By Roya Monajem, Tehran
One of roya's readers is X who nearly always leaves some comments at the end of her writings which sound like sharp criticisms. roya does her best to stay impartial and examine them carefully to find out whether X has any points there or not. For that she needs to understand X. There are two techniques for that, either she has to put herself in X's position which is to some extent impossible as they are strangers and the only thing they might share is their Iranian blood (in case they do) or to look for roya's X, meaning a roya doing the same thing to somebody else.
Quite accidentally today was one of those days when roya's X revealed herself because of reading a book which will soon appear in the book market -getting increasingly meager as the result of unprecedented censorship here - on the hot topic of the day throughout the world, i.e. the way to reach Nirvana, Bliss, God, Happiness....
According to modern western psychology, the cause of roya's harsh criticisms meaning anger - showing its cocktail by the comments she wrote on the corners of that book for the author - is called projection. Which means? She is angry because the other person is mirroring to her what she likes to deny.
And what might she be denying?
Oh! My goodness!
More or less what X wrote at the end of roya's last essay, which was: "In fact" that is what I had in mind for a long time reading her writings. But then I reaized her references to the higher caliber of human thoughts serves no purpose in her writings if you expunge her last stop in a pitiful contemporary political bungalow. Besides I noticed her understandings of seemingly deep concepts are "in fact" perfunctory and rudimentary, in other words pretentious. You may want to scrole back and read my comment to her last piece here too. She still refers to Einstein in a mind set we used to do when I was in high school..." (exact quotation by copy & paste).
There is no doubt that there must be a roya like the one X describes. Who doesn't boast sometimes? Everybody is the One - by whose whatever real or imaginary quality - Rostam is the Knight! As an Old Persian proverb says.
Yet, the reason for roya's 'references to higher caliber of human thoughts' is to distinguish herself from those - like the author of the aforementioned book- who steal other people's ideas and pretend they are theirs. Unfortunately, a very common practice among modern Iranians these days! How many of our present authorities were found to have forged academic certificates! Let alone stealing other people's articles and researches and publishing or registering them under their own personal names.
Yet, it seems this is what happens in all cultures to various degrees. It is called plagiarism. roya learned the word while translating Nietzsche's books. That must be the main reason for the birth of copy-right in the west.
What a word is this word 'right'! How many rivers of blood have flown on this planet, and are still flowing, as the result of its search and attempts made to attain it?! Particularly, for the sake of one called: Right of freedom of expression. How much more human blood should be sacrificed and shed for it? For how long more is this attitude of "I am Right, you are Wrong," most beautifully exposed by Dr. Edward De Bono in his book with the same title, is going to last?
Late Mehrdad Bahar, the contemporary Iranian mythologist, taught me there are two kinds of criticisms. One is made to ruin the other and the second to bring about improvement. Remembering his advice, and also the good old proverb: What is the point of pouring salt on somebody's wound, unless as a remedy, plus being totally exhausted of and nauseated by fault-finding roya, it is a few years now that I have promised myself never to criticize- at least loudly- unless I can have a solution for the subject of the criticism made. Now after a few years I see what a good technique it has turned out to be as a practice for positive thinking too. This together with constant remembering of Oscar Wilde's opening words in his masterpiece The Picture of Dorian Gray, which say: "Artist is one who creates beautiful things," gradually revolutionized my mind. The third promise made was: Try not to repeat anything in what I write for Payvand. The site that all Iranians should be thankful to its creators for covering all news about Iran in the most impartial possible way for so many years now. The fourth was what I learned from Gurdjieff: try not to express negative thoughts and emotions, which bring us Iranians back to our immemorial slogan: good thoughts, words and deeds. As the Farsi slang goes: marg man (death to me) look at where we are standing at present!
Now that I have explained the reason for using 'high caliber human thoughts' let us look at the question of 'egoism' which is the root of all irreconcilable conflicts of opinions and oppositions.
Everybody has heard this very common saying: Know yourself, to know your higher self, god-creator. Looking at it quite earthily, this self, according to one's memory consists of a child to a grown up and includes not only what one has actually went through in reality - as a film of one's life could show - but also one's thoughts, imagination, dreams, aspirations in one word the imaginary self-image we create for ourselves. Disputes usually originate from this second part, i.e. how we evaluate ourselves and how much this evaluation matches with the reality of our being. So the question is: how can one as a human being know where one actually and in reality stands in the spectrum covering from a very petty self - like that of a small child - to a higher self ending with one which is in the image of god which actually means to be the creator of one's personal reality and life. That is to stop being a puppet of outside?
Can it be one's achievements including artistic, scientific creations?
Can it be one's wealth?
Can it be one's fame?
Can it be one's good name?
