Gurudev Shri Vijay Shanti Suriji was born on 25th January 1890 (samvat 1946) in Manadar, a village in Rajasthan’s Sirohi District. His father Bhimtolaji and mother Vasudevi named him Sagtoji. By the union of the powers of events in the past, at the early age of 8 the great saint Shri Tirth Vijayji gave him an audience and he was kept for serving him. For eight years, Sagtoji lived with Tirth Vijayji and practiced ascetic lifestyle, gained knowledge, meditated and learnt the ways of life of saints and ways of purification.
On the Basant Panchmi of 9th February 1906 (samvat 1961) on attaining the age of 16 years, he embraced the Jain Deeksha (consecration) in Ramseen village and then was given the name Muni Shri Shanti Vijayji.
Seth Shri Nopaji Dhayaji of Ramseen spent a great deal of money at the Deeksha Festivities. Thakur Sa Shri Jorawarsinghji was also of great assistance.
After the Deeksha Muni Shri Shanti Vijayji came to Mandoli, where the Agni Sanskara of his Dada Guru Shri Dharam Vijayji was performed. After the darshan of this pious place, He returned to Ramseen. In Ramseen there was a beautiful house of Seth Nopaji Dahyaji where no one would dwell due to unknown fears. At the request of Sethji, Gurudev lived in the house for three days and mediated there due to which there were no signs of fear left and everyone started to live happily there.
“Bhakti Bhakt Bhagwant Guru, Chatur Naam Wapu EK|
Inke pad wandan kiye, Nasai Koti Kalesh||”
Sadhana (Religious Practice)
After some time Gurudev proceeded at the caves of Abu Mountains for meditation and religious practices. He proceeded to the Ashram of Markanda Rishi and the temple of Goddess Saraswati (Goddess of knowledge). These are located near Ajari village in Sirohi District. Many great men the likes of Shri Siddhasen Diwakar, Shri Abhay Dev Suri, Shri Bappabhatt Suri, Kalikala Sarvagya Shri Hemchandracharya have mediated here. Just as the special meditations of Shri Jindutt Suriji on Onkara, Shri Hemchadra on Arhampad, Shri Jin Kushal Suriji on Maya Beej, Gurudev meditated mainly on “Om Hrim Arham Namah”. Along with this he mastered many root words and mediated on Sohum and Pindastha to attain self-enlightenment. By the virtue of his past live Sanskara the self enlightenment came easily. While in meditation he received the extreme blessings of Dada Guru Shri Dharam Vijayji.
In total 6 beejakshara, 12 paada (4 paada for each of the 3 ruchas) and 12 names of Surya are used in the creation of Nama mantras. The six beejakshara in the order of their usage are hrāṁ, hrīṁ, hrūṁ, hraiṁ, hrāuṁ and hraḥ. The 12 paada are explained in detail in the glossary. The 12 names of ‘The Sun’ in the order of their usage are “Mitra, Ravi, Surya, Bhanu, Khaga, Pushan, Hiranyagarbha, Marichiman, Aditya, Savitr, Arka, Bhaskara]”.
The mantra, start with short arrangements of the words at the beginning of the worship and evolve into more complex structures near the end. The mantra for the ease of discussion can be classified into four steps. “Aum + 1 Beejaksharam + 1 rucha + 1 Beejaksharam + Aum + 1 Name of Sun”
Sanskara, imprints left on the subconscious mind by experience
Sohum, The 108 online repetitions of So Hum mantra is about 17 minutes of meditation practice, at a rate of about 6 1/2 breaths per minute, which is extremely relaxing both for meditation and reducing stress in the autonomic nervous system. The Hummmm… sound is intentionally somewhat longer than the Sooooo… sound, as this increases the effect of the relaxation and meditation by releasing the autonomic nervous system.
