prayer beads

Shideh, thanks for the post. The images are beautiful.  One of the pictures that caught my attention:  the one of the three men sitting with prayer beads dangling from their wrists.  The image reminded me of one of my father’s friends, Mihan.  He was from Iran; his wife was American and they and their two children were settled in a nice home with a pool.  I would often spend weekends at their house playing with the kids.  Uncle Mihan did not seem to be a particularly religious man and there wasn’t much in their household that would distinguish it as being distinctly “Irani”; yet, he would always  carry prayer beads in one hand, clicking them one by one.  The image of the men sitting in Iran made me think, what do we carry with us and why can we not let go?   What is so powerful about our traditions and culture that we continue to carry them out even in environments where they seem to have little purpose?  And what things in our culture can we compromise on and what should we never let go of?

Uncle Mihan tragically passed away from cancer, may he rest in peace.  He may have been surprised to know that one day I would remember him after seeing a picture of men in Iran.  It is interesting how he, like so many individuals we encounter, left an indelible impression on my life.

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4 Comments

Filed under culture, homeland, photography, traditions

4 responses to “prayer beads

  1. I’m glad this picture brought good memories of a familiar neighbor, Uncle Mihan. He had an interesting name, Mihan means “homeland” in Farsi.
    To tell you the truth, I always wondered what people did with these prayer beads. Some don’t use it in a religous way, and some do.

    My favorite person in the world, our Nani, Khadijeh, who stayed with my grand mother since my mom was born and raised my mom, aunt, uncle, and me, always carried a prayer bead as well. She also used it next to the Mohr (stone) she would “sajdeh” on during her prayers. She also passed away from cancer a long time ago, but her memory is as fresh as ever.

  2. Manata

    Thanks for this post Fatima. You know, I never did see my beloved pedar-joon (grandfather) carry prayer beads, but he was a deeply spiritual and devout human being. My fondest images of pedar-joon were of him sitting tall on his old leather chair, reading intently from the famous Iranian poets, Hafez and Saadi. Persian poetry was one of his gifts that I carry with me to this day.

  3. but where are the images?

  4. Manata

    Hi Vahid,

    You can see the images under the post entitled “asian images.” I hope you like them.

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