Wednesday, May 29, 2013


This is the first in my 'tribute series'  of modern thinkers, whose Books and Talks have influenced me greatly. It is my journey of personal transformation and understanding of human nature,  and I share the same with my readers. 

Why share ? I understand that every one seeks personal transformation but are so preoccupied with their day to day living, that in spite of their best intentions, they are not able to devote much time, or the inclination and urge is not there. 

But I am confident, that if just excerpts are shared, and just a few of the nuggets read may make an impact on some of my readers, I will consider it as a befitting tribute to the modern thinkers.  

The nuggets of wisdom  that I have managed to pick up -  the 'Aha' moments may also help you my readers in better and compassionate understanding of life, and bring about  personal transformation.  

Short Introduction: 
 Eckhart Tolle is regarded as one of the most spiritually influential person.

 His two most influential Books - The Power of Now ( 3 million copies sold till 2009) A New Earth ( 5 million copies sold till 2009) and approx: 35 million people around the world participated in a series of 10 web seminars held with Oprah Winfrey.   

His childhood and growing up years were far from ideal, and he was depressed and had contemplated suicide, until one night at the age of 29 he experienced 'inner transformation'   followed by wanderings, "in a deep state of bliss". 


You are here to enable a divine purpose of the Universe to unfold - That is how important you are.

Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it

Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life.

The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but thought about it. Be aware of the thoughts you are thinking. Separate them from the situation, which is always neutral. It is as it is.

As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease. When you act out the present-moment awareness, whatever you do becomes imbued with a sense of quality, care, and love - even the most simple action

In today's rush we all think too much, seek too much, want too much and forget about the joy of just Being.

Be at least as interested in what goes on inside you as what happens outside. If you get the inside right, the outside will fall into place.

Wherever you are, be there totally. If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally.

Life is now. There was never a time when your life was not now, nor will there ever be.

Power over others is weakness disguised as strength. True power if within, and it is available to you now.

The truth is: you don't have a life, you are life. The One Life, the one consciousness that pervades the entire universe and takes temporary form to experience itself as a stone or blade of grass, as an animal, a person, a star or a galaxy.

Death is not the opposite of life.  Life has no opposite.  The opposite of death is birth.  Life is eternal.

Death is a stripping away of all that is not you. The secret of life is to "die before you die" — and find that there is no death.


Fear, anxiety, anger, bearing grudge, sadness, hatred or intense dislike, jealousy, envy - all disrupt the energy flow through the body, affect the heart, the immune system, digestion, production of hormones and so on. 

Cleverness pursues its own little aims. Intelligence sees the larger whole in which all things are connected. Cleverness is motivated by self interest, and is extremely shortsighted. Cleverness divides, intelligence includes. 

A genuine relationship is one that is not dominated by ego, which is image making and self seeking. In genuine relationship, there is an outward flow of open, alert attention towards the other person, in which there is no wanting whatsoever. 

Whatever tragic loss occurs, you either resist or you yield. Some people become bitter or deeply resentful; others become compassionate, wise and loving. Yielding means inner acceptance of what is.

The small me that seeks security or fulfillment in things that are transient and gets anxious or angry because it fails to find it. Well at least now you know, who you really think you are. 

The ego's unconscious core feeling of 'not enough' causes it to react to someone else's success as if that success had taken something away from me. 

"One day I will be free of the ego" Who is talking ? The ego. To become free of the ego is not a big job but a small one. All you need to do is to be aware of your thoughts and emotions - as they happen. This is not 'doing' but an alert 'seeing'. When that shift happens, which is shift from thinking to awareness, an intelligence far greater that the ego's cleverness begins to operate in your life.   

The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it. 
Give up defining yourself - to yourself or to others. You won't die. You will come to life. And don't be concerned with how others define you. When they define you, they are limiting themselves, so it's their problem. Whenever you interact with people, don't be there primarily as a function or a role, but as the field of conscious Presence. You can only lose something that you have, but you cannot lose something that you are.

Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on.
You can only lose something that you have, but you cannot lose something that you are.
Living up to an image that you have of yourself or that other people have of you is inauthentic living.

What a liberation to realize that the “voice in my head” is not who I am. Who am I then? The one who sees that.

In the proximity of death, the whole concept of ownership stands revealed as ultimately meaningless. 


The inability or rather unwillingness of human mind 'to let go' of the past is beautifully illustrated in the story of two Zen monks - Tanzan and Ekido, who were walking long the country road that had become extremely muddy after heavy rains.

Near a village, they came upon a young woman who was trying to cross the road, but the mud was so deep that it would have ruined the silk kimono she was wearing. Tanzan at once picked her up and carried her to the other side. 

The monks walked in silence. Five hours later, as they approached their lodging, Ekido could not restrain himself any longer. " Why did you carry that girl across the road ? he asked. " We monks are not supposed to do things like that" 

"I put the girl down hours ago" said Tanzan. " Are you still carrying her ?" 

Now imagine what life would be like for someone who lived like Ekido all the time, unable or unwilling to let go internally of situations, accumulating more and more ' stuff' inside, and you get a sense of what life is like for the majority of people on our planet. What a heavy burden of past they carry around with them in their minds. 

