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Mehdi Eslamou

Mehdi Eslamou

Persian Historian and Sufi Immigrant from Iran

Born: Tehran, Iran
Heritage: Iranian

You all have a gift from your creator. You have a beautiful heart. If you ignore your heart it will become stone. Don’t let your heart become stone. You will not be good for society or your friends or your family. For a long time I ignored my heart. It would give me messages to wake up, but I didn’t listen. Whatever my heart tells me is the right thing. If you practice listening to your heart you will be the best human and that is what you are created to be. The whole of creation happened with love.

Mehdi Eslamou

Persian Historian and Sufi Immigrant from Iran

Love is a covenant of faith; trust, support, appreciation; for lovers in love. This is called unity. My name is Mehdi Eslamlou. I was born in Tehran, the capital city of Iran, in August of 1960. The city of Tehran has great mountains to the north and beautiful desert to the south. I would hike in the mountains and swim in the river. The wind comes through at certain times of the year and the sand moves from one side to the other, changing all the time. Iran was part of the great empire of Persia. Persia was a major power and ruled most of the world for a long time.

My mom was very religious. Women are strong in the house, making all the decisions. The woman is devoted to the family and kids; she keeps the family all together. This way the culture stays in the house. We grew up practicing Islam. My dad was hard to see; he was always working and came home late at night. In my family there were two daughters and in our culture they look to having a boy in the family. As in ancient times, when the father retires the son can take over. This concept stays with the generations. They were waiting for me to come.

I was happy all the time. I would wake up early in the morning to prepare breakfast. I would fire up coal to heat the pot of water and put dry tea into the boiled water. It is a long process to make tea. When tea is made this way you benefit from waiting. Persian meals take a long time to prepare and much care is put into the cooking. Persian alchemists created the foods rooted in the wisdom of good health.

Alchemy is the knowledge of combining the elements. An example is the combination of meat and tomato on a shish-ka-bob. This combination takes away much of the cholesterol in the meal. All Persian food is based on the knowledge of alchemy.

In school I loved to play. I liked to make things and would tell my mother that I didn’t like to study, but I enjoyed creating things and without knowledge you cannot build things properly. I put my effort into studying more.

There was revolution with our government in 1978. People didn’t want the King to have the power to force people to obey him. Mohammed taught, “If you ask people to do something for you, you must assure their freedom, as well as freedom for yourself. If you order people to do something they don’t like, you take away their freedom.” At 17 I learned that revolution can bring books and ideas to the people. In the middle of the revolution, Iraq attacked Iran and I volunteered to go to war against Iraq. Everybody got together to help the unorganized army. I had good friends who were killed in the war.

After two years of fighting, I was tired. The fighting was no longer defending my country; it was about power. I needed to leave Iran and to go back to my studies. I decided to come to the United States to study electrical engineering at the University of Utah.

My idea is to complement my faith with other religions. The power for me is the great teachings of the prophets going back 1400 years ago to Buddha, Zoroastrian, Moses, Jesus and Mohammed. I always wonder if you put these great prophets all in one room together, what would they talk about. Would they argue? If you look at the trees, they all have different kinds of branches, but they don’t fight with each other.

What you want to do you do. You can do anything yourself, you are built to be independent. There is so much power inside. Islam is when you are ready and wise enough to submit yourself to God.

Notation: Download PDF

Love Is a Covenant of Faith

Honoring Mehdi Eslamou

Love Is a Covenant of Faith
Honoring Mehdi Eslamlu

Love is a covenant of faith
Trust, support, appreciate

I am from Iran
From a beautiful town
By the name of Tehran
Mountains, seas, deserts all around
I have two sisters
And I the only son
In the heart of Persia
Practicing Islam
I don’t remember
A day that I was sad
I woke up early
To buy fresh bread for mom and dad

I would go hiking
In the mountains not far away
I would go swimming
In school I loved to play
Without knowledge
You cannot build things
Just like a guitar
Without beautiful strings
When the Shah of Iran
Tried to Americanize
My homeland of Islam
Many people died

The people started shouting
Down with the King
From the Shah to Khomeini
Islamic monarchy
Mohammed taught us
Whatever you do
You must give freedom
To those who help you
In the name of religion
So many have died
Dance and be joyful
Be glad you are alive

What we are is what we are
Lovers of life at heart
What we give will come back
Passions of love spark
Each of us to be a gift
Please don’t turn to stone
Open up your heart and give
You are not alone
Keep your life running
On love from the Beloved
Keep your life running
On love from the Beloved

Music by LARRY LONG. Words by LARRY LONG with Mari McCauley’s 4th Grade Class of FAIR Downtown School (Minneapolis, Minnesota)

© Larry Long Publishing 2005 / BMI