IRAN103 - Mourning, Ashura, Rozzehkhooni

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IRAN103 - Mourning, Ashura, Rozzehkhooni

Postby Admzad » Thu Dec 23, 2004 7:38 pm

IRAN103 - Mourning, Ashura, Rozzehkhooni

1- Once an Iranian couple (in their early 40's) came to
stay with me for 2 days from another city. On their first
day, they went to look at the city & came back with the
Video of Haayedeh's Funeral (Shabeh Khatm). They watched
it together & cried. This was their holiday!

Thinking back often I remember women in my extended family
crying when they got together & listened to sad songs.
Were they crying at the Roozegaareh Siaah, aging, lost
parents, lost youth, hard life?

2- Years ago my neighbors were an elderly couple (in their
80's). They were very polite & never spoke with
Hassrat(regret)/Bichaaregi/Zellat. I never heard them
complain about their kids not visiting them, or
Roozegaareh Siaah/talkh.

They were mostly active in their garden. The guy had eye
& heart problems & was hospitalized after a heart attack.
After a week he came back & told me he hated the hospital
& he wanted to be active. A week later he died on a buss
(& not in a hospital bed he hated so much).

I never saw his wife cry. I could see her sad when she
didn't know I was watching her. They must've accepted the
facts that they were old & were going to die soon. She
always tried to look nice & often would put on some make-up
to cover the deep wrinkles on her face. She would always give
me a BIG SMILE when I said hello to her. I knew she loved him
very much & would miss him & unlike Iranian couples there
wasn't much gap between their age.

She always kept busy with the garden or visiting friends
(going bowling) or going to Church). They had no shabbeh-khatm,
no shabbeh-haft, no shabeh-chehel, no sinnehzani, no covering
everywhere with BLACK cloth, no throwing herself on the ground,
no pulling her out, but she loved him & missed him.

I'm sure they must have had some private ceremony, but nothing
to prevent the neighbors from gossip/back-stabbing (Zannikeyeh
bihayyaa). They did NOT live for the 'Mardom'.
They were extremely un-Iranian, but I loved them both.

3- In contrast to 2 above, I once went to the majlesseh tahrim
of a young Iranian who died in a car accident. I knew his
brother. I felt it was a special ceremony & somehow like a theatre.
In this act everybody cries; then in the next act tea & sweets
are served (Befarmaaeed dahhannetoono shireen koneed), but I
was so upset with Boghz in my throat that I couldn't eat & was
not comfortable eating Sweats as if I was in a part!

The mother was Crying & 'talking' to his son "ey vaay, to
cheraa mordi Akbar joon? biyaa injaa beshin man berram jaayeh
to. Ey vaay khoda Mano zallil koneh. Ey vaay didi che khaaky
be sarram shod. …".

The father had covered his face & was crying with his whole
body shaking. He looked totally 'broken' (Shekassteh) &
sometimes talked to his dead son as if he was there. Somebody
on my side said "Haaji kheyly beetaaby mikkoneh".

Many would take a break & would go in the back to tell the kids
to be quiet & have a tea or talk with others who were there.
Oh the face of the small kids seeing their parents crying!
The kids tried to be quiet & sit close to them.

The people would come in & go to the front to say tassliat to
the Daaghdideh parents. The parents spoke with so much
pain/hassrat/bichaareggi. For months I asked the brother
to go out for dinner but he refused.

I did not find any of this funny at all & was most upset &
depressed for weeks thinking.

The way the parents were talking to their dead son reminded
me of Rozzehkhoony (Moharram), where grown-up men cried with
their hand on their face & their whole body shaking & some
hitting their head. Then they had a tea break & talked with each
other while a new aakhond would walk in & some would get up to
say sallaam in Arabic. But to keep the momentum going somebody
would give Sallavaat & the whole crowd would 'participate' &
shout sallavaat. Entertainment, Psycho Therapy, Brain wash,
Manipulation, Socio-Political Advice, Religion & Salvation,
Theatre, Audience participation (Berthold Brecht eat your heart
out!), etc.

Sometimes some people would joke about how big the Shekammeh
Aaghaa was, specially for the out-of-town aakhonds.

In fact this is an important point, Y were most of the jokes
about 'outsiders'? But the strange thing was that if the
stranger Akhond made them to have a good-cry, they would be
his 'moreed'! So is the urge to Domination/hierarchy a factor
here? I mean we mock others to show we are superior to them,
until they prove otherwise, then we become their Moreed?

Could rozzehkhoony pacify people?
They just sit there & listen & weep & let themselves be lectured
& manipulated, without questioning (u can't question GOD!)
or expressing opinion.

And I was thinking about Sinneh Zanni in Ashuraa. How many of
the Laatto Lute would join the Sinneh Zani & how some of them
tried to impress the girls in black Chaadors who were
watching them.

