Blogs by Bahais

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Yaran II~ #7Baha’is7years


Seven souls imprisoned for what they believe

The unity of mankind was all they tried to achieve

The right to educate our children within the universities

Higher learning the right of all in our splendid diversities


Seven long years of needless suffering for their Faith

Believing quietly, unobtrusively with true humble praise

The time is now to free these oppressed people in release

Give freely to their families some hope and inner peace

© Carol Campbell 2015 

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Recommended link: Seven Days in Remembrance of Seven Years

Everybody Means Something

Seven Years

On this, the sixth of the seven days of remembrance, I am posting a brief profile of Behrouz Tavakkoli. Profiles of all seven Bahá’í leaders can be found on the Bahá’í World New Service at this link

The seven Baha’i leaders who were initially sentenced to 20 years imprisonment have long served both Iranian society and the Baha’i community. Six of them were arrested on 14 May 2008 at their homes in Tehran. The seventh, Mahvash Sabet, was arrested on 5 March 2008 while on a trip to Mashhad. They were held incommunicado for weeks and were not allowed access to legal counsel for more than a year.

The seven formed the entire membership of the now-disbanded group known as the “Yaran” or “Friends in Iran,” tending to the spiritual and social needs of the 300,000-member Baha’i community of that country.

Mr. Behrouz Tavakkoli

695_06_mr-behrouz-tavakkoliBehrouz Tavakkoli . . . was…

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The Prison Poet is Heard

Stumbling Through the Past

Book cover for Prison Poems Mahvash Sabet, Adapted from the original Persian by Bahiyyih Nakhjavani, Prison Poems, (George Ronald, 2013).

I write if only to stir faint memories of flight
in these wing-bound birds,
to open the cage of the heart for a moment
trapped without words.
For how can one not faint for these women,
beaten so brutally?
How can one not fear for them, suffering
such tyrannical cruelty.

Mahvash Sabet, ‘The Perfume of Poetry’, Prison Poems, p. 32

A woman sits in her prison cell in Iran, poetry flows from her pen. Of all Iran’s prisoners of conscience she and six fellow prisoners are serving the longest sentences of all. A member of a persecuted minority, the charges against them were patently false and their trial transgressed basic standards of legal procedure. The jail door has been slammed shut for a long time.

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Mahvash Sabet’s “The Imaginary Garden”

As always the Yaran are in our thoughts.

the Book of Pain

There was once a woman
green as the spring,
who planted her hands in a garden.
And another woman,
red as her heart
who plucked light from the bars of a prison.
And now here I am
with my own patch of soil,
growing a garden
in this tiny cell,
with poppies of love for each pane.

You need just one flower–
that’s all it takes–
to open the windows of sight.
A single verse
is quite enough
to illumine the eyes with light.

So I’ll tie my bags to the foot of the breeze
and soar high up to the top of the trees
in my garden that grows inside.
And I’ll spread wings to reach you
and soar high to teach you
how windows can open wide.
You don’t need much:
one poppy is all
it takes to open to love.
One verse is sufficient
to fill the…

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“I Won’t Back Down” … for the Baha’is in Iran

Another blog expressing concern for the Yaran. This one from Avrel.

The Trailhead

In 2008, seven Baha’i leaders in Iran — known as the Yaran — were imprisoned on false charges with a 20-year sentence. On the fifth anniversary of their imprisonment, the Baha’i world is raising awareness of them and asking everyone to contact their own national governmental leaders with the request that they condemn the imprisonment of these seven specifically as well as all prisoners of conscience. Despite their rhetoric, Iranian leaders are sensitive to international opinion and susceptible to international pressure. This classic song, first recorded by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, seems to say it all.

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Uncaging the Voice, Uplifting the Spirit – the Poetry of Mavash Sabet

A review of the moving poetry of Mavash Sabet.


‘We shout as loudly as we can but our voices too are caged/and day after day death is denied as well as aid./No one listens, no one hears this wingless bird.’ (Mavash Sabet – ‘The Friends’)

Mavash Sabet’s Prison Poems (George Ronald Press, 2013) have been brought to the English speaking world in delicate and skilful adaptations by Bahiyyih Nakhjavani; she was assisted in this work by both her father and her mother.

Nakhjavani prefers to call them adaptations rather than translations due to the immense difficulty of translating poetry from other languages with absolute accuracy especially with the extra elements of metre and rhyme to combine with meaning and the cultural and spiritual dimensions of language.

It is challenging in the parameters of what should be a short a blog/article to convey the full power and complexity of the spiritual and emotional journey Sabet’s poems will take the reader…

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A heart felt poem, you will be hearing more from Baha’i bloggers on the Yaran and the poetry of Mavash Sabet.


Yaran-i-Iran Yaran-i-Iran

Seven holy souls in captivity

Trying to secure a university

Taking special care of community

Temporary measures for it’s unity


Living their lives in adversity

 One day put them with depravity

Will you recant?” with alacrity

No they all replied with surety


And the crimes? asked with intensity

Facing their tormentors with majesty

Denied basic rights of humanity

No one realized their capacity.


Many years have passed with rapidity

Still their being held, audacity

When will they be freed to university

To educate the friends with spirituality?



You are in my prayers constantly! 



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