Inhale silently with Sooooo… Exhale silently with Hummmm…
Avastha Chintan (Contemplating on the different States of Arihanta) After completing the external worship, you must carry out this contemplation. The male should stand on the right side of the idol of Arihanta (that is the left side while facing the idol) while the female should stand on the left side of it (that is the right side while facing the idol). Standing this way, you should contemplate on the three different states that Arihantas went through. They are
Pindastha Avastha (ordinary embodied souls)
Padastha Avastha (omniscient embodied souls)
Rupatita Avastha (liberated souls)
Pindastha Avastha In Pindastha Avastha you contemplate on Arihant’s Janmavastha
Oh Lord, during your third previous life, you acquired Tirthankar Nam karma, Compassion towards all living beings, etc. when you were born to be a Tirthankar, all of 56 female angels of directions and 64 Indras performed birth rituals to you. How great you were that even at such an occasion, you did not feel proud of what was happening around you. Your loftiness is blessed.
Oh Lord, you had the status of a Prince. You had princely power and grandeur, and yet you were neither attached to them nor felt hatred about them. You were like a Yogi who is detached. Glory to your renunciation.
Oh heroic Lord, you renounced worldly power and luxury without any hesitation and became a Sadhu (monk). You carried out heroic endeavors for the attainment of spiritual elevation, bearing the most bitter obstacles and calamities. At times you carried out incomparable and arduous spiritual austerities and penance. You stood for days absorbed in deep meditation. By doing so, you destroyed all the Ghati Karmas. Glory to your austerity. Glory to your bravery. Glory to your tolerance.
Around 1912 (Samvat 1968) Gurudev travelled towards Gujarat and Malwa. He met a Jain Muniraj on his pilgrimage to Palitana, Who had complete knowledge of Aagam and the Jain Scriptures and was good at Jain Shaily (trends). After exchanging ideas the Jai Muniji in highly praising Gurudev said – “Shanti Vijayji you know the Jain Scriptures in minute even better than me. It seems that Sanskaras of many lives are embedded in you.” After Palitana, Gurudev meditated in the Girnar mountains for some time and later visited Godahar in Gujarat and then moved to Malwa. In Malwa’s Anand High School located in Dharnagari he discussed and debated religion with Arya Samajis. This was presided over by Queen Lakshmi Bai (queen of Raja Udai ji Rao sahib). Within a short time at the debate Gurudev put up many rationales which convinced the gathering of his point of view and the Queen adjudged Gurudev as the winner of the debate.
From Malwa Gurudev moved towards Mandoli which was informed to Guru Shri Tirth Vijayji. Up on arriving in Mandoli the Guru and disciple were reunited after a long time.
After living with his Guru for some time, He moved towards Abu to attain “Purnata” through advanced religious practice. He began practicing advanced asceticism and deep meditation beyond imagination.
Near Abu Road is a place called Rishikesh, which is the abode of hundreds of snakes. He meditated sitting on the snake burrows for over six months. During this period He ate Bakuls made of Udad Dal once a day. A Brahmin named Bhabhutaji was in Gurudev’s service. While going to serve the Bakuls to Gurudev he would see snakes all over him and would return in a haste out of fear. Bhabhutaji narrated that once Gurudev had asked for a one-eyed Coconut and had performed Siddhi on it. The Shreefal would reply to what Gurudev said and when the Shreefal spoke, Gurudev would reply. After the Siddhi of the Shreefal Gurudev had it thrown into a well.
From the year 1917 -18 (Samvat 1973-74) during Chaturmasa, Gurudev would reside in Jaswantpura Village in Sunda mountain in Jodhpur state. Many animals were slaughtered for feasts during Navratri festival at the Temple of Chamnunda Devi. To end this violence, Gurudev meditated in silence for many months by virtue of which the thoughts of the priest of the temple and the people who visited there changed just after some advice from Gurudev and the Killing of animals was put to a stop by the Jodhpur state.
