An “Eccentric” Historical Figure

This post is inspired from Robbie’s Open Book Blog Hop – A historical figure who interests me.

Have you heard about an eccentric king – a paradoxical personality?

Known as “the inhuman eccentric” and “a man of knowledge” who had an interest in subjects like philosophy, medicine, mathematics, religion, Persian and Urdu/Hindustani poetry, Muhammad bin Tughlaq, the sultan of Delhi from 1325-1351 is the most fascinating historical figure. He is famous for his bizarre, illogical and impractical decisions that earned him the title of a “crazy” king. It is astounding to note that he could rule for 25 years despite his wild policies.

In contemporary times, Tughlaq is a term still used to tease someone when they do something illogical or counter-intuitive.

What did he do to earn such titles?

  1. He ordered to move his capital from Delhi to Daulatabad and told all the citizens to move to the new capital. In the process, many died on the road due to hunger and exhaustion. (1327)

2. Just after eight years, in 1335, due to political repercussions, he decided to shift the capital back to Delhi, allowing the citizens to return to their previous city. Isn’t it crazy?

3. He allowed the use of token currency, that means coins of brass and copper were minted whose value was equal to that of gold and silver coins. As a result, the value of currency declined and the coins became as “worthless as stones.” Anybody could mint them at home. Nobody could distinguish between the official and the forged coins.

4. He increased the land revenue tax at a time when the Doab region was facing famine, thereby antagonizing his own people.

5. He lost an army of 10,000 soldiers (who perished in the Himalayas) due to poor planning of Karajal expedition.

However, many historians believe that he was a “visionary and a reformer” but lacked the ability to implement his plans.

Ironically, there is no dearth of such personalities in modern times too! It is easier to have a vision.

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Life is Like that…

This image, which I stumbled across accidentally at Pixaby defines the paths of life so well; colorful and joyous at places but an abyss in the center is always waiting to devour us. How we cross it depends on our acumen and proficiency.

As children, we only knew physical pain. We did feel hurt at times but it was absorbed within. We didn’t know it is called emotional trauma, didn’t know it could last longer and revisit us.

We didn’t know what is selfishness; probably constant reprimands helped us in refraining from any such acts. Sibling rivalry was overlooked, as we were unaware of in-depth analysis of behavior. Ignorance was bliss.

We only knew love and couldn’t discern hypocrisy of some people who exploited our emotions. Bullying was an unknown term; obedience was the answer even when hitting was intuitively disliked.

We didn’t have digital devices to quell our thirst of knowing more and believed in whatever our parents and teachers told us. Moral values were imbibed naturally through them. Stories of grandparents were enough for us.

‘Life is not a bed of roses’…this adage never seemed convincing to me when I looked around and saw from the eye of an immature, growing adolescent, with rosy dreams and soft thoughts… that all is well with the world…considering the small, protective cocoon that I lived in, formed those illusions.

The journey of life actually unfolds its reality when we step into this fiercely competitive, engulfing world; waiting to devour us, defeat all our sincere and honest efforts!

Some disappointments, some frustrations and disillusionments become a part of our journey.

Do we give up? No, we want to explore more.

As it becomes more meaningful and challenging; we learn to define our goals, snub some desires and struggle to move ahead with renewed vigor.

But it remains interesting.

Whenever we face the roadblocks, we wonder why is life so tough, why do we have to face a new challenge everyday, why can’t it be smooth sailing?

Sometimes, it seems that life is just a big vacation – when you nestle in the center of a place, surrounded by pine forests with snow covered peaks staring at you, …with whiffs of peace and contentment all around.

A serenity that coaxes us to slow down, to savor the little moments of joy.

Such a scenario changes our opinion, fills us with new enthusiasm to do something new, something different.

Have you ever felt this exhilaration? The illusionary aspect of life is a significant contributor.

Just look at the ocean, feel its vastness, sit by its side and look at the waves rushing at you. They speak to us, if we can understand the profound lesson each wave leaves for us:

Life is that simple yet seems complicated. However high the wave, it has to touch the shore and surrender. Everything meets a natural end. Every moment around us is so transient! All the hues of life merge into each other. None of them belongs to us.

Accept life as it comes, welcome all its ups and downs with resilience. Draw energy from positive thoughts and people. Dwell on your blessings. Keep your cool in the face of provocations and disappointments. Embrace your agonizing moments to exorcize them from your life.

