Murad II

Murad II was Sultan of the Ottoman Empire from 1421 to 1444 and again from 1446 to 1451. Murad II's reign was marked by the long war he fought against the Christian feudal lords of the Balkans and the Turkish beyliks in Anatolia, a conflict that lasted 25 years, he was brought up in Amasya, ascended the throne on the death of his father Mehmed I. His mother was his father's third consort, their marriage served as an alliance between this buffer state. Murad was born in June 1404 to Sultan Mehmed I and his wife Emine Hatun, he spent his early childhood in Amasya. In 1410, Murad came along with his father to Edirne. After his father ascended to the Ottoman throne, he made Murad governor of the Amasya Sanjak. Murad remained at Amasya until the death of Mehmed I in 1421, he was solemnly recognized as sultan of the Ottoman Sultanate at sixteen years of age, girded with the sabre of Osman at Bursa, the troops and officers of the state willingly paid homage to him as their sovereign. Murad's reign was troubled by insurrection early on.

The Byzantine Emperor, Manuel II, released the'pretender' Mustafa Çelebi from confinement and acknowledged him as the legitimate heir to the throne of Bayezid I. The Byzantine Emperor had first secured a stipulation that Mustafa should, if successful, repay him for his liberation by giving up a large number of important cities; the pretender was landed by the Byzantine galleys in the European dominion of the sultan and for a time made rapid progress. Many Turkish soldiers joined him, he defeated and killed the veteran general Beyazid Pasha, whom Murad had sent to fight him. Mustafa declared himself Sultan of Adrianople, he crossed the Dardanelles to Asia with a large army but Murad out-manoeuvered Mustafa. Mustafa's force passed over in large numbers to Murad II. Mustafa took refuge in the city of Gallipoli, but the sultan, aided by a Genoese commander named Adorno, besieged him there and stormed the place. Mustafa was taken and put to death by the sultan, who turned his arms against the Roman emperor and declared his resolution to punish the Palaiologos for their unprovoked enmity by the capture of Constantinople.

Murad II formed a new army called Azap in 1421 and marched through the Byzantine Empire and laid siege to Constantinople. While Murad was besieging the city, the Byzantines, in league with some independent Turkish Anatolian states, sent the sultan's younger brother Küçük Mustafa to rebel against the sultan and besiege Bursa. Murad had to abandon the siege of Constantinople, he executed him. The Anatolian states, plotting against him — Aydinids, Germiyanids and Teke — were annexed and henceforth became part of the Ottoman Sultanate. Murad II declared war against Venice, the Karamanid Emirate and Hungary; the Karamanids were defeated in 1428 and Venice withdrew in 1432 following the defeat at the second Siege of Thessalonica in 1430. In the 1430s Murad captured vast territories in the Balkans and succeeded in annexing Serbia in 1439. In 1441 the Holy Roman Empire and Poland joined the Serbian-Hungarian coalition. Murad II won the Battle of Varna in 1444 against John Hunyadi. Murad II relinquished his throne in 1444 to his son Mehmed II, but a Janissary revolt in the Empire forced him to return.

In 1448 he defeated the Christian coalition at the Second Battle of Kosovo. When the Balkan front was secured, Murad II turned east to defeat Timur's son, Shah Rokh, the emirates of Karamanid and Çorum-Amasya. In 1450 Murad II led his army into Albania and unsuccessfully besieged the Castle of Kruje in an effort to defeat the resistance led by Skanderbeg. In the winter of 1450–1451, Murad II fell ill, died in Edirne, he was succeeded by his son Mehmed II. When Murad II ascended to the throne, he sought to regain the lost Ottoman territories that had reverted to autonomy following his grandfather Bayezid I’s defeat at the Battle of Ankara in 1402 at the hands of Timur Lang, he needed the support of both the public and the nobles “who would enable him to exercise his rule”, utilized the old and potent Islamic trope of Ghazi King. In order to gain popular, international support for his conquests, Murad II modeled himself after the legendary Ghazi kings of old; the Ottomans presented themselves as ghazis, painting their origins as rising from the ghazas of Osman, the founder of the dynasty.

For them, ghaza was the noble championing of Islam and justice against non-Muslims and Muslims alike, if they were cruel. Murad II only had to capitalize on this dynastic inheritance of doing ghaza, which he did by crafting the public image of Ghazi Sultan. After his accession, there was a flurry of translating and compiling activity where old Persian and Anatolian epics were translated into Turkish so Murad II could uncover the ghazi king legends, he drew from the noble behavior of the nameless Caliphs in the Battalname, an epic about a fictional Arab warrior who fought against the Byzantines, modelled his actions on theirs. He was careful to embody the simplicity and noble sense of justice, part of the Ghazi King persona. For ex

