Societies respect the tears that mothers and loved ones shed on the very ground where their dead are put to rest. Now bulldozers erase those tears. Nothing can erase the memories of the funeral procession: Caskets showered with flowers, the significance of the moment beautifully accessorized, hearts that ache. All now shamelessly desecrated by Iran's Revolutionary Guards.
People are people. Whether [they are] Native American Indians or Chinese in Asia, we all shed tears in the same way. We still bury our dead and pay our respects. We have a certain reverence and once we put our loved ones to rest, we hold them in our hearts and minds so that we can return to their grave site and honor their memory.
Members of the Bahá'í Faith are no different. Like everyone else, they love and respect the departed. Bahá'í's believe in the oneness of humanity; that at the end of the day we are all human, we are all "children of God." People carry on. Yet the memory of loved ones who have died lingers and their graves are prayed over. However, in Iran actions by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards have desecrated Bahá'í cemeteries.
Although there has been a history of such desecration, systematic attacks on Bahá'í grave sites began in earnest in 2011 when Iran's Revolutionary Guards acquired ownership of the land at the Bahá'í cemetery, in Shiraz. According to firsthand reports, in June of 2014
The Guards held a public celebration of their progress in clearing the site. In advance of that celebration, to which the media was invited, they used a heavy roller to compact the ground. A carpet was then laid over a number of graves and the commander of the Guards gave a speech attacking Bahá'í's.
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The demolition began so that Iran could construct a new sports and cultural center. Even with this "business explanation," it is truly hard to understand why this desecration has been condoned. Burial places are sacred and once they are violated they cannot simply be reconstructed.
What if that cemetery was the one place on earth where you could visit the final resting place of your loved ones? What if it was your family? What if those were your tears? No one should have to tolerate such abuse. It violates that sense of humanity we all share. It just isn't right!
What is the Bahá'í Faith?
Bahá'ís believe that all humanity is one family; that men and women are equal; all prejudices must be extinguished; individuals must investigate truth independently; science and religion are in harmony; economic problems are linked to spiritual problems the family and its unity are crucial; there is one God and all major religions are sent from God and World peace is vital!
For more information about the persecution of Bahá'ís, please visit this site.
A hui hou kākou