Storyline: The pandit patriarch switches genders while continuing to follow his/her longtime cohorts in focusing on her creative inner life and the plight of women in a male-dominated society, after many a go-round as a dynast following the world-shaking exploits of his/her formidable family.
Fatima Bhutto (1982) - Afghani writer and political activist. Outer: Grandfather was Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, a former prime minister of Pakistan. Father was Murtaza Bhutto, leader of al-Zulfiquar, a left-wing organization which he co-formed to avenge the execution of his sire, by the usurper who deposed him. He was living in exile at the time of his daughter’s birth, and gave her unconditional support in her wishes to be a writer. Mother was the daughter of Afghanistan’s former foreign affairs minister. Her parents were divorced when she was young, and she was raised by her father’s second wife, although her mother later tried to gain parental custody over her. Lost her sire at age 16 in a police shootout, and in 2007, her aunt, Benazir Bhutto, who was prime minister at the time, was assassinated, reinforcing her wish not to actively enter politics. Always wanted to be a writer. Got her BA degree in middle eastern studies from Barnard College in NYC, then got an MA in south asian studies from the School of Oriental and African studies at the Univ. of London. Her first collection of poems, “Whispers of the Desert,” brought her fame when she was a teenager. Subsequent works, “8:50 A.M.” published in 2005, delineated the effects of an earthquake on Pakistan, while a third, “Songs of Blood and Sword,” is a his/story of Pakistan, a memoir of her family, and an investigation into the death of her father, whose demise she blames on her aunt Benazir. Writes columns for several publications including “The New Statesman,” and although she has expressed no desire to run for political office, she is active in her stepmother’s party Shaheed Bhutto. Inner: Feels dynastic politics holds Pakistan hostage, feeding on guilt and ghosts, while power in the country resonates with violence, and women only really have each other for strength and support. Transition lifetime of switching genders in order to directly experience her other side and give it room to expand creatively, while being very much aware of the ghosts of his/story that rule Pakistan through her dynastic connection to its power elite. Jawaharlal Nehru (1889-1964) - Indian political leader. Known as ‘Pandit’ or ‘teacher.’ Outer: From a high-caste Brahman family, noted for their intellectual rigor. Father was a lawyer and politically active, while his mother was the former’s second wife. Eldest of 4, and 11 years older than his next sibling. His sister Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit became the first female president of the U.N. General Assembly. Despite being doted upon by his parents and lapped by luxury, he had a lonely childhood, and was home-schooled until he was 16, via English governesses and assorted European and Hindi tutors, giving him an expanded sense of the world, and a contracted one of himself. 5’7”, with an olive complexion. Completed his education in England, graduating from Trinity College, Cambridge, with honors in natural science. Went on to qualify as a barrister at the Inner Temple, London, per his father’s wishes, and then returned to India, where he remained largely unfocused. Married a transplanted Kashmiri, Kamala, whose father owned a flour mill, one daughter from union, the future Indira Gandhi, who would also become prime minister of India, with her own abbreviated bloodline following her. His wife was a decade younger than he, and felt bitter about her lack of a Western education. Never particularly into the law, but always interested in politics, and India’s oppressed colonial state. Helped run The Independent, a newspaper his father started in 1918, which expressed the views of the Indian Nationalist Congress, while both he and his sire were deeply impressed with Mohandas Gandhi (Aundhati Roy) and his civil disobedience movement. Went to jail in 1921 for his activities, and would spend 9 of his next 24 years in prison. During that time, he would write letters on his/story to his daughter, which ultimately would see publication. Lost an infant son in 1924, and wound up in Geneva for his wife’s health, which gave him the opportunity to read widely. Appointed general secretary of the Party, twice during the 1920s, and after a 1927 trip to the Soviet Union, became intrigued by Marxism, studying it in prison. Able to evolve his own democratic socialistic views through his studies. Became an icon of young intellectual India, and was elevated by Gandhi to the presidency of the Congress Party, over many a senior member. The duo would go on to work closely together, as he acted the role of the secular balance to his mentor’s religious and spiritual stance. Very attuned to the growing discord in Europe during the 1930s, during which time his wife died of TB in a sanitarium in Switzerland. In 1936, he wrote his autobiography, and it became a best-seller in Britain. Visited the Republican side in Spain’s Civil War in 1938, and was globally active on the eve of WW II, although he refused to meet with Nazi officials. England committed India to WWII, despite the Congress Party’s firm stance on fighting only if were granted autonomy. Spent much of the fray in jail, during which time, Gandhi officially anointed him as his heir, while he started on a second volume of his autobiography, which he eventually transmuted into an analysis of India’s past. In 1947, India was granted independence under the provison it partition itself to accommodate its ongoing Islamic-Hindu rift. Became the country’s first prime minister, and remained in that post for life, thanks to his ongoing narrative sense of his/story. Used Gandhi’s assassination by a Hindu fanatic early the following year, to his advantage, repressing Hindu extremists, and putting the country on a secular unified pathway, which momentarily defused the ongoing tensions between Muslims and the majority religion. Able not only to integrate his sense of western Europe into the country’s parliamentary and social systems, but also to keep India neutral in worldly affairs through an overt policy of nonalignment, although he was forced by expediency to abandon it several times. Discarded western clothes in 1950, in favor of what would become known as the Nehru jacket. Arrogantly nationalistic over Kashmir, which would be a continuous contentious bone with Pakistan, he also gave the boot to Portugal from Goa, ending the last kiss of colonialism in India. Created a model of development of statist controls, while discouraging free enterprise and foreign investment, which would hobble the country economically long after he left office. Suffered defeat by the Chinese in 1962 over a border dispute, and then dwindled in capacity following several strokes, the third of which ruptured his abdominal aorta and proved fatal. Inner: Worldly, sophisticated, charismatic and cerebral, with great sympathy for the downtrodden. Placed social issues over economic ones, shackling his country into poverty, thanks to a preference for principle over pragmatics. Viewed religion as “senseless and criminal bigotry,” but never denied people the freedom to criticize him. Regularly practiced yoga. Gandhi-dancing lifetime of following, rather than leading his longtime blood ally, to give foundation, as he always does, to a subcontinental political entity, according to his precepts of fairness, justice and hyper-rationality. Henry De Rozio (Henry Vivian Louis De Rozio) (1809-1831) - Indian poet, teacher and revolutionary. Outer: Of mixed European and Indian heritage, and an atheist, who, nevertheless operated out of Judeo-Christian rationalism. Taught by David Drummond, a free-thinking Scottish missionary, who gave him a solid grounding in his/story, philosophy and literature. Quit school at 14, and began writing poetry. At the age of 17, he was given a teaching post at the Hindu College in Calcutta where he taught the first generation of English-educated Bengali boys. As an Indian nationalist, he gave his students permission to break taboos, while filling them with the ideals of universal learning and creative expression. In 1828, he formed the Academic Association, a literary and debating club, which bred other similar societies in Calcutta. Best known for his poem, “My Native Land,” which showed his deep love of India. A revered teacher, his students would be known as Derozians throughout his life, and many would rise to prominent positions. His rationalist, enlightened philosophy, however, elicited cries of heresy from the uppercrust Orthodox Hindu parents of his students. His school directors were more than amenable to their plaints and he was ultimately sacked, and died soon afterwards of cholera, much to the shock of his followers, who, nevertheless, continued to question the prevailing authority. Inner: Inspirational and well-loved. Actively promoted the welfare of the Eurasian community. Integrating lifetime of incorporating east and west within him, and putting his ideals into language and thought, in preparation for being a revered nationalistic revolutionary leader, who well understood the differences twixt east and west, and how they ultimately could be combined. Hargobind (1595-1644) - Indian Sikh leader. Outer: Only son of the 5th Sikh guru, who was executed in prison, although beforehand, he told his son he must maintain an army to preserve his peoples. As a child, he escaped being poisoned by an uncle and having a cobra thrown at him, while also surviving smallpox. Invested in 1606, at the age of 11, just days before his father’s martyrdom. In the ceremony, he was given two swords, for secular power and spiritual authority, and he would become the integrator of the military with the religious for the Sikhs, who followed a largely passive pathway before his advent to power. His sire had him instructed in science, sports and religion, so that he was well prepared for his role, despite his young age. Had the Golden Temple at Amritsar constructed 3 years after his ascension, and ruled from there, where he was known as Sacha Padshah, or the True King. Tall and handsome. Formed an army, had every male Sikh own both sword and horse, and encouraged his people in physical activity, making warriors of them, while also emphasizing the spirituality of their lives, so that they were instilled with a sense of higher martial purpose. The Mughal emperor Jahangir (Mohamed Ali Jinnah) perceived him as a threat and had him imprisoned in a fort for 12 years, before releasing him. Afterwards, the emperor invited him to his court, where he charmed the older man, and later saved his life, by slaying an attacking tiger with a sword, when the ruler’s attendants fled in panic. Became a frequent visitor, and was able to use his high spiritual sense to offset any of the emperor’s misgivings about his religion. Moved his royal house to Kiratpur, and had 5 sons and a daughter, outliving two of the former. Traveled extensively, and impressed everyone he met with his deep wisdom, so that stories abounded of his insights and sacred sense of the martial and the spiritual. When the emperor died in 1627, the new moghul, Shah Jahan, began persecuting the Sikhs, and he did successful battle with the Mughals six times, having forged a resilient army, while showing himself to be a superior general, even when opposing forces were overwhelming. Spent the last part of his life relatively peacefully, although was deeply saddened by the death of his oldest son, and immediately began training his grandson, Har Rai as his successor. Having done so, he had him ordained at the age of 14 as the 7th Guru, and passed away soon afterwards. Inner: Charming, deeply spiritual, holy warrior through and through. Deeply meditative, calm and highly religious. Displayed royalty on the outside, but saw himself as a hermit on the inside. Integrative lifetime of successfully transforming his people into soldier-saints, by being one himself, and giving them a martial tradition, by which they would be known forever afterwards. Babur (Zahur ud-Din Muha Ammad) (1483-1530) - Indian Mughal emperor. Outer: Descended from the conquerors Genghis Khan on his mother’s side, and Tamurlane on his father’s. Father was easy-going and bookish. At the age of 11, he succeeded his sire as ruler of the small principality of Fergana, north of the Hindu Kush. His father had spent his life trying to recover Tamurlane’s old capital of Samarkand, and his son saw it as his immediate goal, while quickly proving himself equal to the task of taming the cutthroat realm he inherited. Because he was raised on a borderland, he was imbued with the warrior spirit of Central Asia and with Persian culture. Penned Persian poems, and was a writer of considerable grace, later inking his autobiography, Babur-nameh, a classic of its kind. Twice captured Samarkand, but was driven from his country by a Turkoman chief and settled in Kabul in 1504, subsequently conquering Afghanistan. Invaded Transoxiana, but was repulsed, and began making forays into India, before embarking on the decade-long campaign that would give rise to the Mughal empire, through his conquest of the Punjab, Delhi and Agra. Combined the strategy of cavalry warfare with the new weaponry which the Ottoman Turks had brought to Asia from the west. Trained as an archer, but was able to grasp artillery and firearms, using his mobile weaponry to good effect, while showing great presence of mind under fire. Treated Indians as his subjects rather than his prey, and cultivated gardens wherever he went, evincing a great love of nature, which was unusual in so skilled a warrior. Became emperor in 1526, although spent so much time collecting and protecting territory, he never set up a central administration, so that his accomplishments depended upon his successors to give it the governmental foundation it needed. Fathered at least 19 children by 9 wives. Deeply loved his favorite son and when his heir took ill, he prayed that his life be taken instead, walking 7 times around his bed. His son recovered and his wish came true, as he died the same year. Inner: Honest, open-minded and an inspiring leader. Name means ‘tiger.’ Magnanimous, cultured, witty, and adventurous, with an eye for beauty. Excellent presence of mind, making him a skilled tactician and solid strategist, consistently proving victorious over larger forces. Totally together lifetime of creating an apex existence for himself as the founding patriarch for his longtime family members to follow and build upon, while adding the powers of poetic exposition and aesthetic appreciation to his considerable repertoire. Osman I (1258-1324) - Ottoman chieftain. Outer: Father was a tribal chieftain who was awarded a territorial fief by the Seljuk Turks, after serving them well in battle. Probably not a Muslim at birth, but became one in 1280, when he married Kamariya Sultana Mal, , the daughter of a Muslim judge, 2 sons from the union. Also married a sheik’s daughter, with whom he had several more children. Served his father-in-law as an administrator and judge, and ultimately became chief of his people, gaining the respect of all who knew him for his charismatic wisdom. Prized justice over power and wealth, and proved to be a skilled grounding force in helping develop order, commerce and a sense of religious principle. Founded the dynasty that would be the cornerstone of the Ottoman empire, which would be named after him. Because he lived among Greeks, his brand of Islam was extremely tolerant, and he allowed all belief systems in his slow territorial expanse. In 1290, his people proclaimed their independence from their overlord, the Seljuks, when the empire of the latter collapsed. Waited patiently for another decade before challenging the Byzantine Empire for territory, and defeated a frontier army, then waited another 7 years before winning access to the Black Sea. Died before the city which would serve as his empire’s capital could be conquered, which was done by his younger son Orkhan. Inner: Wise, patient, calm and principled. Dynasty-founding lifetime of giving grounding to yet another empire, in what would be a continuing exploration of Muslim rule, after having thoroughly investigated multi-god and Christian rule beforehand. Tancred (?-1194) - Sicilian ruler. Outer: Grandson of Roger II (Arundhati Roy), and illegitimate son of the latter’s eldest son. Joined an insurrection against his uncle, William I the Bad, the king of Sicily in 1155, but was imprisoned for 5 years. After being released, he participated in another abortive coup, then went into exile in 1161. Finally forgiven for his disloyalty 13 years later, he led an expedition for William’s son and successor, William II the Good, and later was a fleet commander. William died in 1189, leaving no heirs for the throne. Crowned king of Sicily in 1190. Although he enjoyed the support of his chancellor, the pope, his people and most royal officials, most of the nobles supported his half-sister, Constance and her husband. Despite his military expertise, his position remained extremely shaky, with an apathetic populace, discontented nobles and other hostile forces, including the English king Richard I (Richard Burton), on his way to crusade in the Holy Land. The latter burned and plundered Messina after provoking a riot there in order to collect on a royal debt. Forced to negotiate with him before he went on his plundering way. The HRE, Henry VI (J. Paul Getty), then backed the claims of Constance, with an invasion, but he defeated him and held him hostage, only to reluctantly let him go under papal pressure, while Constance escaped to Germany. 3 years later, Henry, with the backing of Richard, made another attempt, but before he could engage his hostile force, he died suddenly, thereby ending 125 years of Norman rule in Sicily, when Henry was crowned king shortly afterwards. Although he promised the dead king’s family safe conduct, they were seized and sent into captivity in Germany, where his son was murdered. Inner: Martial adept, but had too many political enemies to hold his rule. Reverse lifetime of ending a line of rulers rather than beginning one as in live past, so as to complete a circle of rule for himself and concentrate in future lives on larger issues of attaining power and holding it. Robert I (?-1035) - French duke of Normandy. Known as ‘Robert the Devil.’ Outer: Younger son of the duke of Normandy. On the death of his sire in 1026, he contested the duchy with his older brother, the rightful heir, who died several years later. Showed himself to be a strong ruler, winning the allegiance of his vassals, while interfering in other territories. Gave Edward the Confessor (J. William Fulbright) sanctuary at his court when he was in exile. Supported Henri I (Sonny Bono) against his mother and brother, when the French throne became contested in 1031, and was rewarded for his loyalty by being given an area north of Paris. Served as a patron of the monastic reform movement, and named his illegitimate son, the future William the Conqueror (Arundhati Roy), as his heir, before dying on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Inner: Martial adept, with the ability to make his will manifest. His pejorative nickname came from a legendary character, and was probably bestowed upon him by his enemies. Competent lifetime of serving as a pre-progenitor for the Norman throne of England, while acquitting himself well in all his endeavors in his transition from emperor to the higher nobility. Heinrich I (c876-936) - German king. Known as ‘the Fowler.’ Outer: Son of a Saxon duke, he succeeded his father at the age 36. His first marriage was invalidated because his wife had been a nun. His 2nd marriage was to Mathilde, a direct descendant of the great Saxon leader Widukind, and an equally formidable figure who brought with her a rich patrimony. 6 children in all, including his successor, Otto I (Arundhati Roy), and his youngest St. Bruno (Mohamed Ali Jinnah). His wife was domineering and the 2 often quarreled, making for an unhappy union. The former wanted their 2nd son to succeed him, while he preferred Otto and eventually got his way. A foe of the German king, Konrad I, who was never able to subdue his rebellions, and eventually named him his successor in 918. Also came into possession of the Heilige Lance, the sacred spear which had pierced the side of the Christ on the cross, which gave him sacral, as well as secular power. Elected king of the Germans the following year by the other Saxon and Franconian nobles, but refused to be crowned by the bishops, preferring to maintain his independence from the Church. Later changed his mind, realizing the political importance of a linkage between the crown and the mitre. Spent most of his life in battle, extending his territories, building fortified towns and maintaining his effective cavalry in order to restore monarchical authority, which had been steadily whittled away by his nobles. By 921, he had secured recognition from the dukes of Swabia and Bavaria. Introduced military reform while stopping the Magyar raids into his territory, by concluding a peace with them in 924, which would last for 9 years. Used that time to fortify his army for the eventuality of the treaty’s conclusion. Trained his soldiers for mounted combat, which greatly increased their efficiency, and he was able to defend his territories and expand his frontiers. Before his death, he secured the succession of his son, Otto, thereby founding the Saxon dynasty that ultimately inaugurated the Roman Empire of the German Kingdom, which became known as the Holy Roman Empire. He had been intent on going to Rome to receive the imperial crown, but died beforehand. As a restorer of the imperial tradition, he was recognized during his lifetime as founder of the German realm, although it was not yet a centralized monarchy, but only a confederation, where the German dukes still ruled their own duchies. It would be up to his son to unite them under one strong figure. Inner: Simple, direct and straightforward, cared more about his own country than self-aggrandizement. Went to war only when he felt armed conflict was inevitable. Founder lifetime of laying the dynastic basis for the maintenance and expansion of Germanic territories. Constantius I Chlorus (Flavius Julius) (c250-306) - Roman emperor. Outer: Of humble Danubian origin. Known as ‘Chlorus’ or ‘the Pale.’ Had a successful military career, and through a liaison, or perhaps a marriage in 270 with Helena, an inn-keeper’s daughter, he became father of one of the seminal figures of the Roman Empire, the future Constantine I (Arundhati Roy). Less than a decade later, he was forced to repudiate his wife/mistress and marry the step-daughter of the co-emperor Maximian (Ernst Rohm), 6 more children from the union. Served as governor of the province of Dalmatia when Diocletian (Alfried Krupp) ascended the Roman throne, and was made a praetorian prefect, while spending much of his time in military engagements in the West. In 293, he, along with Galerius (Rudolph Hess), was chosen as Caesar in the newly-formed ruling Tetrarchy. Adopted by Maximian, he assumed his adoptive father’s name, Valerius. Given all of the provinces north of the Alps, including Britain and Gaul. Shielded the Christians under his jurisdiction from the harsh edicts of Diocletian. Carefully prepared for battle against usurpers, and recaptured Britain in 296. Although Diocletian instituted an all-out persecution of Christians, he destroyed only a few Christian temples and buildings. Spent much of his time guarding the Roman frontier, while campaigning successfully with various German tribes. Made an Augustus in 305, when 2 of the Tetrachy abdicated. Became senior emperor over Gaul, Britain and Spain, while his eastern cohort Galerius outstripped him in power, and also held his son, Constantine, hostage in order to insure his loyalty. Returned to Britain to deal with an emergency and requested the presence of his son, freeing him. After victories over the Picts, he died from a fever, and his troops proclaimed his son in his stead. Inner: Pious pagan, martial adept and resourceful statesman. Loved and revered by the Gauls, and praised by both Christian and pagan writers. Sword-in-hand lifetime of proving his martial skills, while exiting at the right time to avoid a prolonged civil war twixt east and west, that his son was able to handily resolve. Cambyses I (c600-c659) - Persian king. Outer: Father was a member of the Achaemenid dynasty, which, at the time, ruled a vassal state in central Persia that was beholden to the Medes. Probably ascended the throne around the age of 20. May or may not have married Mandane, the daughter of the Median king, and the son from their union, Cyrus II (Arundhati Roy), would go on to found the Achaemenid empire. The claim of the marriage may also have been instituted much later on to give the dynasty greater royal cachet. His life was ill-recorded, but he was able to hand his son enough power to shake the world of the time. Inner: Dynasty-grounding lifetime, once again, of putting all in place for the extraordinary skills of his son, in their ongoing double-generation introduction of great houses and empires into his/story down through the ages. Ancus Marcius (c675-616BZ ) - Roman king. Outer: Grandson on his mother’s side, of Numa Pompilius (Arundhati Roy), the 2nd king of Rome. Married with two sons, although his family is unknown. Made king of Rome in his early 30s, and reigned for a near quarter of a century, as had his warlike predecessor, Tullus Hostilius (Mohamed Ali Jinnah). Seen as more peace-like, he was attacked and tested by the city’s enemies, and proved victorious, adding more hills to Rome. Supposedly brought water to the city via an aqueduct, and expanded it, while further refining the religious system his grandfather had instituted. Died of natural causes, and was viewed as a good monarch by one and all. Inner: Calm and temperate, and equally skilled in the arts of peace and war. Model lifetime of following in the tradition of his longtime elder, rather than getting caught up in the bloodlust competition of his far more bellicose brother, as he would in further incarnations in this series.


Storyline: The seminal statesman switches genders, as she/he focuses on creative expression this time around after employing a full circle of violence and nonviolence as bookends to his/her empire initiating skills, while giving much of western civilization its structural foundation, and its sense of larger self.