Could a major contributing factor to Iranian culture be the
ASHURA factor or the sallavaat factor:
just shout what the guy in front of the sinneh-zanni says.
Be it Marg-bar-x or jaavid-x, or whatever, as long as
it's a Sho'aar, we shout it loud, the louder the better!
Are we not 'conditioned' for it?

And I was thinking about Shahreh Ghesseh:
Kaari keh mollah mikoneh, mellatto dollah mikoneh, ba
gholhovvallah mikoneh, ...
Did Bizhan see it comming?!

4- I once rang my Aunt in Iran after her husband had died from
natural causes (old age), but she cried so hard saying "Ey
vaay x joon, didi ammatt Zallill shod, Ey vaay x joon
Bichaareh shoddam, Ey vaay …., EY VAAAAAAAAY Ey VAAAAAAAYYYY"
I couldn't say a word from the Boghz in my throat. After what
felt like hours, she said with total Zellat/Bichaaregi "khob
shomaa chetorid? Khosh Hasstid?", but I could talk!
I was so upset & shaken for weeks.

If we believe in the all-mighty & all-knowing GOD, then
should we not accept the fact that it was God's will & not
question it? Why should we always remember the dead with
Zellatt/Bichaaregi/Khaari, why should we not CELEBRATE
their LIFE & who they were?

I sure don't want anybody to even cry after I die & would
like my loved Ones to remember me with fond/loving/HAPPY

Oh the art of the 'Islamic mourning' in Iran, God knows
how deeply it has gone into the Iranian psyche, most of
the music even sounds like mourning.

I would appreciate very much if some kind non-muslim
Iranian souls would write to me/here to tell me their own


I remember some women watching TV saying "Ah in
diggeh kieh? Messleh bannaahaa meemooneh. Hammeh
diggeh khaanandeh shodan!"

Could the point I made about <mocking 'outsiders'
& the urge to Domination/hierarchy> be a factor here?


People laugh for many reasons, sometimes even at
sad jokes. Sometimes they laugh out of frustration.

Not only I never laughed thinking about all this,
I have a bad headache now from reading this before I
posted it a few hrs ago, even though I wrote it 4 weeks ago.

A friend once said tragedy becomes commedy in time.
But I think that would depend on how much u were
burnt by it. If u suffered enough, u won't laugh.
A bitter smile maybe, but not laugh.

So much PAIN that could be avoided.
If only people could develope their BRAIN & learnt to use it.

Sometimes we laugh to relief/release our stress too.


Thanks Morgh & HM for your replies.

I'd love to find where this linking of hair-pulling/zellat/ey-vAy
with Atefeh/love comes from. I mean just because somebody
doesn't cry when their loved-one dies, doesn't prove
lack of love/Atefeh.

Could AshurA/rozehkhoony be a factor here?
I mean if crying was not a feature of the culture, then
people would NOT pay somebody to make them cry would they?
Paying for laugh/comedy maybe, but not crying.

So the crowd had to be 'conditioned' for it, no?
Could it be that with khAleh-zanaki & back stabbing like
being called bi-Atefeh biHayA yazid ... & being afraid
of harfeh-mardom (specially in samll towns where the clergy
must have been Gods), somehow people got conditioned into

I think harfeh-mardom plays an extremly importan role in
the iranian culture: "amAn az herfeh mardom!"
I remember some foozool & lazy women going
around in small towns doing moftkhory & spreading
cruel gossip/rumor. Many knew how ast/bisharm/doroo they were & had
to treat them well.

I know many moved to Tehran(big city) to get away from
the social-pressure/restriction of the small towns, often
caused by Islamic factors. U had to go to masched/rozehkhoony,
u had to behave this way or say this/that, etc.

God knows how much damage has been done just by
this little feature of foozooli/gossip by khAleh-zanakAn & the
pressures put on girls/women
for not being torshideh & behaving this way or
that way. Keeping up with jones in cutlures that
suffer from dictatorship/domination/hierarchy
can be far worst than what we see in the west!

Even women try to get into the act using their
husbad/arbAb wealth & have to be zaneh-arbAb (hAj khAnoom)
& behave this/that way.


Nice post David (as usual!).
I agree with all u said.

When I think way back, to a few trips I had to
small towns in the north in my childhood, I remember:

1- Women/men who worked on the fields seemed much
happier & outgoing. They often sang while working (men side
by side women). They often joked with each other too.
Nobody wore black chAdor!

2- u saw black chAdors in small/big towns!
This is where u had to look 'respectable' & be aware of
But there were exceptions too: I remember this 'old' hAji,
who had 30 yo kids, got caught in a women public bath with
a young woman. Many joked about it.

