I watched a YouTube video this afternoon that made my blood run cold. Someone captured on his or her cell phone camera a 40-second montage of a young Iranian woman dying within seconds of a gunshot wound in her chest. As she collapses to the ground, the people surrounding her try to block the wound on her chest with their bare hands. Her eyes roll to the side and blood begins spurting from her nose and mouth. The blood covers her entire face in thick rivulets as a man repeatedly calls out her name in escalating panic: "Neda, Neda, Neda."

The video, which may be too graphic and disturbing for some viewers, can be found on YouTube here.

Neda Agha-Soltan, who died at the age of 26, has become a martyr for the uprising still taking place in Iran. The uprisings have been going on in the aftermath of the most recent national election--which many demonstrators believe has been manipulated in favor of the incumbent president who emerged as the official winner. Her death took place last Saturday evening near the scene of a clash between pro-government militias and demonstrators, and the video of her death has spread virally all over the world since.

Personal details of Neda's life have begun to emerge in news articles such as this Los Angeles Times article published today: her sunny disposition, her talent as a singer, her passion traveling to other countries. According to close family members and friends, Neda did not consider herself an "activist," and simply wanted to attend the mass protest as an ordinary citizen with a personal sense of outrage over the injustice of voter count fraud.

Since her death, the Iranian government have been cracking down on public memorial services for Neda. Authorities have even ordered her family to "not eulogize her, to loudly sing her praises and mourn her loss," going as far as ordering them to take down the black mourning banners decorating the front of their house.

Neda's death, to this very second, is still being seen by many more eyes around the world--on cell phones, on laptops, in internet cafes, and linked to on countless Twitter feeds, blog posts and Facebook pages.

On someone's computer screen, someone has just pressed "Play." A young woman collapses to the ground. Her mouth begins to spurt blood and her eyes roll to the side. As people crowd around her in screams and wails, she stares serenely into the cell phone camera capturing the final moments of her life.

You and I cannot easily dispel the image of a young woman whose death we just witnessed, one eye staring blankly out into nowhere, the other eye completely covered by blood. These things have a way of burning a hole in the viewer's mind.

The Iranian government may successfully prevent the public mourning of Neda's death. But for the rest of the world and its millions of internet users, these mental holes cannot be so simply undone.

Related content on Intent:

Author's Bio: 

Intent.com is a premier wellness site and supportive social network where like-minded individuals can connect and support each others' intentions. Founded by Deepak Chopra's daughter Mallika Chopra, Intent.com aims to be the most trusted and comprehensive wellness destination featuring a supportive community of members, blogs from top wellness experts and curated online content relating to Personal, Social, Global and Spiritual wellness.