When the army was encamped on the bank of the Indus, the design was to cross the river and proceed to Zābulistān. Most of the principal men in the army spoke in favour of abandoning this expedition. Some were influenced by ignorance, some by smallness of intellect, some by dread of a cold country, some by considerations of health and a love for India, some by the inconveniences of travel­ling. Some were influenced by good will towards the incompetent and ill-fated one, and being emboldened by the gentleness of the world's lord, they loosed the bridles of numbers of men (i.e. made them, slack). As the thread of acuteness and profundity was of double strength, the artifices of the tale-bearers were ineffectual. At this time an order was given to the writer of the noble volume to write down the views of the officers, and after having understood them, to represent them to H.M. I was astonished at their talk, but by God's help I was not deceived by it. I had not white hair and long beard, nor did an old, blue-stained cloak adorn a face of hypocrisy. When I did not accept their plausible speeches, they took to conspiring against me, but as I had the favour of the holy heart, apprehensions of this or that one did not touch the hem of my soul. The delay in the Shāhinshāh's carrying out his designs was wholly due to his hope that the Mīrzā would be aided by reason and do what was right. But he from foolishness and somnolence fell into evil thoughts, and his pride increased.


Enemies become proud from your soft words,
'Tis a time when fair speech does harm.

356 Though this was clear to his celestial mind, and he used constantly to say with his pearl-filled tongue, “The wise have an excellent rule, and it is a proper practice that whenever owing to the constitu­tion's deviating from equability a member of it becomes evil, it should be removed from the body so that it may not injure the other members. So also among men, if an individual cause a defect in the substance of auspiciousness, and create disaffection in others it is assuredly proper that the record of his existence should be erased from the book of the world.” But his loving heart could in no way agree to this, and he put off the crossing of the river. He feared lest by the crossing of the army things would go beyond the prospect of peace, and the life of this careless young man come to an end.* When graciousness had gone beyond bounds, and dissimula­tion had ended in imposture, the world's lord was compelled to order a crossing on 31 Tīr (about* 11 July 1588). He encamped at the place where the Indus and the Kabul river meet. He left the main camp with an immense quantity of baggage on the banks of the Indus, and gave the command of that spot to Qāsim K. in order that he might subdue the refractory spirits there and construct a bridge. On 8 Amardād (about 19 July 1581) Ḥājī Ḥabīb Ullah did homage and reported the Mīrzā's petition to H.M. Though he showed some shame and repentance, and confirmed his obedience by oaths, yet as he had not done what was ordered, his words did not bear the lustre of truth. Excuses are accepted when deeds accord with words. Otherwise word-spinners send the tongue in supplication and neglect performance. Many simpletons in old times have from inexperience accepted words as deeds, and have suffered heavy loss. It is proper for a peaceable being that if his deeds be not greater than his words, they be not less. Otherwise feline* tricks and deception are brought to the market. Accordingly the prudent sovereign did not accept the Mīrzā's apologies and issued orders that the prince should advance from Bikrām,* and that he himself would also proceed in that direc­tion. On the 9th (Amardād) the standards moved forward and stopped on the bank of the Kabul river. As the sea of graciousness was commoved he sent Khwāja Muhammad* 'Alī and a party of men. Perhaps one of these interviews might have effect, and the Mīrzā might not fall into eternal ruin. Next day he encamped at Daulatā­bād. On this day he exalted M. Ghyāu-d-dīn 'Alī of Qazwīn, who was the unique of the age for knowledge of history, and was also possessed of excellence and right-thinking, by the title of Naqib* K. He was presented with a splendid dress of honour, a special horse and abundant riches (khwāsta).* The idly-talking genealo­gists had their mouths shut, and the speakers of improper things had 357 guidance. At this stage a courier brought a petition of the Mīrzā. It expressed regret for the past and promised good service for the future. As it did not appear to be sincere, it made no impression on H.M. Inasmuch as choice meditation and the taking counsel are a praiseworthy habit of the Shāhinshāh, he directed that the great officers to the number of twenty should hold a special meeting, and should give answers in accordance with acuteness and knowledge. He also ordered the writer to ascertain the opinion of each, and to report the result to him. The order was carried out, and every one spoke as he had hitherto done. As none of them wished to march, they all spoke in favour of pardoning the Mīrzā and of returning, and they dressed up one idea in various fashions. The writer said: “When a large army under the command of such a fortunate and majestic chief has made a long journey and when the goal is not more than seven or eight marches off, and when the frequent par­doning of offences and the return of the august standards are linked with one of those four* conditions, how can retreat be proper in the absence of these, and solely because of the utterances of obscure envoys and of writings without the lustre of truth. Moreover, it is now the rainy season in India. How will it do to remain near the Indus till it is over, and if we march back now great damage will be done in this rainy weather to the war-material and the result will not be good. It is proper to finish the work which is nearly