For readers who may be interested to read further, I share the following links from my earlier posts, based on my reading and reflection of modern thinkers.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Tragedy of Karbala - The journey from Makkah to Karbala

Excerpts from :

 Kitab Maqtal al - Husain by Abu Mikhnaf  (Lut bin Yahya bin Said - Died in 157 AH)

Yahya bin Said - the father of Abu Mikhnaf was a companion of Moulana Ali (SA)

The martyrdom of Muslim b Aquil took place in Kufa on Sunday 8th Dhulhijjah 60 A.H. Imam Hussain (SA) left Makkah on the very same day. 

At Shifa (approx: 12 kms from Makkah) Imam Hussain (SA) met Farazdaq b Ghalib, a noted poet, who recited the following: 
' The hearts of the people are with you, but their swords are with Banu Ummayah
The decree will come from Heaven and Allah will do whatever He desires' 

Imam Hussain replied : ' You have said the truth. The decree belongs to Allah and He will do what He desires. Every day Our Lord has dominion over all affairs. If the decree that He sends down is what we desire, then we praise Allah for his blessings. He is the One whose help is sought, the One who is worthy of thanksgiving. But should the decree turn out differently from what we desire : those whose intention is truth and whose hearts are righteous, do not rebel against Allah.'

At Hajir Imam Hussain (SA) dispatched Qays b Mushir Saydawi with letter to the Chiefs of Kufa, stating that he is arriving shortly. At Qadisiyah he was seized by Hasin b Tamim and sent to Ubaydallah b Ziyad. Qays climbed on top of the Palace and said : ' O people, this Hussain b Ali is the best of Allah's creatures. He is the son of Fatimah, the daughter of the Prophet. I am his messenger to you. I left him at Hajir. Respond to his call' He then cursed Ibn Ziyad, and was thrown down from the top and his body shattered.

At Khuzamiyah - a watering place Zuhayr b Qayn joins the caravan of Imam Hussain (SA)

At Talabiyah (51 kms from Khuzamiyah) Imam Hussain (SA) received the news of the martyrdom of  Muslim b Aquil and Hani. 

At Zubalah Imam Hussain read out aloud to the people and informed them about the death of Muslim and Hani and Abdullah b Yaqtur. He said : ' Our Shiah have abandoned us. Thus those who wish to part company with us are free to go, without any sense of obligation. People began to scatter away in all directions, only those remained who had joined in from Medinah. 

Readers are requested to pause here and reflect. 

At many places along the way, well wishers requested Imam Hussain (SA)  not to proceed to Kufah. 

At Batin al Aqabah to one well wisher Imam Hussain (SA) replied : ' Servant of Allah, sound decisions are not concealed from me - but the Decree of Allah prevails' 

Please pause and reflect. 

When they saw the approaching cavalry Imam Hussain (SA) changed course and managed to arrive at Dhu Husam before the arriving cavalry, and set up tents. 

The cavalry of 1000 horsemen under Hurr b Yazid Tamim came to a halt facing the tents set up by Imam Hussain (SA) Two saddle bags filled with letters from Kufah were brought out and shown to them.  Hurr agreed to a temporary compromise and awaited instructions from Ibn Ziyad. 

He rode alongside the caravan of Imam Hussain (SA) away from the road leading to Kufah and leading towards Qadisiyah. 

At Nainawah Imam Hussain (SA) stopped and dismounted. 

Monday, May 20, 2013

Tragedy of Karbala - Events in Kufa

Excerpts from :

 Kitab Maqtal al - Husain by Abu Mikhnaf  (Lut bin Yahya bin Said - Died in 157 AH)

Yahya bin Said - the father of Abu Mikhnaf was a companion of Moulana Ali (SA) 

Numan bin Bashir - the Governor of Kufa was considered weak by the partisans of Banu Umayyah. Abdullah bin Muslim b Sa'ad was the first among them to write a letter to Yazid, stating that he should send a more powerful Governor , if he wishes to control the Shih uprising lead by Muslim bin Aquil. Others also wrote in similar vain. 

Yazid consults Sarjun a mawla of Mu'awiyah, who advises that he should appoint Ubaydallah bin Ziyad, who was the Governor of Basra. Ubaydallah enters Kufa with his entourage, having his face covered, enters the Palace and confronts Numan bin Bashir, and replaces him. 

On getting this news of the arrival of Ubaydallah and his appointment as Governor, Muslim b Aquil moves from the house of Mukhtar to the house of Hani b Urwah Muradi. It is reported that 18,000 Shih pledged alliance to Imam Husain (SA). Muslim writes to Imam Husain (SA) to come in haste to Kufa.

Ibn Ziyad is keen to find the whereabouts of Muslim bin Aquil, and he gives Ma'quil a spy 3000 dirhams to penetrate the Shih group and report the developments. Ma'quil manages to convince Muslim b Awsaja, and finally manages to meet Muslim b Aquil and gives 3000 dirhams and pledges alliance. Thus the Ummayah mole, passes all the secrets to Ibn Ziyad. 

Here I would like my readers to reflect - do taffakur on the development that happens in the following two incidents. 