Arundhati Roy (Suzanna Arundhati Roy) (1961) - Indian novelist and political activist. Outer: Mother was a Syrian Christian, and father, a Bengali Hindu, was a manager of a tea plantation and an alcoholic. Parents divorced when she was two and she and her older brother grew up with their mother and her family, who were unhappy with their daughter’s marrying without their approval. She in turn was a dominating and indomitable character with arthritis who founded an independent school, while serving as her daughter’s primary teacher, which allowed the latter freedom of expression and the development of her inner voice. Has a threadbare growing up, which made her extremely sensitive to India’s poor. Left home at 16 and eventually enrolled at the Delhi School of Architecture,, which gave her a later perspective on the graphics of language. Slim, small and quite striking. Lived with Gerard Da Cunha, a fellow student, then dropped out to pursue a writing career, with Delhi as her permanent base. Scripted a TV serial, then wrote two failed films before publishing a critique of Bandit Queen, which brought on a lawsuit against her, and made her retreat into herself, doing a variety of jobs, including running an aerobics class. In 1984, she married film-maker Pradip Krishen, a widower and former his/story professor, while helping raise his two daughters by a previous union, and appearing in one of his films as a goatherd. The two eventually wound up living separately, although never divorced. Her first novel, published in 1997, and written in English, “The God of Small Things,” won the prestigious Booker Prize, making her the first Indian woman to win that accolade, as well as quite wealthy, although she has given much of the money away, and has refused to sell film rights to it. An instant celebrity afterwards, as well as the target of much criticism for the book’s mild eroticism and its treatment of India’s untouchables. Became a political activist afterwards, using both pen, as an essayist, and personal presence against nuclear weapons, rapid development, globalization, and the corrupt nature of Indian government, while evincing a powerful concern for the environment, and its human inhabitants. Heavily criticized the U.S. for its invasion of Afghanistan, blaming the country’s military-industrial complex for befouling the world. Spent several weeks with Maoist guerrillas in the forests of central India, supporting their resistance to development, while placing herself in great danger. Has had her home pelted with stones, while incurring the wrath of those opposed to her absolutism, and did a little jail time for her activism. Wrote a rebuke of her previous life’s support of the caste system, seeing Gandhi as quite regressive in that regard, while also deliberately deglamorizing herself, cutting off her hair, to take focus away from herself and onto the issues she champions. After 20 years, she published her 2nd novel, “”The Ministry of Utmost Happiness,” whose first half features a transgender woman as a means of looking at the duality of India and partition, while the second focuses on Kashmir and the larger world,and the myriad problems her country faces. Inner: Passionate, strongly opinionated and highly cerebral with a dualistic view of the world. Never re-writes, and sees fiction as truth Extremely sensitive to the plight of India’s poor. Is enamored of nature, without any religious sensibilities, and hates being pigeonholed. Her mother’s daughter lifetime of going against the accepted grain from an activist, feminist perspective, as a means of integrating her extraordinary, multi-level personality with modern demands on the psyche of its world citizens. Mohandas Gandhi (Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi) (1869-1948) - Indian political leader. Known as the Mahatma, or ‘the Great Soul.’ Outer: Father was chief minister of the province where he was born, mother was her husband’s 4th wife and a devout Vaishnavite Hindu, whose life was focused on family and temple. Youngest of 3 sons and a daughter. Shy, sensitive and studious, as well as filled with fears, he grew up under the nonviolent tenets of Jainism, with the Hindu God Vishnu, the deity of preservation, as his primary divinity. A largely indifferent athlete and student, despite winning prizes in some subjects, he was married at 13, to Kasturba Markhaji, the daughter of a merchant. Their eldest child died, and then they had four sons, all of whom he would neglect, with the oldest of the four becoming an alcoholic and prostitute, and a total embarrassment to him. Took a vow of celibacy in 1906, although he and his spouse had a largely affectionate relationship, despite disagreements, that almost saw her leave him early on. Found his most gratifying pleasure in long walks, and mildly rebelling against his heritage, via sneak-smoking and occasionally eating meat, while feeling guilty afterwards, and always searching for self-improvement. 5’5” and under 100 pounds, with no political interests while growing up. Attended the Univ. of Bombay, learning English, while wishing to become a doctor, but family tradition demanded he study law. His father died when he was 16, which set a lawyerly course for him, and, despite his mother’s trepidations, he left for England in 1888. Joined the Inner Temple law school in London, while struggling to adapt to the alien environment and maintain his vegetarian stance. The vegan Indian community there opened him up to his native Bhagavadgita, as well as the idealism of his fellow practitioners, which, in turn, made him non-materialistic, as well as accepting of all that had befallen him. After his mother had died in his absence, he returned home in 1891, but had great difficulty in establishing a law practice in Bombay, because of his shyness, forcing him to be a rural drafter of litigation. Accepted a contract in Natal, South Africa, where he discovered mass prejudice against his non-European kind, which impelled him never to accept injustice against himself or anyone else. At 25, he overcame his earlier fears of public speaking, and became an active organizer, exposing the discriminatory practices of Britain’s high-handed imperial ways. Despite nearly being lynched in Durban by a white mob in 1897, he refused to prosecute his assailants. Spent over 20 years in South Africa in his struggle for Indian rights, including nearly 250 days of jail time, while formulating the philosophical basis for his passive resistance to oppressive colonial regimes. Abandoned western dress while there, in favor of simple homespun clothes, and later spent hours every day spinning and encouraging others to do the same. Left South Africa for India via London in 1914, having accomplished some of his aims, and by 1920, he had emerged as the pre-eminent political power in his native land. Dressing in loincloth and sandals, and adopting poverty as his lifestyle, he insisted his countrymen abandon the dress and ways of their British oppressors, and employ nonviolent civil disobedience as the most productive form of resistance, while refashioning the Indian National Congress into a nationalistic body. Arrested numerous times over the next 2 decades, he utilized 17 hunger strikes, the longest for 3 weeks in 1924, mass imprisonments, and an ultimate abandonment of his political position, in a series of campaigns, in the early 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, to focus on building India from the bottom up, focusing on education and cottage industries to remake the country. His wife died in 1944, while sharing imprisonment with him. Became politically active again during WW II, in his belief that nonviolence could undo violent enemies, which caused the British to imprison the entire National Congress leadership. After the war’s end, the British partitioned India into the dominions of Pakistan and India, according to their religious divide of Muslim and Hindu, which was one of his greatest disappointments, causing much violence, disruption and bloodshed, although he accepted the trade-off for Indian independence, and worked to heal his deeply-scarred country, with vigils and fasting, despite being blamed by both sides for the ultimate solution to Britain’s colonial crisis. Also saw to his great distress that the new Indian government had completely adopted the ways and structures of their colonial masters. Assassinated by a young Hindu fanatic who blamed him for partition, while on his way to an evening prayer meeting. Shot three times in the chest and abdomen, he died instantly, uttering, “He Ram,” or “God,” as his last word. Per his instruction, his body was cremated the next day, so that it would not be revered or worshiped. His assassin made no attempt to escape and even shouted for the police. Proved to be a unifying factor in his death, as he had been in life, with the country coming together in deep mourning for him with the ritualized observances of his passing. Wrote more than 80 volumes, including his autobiography, An Autobiography, or The Story of My Experiments with Truth, and is alternately revered for his stances, and reviled for impeding the natural progress of India, which remained an over-populated, underachieving backwater for generations after him. Inner: Brilliant mediator and deeply spiritual, using his own heart, and his deep love for the human condition, as his temple. Great story-teller, employing his own life as an ongoing parable. Continually confronting and overcoming his fears surrounding virtually everything. Sacrificed his progeny to his career, although his wife always remained a strong support. After adopting celibacy as a social stance, later on in life, he shared his bed with young women to test his tenets. Held a strong attraction to the simple verities of life, hard work, austerity and the innate rewards of a job honestly done, no matter the outcome. Saw himself as a truth-seeker, with his life as his basic message, and satya or truth as the central moral principle of life. Exemplary lifetime of fighting violence, racism and imperial hauteur through simple resistance, completing the circle of the foundation-building warrior that he had been, into the healing savant that he will probably continue to be, whenever this remarkable being graces the Earth with his promethean presence again. Rammohan Roy (1772-1833) - Indian social philosopher and reformer. Outer: From a prosperous Brahman family in British-ruled Bengal. Early life obscured, traveled widely in India, showing an affinity for languages, before becoming a moneylender, speculator and estate manager. Strongly spiritual, he was a monotheistic Hindu, who intellectualized religion, looking for the philosophic basis behind it. In 1805, he began working for a British East India Company official who introduced him to western culture and literature. Began translating ancient texts into modern Bengali, Hindi and English, and in 1815, he founded a short-lived society to promulgate his One-God brand of Hinduism. Learned Hebrew and Greek to better understand the Old and New Testaments, and in 1820, he wrote his interpretation of the four Gospels. Two years later, he founded the Anglo-Hindu School, and 4 years afterwards, the Vedanta College, in order to have official organs to teach his brand of monotheistic Hinduism, as well as place traditional Indian culture in a more modern context. Founded and edited two of India’s earliest weekly newspapers, and in 1823, when Britain imposed censorship on the Calcutta press, he turned political and organized a protest, which refocused him on the social implications of the long-held superstitious beliefs of his mother country. Became a highly active activist, denouncing the caste system, as well as the practice of suttee, or burning widows to death on their husbands’ funeral pyres. In 1828, he formed the Brahmo Samaj, modeled on Christian Unitarianism, which would play an important role later in the century for Hindu reform. Came to England in 1828, as the unofficial representative of the Great Mughal, India’s nominal sovereign, and spent the rest of his life there in a final act of integrating eastern and western spiritual reformist ways, before dying of a fever. Inner: Tireless reformer and language popularizer, while also applying western revolutionary methods to eastern ways. Transition lifetime of leaving his sharp weapons behind to pick up the soft-edged arms of intellectual fare, in his ongoing battle to reshape the planet according to his activist vision. Guru Govind Singh (Gobind Rai) (1666-1708) - Sikh leader. Outer: His father was decapitated by order of the Indian Moghul Aurangzeb (Ayman al-Zawahiri), when he was 9 years old, when the former refused to convert. Felt it was a remarkable showing, and proved to be a worthy successor as the 10th and final guru of the Sikhs, gaining installation as such in 1676. Vowed to avenge his sire’s murder and devote his life to a ceaseless struggle against the emperor’s tyranny. Followed his grandfather Hargobind’s (Jawaharlal Nehru) welding of the martial with the spiritual, with an added interest in language, being fluent in several of them. Solidified the Sikh’s martial base, by forming the Khalsa or ‘army of the pure,’ in 1699, a military brotherhood. Rebaptised himself as ‘Singh’ or ‘lion,’ as well as his followers, and this patronym would become the traditional name of all Sikhs. All vowed never to cut their hair or beards, always carry a saber, and wear identifying dress, a practice that would continue into the 21st century. Ultimately outlived his hated rival, but was continually harassed by the superior numbers of the Mughal armies throughout his life. Served as an inspiration on all levels, codifying Sikh law, creating a body of both devotional and ethical poetry and music, as well as a worshipful attitude towards the sword, which he dubbed, “the sacrament of steel.” Fought against both the hill tribes of India and the Mughals, while continually serving as a beacon of freedom, although he announced he was the last of his people’s gurus, and after him, the sect’s holy book, the Adi Granth, would serve that role. Eventually lost all 4 of his sons in the struggle, as well as his wife and mother. Before he was killed by a Pashtun tribesman in revenge for the death of his father, he did a ceremony around passing his office onto his sect’s holiest book. Inner: Archetype of the Sikh soldier-saint, as his grandfather had been. Skilled general, brilliant adept in all he undertook, and a gifted poet. Inspirational lifetime of giving Sikhdom its distinctive fighting spirit, as well as augmenting its cultural base, while learning to deal with much larger oppressive forces from the standpoint of sheer saintly will, lessons he would repeat in further go-rounds. Akbar (Jalal-ud-din Muhammad) (1542-1605) - Indian Mughal emperor. Outer: Of Turkish, Mongol and Iranian descent, with the remarkable conqueror, Genghis Khan, as an ancestor. His father was forced into exile by an Afghani usurper, then regained his throne when his son was 13, although he died the following year, after consulting an astrologer on a roof and falling and tripping coming down. Had his wet nurse’s son killed so as to eliminate any rivals for the throne. Never