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Indicism, Intoxication And Sobriety Among The 'Great Mughals'

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Chapter Summary

This chapter assesses the elite Mughal culture by substituting established paradigms concerning Indicism with the idea of Sobriety and Intoxication by Islam and Muslims. The prominence of Akbar and Awrangzib is dependent on the oppositional nature of their regimes. Akbar is noted for the promotion of non-Muslims to exalted heights, while Awrangzib is distinguished by the restrictions he placed on the employment of non-Muslims. Akbar initiated the Tawhid-i Ilahi circle of scholars. Fatehpur Sikri was built on the site of Shaykh Salim Chishti's burial place and his tomb is a central structure of the palace. Upon assuming the reins of state one of Awrangzib's first acts was to abolish the solar Tarikh-i Ilahi in favour of the lunar Hijri calendar. Awrangzib's ijtihad may not have been 'absolute', but it represented absolute legislative authority in relation to the jurists. Islam is not only embedded in 'India', but India is embedded in 'Islam'.

Keywords: Akbar; Awrangzib; Fatehpur Sikri; ijtihad; Indicism; Intoxication; Mughal culture; Sobriety; Tarikh-i Ilahi; Tawhid-i Ilahi



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