The Immeasurable Wealth of the Moghul Empire

Once the Emperor Akbar wanted to know how much wealth he had in the treasuries of all the cities in his empire. First he wanted to see how much jewellery and gold he had in the treasury of his famous capital, Agra.

He asked his treasurer to give him a report as soon as possible. The treasurer hired one thousand men who used four hundred pairs of scales, day in and day out.

After five months, Akbar called in his son and asked, “What is the report?”

His son replied, “Father, the treasurer and his men are nowhere near the end of this monumental task. There is still so much wealth left to measure!”

Akbar asked, “How much longer will it take? How much more time do they need?”

His son said, “They have no idea how many more months it will take.”

Akbar remained silent for a moment. Finally, he said, “Please tell them to stop.” He realised that even the wealth of just one city, Agra, was immeasurable.


from The Moghul Emperors
by Sri Chinmoy