May 14 marks 7 years in prison for the 7 Baha’i leaders in Iran. In honor of these prisoners of conscience, a campaign #7Bahais7years is telling their stories. You can read profiles of the seven leaders here. And you can read the full Twitter story of Fariba Kamalabadi below…
What is written on the walls of the heart of a prisoner of conscience? Let’s imagine…
My name is Fariba Kamalabadi and I’ve been in jail 7 years for being a Baha’i.
My dear friend, Mavash, has honored me with a poem: “O my companion of the cage! How many cruelties we saw together…”
One of the harshest cruelties was missing my daughter’s wedding: What are they afraid of, to deny a mother this joy?
In prison, I asked one question over and over: “What is this pain I feel and what is this joy?”
I know the pain of separation, and yet “this pain has a pleasant fragrance, because it is filled with the fine perfume of joy…”
I may be behind bars, but I know the joy of a mother “who finds her child to now be a graceful youth, determined and steadfast…”
I may be behind bars, but I know the joy of a child who enriches the pain of separation by taking steps in the path of service…
My children, “you well know that I am with you with every cell of my existence & my prayers fill the atmosphere of your ceremonies”
Be comforted, my dears: “My crime is to worship the One God, and to acknowledge the truth of all God’s religions…”
In prison, I have known a new vision of family. I have many daughters, sisters, sons, all with high ideals for Iran & the world….
“Let me tell you more about joy again, how with its radiance & sparkle it dims all pain and suffering, and even banishes it altogether.”
This story is inspired by a letter attributed to Ms. Kamalabadi, addressed to her daughter.