During this time He visited Bamanwara Tirth. There he went into meditation by the window in the room above the entry gate. That night there was an incidence and Gurudev fell 15 feet below on to the footpath and blood started to flow from his head. Upon hearing this servants at the Temples Office ran to Gurudev and asked him what had happened. Gurudev was not moved at all and said Nothing, OM Shanti. At that time for many months Gurudev’s nursing and treatment was done by Shri Pujaji Maharaj of Dhannari.
From 1919 to 1923 (samvat 1975 to Samvat 1979) Gurudev practiced and deep meditation in silence in the Saraswati Temple of Markanda Ashram. He was deep in meditation day and night. Never seen to be asleep or idling. Never touched a pencil or a pin. Just by virtue of meditation and self awareness Gurudev attained the ultimate knowledge. He could visualize what had happened in the past, or will happen in the future or is happening in the present. He also attained several powers by meditating.
Pundit Lakshmishankar ji of Kivrali village was at his service during this time by virtue of which he too learnt by heart natural Sanskrit and thousands of shlokas form epics such as Gita and other Scriptures. Gurudev had now been blessed by Goddess Saraswati and mastered many languages without having to learn them. Lakshmishankar ji said that Gurudev used to discuss and debate with the Idol of Goddess Saraswati. Goddess Saraswati seemed to rise from the smoke of the burning incense sticks and reciting the Sutras along with Gurudev.
In 1921 (samvat 1977) Gurudev proceeded to Shivganj. In the state of meditation, He visited the home of Dhanroopji a Shravak for taking Gochari. After taking the Gochari, Gurudev saw his son Sunakraj, and asked what had happened to him. Dhanroopji said he was disabled since many years. Gurudev was filled with compassion for the child and said, “Om Shanti… He will be fine”. Thereafter the child Sunakraj slowly began to walk and later fully recovered and led a normal life.
After three to four months Gurudev proceeded to Pomava Village. One night a Goddess appeared in the dreams of Seth Ratanchand Manroopji, who then was eager to donate some money in Gurudev’s feet. His mother and wife too encouraged him to spend on the Ujmana of the Oli of the Bis Sthanaka (page6)
On the 11th day of the month of Jeth in Samvat 1978 (year 1922 ad) the Ujmana festival was organized with great pomp and show. Seth Ratanchandji’s wishes changed and where he had planned to spend some Rs 500-6000 he ended up spending all his capital and the sums he gained by selling the family jewelry. The very next year he earned double the sum spent in rice trade.
In the year 1924 (samvat 1980) Gurudev left for the caves in Abu Mountain to meditate. At times in the Gurushikhar caves and on other in Achalgarh caves. Sometimes in Vashist Ashram (Gomukh), sometimes in White case and sometimes in Red caves he was found in deep meditation.
Through the cold day and nights and not worrying about the wild animals, He stayed meditating in the Peaks above the Adhar Shikhar which is now known as Shanti Shikhar. He spent one Chaturmasa in Aarna Village in Arbud Giri mountains.
After Aarna he spent one Chaturmasa in Vashisht Ashram (Gomukh). It used to rain heavily and was very cold during the rainy season. The fog was so thick that one could hardly see anything. In such extreme cold weather Gurudev remained in meditation for several months wearing just a loin cloth (Langot). He was so deep in meditation that he appeared to roam around as a happy elephant.
The Chaturmasa of 1925 (samvat 1982) was spent in Sirohi. In 1927 (samvat 1984) on the 7th day of Jeth the Anjanshalaka ceremony of Jin Bimb in village Chamunderi was completed by the auspicious hands of Gurudev. In those times an unimaginable and grand sum of Rs 1, 90,000 was collected in the temple and he restored peace in the villages around the temple by resolving their differences and feuds.
In 1928-29 (samvat 1985-86) the dhwaja dand festival at the Rishabh Dev Temple was accomplished in the presence of Gurudev. Gurudev saw that the dhwaja dand would not move from the earth level and he asked the people to touch his OGHA to it and thereafter the objective was achieved.