learned to read or write while growing up among fierce warriors in Afghanistan and Iran, and was illiterate his entire life. 5’7” with an imposing physical aura. Made governor of the Punjab at 13, and then succeeded to his father’s limited throne the following year. Had good guidance from his chief minister, although he forced him to retire in 1560, and established himself as an absolute monarch. Began a systematic policy of conquest, marrying a Raja’s daughter in 1562, while allowing feudal rights to those chiefs who acknowledged him as emperor, and showing no mercy for those who did not. Although a Muslim, he had Hindu princes in his service, and Hindus at all levels of his administration, winning their cooperation through his just rule and the opportunities he afforded them. Gave up hunting, a sport he loved, as well as meat, to accommodate. Made all his commanders and officers directly responsible to him, thereby controlling his armies instead of having them splintered, and also made civil administrators directly responsible and responsive to him, uniting both the pen and the sword in his service, while stitching his empire together with an excellent road system. Made sure all of his underlings were dependent on his largesse through land awarded and favors and money granted. Able to attract people of skill to his government, creating a meritocracy of sorts beneath him. Established a prudent foreign policy of playing external rivals off against one another, while concentrating on his own internal empire. Centralized his financial system, created more efficient revenue collection systems, and established an information network that kept him apprised of the details of his empire. While the elite and the talented, including artisans, scholars, poets and painters, flourished under him, the underclass remained impoverished. Maintained a luxurious and brilliant court, while remaining a distant figure through ceremony and ritual. Ultimately had 7 wives, and 3 sons, although 2 were weak drunkards. Stood at an open window every morning at dawn so that he could be seen. Had a tolerant and open mind towards other belief systems, although offended his own theologians by presenting himself as the ultimate arbiter of all religious issues, while viewing his orthodox clerics as medieval. Introduced the greeting, “Allahu Akbar,” ‘God is great,’ as a subtle reference to himself, although his ideal of initiating a far more tolerant Islam died with him. Founded a House of Worship in 1575 where scholars from all religions could discuss the divine, and also found his own Sufi order. Towards the end of his life, he embarked on one final round of conquest. At the end, he had to deal with a revolt by his son, Salim. Captured, then pardoned him, but was probably ultimately poisoned by his ungrateful progeny, who succeeded him as the Mughal emperor, Jahangir. Inner: Highly intelligent, humane and tolerant, save for those who did not bend to his will. Authoritarian, but just, fair, benevolent and enlightened, creating a cult of personality about himself in order to institutionalize Mughal charisma. Epileptic, rarely slept more than 3 hours at a stretch. Adept martial artist with an equal skill at governance, creating a foundation for eastern government over a disparate people that would prove as workable as similar models he had created in the west. Completion lifetime of ending his run as emperor-for-all seasons to once more become a seminal figure of his time through his ongoing organizational skills at martial and governmental arts. Murad I (1326?-1389) - Ottoman emperor. Outer: Grandson of the founder of the Ottoman Empire, Osman I (Jawaharlal Nehru), a chieftain, who brought Islam to the small principality he inherited, in northwest Anatolia. Father was Orkhan, who extended that principality into a state with its own coinage. Upon succeeding the latter in 1360, he immediately launched a military campaign into Europe and within 15 months had extended his inheritance into western Thrace, forcing the Byzantine emperor to become his vassal. Re-established his capital in Edirne, the renamed city of Adrianople, utilizing the fortresses there as his base. Set up the administrative networks of his government, going outside his family for officials, and created his elite fighting corps, or Janisseries, who were used to maintain and defend his conquered Christian territories in Europe. Always planned well-executed campaigns, with an eye towards empire, rather than fleeting conquest. Employed enslavement in his conquered territories, which forced many captives to convert to Islam in order to insure their freedom under his empire, which shocked Europe, but was in keeping with the traditions of his realm. Capitalized on the Balkan Christians hatred of the Latin Church, and, despite a few setbacks, was able to to bring large territories under Ottoman rule, making the princes of Bulgaria and northern Serbia his vassals as well. Married Gulcicek Hatun in 1359, 5 sons from the union. Took a decade to stabilize his conquests, and also blinded and beheaded his own eldest rebellious son. Through at least 3 further marriages, purchases, assimilation and conquests, he extended his reach even further during the 1380s, finally succumbing on the battlefield during the battle of Kosovo, although different versions of his death exist, including being assassinated by a knife through the breast, by a Slav pretending to have deserted his cause. Succeeded by his eldest son Bayezid I. Inner: Martial artiste supreme, excellent political vision, wise, pious, but also ruthless and cruel in battle. Although a strict Muslim, he dealt tolerantly with the Christians in his empire, refusing to persecute them, and aside from his Janisseries, did not try to convert them. Conquering lifetime, once again, of being a foundation builder for a mighty empire, using Islam as his base, the sword as his imperial wand, and an innate instinct for law, order and administrator structure to accomplish his aims. Roger II (1095-1154) - Norman king of Sicily. Outer: Son of Sicilian count, Roger I (Kathleen Kennedy) and his third wife, who later married Baldwin I (Ayman al-Zawahiri) of Jerusalem in a disastrous union, which won the lifelong enmity of her son for the Frankish rulers of that state. Succeeded his elder brother at the age of 9 and was given the reins of government at the age of 17, after his mother had acted as regent. Knighted and established Palermo as his capital. Saw Charlemagne (Napoleon) as his hero, and deeply respected his own office. In 1117, he married Elvira of Castile, daughter to the Castilian king. 5 sons and a daughter from the union, including his heir William, having outlived the others. Grieved greatly when his wife died in 1135, and was a recluse for a while afterwards. Expanded his own territories through conquest and diplomacy, preferring negotiation and gold to the sword, although was never adverse to wielding the latter, which he used to subdue his rebellious barons and add to his domain. Despite his Norman background, he was an Oriental at heart, establishing a learned court at Palermo, and ruling like a Byzantine potentate, over an Arab and Grecian peoples. Crowned King of Sicily at age 32, which brought together his trio of duchies into one state. Routed a papal army in 1139 and took the pope captive, forcing him to confirm him as overlord of all Italy south of the Garigliano River. Pacified his mainland realm quickly, and watched as his extended kingdom grew rich and prosperous. Married a second time to Sybille of Burgundy, daughter of a French duc, 2 short-lived sons from the union. His third marriage was to Beatrix of Rethel, a grandniece of Baldwin II of Jerusalem (Ehud Barak), one daughter from the union, who married the HRE Heinrich VI (J. Paul Getty). Also sired several illegitimate children. Lived the life of an absolutist, involving himself in all details of government, to the point of going through his exchequer accounts to record the smallest of expenditures. Created a civil service and a powerful navy, as well as a kingdom that tolerated all creeds, while employing his Arab subjects for his finances and his Grecian subjects for their expertise with the sea. Successfully melded Arabic, Norman and Grecian culture. Spent his last 15 years in his stimulating court, surrounded by the leading thinkers of his time, creating an environment where the east and west could meet in convivial intellectual exchange. Inner: Intellectual data-master, with a deep sense of his own place in his/story. Patient and determined, also highly energetic and ambitious. Nation-enhancing lifetime of giving life to the mind and the sword and establishing a kingdom that celebrated both. William I (c1028-1087) - Norman king of England. Known as ‘The Conqueror.’ Outer: Grandnephew of a former Norman queen of England, Emma (Mae West). Illegitimate and only son of Robert I (Jawaharlal Nehru), the duke of Normandy, and a tanner’s daughter, although his mother’s identity is questionable. Had two-half brothers, who were important allies of his, as well as a sister. Acknowledged at 7 as his father’s successor, but his sire’s death in 1035 produced a baronial revolt, and he gained control of his duchy only through the help of the French king, Henri I (Sonny Bono). At 20, he defeated the barons and established his rule. Tall, with a warrior’s body and muscular arms, as well as a commanding presence and fierce face. In 1051, he visited his cousin, Edward the Confessor of England (J. William Fulbright), and obtained a promise he would succeed him as king. Against the wishes of the pope, he married his cousin, a daughter of the English ruling House of Wessex, Matilda (Margaret Sanger). 9 children from the union, including his 2 successors, William II Rufus (Joseph Kennedy, Sr.) and Henry I (Joseph Kennedy, Jr.), as well as an eldest son, Robert Curthose (Rudolph Hess), whom he despised. Proved to be a faithful husband, even though he was often separated from his wife. Successfully fought off two invasions of Normandy by the French king when the latter began fearing the power of the Normans. When a rival, Harold II (Moshe Dayan), was crowned king of England in early 1066, he assembled an army of his own men and foreign fighters, and in the fall of that year, led the Norman invasion of England. His fresh troops defeated his weakened enemies, who had earlier repelled another invasion, allowing him to establish the House of Normandy on the English throne after the his/storic Battle of Hastings, in which Harold was killed. Marched on London next, and forcefully made his claim for the throne. Crowned on Christmas Day in Westminster Abbey, although it took almost a decade before the final revolts in the north against his hegemony were put down, during which time nearly 1/5 of the population was killed. During this period, he also spent much time in Normandy, where he was forced to put down a rebellion by his eldest son Robert, whose inheritance he revoked. Invaded both Scotland and Brittany to expand and solidify his holdings and rewarded his supporters with fiefs, thereby imposing continental feudalism, while retaining the Anglo-Saxon system of local administration to check his barons’ hunger for power. Replaced the entrenched aristocracy with his own Norman nobles, while being careful not to accord any singular one the land/power to challenge him, through judicious parceling of estates. After the death of his wife in 1083, he became far more tyrannical, without her mitigating sense of justice. Raised the power of sheriffs as arbiters of law, fused continental and local systems, and gave villages and manors relative autonomy in return for payments and military service. Organized the Domesday survey, creating an informational base for a tax system, instituted Church reform, and established relative law & order both in England and Normandy, while centralizing ruling authority. Suffered a severe abdominal injury in a riding accident, after falling off his horse during a seige, and perished from peritonitis. After his death, everyone rushed off to protect their estates. His servants stripped his deathroom of its valuables, leaving his half-naked corpse untended, as testament to the true nature of the kingdom to which he harshly gave a semblance of order. His subsequent corpulent body also burst its stone sarcophagus, despoiling his official burial, in a further testament to his outsized nature. Succeeded by his son William II Rufus. Inner: Shrewd and crude, temperate in his habits and pious. Energetic and resourceful general, equally adept administrator, one of the outstanding figures of medieval times, and a worthy founder of a long-standing throne. Nation-building lifetime of combining his martial and informational skills to lay the foundation for the monarchy of England. Otto I (912-973) - German Holy Roman Emperor. Known as “the Great.” Outer: Eldest legitimate son of Heinrich I the Fowler (Jawaharlal Nehru). Mother, Mathilde, was his 2nd wife, a pious and domineering woman who believed only God superseded her and wound up in a convent. Brother of St. Bruno (Mohamed Ali Jinnah). Always glad to be away from his mother, when he was off fighting with his father. His parents continually quarreled, particularly over succession, with his mother favoring her 2nd son, but he succeeded his father as German king at 24, when the latter followed the ducal custom of transmitting power to a singular progeny, rather than the German tradition of dividing the kingdom. At the age of 17, he married Edith, the daughter of the English king, Edward the Elder (JFK). Son and daughter from the union. Given a thorough religious training by his mother, but he was never taught to read or write, which irked him. Depended on others, but articulated his thoughts well to secretaries and welcomed scholars to his court. Both an illegitimate older brother and his younger sibling challenged his rule, and he spent the first 5 years of his reign putting down rebellions and consolidating his power. Through dynastic marriages by his children, and the administration of Saxony by his own faithful officials, he was able to put Germany under the rule of his family. Also allied himself with the two most powerful nobles in France, via familial intermarriage. In the same way, he appointed his brother Bruno archbishop of Cologne and chancellor of the kingdom, and a son archbishop of Mainz, in order to both strengthen the clergy and keep it under his control. When he was 35, he finally taught himself the letters of the alphabet and some sense of literacy. Tall, powerfully built, with a presence that demanded obedience. An excellent strategist, he secured his position by putting down rebellions, then conquering areas to his east, while strengthening and extending his frontiers, and also giving structure to German government, through the use of bishops, which would provide a longlasting framework of rule for his dynasty. After his first wife died, he married Adelheid (Ayaan Hirsi Ali), the widow of the Italian king, with whom he was deeply in love, 5 children from union. She had importuned him to regain her Italian throne in 951, after being imprisoned by a usurper, Berengar II (Adolf Hitler), and he promptly