Tsoknyi Rinpoche

Tsoknyi Rinpoche or Ngawang Tsoknyi Gyatso is a Nepalese Tibetan Buddhist teacher and author, the founder of the Pundarika Foundation. He is the third Tsoknyi Rinpoche, having been recognized by the 16th Karmapa as the reincarnation of Drubwang Tsoknyi Rinpoche, he is a tulku of the Drukpa Kagyü and Nyingma traditions and the holder of the Ratna Lingpa and Tsoknyi lineages. He began his education at Khampagar Monastery at Tashi Jong in Himachal Pradesh, India, at the age of thirteen, his main teachers are Khamtrul Rinpoche Dongyu Nyima, his father Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche and Adeu Rinpoche. Rinpoche has overseen the Tergar Osel Ling Monastery, founded in Kathmandu, Nepal by his father, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, his brothers are Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, Tsikey Chokling Rinpoche, Mingyur Rinpoche and his nephews are Phakchok Rinpoche and the reincarnation of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, known popularly as Khyentse Yangsi Rinpoche. He introduced studies for non-Tibetans.

Under his leadership it has "thrived and grown into a mature sangha of dedicated practitioners."In 2005, he led a group of students to Nangchen in Eastern Tibet to meet the Tsoknyi Nangchen nuns, who live and practice meditation in remote nunneries and hermitages. This trip became the subject of a documentary called "Blessings: The Tsoknyi Nangchen Nuns of Tibet" narrated by Richard Gere. Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Open Heart, Open Mind—Awakening the Power of Essence Love, New York: Harmony, 2012 ISBN 978-0-307-88820-4 Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Carefree Dignity: Discourses on Training in the Nature of Mind Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Fearless Simplicity: The Dzogchen Way of Living Freely in a Complex World, ISBN 962-7341-48-7 Tsokyni, Sylvia Boorstein, Norman Fischer, "Solid Ground: Buddhist Wisdom for Difficult Times," Official website UK Organisation

Kyle McLaren

Kyle Edgar McLaren is a Canadian former professional ice hockey defenceman who played 12 seasons in the National Hockey League for the Boston Bruins and San Jose Sharks. McLaren was drafted by the Boston Bruins in the first round, ninth-overall, during the 1995 NHL Entry Draft, he played his first NHL season when he was just eighteen in the 1995–96 season, was the youngest player on an NHL roster that year. Kyle became a Bruins Assistant Captain. In Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on April 25 in the 2002 playoffs, McLaren injured Richard Zednik of the Montreal Canadiens with an elbow to the face. McLaren received a three-game suspension from the league. Despite Boston winning the game 5-2, they would lose the series to the Canadiens in six games. By July 2002 McLaren was dissatisfied with his perceived role in the Bruins organization; that summer, McLaren had been offered a two-way contract by Bruins general manager Mike O'Connell, meaning that McLaren could be made to report to the minor league affiliate of the Bruins, the Providence Bruins of the AHL, where he would earn but a small fraction of his NHL salary.

An established NHL player at that point, McLaren was demanded a trade. In a three-way deal, San Jose traded their 1999 first-round pick Jeff Jillson and goaltender Jeff Hackett acquired from Montreal for Niklas Sundstrom and a third-round pick, to Boston for McLaren and a fourth-round selection in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. McLaren developed a reputation for having one of the best hip checks in the league, his most notable hip check was in the first round of the 2004 Stanley Cup Playoffs when he pinned St. Louis Blues winger Petr Cajanek into the boards near the Sharks' blue line. Cajanek would not play for the remainder of the series. Other memorable hip check recipients include Trevor Letowski. During the 2003 season he was struck in the face by a slapshot from Vancouver’s Sami Salo and missed 6 games due to his injury. For the remainder of the season he played with a clear visor, he stopped wearing a visor until partway through his 2005 season, when he returned with a yellow tinted visor because its color helped prevent glare of the ice from affecting him.

McLaren switched back to a clear one during the 2007–08 season. In 2006, McLaren signed a three-year contract worth US $7.5 million. McLaren signed that deal citing how much his family loved it there. On October 7, 2008, McLaren was placed on waivers by San Jose Sharks' general manager Doug Wilson so that the team could accommodate the salaries of newly acquired defencemen Brad Lukowich, Dan Boyle, Rob Blake within the constraints of the NHL salary cap, he played the season for the Sharks' AHL affiliate Worcester Sharks. On March 4, 2009, he was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers for a 2009 sixth-round draft pick, but that deal was nixed as the Flyers reported that McLaren failed his physical. McLaren received an invitation to attend training camp with the New York Rangers for the 2009-10 season, but did not make the team after failing a physical. McLaren received another training camp invite by the Atlanta Thrashers for the 2010-11 NHL season on August 24, 2010 but was released on September 22, 2010.

1992–93: Top Defenceman in the Western Canadian Bantam Tournament 1995–96: NHL - All-Rookie Team Kyle McLaren career statistics at The Internet Hockey Database Kyle McLaren career statistics at Kyle McLaren player profile at