Aryanism” has become such a liability for us Iranians that the Fascist IRI regime resorts to this ultra-nationalism (border line Fascism) ideology to fool us Iranians to think they’re not unpatriotic after all! Remember Antari Nezhad bringing Cyrus cylinder to Iran?!!!”