“Iran’s greatest concern is weapons of mass repression”, is the headline in the July 11, 2012 issue of Examinerwritten by Randi Dobbs addressing the plight of the mass repression of anyone with ideas including the Baha’i community; much feared by the Islamic Republic Regime. The article eloquently explains:
The Iranian state is at war with its own people — not a military war with armed confrontation, but a war of ideas, nonetheless, and the government is losing. Whether the regime realizes it or not, every Iranian citizen is a soldier in this war and the casualty list includes not just Baha’is but journalists, students, artists, women’s rights advocates and virtually anyone perceived to be at odds with the regime. If the Iranian government has its way, it will pursue new ways to use the Internet to conduct mass surveillance of its own people, further restricting the free flow of information.
What is unique about the Baha’is that has been such a focused target of the Islamic Regime’s oppression and persecution from the very beginning? One obvious guess is that the Baha’i community has the magic combination of peaceful and civilized orientation towards all including the Islamic Regime but at the same time is clear about and committed to its principles, universal values, morals, and high aspirations for the good of all people and betterment of the world including the birth place of their Faith, Iran. The Baha’is are audacious but loving in their standing for the principle of the oneness of all humanity, the oneness of God and the oneness of all religion. They believe that if religion wishes to play a role in the advancement of human civilization, religion must stop dividing and be about uniting all humanity as one family.
This oneness is what the director of the documentary “I AM” Tom Shadyack so effectively has documented. I AM is a 2011 documentary film written, narrated, and directed by Tom Shadyac. The documentary explores Shadyac’s personal journey after a 2007 bicycle accident, “the nature of humanity” and “world’s ever-growing addiction to materialism.”
A group of my colleagues attending Education Under Fire documentary screening seemed angered by the situation of the Baha’i students being banned to attend university in Iran and BIHE faculty arrested and put in prison. They argued that there are many reasons for the cruel and inhumane behavior of the Iranian Islamic Republic Regime towards its noble and peaceful Baha’i citizens. One major reason, they are convinced, is fear of Baha’i ideas and ideals. Another is jealousy of popularity of Baha’i values such as oneness of all mankind, equality of women and men, harmony of science and religion, independent investigation of truth to name a few. They all see that amongst the young and educated population, specially women in Iran, Baha’i ideals opens a window of hope for the future. They are amused that the Islamic Republic Regime can be ignorant to such outrageous degree of the force of ideas that its time has come. The Islamic Republic’s biggest problem which has no cure, they say, is IGNORANCE!!