Emperor Akbar posed a question to his court and everybody was supposed to come up with an answer the next day.
The question was “if life was a game, what is its nature and how would you win it’
Courtiers were puzzled and kept wrecking their brains the whole day. Emperor was fond of tossing these curveballs and seeing his darbaris stumble over each other.
Next day Diwan-e-Khaas was abuzz with excitement. Some faces were glum, some serious while some had a self satisfied smirk. So as emperor sat down and asked around, answers started to come in :
‘Maharaj life is a game of accumulation of power and to win it one must be able to subdue others’ Raja Maan Singh opined.
‘Overlord of Hindustan, life is a game of integrating with a community and complying with Gods wishes and to win it one must follow precepts of morality as well as give deference to God. Mulla Do Piaza was never short of ideas.
‘O King life is a game of meeting situations with courage and intelligence and to win it one must live by a code of honour’. Raja Todar Mal the finance minister, suggested.
All eyes were now on Birbal. As King turned to look at him, he bowed and spoke
‘My lord if life was a game, it would comprise of solving three interlocking problems in that order : challenge of survival, mating problem and finding its meaning. Think of these as beginner level and advanced level versions’.
‘To win its three levels requires varied skill set and thus overall a learning mindset as talents at one level are often a handicap at another’
‘So Birbal, in your view, a person must forever remain in school’ Maulana do Piaza taunted.
‘Schools are more about literacy and less about skills, as you must be aware o learned one’ Birbal replied hinting at school Maulana ran.
‘To win at game of life one must either have a portfolio of coaches or mentors, who are adept in these areas or one must have ardent appetite for reading books of all kinds.’
‘What if one does not adopt any of these strategies Birbal’ King interjected.
‘One who doesn’t do any of these things, my King, is playing like an amateur and will surely lose his game to life’ Birbal concluded.