Friday, June 23, 2006

Mowgli R.I.P

Mowgli, aka Dishi (via Mogadishu), a black and white Lhasa Terrier, passed away this morning after an eventful ten years of life. Only those not intimate with my crazy, wonderful family, of which he was a full fledged member, would call him a dog.

I rushed to Noida this morning, where my family buried him under a tree in a infrequented park close to our house.. Much later in the day, after all the tears and laugther of rememberance, I remembered a story, told at the end of the 14th century by the famous Sufi, Sayyid Muhammad Gesudaraz. The version I read, and quote from, is in 'Before Timur Came: Provincialization of the Delhi Sultanate through the fourteenth century', by Simon Digby -

There were four men who were travellers, and the fifth of them was a dog. The dog expired on the bank of water. The men said: "This poor creature was a companion to us. Let us bury him here and leave a sign, so that when we come back we may remember that this is the place where our dog (is buried). Before they left they made a mound of earth had the apperance of a grave.

It happened that a caravan arrived (there), who had heard that the road was dangerous. They saw the form of a grave there and above the grave there was a tree. They thought that this was the grave of some holy man.... to that burial place they made a vow of a tenth of the goods of those in the caravan that, "if we travel safely we will bring a tithe of those in the caravan for the holy shaykh."

It befell that there was dissension among the brigands and the road was clear. The caravan passed safely and they returned and came to the place. They built a dome, a mosque, a hospice and a stopping place. This attained a reputation among the people. A city was then populated and there was a ruler...

My younger brother has already been twice since to what we have taken to calling the Mazaar e Mogu Shah...
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