King Amar and God's inscrutable ways19

There was once a king named Amar. One day he said to his commander, “Take ten thousand soldiers and go attack King Jaghen. Seize him and bring him to me.”

The commander said, “Would you allow me to ask you one question?”

The King said, “No, I have no time. Go immediately! Everybody appreciates him and admires him. His very name torments me. I won’t kill him, but I will keep him in prison for life. Life-imprisonment he will get in my palace.”

The commander was sad to hear the King’s request, but he had to follow his orders. He took ten thousand soldiers and went to the other king’s kingdom. For seven days he fought with the soldiers of King Jaghen and finally he defeated them. As the commander was about to bring the captured King back to King Amar, all of a sudden the Queen approached him. She placed her right hand on the commander’s shoulder and said, “My son.” She said it with such affection that the commander’s heart melted.

“What would you like?” the commander asked.

The Queen replied, “My son, please do me a favour. Just release your father. Take him to the King, but not in chains. You are such a brave hero. You have defeated us and now we are at your mercy. But please treat us well. Take us to your palace, and we shall definitely abide by your King’s will since we have surrendered to him. My son, I do not want your father to go to King Amar in chains.”

The words, “My son,” conquered the commander’s heart. “You have called me your son. How can a son do this kind of thing? You are my mother. I am leaving your husband, my father, here. Whatever happens to me, my fate I will gladly accept.”

So he came back to the King alone, without King Jaghen. King Amar got furious: “Where is he? Where is King Jaghen? How did you come back without him? I was told that you had won the battle.”

The commander replied, “Yes, I have won, but I could not bring the King because the Queen called me her son. There was such sincere affection and love in her voice. I didn’t have the heart to bring her husband, who is now my father.”

King Amar mocked at the commander, “Oh, I see. You have a new father, a new mother. All right, let your parents take care of you. You shall be imprisoned for seven days, and on the eighth day I shall kill you. Let me see how your mother, who has conquered your heart, can save you now.”

The commander said, “If my mother cannot save me, no harm. She has such affection for me and I have such affection for her.”

One of the soldiers, who was extremely fond of the commander, became sad and mad. He was sad because his chief was going to be killed and mad because that old lady, the Queen had come with such affection that the commander did not arrest King Jaghen. So the soldier went to King Jaghen’s palace and said to the Queen, “Look what you have done. The commander will be hanged on the eighth day because he could not take your husband.”

The Queen said, “I wanted him to take my husband, but not in chains. I said we would gladly abide by his King’s decision. But he did not take us. We shall eternally remain grateful to him and we shall pray to God for his safety.”

The soldier said, “Yes, yes, you will pray.”

“Yes, we shall pray,” the Queen assured him. “Believe me.”

The soldier said, “All right, then, I will believe you,” and he returned to his kingdom without saying anything to the commander.

The Queen of Jaghen was extremely sad. “Because of me, this commander is going to die. Love is so good; again, love can create such problems. Because of his love for me, the commander did not arrest my husband. I have to do something.”

The Queen went to the palace of another King who happened to be their friend. This King was infinitely more powerful than King Amar, and his Queen was her good friend. The Queen of Jaghen said to her friend, the other Queen, “Sister, save me, save me! Save my life!”

The Queen said, “I shall do anything you want me to.”

The Queen of Jaghen said, “I want you to save my son.”

“Your son? asked her friend. “What has happened to him?”

“I have adopted a son,” the Queen of Jaghen explained. “He was so kind to me. He came and attacked our Kingdom and arrested my husband and was going to take him to King Amar. I asked the commander to remove the chains and I told him that we would abide by King Amar’s wishes. But because I called him ‘son’ with such affection, he not only listened to me, but he would not take my husband back to Amar. Now King Amar is angry and wants to kill him. He will be hanged in a few days’ time. Please help me. I really want to save him.”

“Don’t worry,” her friend said. “I will be able to help you. Your commander-son will be saved. King Amar is deeply in love with my daughter, but my husband and I do not like him at all. Therefore, we have not given permission to our daughter to marry him. My daughter loves him also, but she does not want to displease us for we are so fond of her. But now we will give our daughter permission to marry him on condition that he set the commander free.”

“We are not afraid of him at all because we are much more powerful than he is; that’s why he did not dare attack us when we refused to give him our daughter. Now we will tell him we will give him our daughter provided he release his commander. If the commander wants to continue to serve him, that is up to the commander; but King Amar must set him free.”

At the Queen’s request, the King sent a messenger to King Amar saying, “We are prepared to give our daughter to you, but on one condition: you have to set your commander free.”

As soon as King Amar read the letter, he was so delighted and excited that he ran into the room where the commander was and personally released him. “Now my desire is finally going to be fulfilled. In comparison to what I am getting, setting you free is nothing. Now you go your own way. If you want to go to the other Queen who called you her son, you can go and be her commander. Or if you want to stay here, you are totally free to do so. For me to get this princess as my wife is to get everything. She is so beautiful, inwardly and outwardly. I didn’t dare to fight her father knowing I was no match for him in courage, valour, strength and power. But now, on his own, he is giving me his daughter, and I am so grateful to him. I am also so grateful to you. It is because of God’s inscrutable ways that I am getting my heart’s desire fulfilled.”

GIM 99. 24 January 1979