marched on Italy, and declared himself king, before wedding her. Further enhanced his territorial empire over the next decade, and when Berengar’s son, Adalbert (Rudolph Hess) attacked the pope, the latter asked for his help, and he marched on Rome and defeated him, which occasioned his being crowned, along with his wife, emperor and empress in 962. Had his son Otto II (Shah Massoud), declared as his heir, thus establishing the Roman Empire of the German Nation, which became known as the Holy Roman Empire, with himself as secular head of the Church and part of the consent process of selecting popes. Ultimately imprisoned Berengar the following year, and deposed the pope for consorting with him, before established his own pope, although he supported the former’s claim in 965, when his choice died. Marched for a third time on Italy in 966 and stayed 7 years, subduing Rome, and beyond. Negotiated with the Byzantines to marry his son to one of their princesses in 972, and then returned home for one last great assembly, before dying several weeks later. In his 37 year reign, he brought his house to its greatest glory. Inner: Reserved, calm, and dignified. Very physical, with an excellent memory. Deeply religious, rarely missed Mass. Successfully instilled a Christian ethical sense in the burgeoning German empire, while his domain experienced a cultural renaissance. Empire-building lifetime of giving order and continuity, despite his own illiteracy, to central Europe so that it could enter the modern age on equal footing with its western counterparts. Constantine I (Flavius Valerius Constantinus) (c273-337) - Roman Emperor. Outer: Son of Constantius I Chlorus (Jawaharlal Nehru) and an innkeeper’s daughter, St. Helen, who later converted him to Christianity. His parents were probably not officially married, although he spent his youth at the eastern court of Diocletian (Alfried Krupp), as a hostage to insure his father’s good behavior. Made tribune at the age of 11, after his father had been made Caesar, and served in the army with distinction. In his early 30s, he had one son, Crispus (Guy Burgess), from a union with his mistress Minervina. In 306, he escaped from the court of Galerius (Rudolph Hess) and joined his father in the West. Fought in Britain and Gaul, and was at his side when his father expired, before being declared emperor by his troops in 306. The following annum, he married Fausta (Indira Gandhi), the daughter of emperor Maximian (Ernst Roehm), by whom he had 2 daughters and 3 sons, including Constans (Ayman al-Zawahiri), Constantine II (Mohamed Ali Jinnah) and Constantius II (Shah Massoud), all of whom followed him on the throne. Solidified his hold on the empire in 312 with a victory over the last of his rivals, Maxentius (Hermann Goering), then had an uneasy partnership with Licinius (Reinhard Heydrich), who had married his half-sister, for the next dozen years. Legend has it, he received a sign of a flaming cross upon the sun as evidence of the supremacy of Christian god during the pivotal Battle of the Milvian Bridge for the empire in 312, although he was a pagan worshipper of Sol Invictus most of his life. Ended the persecution of Christians begun under Diocletian, and became a patron of the church, using it as an instrument of imperial policy and robbing it of much of its earlier independence. Despite his lack of understanding of the Christian faith, which had far too many schisms for his tastes, his lasting legacy was as the pivotal figure in uniting the Roman Empire with Christianity as its official religion, although more for political than spiritual purposes. Reorganized the army, and disbanded the praetorian guard after 3 centuries, seeing it as far too much an instrument of potential chaos and usurpation. Eventually did battle with Licinius for absolute control, defeating him twice in 324, then after sparing his life, finally decided to have him, as well as his son, executed, making himself the sole master of the empire. Also ordered the execution of his 2nd wife, Fausta, and eldest son Crispus for suspicion of treason in 326. A great builder, and destroyer as well, he left his architectural mark on the Eternal City, with both religious and secular structures, then moved the capital of the empire from Rome to the ancient city of Byzantium, in order to defend his position better. Like Rome, it had been rebuilt on 7 hills, and had many of the same features. Refounded it on 5/12/330 as Constantinople, which he restyled as a Christian counterbalance to pagan Rome, with much effort placed in erecting churches and basilicas, particularly the Hagia Sofia (Holy Wisdom) and Hagia Eirene (Holy Peace), although not all traces of its pagan past were eliminated. Tried, however, to do too much too soon, resulting in a shortage of workers and much jerry-rigging of his magnificent edifices Also established a senate there, and continued the tradition of giving grain subsidies to the people. Instituted an oriental mode of rule, and was referred to as lord, while playing the role of sacrosanct leader, above the status of mere mortal. Conservative in his approach to administration and organization, he followed patterns set by his predecessors in most spheres. Involved himself in the religious disputes of the time, and was instrumental in the selection of the 4 gospels as the foundation of New Testament. Did not exclude pagan officials from his imperial entourage, but in later years, his bishops played prominent roles in court politics. All during his reign he periodically campaigned on his frontiers, and planned to conquer Persia and make it a Christian state, but did not live long enough to do so. The last decade of his life, he gave way to religious monomania, styling himself the “Equal of the Apostles.” Shortly after Easter in 337 he fell terminally ill, and had himself baptized a few weeks before his death. Died wearing the white robes of a Christian neophyte. Beforehand, he had chosen to be buried in his new capital, amidst 12 sarcophagi representing the 12 apostles, with his, the 13th, as a political Christ figure for the ages. After a slaughter of his relatives and potential lesser heirs, his 3 remaining sons divided his empire after his death, according to his wishes, which were for a tetrachy, including a nephew, the precise system he had earlier overthrown. Inner: Majestic figure, tall and strong, highly intelligent, highly capable. Vigorous soldier, and equally capable administrator. Impulsive, extravagant, with a grand sense of self, which would be born out by everything he did, as one of the truly transcendent figures of the story of humankind. Seminal lifetime of reshaping his/story in his image, and profoundly affecting the future course of western civilization as the emperor of his age. Cyrus II (c576-529BZ) - Persian emperor. Outer: Father was Cambyses I (Jawaharlal Nehru), a member of the royal house of An’shan, a mid-Perisan kingdom. Mother was the daughter of the king of Medes, who overruled the vassal state of his sire. Different versions of his origins exist, as enhancements of his own legend. Probably the only son of his parents, although little is known of his early life, and the legends that do exist reflect tales of the time of a hidden youth to escape assassination by a jealous king, and then a revelation as to who he really was when he was part grown. Succeeded his father in 558BZ, before gaining the throne of Media, when that king’s troops revolted, thereby making his state a continent player, rather than a minor kingdom. May have married the king’s daughter afterwards, two sons from union, including Cambyses II (Adolf Hitler), who succeeded him, and Smerdis (William Paley), who also briefly ruled the Persian empire. Several daughters as well, one of whom would marry Darius the Great (William Randolph Hearst), the next great ruler in his line. Invaded northern Mesopotamia, defeated the Lydian king Croesus (John D. Rockefeller) and within several years, he had extended his small principality into a vast territory that stretched from the Persian Gulf to the Dardanelles and Black Sea, in what was, at that time, the largest state that had ever existed in the recorded world. Still not content, despite crushing two large empires, in 540BZ he marched on Babylon, the capital of Babylonia, and by diverting the Euphrates River where it came into the city, he was able to enter through the sewergates, and surprise its inhabitants, who were feasting and celebrating. Occupied the city, showing a remarkable religious toleration for the time, allowing its denizens, including its displaced Jews, to return to Judah, although most chose not to, and rebuild their Temple in Jerusalem, thus ending the 1500 year empire of Babylon, which now became one of his capitals. Appointed his son, Cambyses, king there, since he could not be present during their yearly ceremonial festivals, which was a must for the ruler of the country. Able to complement his martial skills with an excellent sense of administration, creating the foundation for a vast empire, through his serial additions and ability to organize them according to his governmental precepts, with everyone beneath him, responsible only to him. Encouraged the restoration of ancient temples, and allowed people their old ways, to ease their sense of being ruled by a foreign power, and asked only for tribute and conscripts, to further minimize his imperial intrusiveness. Died while fighting barbarians on his eastern frontier, after a reign of almost 3 decades. Persia would remain a dominant cultural, philosophic, and political force in the ways of the West and the Middle East for the next millennia because of his actions and policies, justifying his sobriquet of ‘the Great.’ Inner: Tolerant, vigorous, relatively humane, clear-sighted and well-ordered. Empire-building lifetime of evincing all his skills in both the martial and governmental realms, while showing the religious tolerance that would mark all his emperor lives, as well as the ability to augment and organize his conquests into a definitive imperial whole. Numa Pompilus (c750-c673BZ) - Roman king. Outer: Of Sabine descent. Youngest of 4 sons, and supposedly born on the day of the founding of Rome. Married the daughter of the Sabine king, 4 sons and a daughter from the union. Following his wife’s death after 13 years of marriage, he lived simply in a village in the woods, pursuing a life of philosophic contemplation. Around the age of 40, he was approached by delegates to succeed as king of Rome, he at first eschewed the honor, and then finally relented. As the 2nd Roman king, he wished to bring the order of civilization to his kingdom. Established the boundaries of Rome, as well as its surrounding peasant communities. Divided his divided peoples into guilds, which would become their primary means of identification. Brought the order of the Vestal Virgins to Rome, and established a priesthood, while using religion as a unifying theme of the city’s place in the higher universe. All 4 of his children would spawn great Roman dynasties, while he reigned for a relative peaceful 43 years, eventually dying of old age. Succeeded by Tullus Hostilius (Mohamed Ali Jinnah). Inner: Pious, with an abundance of natural wisdom. Well-ordered lifetime of first finding in philosophy what he wished, before turning it all into political reality, in a largely triumphant go-round of vision integrating with will, giving foundation as he always does, to a future mighty empire.


Storyline: The tenacious nation-builder switches genders,.in order to open her/himself to her female side, after giving anchor to a host of ruling houses through his adroit political and martial skills, while gradually opening himself up to the possibilities of socialism and
Sampat Pal Devi (1958) - Indian political activist. Outer: Father was a poor shepherd. Tended goats and cattle while dreaming of an education, which was denied her. Instead she taught herself to read and write from her brothers, who were allowed to go to school. One of her uncles responded to her enthusiasm for learning, and enrolled her in school. However, after four grades, when she was 12, she was taken out and married off to an ice-cream vendor. Three years later she had the first of five children. At 16, she spoke up for the wife of a neighbor who beat his spouse regularly, and when he threatened her, she organized women in the neighborhood to intimidate him, forcing him to apologize publicly. The incident inspired her, that same year, 1980, to begin a society called the Gulabi Gang, Gulabi meaning pink, with a group of women from her village, in order to fight for social justice for them. The Gang became an organized women’s movement that attracted tens of thousands of members in her native Banda. Its members wear pink saris and arm themselves with bamboo sticks, which they use to defend themselves against violent resistance. Took a job as a government health worker, but eventually resigned it to put all her energy into social activism. Eventually, the gang expanded to several hundred thousand members worldwide, thanks in good part to her charismatic character. In 2008, she visited Paris and the following year Italy, becoming a global figure in feminist circles, while inspiring both books and documentaries on her life and struggles. Stood for Congress in 2012, although lost, which also ran counter to the group’s anti-political party constitution, inspiring some questioning of her fitness as its dominating governor. Deeply bothered by a 2014 Bollywood fictionalized account of her group, Gulaab Gang, which was based on pure projection and nothing more. Nevertheless, it helped feed into her ouster from the group later that year, after she was accused of demanding 5000 rupees to help confront some in-laws who were subjecting her to severe mental and physical anguish. Her larger political ambitions as well as her refusal to reveal donations to the group, also made her suspect, as someone now less than trustworthy, despite her long-standing status as an above reproach figure of integrity. Deeply hurt by the action, she denied all charges and vowed to fight them, in order to clear her good name. Inner: Uncompromising, charismatic and strongly motivated. Despite her protestations, also intrigued by the power arena, and subject to its siren call. Fierce feminist lifetime of deeply immersing herself in the backwaters of an oppressive patriarchal society in order to both understand and lead her gender out of the oppressive mire in which they have long been cast, while battling her own personal demons of ego and power, as a warrior for social justice. Mohamed Ali Jinnah(Mahomedali Jinnahbhai) (1876-1948) - Pakistani founder. Known as “Quaid-e-Azam” or “Great Leader.” Outer: From a middle-class Shi’a Muslim family. Oldest of 3 brothers and 4 sisters of a prosperous merchant. Initially educated at home, he went to both a madrasa and a Christian missionary high school, passing the exam to enter the Univ. of Bombay. His father wanted him to gain business experience, instead, and sent him to England with that aim, after arranging a marriage for him with Emibai, a distant teenage cousin in 1892. Decided to study law instead, and joined Lincoln’s