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Chapter 26: The Essence of Surrender

Poras - that was the name of the man who ruled on the boundary lines of India - he was really a brave man. His very name “Poras” means a real man, an authentic man. And Alexander, for the first time, was afraid; although he had more armies.but he did not have that spiritual quality that Poras had, that meditativeness, that presence.

Alexander had heard many stories about Poras; that nobody has ever been able to conquer his land although bigger armies have attacked. But the man has something in him; his very presence makes his army ten times bigger; his people feel that their victory is certain because Poras is leading them, and Poras knows no defeat.

Alexander was for the first time trembling inside, and for the first time he behaved as a politician - ugly. Up to that point he had simply been a great warrior, but hearing about Poras, he thought, “He is a far greater warrior, not only physically but spiritually; and just an army won’t do.” So Alexander played a cunning strategy.

In India, in the month of Shravan in the rainy season, there is a day, the day of brothers and sisters. The sister binds a thread to the brother’s wrist. It is called rakshabandhan, a contract: “You will protect me.” And the brother promises her that even if he has to lose his life he will protect her.

And Alexander sent his wife on that day to the palace of Poras. Of course she was received with great honor. Everybody was surprised - why had she come? - because on the other side of the Sindhu River Alexander was waiting for the right time to attack. And his wife came alone, and she said, “I want to see Poras.”

Poras had no sister. She went to Poras and she said, “You don’t have any sister; I don’t have any brother. I want to become your sister.” And she had brought the traditional thread.

She put the thread on the wrist of Poras, and Poras touched the feet of the woman and said, “You need not be afraid of anything. As long as I am alive I will protect you. If you have to ask.anything that I can give to you, I will be honored.” And she said, “In the war that is going to happen please don’t kill my husband; he is your brother-in-law. You will be destroying my lover. Remember this thread. You have promised me, to protect me.”

Poras could see the strategy, but he was a man of his word. He said, “Don’t be worried.” She was sent with security so that she could reach her camp on the other side.

And this was the reason that Poras was defeated. History books written by Westerners simply don’t mention the fact; that it was not a victory for Alexander, it was a victory for Poras.

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