Content. Satisfied. Not wanting more. These are virtues in Iranian / Islamic culture: you should never complain, you should be satisfied with what you have, you should be grateful. These are the hallmarks of a good Moslem. Shaaker. Ghan’ee. Raazi. “Divine discontent” has no meaning for us, neither has “necessity is the mother of invention”. What we have, we should be grateful for, lest it be taken away. Something worse is bound to follow. Nothing bad has gone to be replaced by anything better, as we like to say. Accept what is happening to you. Protesting too much will only lead to worse. As everyone now knows, Iranians are remarkably ineffective, if colourful, protestors- rather, we excel at wheedling and dealing, flattering and nagging. Negotiating, as we call it with dignity. This is our legacy of hundreds of years of cruel crazy monarchs and a culture saturated in a backward and intolerant religion.

And I am not immune to it. See: last year I complained that we had to spend christmas with people who are not the people we most love, and this christmas, I didn’t even have them. I complained of inviting people over too often, now I don’t have those people. The years before, I complained why do I only have one brother here, why can’t I have the others too, and now I don’t even have the one.

But I am a good Iranian, believe me. I am happy with what I have. The complaints are froth on water. I am grateful, I am happy, I am content. Nothing and nobody else matters- the people who matter are here, with me, I spend my days and my nights with them, I devote my hours to them, and that is enough and makes me happy. I want nothing else, not really. This the best time of my life. I know this in my heart. The complaining is in jest, just so the gods and goblins do not become too jealous of my good fortune. That is all. Believe me.


One comment

  1. Good to see that you are always unsatisfied with an empty screen, and therefore continue to write. I guess before Tim Berners-Lee invented the world-wide-web, he was also complaining about the inefficiency of information exchange, and without him we would still depend on sending fax and typewritten letters. It seems to make people very productive, if they are discontent with defined issues of life. But on a global scale, I somehow tend to decline to the Persian view and think that one can not always be unhappy or frustrated.
    Happy New Year. best regards

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