completed, and then to punish or forgive. “Owing to a mixture of interested motives they were angry, and consulted together (lit. put their heads down) with evil intentions. A cautious* man said to me from ignorance, but with friendly feelings (or it may be without understanding the laws of friendship), “Though I know that the degree of your knowledge is being revealed, and that truth-speaking is being displayed, yet in the troubled state of society it is indispensable that one should act along with one's contemporaries and espe­cially with those who are powerful in the state.” I replied: “It has been reckoned as one of the worst things to conceal what is fitting for the time, in a meeting for uttering confidences, and in the pure place of counsel, and to speak contrary to one's real sentiments. Such a course is destructive of realm and religion. Why should I for the sake of security in an outward world, which is soon to be destroyed, knowingly choose what is deadly injurious spiritually? Seeing that I have not spoken foolishly for the sake of applause I am in hopes that no dust will fall upon my skirt.” It was suggested that every one should lay his opinion before H.M. and that no men­tion should be made of me unless he inquired. With this under­standing we separated. On that day* I had headache and fever and was unable to pay my respects (kornish). Some evil-disposed opportunists made a compact among themselves and resolved upon injuring me. They seduced many simple-minded and honest persons by improper language, and they represented to H.M. that all the officers were of opinion that M. Ḥakīm should be forgiven and that the army should return. The Khedive of the world asked, “What is so and so's opinion, meaning the writer of the book of fortune.” One of them, who was shameless, from audacity and plausibility 358 said: “He too agrees with this opinion.” The short-sighted ones from envy and selfishness (tandārī) took this wrong course, and were firm in their evil imaginings. H. M. was indignant and said: “Such short-sighted views do not approve themselves to me. Apparently the officers are afraid of the cold of Afghanistan (Zābul); I'll leave them all behind, and go there with my disciples (shāgirdpesha.)” Next day I had recovered, and without delay I went and saluted H. M. (kornish sirbaland shud). The marks of glory were shining on the holy forehead and there was a new splendour to the great assem­blage. There was a deep deliberation and a profound inquiry. At this time the sublime sovereign called me near him, and made inquiries after my health, which were mingled with reproaches. He asked why I had changed the opinions which I always* used to entertain. It became clear that hostile persons and fabricators of words had played a trick and laid a plot. I fell into despondency, and came into a condition which may* no evil-doer fall into. The turbulence of youth, the exuberance of devotion, the intoxication of honesty, the hatred of life were aroused. Prudent counsel was nearly deserting me, and the revolutions of the spheres were almost over for this faster in Society's morning, that is, this new traveller* in the inexperience of the disposition of the Age. By virtue of my happy star, God's help lifted me up from the pit of irreflection. Right-thinking Reason cast the shadow of benignity over me. I emerged somewhat from my sorrow of heart and I petitioned H.M., saying, “Was what they allege me to have said spoken to one person's ear, or was it uttered in that meeting?” The audacious one chose to answer, “The latter was the case.” The justice-living sovereign sent for them all and questioned them. Some who were in league took, one after another, the same road of impudent assertion. The jewel of wisdom was nearly destroyed, and I was almost consigning myself to the repose of non-existence. The far-seeing prince read on the tablet of my forehead the marks of honesty, and the confu­sion was being diminished, but things were altered* by the audacity of the wicked men, and he was believing their statement to be true. In this confused and hopeless condition one of the brave and truth­ful men, who was not afraid* about himself and did not regard the numbers of adversaries, and whom I in my* imperfect acquaintance with him did not believe to be truthful, said, “In that meeting a certain one (i.e. A.F.) was speaking against this set of men; perhaps the conversation (they rely upon) may have taken place elsewhere.” The knot on my heart was loosed. In the abundance of his capacity H.M. folded up the roll (tūmār) of discussion. In gratitude* for this great boon from God, for the medicine for the crisis is not due to any one else, and by the hair-splitting acuteness of the world's lord, the real truth became impressed on far and near—I abandoned* the idea of retirement and of sinking down. The rank of my service was increased. H.M. put aside the asking for advice and went on, stage by stage to Zābulīstān. On the 14th he encamped near Bigrām. He spent some time in Gorkhattrī,1* which is a shrine of the Jogīs. There is a great cave in this place. Babblers say that no one knows how deep (long ?) it is. In the midst of it is the way to the secret chamber of the saints of old times. On account of the difficulty and darkness of the way, and its tortuousness, one cannot get there. As it was the prayer-spot of the great ones of God he entered it alone by the light of wisdom, and some of his servants, one after the other, also had this blessing. This least of men was one of them. The road was very long. It was necessary to sit down and to lie down and to trust to God. Many brave men had not the courage to do so, and turned back when half-way. After that he rested at the fort of Bigrām. This country is called Par­shāwar, and the general public call also the city by this name. The governorship of it was assigned to Yār 'Alī the Nāir-i-Biyūtāt.