In Islam the devil is referred to as Iblis therefore the title of this peace is a reference to this Cliff Richard song.

The reason I’ve brought this up is a ruling from Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Iran that music should not be taught or practiced in the country. There is no prohibition of music in the Koran indeed in the Ayatollah’s statement he acknowledges that but carrys on:

“Although music is halal, promoting and teaching it is not compatible with the highest values of the sacred regime of the Islamic Republic.”

The ruling came about because a 21 year old follower wanted to know if it was right and proper for him to take music lessons. Apparently the reponse carried on:

“It’s better that our dear youth spend their valuable time in learning science and essential and useful skills and fill their time with sport and healthy recreations instead of music.”

Yet there is merit in music and a prohibition on it must be a tough one to rule over. Is singing in the shower allowed? Also music can stir and inspire the soul.

Now of course the Ayatollah has always been against the influence of western style music, but the prohibition of all music teaching and promotion is a sign of someone losing control. Of maybe as Mohammad Reza Shajarian, Iran’s most prolific and popular classical vocalist there is more to it:

“They are afraid of my concerts because of those moments before the concert is begun, when the whole hall is in silence and darkness when someone suddenly shouts ‘death to dictator’ and everybody accompanies and they are unable to identify that person.”

The green revolution may well live on in music.

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