Inn, before being called to the bar at the age of 19, while bristling at the slights of his alien status by his host country. Suffered the serial deaths of both his mother and wife while in England, but remained there, showing a fascination for the English Parliamentary system, which he carefully studied. Tall, stately and gaunt. Developed a taste for the theater, and at one point harbored the desire to play Romeo, while actually being offered a theater contract. Worked to elect the first Indian, a Parsi leader, to Parliament, then returned home in 1896, to discover his father’s business in array. For the next decade, he worked to establish himself as a lawyer in Bombay, via several high profile trials, before turning to his true passion, politics. An unobservant Muslim, he also affected western dress, while using English more than his mother tongue. In 1910, he was elected to his first post, the Imperial Legislative Council, with an eye towards western political ways, and the goal of achieving independent nationhood for India, while seeing his religion within the larger context of Indian nationalism. Joined the All-India Muslim League in 1913, after being assured it shared his same goals. Tried to unite the Hindu Congress with the Muslim League, but opposed Mohandas Gandhi’s tack of non-cooperation with British authorities, seeing it as too Hindu-tinged to be effective. In 1918, he married Ruttenbai Petit, the daughter of a wealthy Parsi mill owner, who was nearly a quarter century his junior, much to her family’s outrage, in an unhappy union, so that the singular woman in his life would be his beloved sister, Fatima, who worked and traveled with him, as well as helped raise his one daughter. Left both organizations in 1920, and remained apart from national politics until later in the decade, as Gandhi’s rising star totally eclipsed him, before returning to the Muslim League to try to fashion it into a cooperative body with other Indian organizations. His total involvement in politics ruined his marriage, and he and his wife separated in 1927. Failed in his political attempts, and retreated to London for the first half of the 1930s, where he practiced law before the Privy Council. Returned to India in 1936, only to see the Hindu Congress ignore the Muslim League on all levels of government, creating sectarian strife between the two groups. In 1940, the league adopted a resolution to form a separate Muslim state called Pakistan, which enjoyed huge popularity among his minority group, despite extreme resistance from the Congress, as well as the British government. Founded “Dawn,” a newspaper, the following year to put forth the League’s point of views, while coming down with tuberculosis. In 1943, he survived an assassination attempt by a knife-wielding assailant. Met with Mohandas Gandhi (Arundhati Roy) in 1944, to little avail, and left feeling ill, tired and depressed at his total lack of support, although his status among Muslims was raised by the effort. India was swept by violence in the wake of the rift between the two religions in 1946, and to avoid civil war, a partition was adopted, making West Punjab, east Bengal, Baluchistan and the Sind into a new state, so that in 1947 Pakistan, which meant 'land of the pure,' was born, with himself as its first head of state, assuming the role of Governor-General, a largely ceremonial title, and president of its constituent assembly. Much preferred Bombay, where he owned a palatial residence, seeing the new state as “moth-eaten.” Put forward the ideal of a secular state, with Islam as a cultural rather than religious force, and went about exchanging populations to insure that the Hindu/Muslim rift would not destroy the new creation, despite the subsequent deaths of some 200,000, and another 15 million reduced to the level of refugee. Continued to deal with Pakistan’s various problems over the next year, particularly the definition of territory involved, before finally being worn down from a lifetime of unrelenting activism, and dying at home of lung cancer and tuberculosis, a revered figure, as the singular father of his country. Both his birthday and deathday would be national holidays, and his face would grace his country’s higher notes of currency. Inner: Tenacious, shrewd and extremely focused. Total political animal, with a fascination for western means to achieve eastern ends. Firm believer in British law. Never particularly religious, despite his strong identification as a champion of Muslim needs. Seen as cold and arrogant by those who dealt with him, although warm towards family intimates. Sartorially resplendent, owned 200 Savile Row suits at his death. Had an upper-class English accent, and was a heavy smoker. Nation-building lifetime of using the tools of democracy and his own unyielding personality to forge a new nation as its original father, after many a go-round of following in the large dynastic footsteps of his longtime masterful family members. Ranjit Singh (1780-1839) - Sikh maharajah. Outer: Only child of a Sikh chieftain. At the age of 12, he succeeded his sire as head of the Sukerchaikias, inheriting a group of villages located in present-day Pakistan. At 15, he married the daughter of another Sikh chieftain, and her widowed mother would go on to direct the affairs of their clan. Later contracted a second marriage, which made him pre-eminent among the various Sikh clans of their larger confederacy. In 1799, he seized Lahore, the capital of the Punjab, and two years later he was confirmed as governor of the city by the Afghani king, although he announced he was now maharajah of the Punjab. Had coins struck in the names of the Sikh Gurus, including Hargobind (Jawaharlal Nehru) and Gobind (Arundhati Roy), and ran the state as a Sikh commonwealth. In 1802, he captured the important commercial center of Amritsar, which was the Sikh’s most sacred city. Continued his conquests throughout the Punjab, although he was eventually halted by the English. Signed a treaty with them in 1809 to define his eastern borders. Looking to the north and west, he did battle with the Afghani Pushtuns, eventually capturing their citadel of Peshawar in 1818, so that the following year he had wrested Kashmir control from them. By 1820, he had consolidated his rule over the whole of the Punjab state available to him, an area of a quarter million square miles of South Asia’s richest and strategically most important domain. Able to effect his conquests by blending an army of Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims, while employing both commanders and cabinet ministers from all 3 divisions. His “army of the pure,” which numbered 100,000 Sikhs, used the sacred scriptures of their 10 Gurus as their unifying totem. After his establishment of Sikh rule, he began using European officers to train his infantry and modernize his army, which continued to fight over the next near two decades. In 1838, he agreed to a treaty with a British viceroy, to restore the Afghan throne to its rightful ruler, and in the subsequent battle they were successful. Took ill afterwards, and died in Lahore, 40 years after conquering that city. His state, which was built on his skills, tactics and personality, collapsed in less than 7 years after his death. Inner: Combined a gift for diplomacy with adroit military skills, and the ability to unite a diversified army and government around his charismatic leadership. Founding father lifetime of preparing himself for the far more complex task of nation-building in his next go-round in this series, employing the same shrewd tactical abilities with his tenacious sense of transcending all odds to achieve his goals. Shahaji Bhonsle (1611-c1657) - Indian leader. Outer: From a family of humble origin. Eldest son, and one of two brothers, of a Hindu general. Married by his father into the nobility, via Jijabai, despite initial resistance by the latter, and the union produced the founder of the Maratha kingdom, the great warrior, Sivaji (Shah Massoud), as well as another highly competent general, Sambhali, who was killed on a military expedition, in addition to 6 daughters. Had two more wives as well. Served the sultan of Ahmadnagar, proving himself an important local leader. Switched sultans, and married a second time, and his third son, Vyankoji, became a Marathan ruler, as well. Also had a fourth son by a dancing girl. Groomed all his boys to be not only adept warriors, but good administrators, and men of culture. Extremely ambitious and highly capable, he proved himself in battle and then allied himself with various factions in the hopes of creating a new kingdom. Shifted allegiances again, until he was back with his original sultan, but in 1633, the latter was taken prisoner by the Mughal army. Did guerrilla warfare with the remnants of his forces only to be forced to ultimately surrender to the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in 1636. Banished afterwards and imprisoned, he was released by his son. After supporting his son, Sivaji, and seeing in him a far greater warrior than himself, he withdrew from active life. Died on a hunt, after falling off his horse. Inner: Scholar and a man of cultivation, supporting the cultural as well as the martial life of both his family and his domains. Adroit statesman and opportunist, operating from a secondary, rather than a primary position as in lives past. Dynast lifetime of siring a son far greater than himself, and creating the training on all levels to make him so, while serving whoever served him best. Murad II (1404-1451) - Ottoman emperor. Outer: Son of Mehmed I. Succeeded as Ottoman sultan in 1421, at the death of his father. A man of peace, he would prove sensitive to his solder’s needs, and fair in his negotiations with his enemies. Had to fight a couple of claimants to his throne, including a younger brother, as well as a revolt of the princes. By 1425, he had prevailed, and had re-established Ottoman rule in many of the Turkmen principalities in Anatolia. Took on 7 wives, with his fourth producing his heir. Forced Byzantium, which had championed his rivals, to pay tribute once again, although failed to take Constantinople, leaving it for the next generation, and then flexed his muscle in his surrounding world. A 5 year struggle got him Salonika back from the Venetians, while he stopped his soldiers from performing the massacre that those victories usually inspired. Expanded the Janisseries, who would become the empire’s elite guard, by bringing Christians, as well as other captured youth into their ranks, and balanced them with his sipahis, or cavalrymen, creating a stable stable of warriors, who would give military foundation to the empire. Overextended himself over the next decade, so that a much larger alliance was battling him, and he wound up on the losing end. After signing a peace treaty in 1444, he felt he had given the empire precisely what it had needed, and abdicated in favor of his 12 year old son, Mehmed II (Shah Massoud), in the hopes that he could retreat and live in seclusion in his Asiatic palace at Magnesia. Shocked at how ill-educated the boy was, he got him a good teacher, and then left, but his retirement only lasted 3 months. Because of his religious policies, competitive enmity had come to the fore twixt Muslims and Christians who had risen to power, creating tensions galore, which his son Mehmed exacerbated. When his European enemies quickly broke the truce, he was back in the saddle, leading his armies in a crushing victory against their Christian forces. In 1446, he was beseeched to reclaim the throne, which he did, scoring another victory over the Hungarians 2 years later. The rest of his reign was taken with tactics and strategies around strong and vulnerable points in his empire, while building a greater rapport with his son. Died of apoplexy, and handed over a strong empire to his heir. Able to win the honor and affection of his people for his just rule. Inner: Honest, scrupulous, and though basically a man of peace, showed an equally countervailing martial adeptness. Plaudits all around lifetime of continuing to realize his best traits while seated upon a throne, despite a secret wish to be relieved of his responsibilities and enjoy the company of his own solitude. Raymond IV (c1042-1105) - French/Spanish crusader and ruler of Tripoli. Outer: Son of the French count of Toulouse, mother was a princess of Barcelona. Married three times and was twice excommunicated by the Church for having wives too closely related to him, including Matilda, the daughter of the Sicilian king, Roger I (Kathleen Kennedy). His last wife, Elvira, was the illegitimate daughter of the Spanish king of Castile and Leon. Despite his deep religiosity, he was also a sensualist who loved the company of women. Acted as a pious lay leader of church reform, who maintained close ties with Spain. Not a particularly good administrator, although an excellent diplomat and soldier. Lost an eye while fighting against the Moors in Spain, a fact of which he was extremely proud. Became the first great prince to take the cross and join the First Crusade, and was also one of its prime military planners. Felt he would soon die and hoped to expire in the Holy Land. By far the richest of the crusader princes. Led the largest contingent and expected to be acclaimed as its singular leader. Showed selflessness and military skills by claiming no territory as his own, and loyally serving the Byzantine Emperor, whom he personally disliked. Helped capture Jerusalem in 1099, but refused its crown, feeling he was too old and ill. Quarreled with Godefroi de Bouillon (Shah Massoud), for humiliating him after the capture of Jerusalem, but was able to fight alongside him, after first baptizing himself in the Jordan, but left Jerusalem after a further argument with him about who should have the honor of receiving the city in surrender. Later taken prisoner by Tancred (Jawaharlal Nehru), kept in honorable confinement and released. Laid seige to Tripoli and established his own dynasty there, and getting his wish, he expired in the Holy Land. Inner: Effective and relatively selfless warrior. Intelligent, highly moral, with a saintly sense about him, although he was also imbued with his own inner sense of honor and glory. Curious admixture of Spanish gravity and sensuality. Proud, stubborn and private. Dual lifetime of celebrating the flesh and the spirit while giving service to a great cause, the latter being a continual theme of his throughout the millennium. Heinrich II (973-1024) - Holy Roman Emperor. Outer: Born the day before Otto I (Mohandas Gandhi) died. Son of the duke of Bavaria, who was the last of the Saxon line to sit over the Holy Roman Empire. Had little contact with his rebellious father, who was known as ‘the Quarrelsome’ and was usually in exile for his troubles. Educated by the Church, which he always held in high esteem, while being totally conversant with the Bible. Suffered poor health throughout his life, and yet was physically active. Married Cunegond, daughter of the Count of Luxembourg, although the union produced no heir. Secured election through aggressive action as king of Germany in 1002, despite considerable opposition, succeeding Otto III (Shah