This is more of a rant rather than a post so read at your own warning.
After the counter-revolution the majority of Iranians have decided that they have had enough with Islam and want to return to their Zoroastrian roots. After the neo-Zoroastrians (they prefer to be called noZis) wrest back control, one of their first shock findings is that the birthplace of Zoroaster happens to be under the Naqsh-e Jahan square in Isfahan.
The noZis tear down the square and leave the rubble while they decide what to do with the site. In the interim all the medieval Muslim sites, which form the bulk of the architectural legacy of Iran, are benignly (or rather callously) neglected in favour of Persepolis (which is garishly rebuilt in what the noZis think was Darius’s court) and other “reconstructed” Sassanian/Achamenian sites (many mosques have been discovered to have been built on top of fire temples).
Ferdowsi is the only Muslim poet truly privileged in noZi Iran but even the Shahnameh is under threat because it’s written in the “alien Arabic script” and not in the purer Pahlavi script (in fact some noZis argue that there should be a switch to the more “Aryan” Latin alphabet). At any rate the majority of Iranians are back to being officially illiterate.
Modern Persian is deemed to have far too many Arabic words and so the more rustic Dari of Yazd is chosen as a base language. Considering that this Dari was spoken by insular villagers the last millennium; it’s deemed that Avestan is the only acceptable source language. Reality turns out to be a bit different; Old Persian in the Arabic script remains the dominant language of arts, calligraphy and culture while New Dari in Pahlavi becomes totally dependent on Anglo-French borrowings to become a complete language.
In the interim any Islamic poet, scientist or historian (even if Persian/Iranian) is sort of cast as the “other” and a scramble/obsession begins to discover ancient Persia’s scientific & aesthetic contributions. Some of Iran’s finest minds have been able to prove that ice cream in fact originated in Yazd.
Furthermore thousands and thousands of online noZis descend on the web to foam and obsess about Iran’s Muslim neighbours and to complain about Iran’s preferential treatment of her Muslim minority (they still maintain their own separate laws to the chagrin of the noZis).
They are also fuming at Eastern Iran’s still heavily Muslim region decision to secede into a new Khorasani state with Mashad & Herat as the capital. Iranian nationalists draw maps of Greater Iran that prominently figure Khorasan and constantly remind the Khorasanis that their Islamic identity is a myth and in fact they were Zoroastrians just a few generations back.
It’s difficult to translate as the video is in Turkish but it’s essentially contrasting between Pakistan and Iranian border..
Also sharing Drew Binksy’s Iran Travelogue videos:
Out of all my travels in 137 countries, it is right here, in Iran, where I have found the most hospitable and friendly people. Complete strangers coming up to me on the street, from big cities to small towns, offering me a cup of tea in their shop or a bed to sleep in their home. I'm convinced that I could come to Iran with $0 in my pocket and easily be able to make friends, find delicious meals and be welcomed in a comfortable home like family. Seriously, it’s almost like they force you into their homes (in a good way!)Over the last 2 weeks, I’ve told dozens of Persians that I am both American and Jewish, and contrary to what you may think, it makes them like me even more, peaking their interest and asking more questions. I have not felt a minuscule of negative hostility yet from anyone in this country.Also, as I have now published 10 videos about Iran so far — it really makes me laugh when I read some of the comments and hear people calling my videos "propaganda." These videos are the farthest thing away from propaganda!!! They are telling you the downright truth from my experiences in the country. Nobody told me to make this video (or any video). I made this because I feel the need to share what I am seeing to you. And I hope that by watching this video (and my others about Iran) — that you will remove your negative stereotypes about this humble nation and realize that it's one of the safest and best places to visit on our planet.If you have ever been to Iran, and you agree with what I am saying, then please share your thoughts or a quick moment/story from your experience with the people here. I want the entire world to know!!!Follow Drew Binsky for daily travel videos, and come say hi on Insta @drewbinsky 🙂 Music: Epidemic Sound*Note* My trip to Iran was from May 26-June 9, but due to limited WiFi there, I decided to delay my videos until trip ended — which you are seeing in chronological order. Hope you enjoy!