Can it be one's piety, innocence, and devotion?
Can it be one's honesty?
Can it be one's compassion?
Yet is any of them worth anything - despite their worth - if the price paid is disease and discomfort?
In this new century and astrological era, when all past values have been re-evaluated as Nietzsche wished, and humanity and the earth have paid enough for human Egoism, where one stands in the above spectrum -petty self to higher self- seems to be determined by the degree of positive energy one spreads around, or in other words, how much love, hope and motivation one can stimulate in oneself and thus others.
Sooner or later as the rule of nature ordains, there will be a change here. After all that this country has gone through in the past 30 years, the devastating state it is going through at the moment, the only thing that may save it from a civil war, revolution and similar bloody experiences repeated on this land and elsewhere throughout the human history, is an extreme alertness combined with 'love of humanity and the mother earth.' For that it seems we need to have a realistic evaluation of ourselves in order to allow and make room for anybody with better capacities, abilities and experience to move and work. We have all realized by now that beautiful slogans do not bring us bread, well-fare and a constructive stimulating atmosphere to live in and enjoy the blessing of life. For that it seems we also need to realize that the era of :I am Right, you are Wrong - the root of all disputes and wars - is fortunately over. So if we have to criticize let us install this intention in ourselves to do so for the purpose of improvement and only on the condition that we have a 'better' solution. It seems the time has arrived when the long question of whether it is first the politico-social system which must be put right for a better world to come or the individuals should reach a certain level of being to create such politico-social system is getting resolved. Whether we want it or not, and despite all educational manipulations and media brainwashing, people are on average much more educated and politically conscious throughout the world. That is perhaps why the Iranian slogan: Where is my vote, could touch the hearts of other nations to support the movement here.
Wondering whether that "pitiful contemporary political bungalow" mentioned by X is this country or it means a totally different thing, taking it to mean Iran, isn't it as the result of our attitudes and actions that it has turned to a 'bungalow' and of a 'pitiful' kind because its headsmen are most inhumanly 'expunging' an increasing number of Rostams in any ways they can with UN keeping more or less completely silent.
There is a story that Rajnish Osho recounts an old story about a man - a "serial killer" in our language, with a difficult Indian name - who lived at the same time of Buddha. The man had promised himself to kill 1000 people and in order not to forget the number, he cut one of their little fingers and made a necklace of them. Once the figures start to rise and the man proved to by quite resolute in fulfilling his wish, the area was gradually evacuated with guards standing on the roads warning passengers about their inevitable fate if they insisted to continue their journey along that road. The only one who dared to pass the forbidden boundaries was the killer's mother. When he had already killed 999 people and time kept passing without finding his last victim, he warns his mother: If I don't kill another person before your next visit, then I have to kill you. And so even the mother stopped visiting him, until one day Buddha and a great number of his followers reached that forbidden land and were stopped by the guard. After hearing the story, Buddha tells the guard that he would be very happy if his death helps another man to reach his life goal and aspiration and despite his follower's fearful warnings, he continues his walk alone. To make the story short, the happy ending is that the killer falls in love with Buddha. When faced with his followers' repugnant indignation for seeing their master exonerating such a devil, Buddha tells them: True that he took so many lives and created so much pain and suffering for the inhabitants of this place, which whether we want it or not is over and done. However, considering the degree of his determination, perseverance, and now his honest regret, shamefulness and repentance, imagine how much more sincerely he would try to be and do just the opposite.... or something like that. No need to emphasize that this is just a literal quotation.
Could we trust that devil-man?
In the above story it is said that while watching the process of the killer's transformation and how he was getting hesitant to kill his last 'different' victim - which meant only one step to reach his life-aspiration and his falling in love with Buddha, he asks the killer to let him have his final wish before. "This is the ethics of execution," Buddha told him. After getting his approval, Buddha requests him to go and cut him a branch of white blossoms from a tree nearby which the man willingly does and chooses the most beautiful branch as can be expected from any lover who wants to give flowers to his beloved. But as soon as he turns back from the blossom tree toward Buddha, he hears Buddha shouting: Stop! That was half of my wish. The second part is to put it back!
The "poor" killer was so shocked by what he heard that he first thought his initial evaluation of assuming that Buddha must have been mad to risk his life despite all warnings was right. Crying that loud, he added: But this is impossible! In reply, Buddha said: One can destroy only that which one can recreate... or something like that to make it shortest. Gandhi and Nelson Mandela have already showed us that it is possible to forgive torturers and killers.
Nothing more to add except may our hearts be filled with a loving determination to create beautiful thoughts in our minds, pleasant emotions in our hearts, together with a force strong enough to overcome all the hatred we might carry in our genes against our human kind!
... Payvand News - 11/16/09 ... --