Sunday, October 7, 2012

Din-e-Elahi: Mughal Akbar Mass Program For Unity

Written By: Sanwal Malik

Jalal-ud-Din Akbar (1556-1605), the son of Humayun had three main phases in his life. One was firm belief in religion holding the founding tenets of Islam. The second started when he opened the doors of religious natter and dialogues in which he invited the religious scholars of different sects of Islam in the “Ibadat Khana” (the place of worship) but soon he was disillusioned with the attitudes of the Maulvies and scholars who started losing their tempers and even abused one another on petty issues.

Therefore the subsequent phase resulted in the promulgation of a new religion, din-e-Elahi. He accumulated the best practices of Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Jainism and propounded the new religion in 1581.
 There are ten virtues which the Din-e-Elahi professes.
(1) liberal-mindedness and generosity
(2) forgiveness of evil-doers and repulsion of anger with mildness
(3) abstinence from worldly desires
(4) non-attachment to the materialistic world
(5) careful weighing of pros and cons of actions to be taken
(6) performance of noble deeds with courage
(7) softness of voice and gentle speech
(8) good behaviour to others
(9) absolutely no connection with bad characters and evil-doers
(10) total dedication to God

Din-e-Elahi was more an ethical cult than a religion as it did not present any common prayers or system as all these eclectic religions offered. It was based on ethical values considering and propagating slander, lust, and pride as deadly sins whereas piety, kindness, mercy as the commonalities of the diverse religions and were appreciated. Slaughter of cow was prohibited to accommodate Hinduism and celibacy was venerated. The religion had no script or written documentations. Din-e-Elahi could triumph over only 19 adherents consisting mostly of Muslims. Hindus and other religions did not embrace it though they appreciated the religious move of Akbar.
Din-e- Elahi met with fierce criticism by the believers of Islam as he denied the foundations of religion by appreciating celibacy and the prohibition of cow. The Hindus also could not accept it as a religion. Din-e-Elahi was intended to create harmony and integrity among the different religions though it could not bring the desired fruits.I think interpretation of religious teachings according to the wishes and agenda of rulers is not a new phenomenon. This is almost as old as the religion itself. Many scholars refused to act as Qazi under Muslim rulers, just because they were afraid of to act according to ruler's wish and not according to God's law.
Do me a favour answering one question, what is most important? Fighting on basis of religion for years or accepting each other perspective and living together with peace!
What if Din-e-Elahi succeeded and there would be a no separation of South Asia?
What would be the present scenario then? What if Akbar intention was noble?


  1. The reasons are simple : he wanted to promote unity and peace among the diverse factions of his people...and number two: he was a freaky arrogant narcissist moron who fancied himself as the Supreme Ruler of the Universe.....
    And no matter what his intentions were...he violated the most basic tenet of Islam...
    And no Din e Ilahi was NOT the answer to the South Asian split....
    It simply enraged the Muslim clerics and leader....

  2. Well considering the situation: i must say Two Nation theory is also wrong then..why bangladesh separated from Pakistan....both are muslims states and struggle.......May be Din e elahi would have promoted peace all over asia