Massoud). Crowned after bitter fighting in Italy, then made heathen alliances to advance his aims in Poland. Far more interested in his temporal power than being a true Christian king, and never adverse to compromising his religious stance when political realities dictated it. Marched to Rome and was crowned by the pope as Holy Roman Emperor in 1014, holding the title for a decade. Worked in close concert with the papacy, established a splendid new bishopric in Bamberg, and insisted on episcopal celibacy to insure the Church would be heir to the bishops’ territories, which, in turn, would be beholden to the crown. Placed German administrators in Italy, did reluctant battle there against the Greeks and Lombards, although withdrew on his first opportunity to do so. An active administrator, he was continually riding through his kingdoms and administering personal rule. A successful military commander, as well, he gave order to his empire, squelching rebellions and the ambitions of others. A traditionalist by nature, and a consolidator of Church’n’State, so as to be given saint status after his death for it. Died suddenly, and left no direct heir, ending his Saxon dynasty on the throne of Germany. Canonized in 1146, as was his wife in 1200. Inner: Pious, devoted to church ritual and prayer, and yet intensely political. Hands on lifetime, once more, of integrating the spiritual with the secular through the power base of high political office, and serving as a sacred warrior towards that end. St. Bruno (925-965) - German archbishop. Known as Saint Bruno the Great. Outer: Youngest son of Heinrich I (Jawaharlal Nehru) and St. Matilda, brother of Otto I (Arundhati Roy). One of 6 children. His mother, an extremely dominating woman, imbued him with her strong pious sense. Educated at the cathedral school of Utrecht and the court school of Otto, showing himself to be proficient in languages. Became a patron of learning, and at 15, he was given the role of chancellor, preparing his illiterate brother’s official papers. After being ordained, he was made abbot of Lorsch and Corvey, where he restored monastic observances. Accompanied Otto to Italy in 951, then was elected to the see of Cologne, where he became archbishop, showing himself to be a zealous pastor and the founder of numerous institutions there, making Cologne an important Christian center. Named duke of Lorraine, he became involved in French affairs, maintaining good relations with France, while restoring peace to the troubled duchy and creating new administration divisions. While Otto was in Italy for his imperial coronation in 962, he shared in the administration of the German government and took care of the emperor’s son, Otto II (Shah Massoud). Died while on a mission to France. Inner: Talented statesman and prelate, pious and zealous in his beliefs. Support lifetime of acquitting himself well with longtime family members, playing a noncompetitive secondary role in a different sphere, in order to work on his own gifts for spiritual and temporal, rather than martial, leadership. Constantine II (Flavius Claudius Constantinus) (317-340) - Roman Emperor. Outer: Oldest son of Constantine the Great’s (Arundhati Roy) second marriage with Fausta (Indira Gandhi), and brother of Constantius II (Shah Massoud) and Constans (Ayman al-Zahawiri). Proclaimed a Caesar shortly after his birth and given consulships as an infant, then raised as a Christian, like his siblings. Became commander of Gaul at 10, following the death of his half-brother Crispus (Guy Burgess), and at 15 he was given a military command, gaining considerable experience along the way. Married, although the date and his wife’s name is unrecorded. Held court in Gaul, and with his brothers, he was made Augustus at the death of his father in 337, and was given Gaul, Spain and Britain as his realms, while supervising his younger brother Constans, who had been given Italy, Africa and Illyricum. Freed the Trinitarian bishop Athanasius, who was popular in his realm, from his exile, and allowed him to return to Alexandria, which raised the hackles of his sibling Constantius II, a supporter of the Arians. Disputes rose between the fraternity, since they championed different streams of Christianity, and he invaded Italy, although he was killed in the subsequent fighting over the territory. Inner: Orthodox Christian, although never given a chance to develop. Foreshortened lifetime of competitively dealing with military adepts among his own family, and being the first among them to fall. Xerses II (?-423BZ) - Persian emperor. Outer: Only lawful son of Artaxerses I (David Sarnoff) and his queen Damaspia, who both expired on the same day. Ascended the throne as the legitimate heir, but only ruled for a total of 45 days. One of his half-brothers, Sogdanius (Guy Burgess) conspired with two others against him, and managed to get him drunk, at which point he was slain. Sogdanius would also suffer a similar fate, 6 months later. Inner: Little known of his persona. Cup of coffee lifetime of falling victim to the greater powerlust of others, thanks to making himself vulnerable, a situation he would later redress in his ongoing struggles with his longtime family members, in his ongoing desire to raise his abilities to the level of theirs. Tullus Hostilius (c710-c641BZ) - Roman king. Outer: Grandfather had been a distinguished Sabine warrior. A warrior through and through, he was selected in his late 30s to be Rome’s third king, and soon after went to war with Alba Longa, which was ultimately settled when a trio of Roman brothers, the Horatii defeated a trio of the latter’s brothers, thereby making the one submit to the other. The latter, then provoked another neighbor, although Rome proved victorious, as the city’s population swelled again. Continued his warring ways throughout his long reign, until a plague put an end to his aggressiveness. Turned to religion, after spending a lifetime scorning it, and was supposedly struck by a bolt of lightning at the end of his quarter century reign, while performing a rite to Jupiter. May have been largely a figure of myth. Inner: Extremely bellicose, as well as obsessive. Experimental lifetime of dividing his sense of spirit from his martial artistry only to try to reunite them at the end with such electric fervor, he once again destroyed himself.


Storyline: The founding foremother steadily builds on her own independent abilities at empowering women, dedicating each of her lives in this series to championing specific issues, while writing her name large in his’n’herstory.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali (Ayaan Hirsi Magan) (1969) - Somali/Dutch/American political activist. Outer: Father was a political opponent of the Somali dictatorship, and was jailed for his activism, forcing his family to grow up in exile, from the time his daughter was six, moving from Saudi Arabia to Ethiopia to Kenya. Per religious practice, she suffered genital mutilation by her grandmother at the age of 5, despite her sire’s objection, who was in jail at the time. Nevertheless, she initially embraced Islam and its tenets, with the desire to be a devout Muslim. As a young adult, she began questioning the absolute submission asked of Muslim women to their husbands, and wondered why the opposite was not true. Tall and slim. In 1992, her father married her to a distant cousin who lived in Canada. Fled to the Netherlands to escape the marriage, while working in factories and as a maid, ultimately earning her sire’s forgiveness, while the marriage was annulled. Learned Dutch, which enabled her to study at the Univ. of Leiden, and she became a translator for Somali immigrants, which made her realize that liberal, Western society was much preferable to tribal, Muslim cultures. Gained an M.A. in political science, and worked as a researcher for an Amsterdam foundation, while the 9/11/2001 airplane attacks in America made her totally rethink her relationship to Islam. Elected to the Dutch Parliament in 2003 and served for 3 years. While there, she defended the rights of Muslim women and campaigned against violence perpetrated on them, including honor killings and female circumcision. At the time she saw herself as a voice for enlightened, liberal Islam. In 2004, when Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was murdered for making a short about the oppression of women under Islam, a death threat to her was pinned to his chest. Forced to resign from Parliament in 2006, when the Dutch minister for Immigration revoked her asylum application, even though Dutch courts ruled she was a legitimate citizen. Moved to the U.S. to become a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington D.C., while living with round-the-clock security in order to continue with her work on fighting for the rights of women in Islamic culture. Declaring she is now an atheist, she has published a collection of essays, “The Caged Virgin” as well as a memoir, “Infidel” in 2007. The second volume of her autobiography is “Nomad.” Founded the AHA Foundation (her initials), a nonprofit organization in 2007, to protect the rights of women in the West against forced marriages, female circumcision and honor killings, via advocacy and education. Married British his/storian Niall Ferguson in 2011, one son from the union, born two months after their wedding. Became a citizen of the U.S. in 2013, while serving as a fellow at the JFK School of Govt. at Harvard. Continually writing and lecturing, as a highly public voice of the voiceless, with her focus on gender rights within the context of the oppressive beliefs associated with male Islamic dominance. In “Heretic” published in 2015, she deliberately provoked discomfort around Islam, naysaying liberals trying to look for ameliorating circumstances in the religion, claiming it is a political system advocating upheaval and distemper. Inner: Outspoken, articulate, calm and confident in her views. Sees Islam as the philosophy of death and suppression, with its otherworldly focus and promise of pulchritudinous virginal paradise for its dutiful male adherents, while fearing excess Islamic integration and the possibility it can bring Sharia law to bear on whatever country it inhabits. Self-empowering lifetime of continuing her activism in the service of oppressed Islamic women in her ongoing need to uplift and enlighten the world around the needs and wants of its long-suppressed majority gender, while manifesting in a racial form she had heretofore found inferior to give her a more complete view of her own humanity. Margaret Sanger (Margaret Higgins) (1883-1966) - American social reformer. Outer: Of Irish descent. Father was a ne’er-do-well tombstone cutter, labor-rights advocate and militant freethinker, mother was a devout Catholic and a passive child-bearer who died worn out at 50. 6th of 11 children. Attended Claverack College, and taught school, before training as a nurse following her mother’s death. Became a socialist, and in 1902, she married William Sanger, a socialist Jewish architect, two sons who became doctors, and a daughter who died in childhood, from the union which ended in divorce 18 years later. Moved to upstate NY in 1903, because of TB, then returned to NYC in 1912, when her real lifework began. Worked as a nurse and a mid-wife on NYC’s lower East Side, where she got a firsthand glimpse of poverty, rampant childbirth and illegal abortions, and became radicalized by watching an immigrant woman die from a self-induced abortion. Read everything she could on contraception, then began writing for a left-wing paper, and had an article on venereal disease suppressed by the government. Got involved in the Socialist Party, and befriended many radicals, including Emma Goldman (Lori Berenson), who influenced her greatly. Began to see contraception as the key to women’s emancipation, and gave up nursing in 1912 to concentrate completely on the issue, coining the phrase ‘birth control.’ Went to Paris and Scotland to study birth control conditions, and on returning in 1914, she distributed a pamphlet entitled “Family Limitations,” which was prosecuted under obscenity laws. At the same time, she began to publish a periodical called The Woman Rebel, that later became Birth Control Review, which looked at sex and motherhood in radical new ways. Arrested on charges of sending birth control information through the mails, she found herself completely without support. On the eve of her trial, she fled the country to avoid charges, which were later dropped, and returned in 1916 to become a heroine of the birth control movement, enjoying her newfound celebrity. Established the first birth control clinic in the country, which was closed down and she was sentenced to 30 days in a workhouse as a ‘public nuisance,’ in 1917. Pursued her own sexual freedom with many lovers, including sexologist Havelock Ellis and writer H.G. Wells. Founded the American Birth Control League in 1921, and the following year, she married James H. Slee, a supportive millionaire industrialist, who was 17 years her senior and an active Episcopalian, but she maintained her own independence throughout the union. Her husband was the largest individual supporter of her Birth Control League. Organized the first World Population Conference in Geneva in 1927, and was instrumental in creating a national lobby group which pressed for legislative changes during the 1930s. More moderate, as well as pragmatic, with age, although she became increasingly more anti-Catholic. Effective visionary and doer, who wanted women to work and love as they wished. Slowed by heart attacks later in life, but she continued her crusade around the globe, lecturing and spreading her influence as far abroad as India and the Far East. Author of numerous books, including her autobiography in 1938. Her second husband died in 1941. In 1946, she helped found the International Planned Parenthood Federation. Opposed John F. Kennedy’s run for the presidency in 1960 because of his Catholicism. Died of arteriosclerosis in a Tucson nursing home. Inner: Confrontative and tireless in her devotion to causes. Charming and persuasive, with a gift for strong Irish invective. Extremely strong-willed and highly motivated. Felt the darker races were inferior, and was all for sterilization of women who had the potential of bringing forth those she deemed unfit, as an adherent of eugenics. In your face lifetime of radical commitment to societal change, while living out her precepts in full, as an ongoing embodiment of the gradual emancipation of women to be who they are without societal constraints. Margaret Fuller (1810-1850) - American social reformer, writer and feminist. Outer: Father was a domineering lawyer and politician, while her mother was a mild nonentity. Eldest of 9 children. Her sire had wanted his first to be a boy, and educated her as such. Able to read at 4 1/2 ad was fluent in Latin by 6. Heavily influenced by her sire’s rationalist views, she received a classical education of such rigor that it almost ruined her health, before she continued with more conventional schooling at 14. Large-breasted and full-figured by her early teens, with an overabundance of physical energy. A sleep-walker, she was plagued by both nightmares