On the 8th day of Falgun month in samvat 1984 (1928 AD) His Guru Shri Tirth Vijayji left for his heavenly abode in Mundatara village.
“ Janam bhumi, janani, jagat guru, jagdish|
Durlabh panch prakar hain, inhein namao sheesh||”
Knowledge and Philanthropy
The Chaturmasa of year 1928 (Samvat 1985) was spent in Aarna village which is between Abu and Abu road. Gurudev sat on a rock meditating during this period. It is believed that it is here in the Asoj month he gained Complete Knowledge. It is referred as Pratibhagyan and Anubhava Gyan in Scriptures.
On the eve the Gods celebrated in the temple as per one of his disciples.
In 1930 (samvat 1987) around Diwali time Sir George Oglivy was appointed the AGG of Mount Abu. He was an ardent devotee of Gurudev. Many years ago when he was an ordinary officer Gurudev had told him that he will be the AGG (Agent to the Governor General) one day for Rajputana. In the same year Mahatma Gandhi had stated his Satyagraha and many political arrests were made. On being asked by his devotees, Gurudev had predicted that Gandhiji will be released on 4th March 1931 and the English government will announce reconciliation. As a result on 4th March 1031 Gandhi-Irvine pact was announced and political prisoners were released.
One day a thought came to Gurudev’s mind that the Government collected Mundka Tax form only religious visitors of their religion and not from Tourists, Christians and Muslims and that it was not just. This injustice must immediately be ended in all temples. He transmitted the vibrations of his wow to the entire world silently.
In the initial years Gurudev drew the attention of his visitors to the unjust tax but He realized that the Jain Sect was not united enough to risk taking up something like the Satyagraha to effect the lifting of the Mundka Tax. Gurudev knew that in a few years with the Indian independence the Mundka tax will be lifted. Hence he would say in the final few years to pay the Mundka Tax if the devotees wanted to go to a temple. Finally due to the vibrations sent by Gurudev the tax was finally lifted upon independence of India.
In this reference the tax on Shatrunjaya (Palitana) is also remembered which is described in brief hereunder-
The Palitana Durbar of Shatrunjaya mountain used to collect annual taxes from the Anandji Kalyanji Pedhi. The Durbar increased the demand for tax significantly and the Jain sect could not do Satyagraha to oppose it. As a result in 1926 (samvat 1985) it was decided to stop going to Shatrunjaya and go to the neighboring Kadamb Giri for darshan of the Almighty. Many kings of states were devotees of Gurudev. When this matter was raised with Gurudev, the Palitana Durbar agreed to be satisfied with whatever amount Gurudev decides. The message of this subject was sent by Shri Gulabchandji Dhaddha, Shri Raikumarsinghji son of Babu Badridasji of Calcutta, Mohanlalji Baid of Agra and other renown persons to the Anandji Kalyanji Pedhi, asking them to leave the matter of the tax in the safe hands of Gurudev. But disregarding the request and on advice of some main Teachers in 1928 (samvat 1985) the Pedhi decided to pay Rs 60,000 as annual tax to the Durbar. If they had accepted the mediation of Gurudev there would have been a great benefit to the Society.
In 1031 the festivities of the Gurupoornima were celebrated in Mount Abu on behalf of the daughter of the Jodhpur Durbar’s Sumersinghji (Maharani of Jaipur). In this very year the state’s first Animal hospital was opened in Mount Abu so that sick animals would not have to be shot dead but would be treated and cured. In this year Shri Digvijay Singhji (Jamnagar Durbar) came to pay respects to Gurudev. American writer Ms Neelakrem Cook also came in November 1931 and stayed for a few months with Gurudev. She also stayed later in Gandhiji’s Sabarmati and Vardha Ashrams. She wrote her divine experiences with Gurudev in 36 pages mentioning “Gurudev is Guru God, Divine Guru”.
