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Category Archives: Dharma

Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar [1] seems to be happy giving a glimpse of the history lessons he picked up while at the Madrassa in Quetta, Pakistan, and other places of Islamic learning and scholarship throughout his illustrious career. His impressive academic credentials notwithstanding, his comments do provide an interesting insight into the bigger picture of the taquia (lies, deception) concept in Islam.

Excerpts from the Pakistani newspaper, Daily Times [2] follow.

Taliban leader Mullah Omar on Saturday told the US and NATO to study Afghanistan’s long history of war, in a reminder that foreign forces had achieved limited military success in the country.

He said the US and NATO should study the history of Alexander the Great, whose forces were defeated by Pashtun tribesmen in the 4th century.

Unfortunately for Dr. Omar, with the possible exception of the profound work done by the renounced and illustrious historians at the various Madrassas he might have graced, there is no record of any "Pashtun tribesmen" confronting the Greeks under Alexander, when they reached the Indian subcontinent. His claim is typical of the distortion of history Muslims are apt at, in order to give Islam a favorable profile. Which is, not surprisingly, consonant with the taquia (lies, deception) concept in Islam. Before Islam was spread by the sword in the Indian subcontinent, present day India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, SE Asia, Eastern Iran, some parts of Central Asia, Burma were primarily Hindu, with some Buddhist, Jain and Zoroastrian population. During Alexander’s time, these regions were more or less completely Hindu, since that was before the advent of Buddhism.

When Alexander reached the Indian subcontinent, he faced ferocious resistance from the assorted republics of North West India. Bloody battles fought with the Kambojas and at Aunous, culminated in the Battle of Hydaspes (May 326 B.C.) against the Indian Hindu King Pururava (known to the Greeks as Porus), in which nearly 5000 Macedonians were killed. Alexander himself was wounded in the battle and his favorite mount Bucephalus and key soldiers slaughtered in the fighting.

The Indian king wounded, but still on his feet was restored to his throne by Alexander, impressed by the courage, determination and valor of the Indians, and by the nobility of Pururava, who refused to submit even after defeat. But the resistance of the Indians and what they told him led to a drastic change of action for the all conquering Macedonians.

The kingdom of Pururava was in fact a relatively minor power, one in the tapestry of small Hindu kingdoms and republics in North West India. Far larger and more organized states like that of Magadha lay to the east, awaiting the onset of the Greeks. It has been recorded that Hindu monks and Sadhus (saints) traversed the face of the nation to rouse the people against the invaders. The saint philosopher Chanakya was believed to be a guiding force behind the resistance. Some holy men brought before Alexander even boldly proclaimed that he would never be able to defeat the land of India and it would prove his doom. A young prince called Chandragupta was brought before the Emperor, who ordered his death. Chandragupta nevertheless managed to escape and organize the armies of Magadha against the invaders.

It has been recorded by traditional Greek historians that the army of Alexander tired and worn out by their long marches clamored that they return to their homes and hence Alexander turned back from his march into India. However a more critical analysis, now widely accepted, attest to the fear of the Greeks to march further into India. The Greeks had almost been defeated by the small armies of the Indian North West and their chances against the much larger and organized armies of interior India would have been extremely doubtful.

The difficult victory over only 22,000 Indians in the Battle of Hydaspes took the edge off the courage of the Macedonians.  They had no enthusiasm for Alexander’s proposed crossing of the Ganga (Ganges), a river said to be four miles wide and six hundred feet deep, to encounter an army on the other side consisting of 200,000 infantry, 80,000 cavalry, 8,000 chariots, and 6,000 war elephants.  Alexander was so angry at their reluctance that he shut himself up in his tent, saying that if they would not cross the Ganga, he owed them no thanks for anything they had done so far.  But finally the persuasions of his friends, and the pleas of his soldiers, got Alexander to agree to turn back. One can only imagine the mind of the young emperor, who believed himself to the son of the Gods and the victor over the once mighty Persian empire being forced to turn back in humiliation and defeat from his goal and to die a broken and sick man just shortly afterwards baffled by the determination of the Hindus of India.

Alexander was a great conqueror and an unforgettable figure in history who still evokes debate and emotion. While during his military campaigns, he did slaughter a lot of people (including civilians) and razed to the ground a lot of cities, in general, he was a very courageous person who was honorable and more-or-less gracious both in victory and defeat, as is evident by his friendship with Pururava, post war. Nevertheless, the credit for stopping his all conquering armies lay in the field and plains of India and provided only a prologue to the rise of the mighty Mauryan empire and the projection of Hindu and Indic values to the world.

Mullah Omar’s ancestors were most likely Hindu or Buddhists forced to convert by the barbarian Islamic invaders, who unlike Alexander were utterly dishonorable, disgusting and despicable to the bone, and who unfortunately came at a time when the pan-Indian Hindu empires were at a wane, and most smaller kingdoms were too busy fighting among themselves. His claim of Alexander being defeated by "Pashtun tribesmen" only blows the trumpet of his own stupidity and ignorance. Hardly a surprise, considering his awe inspiring academic credentials and the many degrees he has earned in the numerous madrassas in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Sadly, what is today Afghanistan and Pakistan, during Alexander’s time were Hindu lands where great Hindu kings like Pururava fought their enemies with honor. And such was their honor that even their enemies after being victorious extended a hand of friendship and camaraderie.




[3] (This Wikipedia sections contains references to peer reviewed and trustworthy material, on which primarily this post in based)




I would like to start this blog with a Sanskrit sloka from the Bhagavat Gita, Book IV, Sutra 5, 7, 8:

yada yada hi dharmasya
glanir bhavati bharata
abhyutthanam adharmasya
tadatmanam srjamy aham
paritranaya sadhunam
vinasaya ca duskrtam
sambhavami yuge yuge

Translation from ‘Bhagavad Gita As It is":
Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion–at that time I descend Myself. In order to deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to reestablish the principles of religion, I advent Myself age after age.

A slightly different translation [1] is:

Whenever there is a withering of the law
and an uprising of lawlessness on all sides,
then I manifest Myself.

For the salvation of the righteous
and the destruction of such as do evil,
for the firm establishing of the Law,
I come to birth, age after age.

Why did I chose this particular sloka?

Watch this space…