Din-i-Illahi

Din-i-Illahi

The quest of Akbar culminated in the Tauhid-i-ialhi (the divine monotheism) or Din-i-Illahi, the word Din was applied decades later.

  • In 1582, this religious doctrine which combined mysticism, philosophy and nature worship was propounded by Akbar which recognized no prophets.

Akbar declared himself the spiritual guide of his subjects. His religion Tauhid-i-illahi favored peace and tolerance.

Tauhid-i-illahi prohibits lust, sensuality, slander and pride, considering them sins. Piety, prudence, abstinence and kindness are the core virtues of this religion. The soul is encouraged to purify itself through yearning of God. It respects celibacy and forbade slaughter of animals.

Elements of Din-i-Illahi

Din-i-Illahi was an eclectic doctrine that contained elements from very diverse fields. It overthrew almost every ceremonial rule whether Islam or Muslim, but took the good ideas from the Brahmins as well as from the missionaries and adopted “Sun” as a symbol of the worship of the creator. He started a new Illahi era. The new religion proposed:

  1. Forbade cow eating
  2. Indifference among all Indians
  3. Instituted worship of Sun as creator
  4. Incorporated the sacred fire adored by the Parsis
  5. Encouraged the Havana (hom sacrifice) of the Hindus.

The new cult was immediately professed by a small band of the courtiers of Akbar including Faizi, Abul Fazal, Birbal and a few others. But the rest remained indifferent if not hostile.

This hotchpotch of philosophy, mysticism and nature worship of Akbar’s divine faith practically died with him, but left footprints which partially contributed in creation of a nation, that was never a united nation before.

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