Brahmaswarup Param Pujya Bhagatji Maharaj
Fagan Sud Purnima (Holi) Vikram Samvat 1885
( Friday, March 20, 1829 A.D.)
Mahuva, Dist: Bhavnagar, Gujarat, India
Pragji, Pragji Bhagat
First Meeting with Sadguru Gopalanand Swamiji
In Vikram Samvat 1895, when Sadguru Gopalanand Swami saw little Pragji in Pithawadi village for the first time, he immediately revealed, ‘His (Pragji’s) soul is of very high spiritual order of venerable origin….’
Bhagatji receives a crystal clear spiritual directive from Gunatitanand Swamiji
‘Listen Pragji ! You can imbibe the Gunatit Knowledge only if you allow a complete deliquescence of your mind and body in the service of God while staying in our company…’
Bhagatji’s Prayer to Gunatitanand Swamiji
Impeccably following the spiritual directive of Gunatitanand Swamiji in its letter and spirit completely, Bhagatji Maharaj pleased Gunantitanand Swamiji who offered Bhagatji Maharaj any reward desired by him. At that moment, Bhagatji Maharaj prayed Swamiji, ‘ if you are really pleased with my dedication, Swamiji ! Then, please bless me with the realization of the Gunatit Knowledge; let me experience your divine abode; and kindly let my soul become a true devout !’ Swamiji granted his prayer and blessed Bhagatji Maharaj.
Obviously Impossible Made Possible
Deeply impressed with a very high order of erudition acquired by Bhagatji Maharaj with the blessings of Gunatitanand Swamiji, Shri Abhesang Bapu of Ganod remarked,’ Swamiji has grown Bananas on Cactus !!’ Providing a very convincing reply by clarifying all the doubts, Gunatitanand Swami Said, ‘ Bhagatji has actually deliquesced his body and mind within the Divine Will and thus was bestowed with spontaneous blessings by us since he made himself deserving to receive and retain such blessings’.
What a Great Divine Vision !
Having realised the Gunatit Knowledge, Bhagatji Maharaj actually believed and visualised every single devotee as the manifestation of Bhagwan Swaminarayan Himself, and thus used to bow down to all the devotees with the same spirit and feelings as he would, to the Lord Himself. One day, a few mischievous youth decided to play a joke with Bhagatji Maharaj. They put the Tilak and Kumkum, usually worn on the forehead by the devotees of Swaminarayan Sampraday, on the forehead of a dog. They let the dog on the road on which Bhagatji Maharaj was walking from the other end. As soon as Bhagatji Maharaj saw the dog with the Swaminarayan Tilak and Kumkum on its forehead, he started prostrating before the animal on the road. His feelings expressed through his eyes and face revealed his deep reverence for the Swaminarayan Tilak and Kumkum, no matter what form of life adorned it ! What a great divine vision !!
”Visualize Every Single Devotee as the Manifestation of Brahma, Kothariji !’
Pujya Gordhandas Kothari was a very able administrator in the Swaminarayan Temple in Vadtal when Bhagatji Maharaj was staying in that temple in service of the Lord and His devotees as a tailor. Gordhandasji was also a very stringent adherent of spiritual and religious codes as established by Bhagwan swaminarayan. Therefore, he was a very highly respected devotee, not only among other devotees but also among the saints staying in the Vadtal temple. Many of the devotees would seek his guidance and a number of saints used to confess their misdeeds before him and ask him for suitable atonement. But, once it so happened that Gordhandasji himself felt restless from within and thus went up the temple and prayed very ardently before the idol of Shri Harikrishna Maharaj. His prayer was heard and he got a reply which directed him to consult Bhagatji Maharaj with his problem. Knowing Bhagatji Maharaj as only a simple low-caste tailor devotee, Gordhandasji could not believe his inner voice and thus engrossed himself in deep prayer for the second time. This time also his inner voice asked him to seek guidance from Bhagatji Maharaj. Gordhandasji followed the directive of his inner voice and briefed Bhagatji Maharaj about his state of inner restlessness. Listening patiently to Gordhandasji, Bhagatji Maharaj smiled and said,
‘Kothariji ! The simplest way to get rid of all restlessness forever and to attain a permanent state of divine bliss is to visualize every single person entering the premises of this temple as the manifestation of Brahma Himself !’ ‘How is that possible Bhagatji ?’, Gordhandasji questioned Bhagatji’s solution, ‘you say I visualise every single person as the manifestation of Brahma, when in fact, I know ins and outs of not only the devotees but also of the saints of this temple, many of whom have confessed their wrongful deed to me for many times. To believe them or to visualize them as the manifestation of Brahma is virtually impossible, Bhagatji !’ ‘Then, forget about the permanent state bliss, Kotahariji.’ The one and only simplest path to a blissful life is the visualization of all the devotees as the manifestation of Bhagwan Swaminarayan Himself ! This is the most powerful of all the means to please the Lord.’
At the age of 69, the physical body of Brahmaswarup P.P.Bhagatji Maharaj bade farewell to this world on Kartik Sood 13, Vikram Samvat 1954.
Mahuva Town, District Bhavanagar