3- Perhaps this lack of intertainment is a factor
for so much ceremony in rozekhoony. We wash hands & feets
in a ritual first, then we namAz together (physical m
ovement, warm up the body). We then sit around together &
tea with sugar is served, have a chat, relax, watch who is
coming/going, gossip, then listen to speach/cermon, then
rozehkhoony & crying, then salavAt, next another round of
tea & sugar is served, people feeling sabok from crying, & on & on.

4- AshuA was a major source of activities for many families:
they made halvA, sharbat, ..., kids were sent to serve these
to peope, dasteh, ...
Boys showing off in sineh zani when girls looked.
Tazieh in many small towns was a major source of 'entertainment'.
I don't mean to be rude/sarcastic, but in a way
this was a major entertaining activity.

We are talking about towns that had no TV or
cinema & come dusk u could hear the azAn all over
the town & shops closing & people going to masjed.

5- I remember many young boys laughing hysterically when
they saw a horse shAsh, or got excited.
A super major source of entertainment for the kids at least.
Of course there was laughing at fool of the town too, which was
sometimes very cruel coz they picked on mentaly-retarded.

6- Last but not least I remember many young boys talking
about mAdion (mare) & braging about having sex with them.
This I found absolutely shocking, being a big-city boy &
having had a sheltered life.

Considering that many books have been written by some of
major olamAyeh dini about this subject describing when & how
it is OK to do it, this must be an important source of
'entertainment' in small towns/villages.

We must clean UP the cuture first if we want 'democracy' in Iran.


Dear IN,

Thanks for your kind words!

I can't tell u how happy I feel when I see Iranians being KIND to
each other & mean it! Not just to somebody in their hezb/party/group,
but to the 'opposition/enemy'! It is possible guys! I do remember a lot of
kindness from my childhood too!

I got so disgusted by the big Revulsion, that I switched-OFF from
Iran & for 10 years I had so much anger & hate in me towards aakhonds
& anything Islamic & held all Iranians responsible.

For over 10 years, I kept of saying: no not all
Iranians are terrorists/Mullahs/fanatics, no
not-without-my-daughter is not common, no we
don't do female circumcision, ...

After 15 years I discovered y it's been said "dar afv lezzatist keh
dar enteghaam nist". I have not frogotten & will never froget, but
hate & anger are very destructive.

It's been said that to find friends one must close one eye & to keep
them one must sometimes close both eyes. Iranians must learn to
cooperate & not be domineering/dictatorial/hierarchical.

Up to 6 months ago, I did not know who the president was in Iran, or
who the presidents were in 79-2001! Two years ago I looked at some
Iranian chat-site full of the most rakik fohsh, so bad that one guy
pleaded for it to stop. U could argue that the Fohsh-giver was the IRI
agent or some other hezb member trying to cause damage. But the fact
is that it disgusted me again.

Iran has given me too much pain in the last 30 years that I care to
remember. I've seen many of loved-ones loose the spark-of-life in
their eyes & many had heart attacks. Every time I get a picture of
my loved ones from Iran, it makes me depressed for weeks.

I'm sick of these words: sho'aar, enghellab, aazaadi, freedom, hezb, ...
I'd like to see a 'reasonable' government in Iran working towards
welfare of all Iranians of all religions. I doubt if we could have
true democracy in Iran in the next 200 years. We must build the culture
for it first.

Most of my loved-ones are Muslims, so I wouldn't say bad things about
Islam in front of them, and I can't hate them. My love for them goes
beyond religion! Also, the Islam I remember was NOT full of hate/anger.
I'm not saying Islam is good, but it should/can be much better than it
has been in Iran. If most people were intelligent & could THINK, we'd
have less social/religious problems in Iran.

I read a book about this Mullah who turned against IRI, coz he found it
too cruel. He talked about his childhood growing up in Qom(?) & always
being careful not to step on ants! Does anybody remember the name of the
book? IIRC there was 'prophet' in the title.

I've worked in many countries & have had friends from many different
religions. I judge people for who they are, not for their country of
origin or their religion.

I know Islam will be in Iran 200 yrs from now, if Iran as we know it
still exist! It may have less supporters, or more intelligent supporters
, but it will be there. The solution is NOT to KILL all aakhonds. They too
are Iranians. We've had too much HATE!

I'd like Iranians learn to THINK & seek knowledge & use logic/sense &
be compassionate towards life & all living creatures, & learn to LIVE.

But to get there we need to clean the dark spots in the culture &
educate the people. But this is a catch-22 situation. We need a reasonable
government for doing this. And to have that we need to cooperate & work
together: left/right/up/down & Islam! We must learn that we are all in
this sinking boat together!


Is it the the sallavaat factor which causes the following:

(just shout whatever u r told.
Be it Marg-bar-x or jaavid-x, or whatever, as long as
it's a Sho'aar, we shout it loud, the louder the better!)

or the Baabaa-aab-daad factor in schools?

All shouting, the louder the better.

Could it be that all this shouting prevents people from THINKing?

baabaa aab daad, emaam marg daad!
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