Aurangzeb Visits the Mosque
Prince Aurangzeb incarcerated his father, the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, and also imprisoned and even killed some of his brothers so that he could become Emperor. Afterwards, he felt miserable at what he had done, and he often went to the mosque to pray.
One day he was praying in the mosque, along with many other people, when one of the mosque attendants saw a hole in the carpet. The man cried out, “What will the Emperor think if he sees such a hole?”
The Emperor overheard the attendant and became, furious. The man apologised profusely and said, “Please forgive me, 0 Emperor. Next time when you come, there will be no hole in the carpet. It will be a brand new carpet.”
Aurangzeb said, “You fool, that is not why I am angry! Why should you beg my forgiveness for a hole in the carpet? In my palace, if I had seen such a hole in the carpet, I would have been really furious. There I would not tolerate such a thing. But I have come here not as the Emperor; I have come as an ordinary person, as one of you. I have come as a beggar to pray to Allah. This is Allah’s special place, and Allah does not care for luxury and pomp. Here, simplicity and poverty are the real perfection. So do not worry about the hole; let it remain. Only if I pray in a simple place will I have true aspiration and true love for Allah!”
from Illumination-Experiences on Indian Soil
by Sri Chinmoy