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The ideal refugee: The Parsis- know to spread only love

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A few Persians following the Islamic conquest somehow managed to escape to China and India. The Sassanid King along with his court lived in exile in China. A major part of China was ruled by the Tang dynasty. With the Tang help, they tried in vain to conquer back their land. On his death bed, the Persian King looked towards the west and is believed to have said, “I tried all for my homeland.” Turning towards the east with the Chinese Emperor in attendance, he said, “I am thankful to China my new homeland.”

In India, the followers of Zoroastrianism who came from Persia are called Parsis. By the same time when the Sassanids were given refuge in China, many Parsis landed on the shores of Western India. Indians back then followed the policy of not letting aliens enter their towns and villages. They were allowed to camp or stay at the rest houses on the outskirts. The arrivals were provided with supplies and watched. When there was no reason to doubt only then entry was given. The Hindu King of the place where they had landed, sent them the supplies with the word that they are already full and that there is no place for new people.

The Parsis sent back a glass of milk with sugar as an offering to King saying as the sugar is not visible in the milk, yet it adds sweetness; our presence will only add sweetness to your land. The King gave them entry with the condition of accepting local language and clothing. The Parsis asked for one more thing. Unlike Indians who don’t carry footwear in their temples, Parsis are required by faith to wear them – the King accepted. Parsis for more than a millennia now have lived in India. Iran, the place of their origin is now ruled by an Islamic theocracy. Of the 1.3 billion of the Indian population, Parsis are just 70,000 but they have made contributions to India in every field. They have lived true to the words of their ancestors. The goodwill of the community is such that when population rise is being checked, the Parsis are being incentivized to increase their numbers.

For a person who has left his land and moved to another, love for both lands should be a part of him. Leaving the country of origin is neither a divorce to it nor love for it is a reason to not assimilate in new lands. Both the identities can simultaneously exist. But, there is a conflict. People are not willing to leave the habits which failed them. Those who have failed are expecting the conscience of others to be conquered not by goodness, but by using the naivety of the hosts against them. This has made many citizens of the host countries apprehensive about those coming in.

Differences in society are increasing. Apprehensions are not unfounded and the wellbeing of people who already are citizen comes first before new people are settled. To be grateful and loyal to the land which gives refuge is the least it expects. People may originate anywhere but the land which gives shelter is their new motherland.

Lord Krishna had two mothers, one who gave birth to him and another who raised him. If the devotees of Krishna are asked the name of his mother, most at first take the name of the latter.

One cannot pick between the two eyes he has, he will not puncture one for another.

Republished from my personal blog –

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