Saturday, May 24, 2008

jodha akbar - a true love story

Thirteen years back I had seen Allahabad Fort built by Emperor Akbar in 1583 A.D which stands erect even today except in those places probably the zenana which are very near to Yamuna where it has sunken in. This is the area which Akbar had designed especially for his wife Jodha. The windows of the side where this rajput princess often stayed face Yamuna, a river worshipped especially by people who worship Krishna. The architecture was in such a way that that the river used to flow inside the fort touching the walls of her palace so that she did not have to go out but could bathe right in the river staying in her palace named as Jodhabai Palace. When I saw it for the first time I was very young then… my mind full of romances waiting to be lived…it had brought a smile to my face… I thought that’s the way it is between every man and woman on this earth. Life teaches otherwise. To fall in love is easy…to be in love for a lifetime is more often a dream.

It was a thinking out of box when Ashutosh Gowarikar decided to make a full fledged movie out of a real love story of two people whose lives were never read this way. Akbar the great Mughal emperor in the Indian history given to administration and socio-political reforms and Jodha the woman used as a pawn in the political game to unite the Rajputs and the Moghuls for selfish political ends-the way a woman has always been used if she is a part of the rajgharana. But seen as the first inter-religious marriage between a Muslim man and a Hindu woman mostly, this alliance has more shades often overlooked.

We never forget a Shah Jahan building a beautiful mausoleum, the internationally revered Taj Mahal for the woman who died bringing his 14th child to the world. We always love and respect people more when they are dead…we shed tears, we remember all the little things associated with this man or woman fondly….ironically these are the same men and women we hardly spend our time or energies with as long as they are alive.

What enhances my respect for emperor Akbar is his quality of being a good husband and the amount of freedom and respect and love he offered to his wife even when she was alive. What is so touching about this real story of the moghul emperor and the Hindu princess is not just going through the rituals of a wedding but being actually wed…in communion, in harmony, in love with each other. Culturally alien to each other in terms of religion, language, food, lifestyles…they allowed their hearts to take over.

An alliance between a Hindu and a Muslim is looked at as a taboo even today by a majority of Indians whose minds are torn with caste, creed, religion, gender and what nots. To allow her to continue with her religious faith, not forcing her to convert to his own religion speaks not so much for the two religions but for the individuals, for the human factor and a feeling called love.
Akbar did not build a Taj Mahal for his woman. Akbar did not wait for her to die so that he could prove his love to the world by erecting an ostentatious symbol of love. He only saw that life for his wife was easy and the way she wanted to live. Giving enough space and enough freedom to people we love and who are living and around us is a test of love professed.

My salutations to this beautiful couple who lived their love in silence without bothering to bring it to the world.

Surely truest wisdom is a loving heart.

11 comments:

Sucharita Sarkar said...

True love makes no demands,
true love lets you grow,
true love is based on wisdom
true love needs no show.

Your post truly describes what love is all about.

I've added you to my blogroll. Hope that's OK with you.

Stacey said...

What a lovely post....

"To fall in love is easy....to be in love for a lifetime is more often a dream"

Your right, falling in love is so so easy...but finding love that will last a lifetime is a dream for many people...but...those that are fortunate enough to find the love of their lives...should never take each other for granted and cherish every moment :-D

Sayani said...

thats a romantic part of jyotsana ...loved reading it
jodha akbar among one of my all time watchable

did u see "beautiful mind " ?

Stacey said...

Hi jyotsna,
Thank you very much for your comment on my post I have left you one on....
"A Mother is born".... ;-D

life is good said...

this post is about true love only people will heart will understand the deepness. any amount of words will be less for this post.
hats off

Lynda Lehmann said...

What an interesting and inspiring post! We need all kinds of love to overcome the differences and divisions that tear societies and worlds apart. And that love begins with the individual.

Yes, of course you can add my link, and I will add yours to Peripheral Vision!

Nika said...

This is a beautiful story. I actually read a book about this woman. I truly think it is a story worth reading.

SunShine said...

You are a beautiful writer. You hit the nail on the head about how people honor and remember the little things of people when they have passed away, rather than when they are alive. In my recent studies and personal growth of myself - it goes back to living truly in the moment of life. When one can learn to do this effortlessly I believe that the honor is bestowed upon our giving to others and being completely aware of there essence is that great honor.

This was another beautiful post from you. I love your perspective on love. It is divine.

Kunjubi said...

To fall in love is easy…to be in love for a lifetime is more often a dream.
I can not but agree with you 101 percent, that what u say is true... True to the core.Are we crazy to think always about this emotion? Why do we evaluate always; magnify its qualities?Mental make up? Hormones? Chemical catharsis? Have you ever thought about it?
..You always remind the greatness of love. I have company. Thank you.... kunjubi

White Rose said...

I love how you weave subtle nuances into a story. You show lives in all their brilliant color.

I remember the relationship of my Grandparents, easy laughter, my Grandfather giving my Grandmother playful pats on her bottom, they loved each other all their lives. I'm sure it wasn't always easy, but you could see, even when they were well into their 80's they still looked at each other as lovers. It was beautiful to see.

David said...

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