Ubaydallah comes to pay a visit to Hani b Urwah a very prominent leader of Kufa and the powerful Madhhij clan. Hani was recuperating from an illness. The leaders of Shih requested permission from  Hani to kill the tyrant - but Arab honor prevented Hani from doing such a deed.  " I do not want him to be killed in my house"

Ubaydallah once again came to visit Sharik b A'war who Ibn Ziyad and other Governors, held in high esteem, although he was a staunch Shi'ite. Sharik told Muslim b Aquil to kill the tyrant. Once again Arab honor prevailed, and Hani disapproved and ubaydallah walked safe. 

Do reflect on the above historical incident. Had Ubaydallah been killed, the course of history would definitely have been different. Imam Husain (SA) would have entered Kufa in triumph, the tragedy of Karbala would not have happened. 

True - but reflect again - what about the promise Imam Husain (SA) gave to Nana Nabi (SA) to free the debt of Ummah till Kayamah ? What about the emancipation of souls of the followers of Ahalabait (SA) till the day of Kayamah ? 

A lesson learnt. All historical events transpire with a premeditated design, and have a deep and hidden purpose, and it is good for the humanity at large, which we ordinary people fail to comprehend. ALLAH KNOWS BEST. I have shared the historical event that transpired in Kufa, so that readers may reflect.

Hani is summoned by Ibn Ziyad. Ma'quil the spy confronts Hani and Ibn Ziyad commands Hani to bring Muslim b Aquil, to which Hani the ever proud Arab retorts : " No by Allah I will never bring him to you. Do you expect me to bring my guest for you to kill ? He offers  guarantees and securities, that Muslim b Aquil means no harm to the Governor, but will not offer his guest to be killed. 

When Muslim b Amr Bahili tries to meditate Hani replies : " I have numerous followers, but even if I was alone, I will die fighting to protect my guest." 

Ibn Ziyad becomes furious and starts hitting Hani with a stick, so much so, that the flesh from his cheeks and forehead was splattered over his beard, and the cane broke. The Madhhij clan, of which Hani was the leader, surrounds the palace. 

Abdullah bin Khazim was the first eyewitness to report the development to Muslim b Aquil. Of the 18000 who had pledged alliance, nearly 4000 were nereby , who assembled to fight. 

Ubaydallah b Amr was entrusted with the command of Kindah group. Muslim b Awsajah was given command over the Asadi and Madhhij group. Abu Thumamah commanded the Tamim and Hamdan group, and Abbas b Jadah the Medina group. They all marched towards the Palace. 

Ibn Ziyad on the other hand summoned leaders close to him, and sent them out to their respective tribes, and told them to convince the members to desist from the attack, or else they will face severe consequences. All these Umamayah partisans managed to cajole and threaten their respective clan members. 

The womenfolk of Kufa played a decisive role and convinced their husbands, sons and brothers to desist from fighting the Governor. 

This than was another turning point in the events of Kufa, which had a direct result on the Tragedy of Karbala.

This is how Abbas Jadali reports : When we left with Muslim b Aquil marching towards the Palace, we were 4000 strong. When we approached the Palace, we had shrunk to 300 men. By evening only 30 were with Muslim b Aquil who offered asr namaz in the masjid. 

None the less he marched towards the Palace gate, and people started deserting him, from 10 supporters, he was left all alone, when he left the gate of Kindah. 

Here I would request my readers to pause and reflect on the events that unfolded within hours.

Muslim b Aquil seeks water to quench his thirst and a woman named Tawah offers him water, and gives him shelter. 

At nightfall Ibn Ziyad commands everyone to be present for the Isa namaz. If any one fails to turn up, they will loose protection and security. 

Bilal the son of Tawah confides the secret to Abd al Rahmn Ash'ath, who informs Ibn Ziyad of the hiding place of Muslim b Aquil. 

Sixty/seventy people from the tribe of Qays go out to catch Muslim b Aquil. Muslim b Aquil comes out alone to fight. When Muhammad b Ash'ath approaches him and said : " O young man, you can have a guarantee of security. Do not cause your self to perish."

Muslim b Aquil continues to attack reciting: 
" I swear that I will not be killed except as a free person
Though I consider death something repulsive
Every person will one day confront evil
And the cold will be mixed with bitter hot
The soul will become tranquil and free of any fear
I suspect that I will be deceived and duped "

But Ash'ath manages to convince Muslim that he would not be cheated or betrayed and he need not fear , as the Umayyads were his cousins. 

They betrayed him, and Muslim b Aquil was helpless. He requested Ash'ath to despatch a letter to his family and Imam Husain (SA) of the events that have transpired. 'The Kufans have lied to you and to me ' he wrote.

Extremely thirsty he was denied to drink water by one Muslim b Amr Bahli. 

The martyrdom of Muslim b Aquil took place on Sunday 8th Dhulhijjah 60 A.H. Imam Hussain (SA) left Makkah on the very same day. 

Posted as an act of Hamd and Shukr on the joyous occasion of home coming of  Aqa Moula (TUS)  after a long recuperating medical stay at Saifee Hospital for more than 4 months.
10 Rajab ul Asab 1433 H