Thank you for reading my reflections. If you liked them, please share this post at your favorite social networks.

© Balroop Singh

Glisten that Glowers

shimmer
Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto

He sits at the beach. Alone, abandoned. The glistening sea seems to mock at him. The horizon is hazy; the beauty of the beach seems meaningless. The shimmer they soaked in sizzles within.

This sea is never going to be the same. Never. It had swallowed all he had, stripping him of his securities. The waves devoured her and he looked helplessly, shrieks died within his parched throat. He could hear them even in his sleep.

Why he comes back each evening – a question that haunts him. His eyes never seem to tire; he watches each wave with the hope of seeing her, mingled in the elixir that endows us with life! Some ironies are so ambiguous.

People passed by, reveling in their rendezvous with waves but he drowned in the aftermath, struggling to come to terms with a life, bereft of all smiles till this girl shook him.
“Want to be friends?”
He looked at her with blank eyes.
“Why are you sitting here alone?”
“I don’t have anybody. I lost my mother.”
“So what? I lost mine too and there are many who don’t have their moms around them.”
“Is your love so shallow?” he grimaced.
“No, I love myself. My therapist told me to make one new friend everyday and smile at him. I’ve learnt to smile.”

A smile can melt volcanoes. Just one person could change your life.
© Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for an inspiring Thursday #writephoto prompt Glisten

You can click here for my poetry.

Check my latest book: Moments We Love

If  you have liked this post, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Rocky Terrain

beyond-2
Sue Vincent’s #Writephoto

Rocks don’t inspire me
But hostile terrain beckons
I’ve no choice
I can’t give up my chase
If the cure lies beyond.

Thank you for the inspiration Sue. We are all on this terrain.

I have been writing poetry, deriving solace from the spring, heralding change – a brilliant reminder that nature remains untouched despite the encroachments that have been made on her beauty.

The fiery touch of Corona virus that nature has sent to show who is in command, is just the beginning of a new era for mankind who didn’t bother to heed the warnings. William Wordsworth’s prophetic lines come to my mind:

“To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.“

I’ve kept my cool by keeping my thoughts positive, by reiterating the message of the universe that nothing is permanent.

I’ve been listening to music more than the news to keep my sanity.

I come from the family of doctors and many of my dear ones are directly involved in the task of offering their services, I call them the soldiers of present times and salute all those who are fighting the monster called Covid – 19.

We shall overcome is the refrain that rings in my ears everyday.

Mother nature has been too kind, ‘we should never take anything for granted,’ we heard that phrase a thousand times but never paid any attention. We need to respect her message and her creation.

Remember, we are doing no honor to her. We are doing all this for ourselves, to save us and keep our dear ones safe.

After paying for our negligence, we would get another chance. That’s the law of nature. As a renowned urdu poet Sahir Ludhianavi wrote, “Raat bhar ka hai mehmaan andhera, kiske roke ruka hai savera…” (Translation: Darkness is just a guest of the night, who can hold back the morning?)

I have pulled out an excerpt from my debut poetry book to renew hope:

Time has stood still
The storm is yet to pass
The descent of night seems eternal
Perplexed, petrified, I wait.

Wait for a new dawn
Wait for a smooth tide
Wait for that lovely flight
Which brings hope!

© Balroop Singh

You can click here for more poetry.

Check my latest book: Moments We Love

If  you have liked this post, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Thank you for your support. Please share your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.

Living Again

torrent
Sue Vincent’s #writephoto

I rise from the valley of death
The valley you pushed me into
The valley I reject…
Its deluge couldn’t drown me.

I don’t want to mourn for
The blessings that I have lost
I refuse to crumble under them
Within me, I can hear a loud protest.

Your memories don’t make me smile
They offer no solace now
They rest on a rocky ledge
Floundering in watery grave.

Divesting that soaking attire
I am seeking new vistas
My eye lashes are glowing
Approbations no longer allure me.

I seek the company of those
Who can guide me, escort me
Toward the path of enlightenment,
Forgiveness and peace.
© Balroop Singh

Thanks to Sue Vincent for an inspiring Thursday #photoprompt Torrent

You can click here for more poetry.

Check my latest book release: Moments We Love

If  you have liked this poem, please share it at your favorite social networks.

Thank you for your support. Please share your valuable reflections, they are much appreciated.