Bahá’í Leader Writes to Her Newborn Grandson from Prison



Translation by Iran Press Watch


According to a report from the Bazdasht’s site, Mrs. Fariba Kamalabadi1, one of the Yaran (a coordinating group of seven people who facilitated the administrative affairs of the Iranian Baha’i community) has written a letter to her grandson from the women’s ward of Evin prison as follows:

Sweeter than honey and sugar, O my son

Your stepping into the world has cast a ray of hope into our hearts, and it has dispersed drops of confirmation into the gardens of our existence. The vitality and subtlety of your being are signs of freshness and elegance in the unceasing conception in the world. The harmony and softness of your hair is a secret of the repeated genesis of softness and grace in the world of being and purity, and the innocence of your soul is the dawn of the frequent appearance of the sun of purity and innocence in the world. Yes, the arrival of any child into this world ushers in a bright sun that seals the end of the story of the night, and it promises the rise of the victory day.

How can people witness the creation of serenity and elegance in the world every day, and not believe and have hope in the possibility of amending it? My son, your name “Masih” (meaning Messiah) is reminiscent of a holy being who, in his own will, gave his body to the cross to guide “the ones who are lying as Dead on the couch of heedlessness” to eternal life. Your middle name “Benedict” is a reminder of a spiritual thinker and philosopher, [Benedict] Spinoza, to whom mankind for centuries has been indebted for his moral teachings.

Your parents, with this name, taught you to follow their steps.

My beloved, your birth in a Baha’i family, although the relatives on your mother’s side are adherents of Christianity, and many families from your father’s side believe in Islam, yet they all love you and love each other, is the true evidence of the underlying unity of the divine religions. Also, it is clear proof of the invalidity of the stubborn and frozen religious bigotry whose cold and dark shadow for centuries has prevented the hearts of humanity from reaching the heat of intimacy and happiness. Even now as I write this letter, it is the ninth year since my friends and I have been fettered with the chains of religious intolerance.

O My son! your dear being, which is the result of the union of two different races ‒ the yellow and the white ‒ is the story of the oneness of humanity; it implies the absurdity of racial prejudice, which is the destroyer of the foundation of humankind.

Yes, “O well-beloved ones! The tabernacle of unity hath been raised; regard ye not one another as strangers. Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch.”

My precious, your birth from the union of a Filipino mother and an Iranian father in Australia, speaks of the present day, and it proclaims: “The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.” By expressing this fact it reveals the humiliation and disgrace of the chauvinistic bias and extreme nationalism that in the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth century dragged humanity into a destructive ordeal and annihilation.

My beloved grandson ‒ your birth not only heralds the permanent birth of gentleness and serenity in the universe, but it also promises the realization of the oneness of humankind on earth.

My child ‒ how fortunate and blissful you are that your loving parents teach you to perform service to humanity, and they whisper in your ear: “…That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race” from your birth.

They teach you honesty and truth and read to you: “The tongue bears witness to My Truth; do not defile it with falsehood.” They will raise you up with the spirit of tenderness and chant songs of affection for you that: “Love is light in whatsoever house it may shine, and enmity is darkness in whatsoever abode it dwell.”

They invite you to science and reason, and they repeat: “knowledge is a veritable treasure for man, and a source of glory, of bounty.”

My Love ‒ although I am deprived of seeing, touching, smelling, kissing and holding you in my arms, you do not know how I was counting the moments until your arrival. I raised my hands and prayed for your health.

To express my love I knitted strands of yarn together, and blew the heat of my love into them, and in every knot praised God a thousand times that He gifted you to us with His beneficent and merciful hands.

Your Grandmother



1. Fariba Kamalabadi, along with Mahvash Sabet, Behrouz Tavakkoli, Jamaluddin Khanjani, Afif Naimi, Saeid Rezaie, and Vahid Tizfahm, were members of the “Yaran” (Friends of Iran) who were facilitators of the community affairs of Iranian Baha’is. This Baha’i citizen was arrested by security forces in April 2008; after more than 114 days in solitary confinement and 27 months in temporary detention, she was transferred to Rajai Shahr prison, and then was moved to Gharachak Prison in Varamin. Fariba Kamalabadi was sentenced in July 2010  to 20 years of incarceration by Judge Mohammad Moghiseh, Head of Branch 28 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court. In December 2015 this verdict was commuted to ten years, by applying Article 134 of the Penal Code.

At the present time, the Yaran are enduring their ninth year of their imprisonment.


3 Responses

  1. Brooks Garis

    August 10, 2016 9:47 am

    What a remarkable letter. This is the high-minded clarity that characterizes the vision of those who have willingly accepted the sacrifice of their freedom as their gift to a dark world yearning for light. This is the illumination that proves the truth of their love of God and their obedience to Divine Guidance. This is the path that shows how, once again, in the ages of mankind, Divine Guidance has been renewed in the world to liberate the souls from the fetters of the world.

  2. Stephen Paschal

    February 10, 2017 2:20 am

    As a fellow human being I’m outraged by the treatment of these fine people by the Iranian government. As a Baha’i man however Mrs. Kamalabadi’s strength and faith is an inspiration…especially when one understands that all they need do is deny their faith in the Bab and Baha’u’llah and they’ll be set free.


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