and self-induced pressure, and wound up a victim of daily migraines from the routines instituted by her sire, who did not subject his subsequent sons to the same rigors. Considered a brilliant prodigy, she took care of the younger children when her father retired, while studying privately and reading prodigiously. Homely, with an abnormally long neck, sparkly eyes, abundant blonde hair, and a nasal voice, which was initially quite offputting. Nevertheless, she was a good mimic, with a wry sense of humor. In 1833, the family moved to a farm in Massachusetts, where she suffered extreme isolation, and when her father died two years later, he left virtually no estate. Taught for two years at an experimental school, then hied herself to Boston, where she became involved in transcendentalist circles, while holding feminist salons called Conversations, which discussed education, philosophy, culture and women’s rights and were attended by many of New England’s leading intelligentsia. Quite voracious in her appetite for friendships and affection, she was a dominating character in most of her relationships. Worked in tandem with Ralph Waldo Emerson (Reinhold Niebuhr) as editor of The Dial, an influential transcendentalist periodical, in a tempestuous intellectual and emotional intertwining of surrogate father and daughter, which confused the former no end. Once told him, “You are intellect; I am life.” Despite a facility for expressing herself, her essays were largely undisciplined, revealing an ofttimes chaotic intellect. Published her first book in her mid-30s, then went to NYC, where she worked as a literary critic for the New York Tribune, later becoming the first American woman to work as a foreign correspondent. Her seminal work was Woman in the 19th Century, which grew out of a piece in the Dial and became the first feminist tract in America. Traveled to Europe in 1846, and was feted in London and Paris, as an intellectual celebrity, while reporting on her observations and adventures. Met Guiseppe Mazzini, who was living in exile in England with a sentence of death upon him, and became involved in his cause, the unification of Italy. Went there the following year, and while in Rome, she met and fell in love with Giovanni Angelo Ossoli, a radical impoverished Italian aristocrat, over a decade her junior, who became her first lover. Although he was in no way cerebral, he was tender, courteous and kind to her, offering her the love she had long craved. The duo lived together for 2 years, before secretly marrying, one son from the union. Involved in revolutionary activity with him, while often being forced to live apart, as she continued to send cogent dispatches, thanks to the contacts she had made on both sides of the issue. Had excellent insight into the Mazzini’s shortcomings, while trying to keep her dispatches factual, although was clearly pro-unification, asking for American help, which was extremely slow in forthcoming. Subsequently was dropped from the Tribune’s payroll, after rumors of her living in sin, and wound up virtually penniless. Forced to flee to Florence with her husband, after their baby almost died. Began a his/story of the revolution, before she decided to return to the U.S., via the cheapest passage possible, a merchant ship, the Elizabeth, only to have the captain die of smallpox at Gibraltar at the beginning of the voyage. After a week of quarantine, they headed west, with the first mate at the helm, only to have her son develop the same disease, although she was able to nurse him through it. The first mate subsequently got confused as to where they were, and the ship hit a Fire Island sandbar in a storm upon reaching America. Drowned after clinging for 12 hours to the ship’s forecastle. Of the three, only her child’s body washed ashore. Her subsequent legacy would be tarnished by the prejudices of her time, despite the pioneering nature of her work, and her extraordinary will to transcend even the petty prejudices of the transcendentalists. Inner: Highly independent feminist with an active mind and an equally strong will. Once opined, “I now know all the people worth knowing in America, and I find no intellect comparable to my own.” Dualistic persona, alternately arrogant and childlike, passionate and pitiful, and coy and commanding. Brilliant, demanding personality, highly social, invariably honest, with a host of unmet needs, until her Roman sojourn. Freewheeling lifetime of direct support for her burgeoning skills as a social thinker and reformer before plunging much more deeply into the oppressed tradition of women as secondary citizens. Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797) - English writer and radical feminist. Outer: Of Irish descent. Grandfather was a successful weaver, allowing his son to become a gentleman farmer. Father was an unsuccessful drunkard and wife-beater, whose failure caused the family to move often. Her mother was extremely unhappy, and unloving, but she later felt compelled to protect her from her progenitor’s rages. 2nd of 7 children, and oldest daughter. Angered over the importance bestowed on her oldest brother, who was given educational opportunities others in the family were not. Mercilessly bossed her sisters around, and showed herself to be a self-absorbed moralist. Vowed at 15, she would never marry, since women were viewed as chaste property at the time and little more. Self-educated, she started a small private school that failed, with a companion who subsequently died in childbirth, although she met many nonconformists in the process, and at 19, became the companion to a wealthy widow, while struggling to maintain her dignity in her subservient role. Cared for her mother and after her death in 1782, took responsibility for her younger siblings, while her father remarried and moved to Wales. Abducted her sister and her baby from her tyrannical husband. Became a governess and wrote on female education. After moving to London in 1787, she joined a radical intellectual group and continued writing on social themes, while working for a publisher, writing articles and translating. In 1792, she wrote in a white-hot three weeks, A Vindication of the Rights of Women, an emancipation declaration of independence and education for women, which was greeted with contempt by the contemporary male establishment, but has since become a seminal work in the long struggle for equal rights. Became famous afterwards, and moved to Paris to write about the French Revolution. At 34, she lost her virginity, and had an out-of-wedlock daughter with an American adventurer and timber merchant, Gilbert Imlay, then made 2 suicide attempts when the relationship failed, once with laudanum and once by throwing herself in the Thames. Their daughter Fanny (Yoko Ono) would kill herself with laudanum, as well, at the age of 22. Appalled by the mob violence in Paris, she returned to London to continue working for the publisher, with one brief trip to Scandinavia on Imlay’s account. Became the wife of writer William Godwin (Betty Friedan) when she became pregnant, despite their anti-union principles and anti-conception practices. Died of puerpal fever, 11 days after giving birth at home to her namesake, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (Lynda Barry). Inner: Angry, ardent and arrogant. Independent, self-absorbed victim and vindicator of women’s rights, although on a personal level, seemed not to care for women very much. Foremother of modern feminism, despite an extremely flawed personality. Uppity woman lifetime of establishing her own sense of independence, as well as the themes of self-empowerment for women that she would continue to explore in later incarnations in this series. Mary Astell (1666-1731) - English feminist writer. Outer: Born into a family of coal merchants. Educated by a clergyman uncle, who fought a losing battle with the bottle, and was ultimately suspended from the Church of England. Her conservative Anglican father died when she was 12, as did her uncle, and she and her mother were forced to live with an aunt. That duo also passed when she was 20, and since she was too poor to bring a dowry to a marriage, she moved to London at 21, and found support with a group of literary women, and became a writer, herself, publishing at 28, while also gaining the assistance of the Archbishop of Canterbury, William Sancroft. Despite her connections, she had a great deal of difficulty in supporting herself, and wound up existing on the charity of friends. All of her sustaining relationships were with women, with no overt desire for the company of men, other than the Archbishop. Ridiculed for proposing the idea of a college for women, despite almost having her projected seminary actualized. Unmarried, she urged other women to do similarly. Despite her radical feminism, she held very conservative religious and political convictions, which she also wrote about, as a Christian Platonist. Ended her public writing career in her early 40’s, and opened a charity school for girls, before finally dying of breast cancer, after having her right breast removed via a mastectomy. Spent her last days deliberately alone, with only her coffin for company, as she contemplated meeting her sense of God. Became the first widely read feminist polemicist, with A Serious Proposal to the Ladies, for the Advancement of Their True and Greatest Interest, parts I and II, as well as the first respectable female prose writer in England. Inner: Pious and ascetic. Continually connected with women as her support and focus, although surprisingly conservative in her acceptance of patriarchal institutions of the time, like the Church’n’Throne, reflecting her father’s view of things. Breakaway lifetime of beginning to flee from the constraints long placed on women, from a position of self-made empowerment. Margaret Clitherow (Margaret Middleton) (1556-1586) - English martyr. Outer: Father was a chandler who later became mayor of York. Raised as a Protestant, and in 1571 she married a kindly, easygoing and prosperous butcher, John Clitherow who became a chamberlain, 3 children from the union. 2 sons were invested as priests and a daughter became a nun. Converted to Catholicism 3 years later, while her mate remained a Protestant, but did nothing to dissuade her from her beliefs or activities. An outspoken and activist Catholic, she was imprisoned for 2 years for not attending parish church. Learned to read during her incarceration, and upon her release, she organized a school for her own, as well as her neighbor’s children. Also harbored priests, which was contrary to law, and hid them in a specially built room. Her husband was summoned by the authorities in 1586, to explain the absence of their son, who was away at a Catholic college abroad, although a subsequent search of their home yielded nothing. Arrested, imprisoned and charged with harboring priests, she refused to plead so as to avoid the involvement of those closest to her, despite the penalty of being crushed to death for doing so. The judge reluctantly sentenced her, and she died after 15 minutes of being subjected to the torturous verdict. Canonized in 1970, and declared one of the Forty Martyrs in England and Wales. Inner: Witty, merry and handsome. Comfort to one and all and beloved by many. Martyred lifetime of religious activism in preparation for her extended career as a pre-eminent disturber of the peace and status quo. Matilda (1031-1083) - Queen of England. Outer: Descended from Alfred the Great (Saul Williams). Father was Baldwin V of Flanders. Quite short, probably a little over 4’ tall. Although she was forbidden by the Council of Reims to marry William of Normandy (Arundhati Roy) in 1049 because she was closely related to him, she did anyway 4 years later, and was granted a papal dispensation in 1059. Built an abbey at Caen as penance. 9 children from union, 2 of whom became English kings, William II Rufus (Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr.) and Henry I (Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.). In love with a young Englishman, who was dungeoned by her mate. Ruled Normandy in William’s absence, after he established his house on the throne of England, following the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Crowned 2 years later, when her husband felt he had secured his position. Spent most of her time in Normandy tending to the affairs of the duchy. Founded other abbeys and was a benefactress of French religious houses. Despite their separate lives, her husband remained faithful to her, and the two shared a deep love for one another. Affectionate with children, with a strong sense of social justice. Fell into a state of ill health and religious fervor towards the end of life. Inner: Highly energetic, religious, small and steadfast. Well-loved lifetime of being allowed to govern in the stead of a powerful and inspiring longtime mate, before karmically peeling off from him in subsequent lives, as he went East, and she stayed West, to further explore her female side in a much more open environment. St. Adelheid (931-999) - Holy Roman empress. Outer: Daughter of the king of Burgundy, mother was a Swabian princess. Her father died when she was 10, and at 16, she was married to Lothair, who succeeded to the kingship of Italy that same year. One daughter from union. Her husband died 3 years later, perhaps poisoned by Berengar (Adolf Hitler), who seized the throne, declared himself king, and demanded she marry his son, Adalbert (Rudolph Hess). When she demurred, she was imprisoned in 951, although escaped 4 months later and asked the German king Otto I (Arundhati Roy) to help her reclaim her throne. He promptly fell in love with her, marched on Lombardy, declared himself king and the two were wed in 951, five children from the union, including Otto II (Shah Massoud), his father’s successor. The duo were crowned emperor and empress by the pope a dozen years later, following much political maneuvering. As empress, she spent her time promoting Cluniac monasticism, while strengthening the ties between the German church and the emperor. When Otto died in 973, she tried to exercise control over her son, and wound up leaving the court 5 years later to live in Burgundy, with her brother, who was king there. Reconciled with her son, and before his death in 983, he appointed her regent in Italy. Upheld the right of her grandson Otto III (Ayman al-Zawahiri) to the throne, and in 991, on the death of her daughter-in-law, she returned to Germany and governed for 3 years until he came of age. After he was crowned emperor in 996, she retired from the court and devoted herself to founding churches, monasteries and convents. Ultimately retired to a convent where she spent most of her time in prayer. In her later years, she took the title "Adelheida, by God's gift empress, by herself a poor sinner and God's maidservant." Made a saint in Germany, France and Italy for her good works. Inner: Religious, energetic, and highly active. Well-loved lifetime of working in concert with her longtime mate, while helping forge the connections between Church’n’state that would serve as a foundation for the empire to come.



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