Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Western Philosophy from the Middle East

It has been a long time since I have blogged. I did not want to help fill the internet nor the bloggersphere with ill tempered material that only voiced my opinion upon the situations that arose last week. Instead I decided to hold my tongue rather than insert a plague of malicious words upon anyone. Ok, so I am hardly malicious in any way towards anyone, more of the guy who smiles even when things turn for the bad.

I want to start off this week by speaking upon Iran. No, not upon the Iranian President's interview, although that did turn sour and I may post upon it tomorrow, but on a gentleman's writings I just happened to stumble upon. A blog on blogger was created to help free him from his cell, but as for right now he is free; touring the free world expressing his gratitude for any allegiance to his cause. It wasn't his blog that I found but an article in the Washington Post that had me begin reading the blog that also posted some of his translated letters from the prison. These letters are fascinating as they are the beginning of Western Philosophy in the Middle East.
His name is Akbar Ganji. He had fought in the revolution to free his country from the Shah, only to find a new form of government that began taking away people's rights. Akbar Ganji is a writer and began to believe in the Freedom of the Press. I don't want to begin a biography upon him, for a brief summary you can read the article in the Washington Post, but here we find a Iranian, who has begun to find freedom.
What is fascinating about freedom is that it is almost entirely western. The Eastern philosophies had never pertained towards natural rights. Most countries in Asia have lived off a monarchy or other forms of dictatorships that to them an idea of revolution is ridiculous. We can go back to cultural movies as in Jet Li's HERO where one King raged war across his neighboring countries in order to unify them under one Kingdom causing all the wars between the neighboring countries to end. The wars fought were not for freedom, but over patroitism towards the King and Land. Only in Ancient Greece under philosophers as Socrates, was Democracy able to be created. A land of thought, of acceptance, and of opportunity. For those reasons did Rome and Greece begin to surpass others. (Of course, they did fall, but corruption reared its head)

Yet, this gentleman, Ganji, who is free at the moment feels a duty to return home to Iran to fight the fight from within. Not by starting a revolutionary war, but a revolution in thought. He knows he may be arrested again, but he knows that this is what he has to do.

For those who enjoyed V for Vendetta, Ganji is V. Knowing that his end may be near, but without fearing he takes the steps that he believes that are needed. I once had a friend who thought perhaps those who appeal government should be taking care of their families first. But Ganji, who is married and has two daughters must think the same as I would if I was in his place; Do I want my kids to live under rule like this? Should I not try to change it?

Our own country is far from perfect, but it is a heck of a lot better than anywhere else. Let us remember that whenever tyranny or leviathan raise their ugly head, gentleman like Ganji who I consider to be in the same group as Ghandi, Mandela, Guy Fawkes(yes, I threw that in just for the comment on V For Vendetta earlier), and the Founding Fathers. The men who see oppression and feel the need to try to change things to bring about individual rights and freedom.


Anonymous said...

I like this post. It's wonderful to see the world changing. He is very much like V, and I hope that his sacrifice will be realized, and taken to heed.

Idunois said...

I am glad you enjoyed this post. I did too before I wrote it. Namely because I liked what he stood for, not because of my writing. Everything begins with one cornerstone...