Posted by Drew Binsky on Monday, June 18, 2018
IRAN is the world's largest producer and exporter of CARPETS, producing 3/4ths of the world's total output. And frankly, you cannot visit Iran without being completely immersed in the carpet scene. They are decorating almost every floor in all mosques, palaces, museums, hotels, restaurants, households and any other notable buldings. The come in all kinds of textures, designs, colors and styles — and they add such a unique flavor to Persian culture. I am really enjoying it!Today with our G Adventures's crew, we had the pleasure of visiting one of the most well known carpet shops in Isfahan, Iran — and little did I know how EXPENSIVE they can be! Well, not all of them (some are $70USD…) but I found one today that is worth $100,000 USD!! Can you believe that?Join me as I take you deeper inside the world of Persian rugs :)Follow Drew Binsky for daily travel videos and inspiration, and come say hi on Insta @drewbinsky! Music: Epidemic Sound*Note* My trip to Iran was from May 26-June 9, but due to limited WiFi there, I decided to delay my videos until trip ended — which you are seeing in chronological order. Hope you enjoy!
Posted by Drew Binsky on Tuesday, June 19, 2018
- The discussion on Muslim birthrates is verging on the obscene. As I’ve mentioned before the problem with multi-ethnic multi-religious liberal democracies is that people start tracking population data. One strong about the autocratic and mercantile Khaleej Gulf Arab states is that they are simply indifferent to their population; you are either a citizen or not. I can see the Rise & Rise of Dubai as a enlightened despotic trading entrepot for Indians, Pakistanis and other Asians.
- Vidhi made the very important to me in our discussions that as a Sindhi, she has an interest in her homeland. But she also made the critical point (I’m the only Punditeer who’s married to the enemy; the rest of you encounter them online whichever side your on) that she wouldn’t be able to dress as a Hindu
- The importance of Khorasan to Turan, which I will expand on in future posts. There were two great Persian dialects in the middle ages; Sabk-e Khorasan and Sabk-e Hind. One of the great mysteries is what contributed to the intense “Persianiasation” of Khorasan; when it was originally Parthian/Eastern Iranian and “Aryan”.
Here is my take on the significance of South Asian aDNA from Eastern Iran and Central Asia during the Bronze Age –
The Chalcolithic contacts between South Asia and regions immediately to its East & North i.e. Eastern Iranian cultures such as Jiroft or Halil Rud (from sites such as Jiroft & Konar Sandal) & Helmand (Shahr-i-Sokhta) as well as Central Asia (from sites such as Geoksiur or Sarazm) are not so well documented. This is an unfortunate lacunae that needs to be filled up in the near future because the Chalcolithic appears to be a critical phase where the communication channels within this vast region are likely to have become more intensified leading to a process of urbanism and continuing well upto the downfall of these urban civilizations.
Nevertheless, there are some tantalising and very important clues for this period that can have larger repurcussions as more research is done but I will come to that later.
Let me first point out the archaeological and genetic evidence we have for the 3rd millenium BC.
First let us note the evidence of interaction between the Helmand civilization (exemplified by sites such as Shahr-i-Sokhta & Mundigak)
A series of artefacts found at Shahr-i Sokhta and nearby sites (Iranian Seistan) that were presumably imported from Baluchistan and the Indus domain are discussed, together with ﬁnds from the French excavations at Mundigak (Kandahar, Afghanistan) that might have the same origin. Other artefacts and the involved technologies bear witness to the local adaptation of south-eastern manufactures and practices in the protohistoric Sistan culture. While the objects datable to the ﬁrst centuries of the 3rd millennium BCE fall in the so called “domestic universe” and reﬂect common household activities, in the centuries that follow we see a shift to the sharing of luxury objects and activities concerning the display of a superior social status; but this might be fruit of a general transformation of the archaeological record of Shahr-i Sokhta and its formation processes.
The above is part of the abstract from this paper –