“ Bhakti Bhajan Bhagwan ka, Seva Aadar vain|
Ninda Irshya Tyag kar, Magan raho din rain||”
The divine message of Non-violence and the Porwal Conference;
Gurudev spent the summers of 1933 (samvat 1989) in Bamanwara Tirth and thereafter he proceeded to Delwara in the rainy season. By now he was famous worldwide. On the eve of Dussehra festival in the Devi temples of all cities and villages Animal sacrifice was performed. To stop this Gurudev sent a message to all the Kings of the country which was well received and hundreds of them decided to put an end to this animal slaughter in their states and this message was communicated by them to Gurudev in letters and Wires.
He was invited to join the Porwal Conferences in 1934 (samvat 1990) in Bamanwarji. The proceedings at the conference began on 11th April 1933 and lasted three days. There he met and exchanged ides with Shri Vijayvallabh Suriji. In this conference with great requests Gurudev was respected with the accolade of “ Anant Jeev Pratipal Yogendra Chidamani Raj Rajeshwar)
On 30th October 1933 (Samvat 1990) Mumbai resident, Seth Gulabchandji Rajaji from Dujanawalon expressed his desire to take out the Panchtirthi Sangh. Gurudev accepted his request and on 2nd November 1933 proceeded along with the Sangh form Bamanwara.
Sangh travelled to Nandiya, Laaj, Lautana, Diyana, Ajari, Markandeshwar, Pindwada, Jhadoli and Arasana to reach Virwada on 20th November 1933.
Renouncing food and water at Virwada by the Sangh
By this time there were thousands of devotees of Gurudev across the world who came to pay respects form time to time. Many Kings, Parsis, Muslims etc too came to pay respects. They were all fans of Gurudev due to his divine foresight, lovingness, and his bewildering ability to understand the confusions of the mind and relax it towards peaceful thoughts. All wished to decorate the accolade and status of “Acharya” to Yogiraj Gurudev.
En-route Acharya Vijaymahendra Surishwarji, Acharya Shri Vijaygulabsom Surishwarji, Upadhyaya Shri Udhyotvijayji, Pundit Labdhisagarji, Muni Manharvijayji, Muni Mangalchandji, Sadhvi Shri Manikshriji, Shri Amritashriji and Shravaks-Shravikas etc, with the chaturvid Sangha had the strong urge to bestow Gurudev the status of Shri Jagatguru Suri (Acharya) Samrat and be blessed.
Earlier a few years ago too Gurudev had declined the Acharya status even after several requests by Shri Vijaykesarsurishwarji in Rohida Village. En-route the Tirthyatra the Sangh held conferences and in every village to dedicate the status of Acharya but Gurudev kept refusing but upon arriving in Virwada the Sangh decided that until Gurudev accepts the Acharya Pad they will not accept any food or water. Even then Gurudev kept refusing. It was 3 am now since morning no one had eaten or drank anything.
Sangh (being equivalent to the 25th Tirthankar) bestows the Acharya Status
Then all of a sudden there was excitement in the Sangh and all decided unanimously to forcefully bestow the Acharya Status to Gurudev. At that time Gurudev was meditating under a tree outside the village. The Sangha after due consultation between themselves came to where Gurudev was and in a moment of impulse at exactly 3.15 AM they respectfully bestowed the charter and Chaadar (written in Saffron ink) to Gurudev.
When Gurudev still refused, then Babu Jagpatsinghji Dugar resident of Murshidabad and others submitted that even Tirthankars respond to the wishes of the Sangh’s with “Namo Thithass”. Hence how could you not accept the wishes of the Sangh? Shri Sangh is equivalent to the 25th Tirthankar and you have to accept their wishes. Saying this all present with great joy hailed the name of Jagatguru Samrat Shri Shanti Surishwarji Maharaj which echoed to the skies. Ultimately only after Gurudev accepted he accolade did the Sangh break here fast. During the same Pachtirthi many 50 year old feuds of Nandiya, Virwada, and Dujana villages were resolved and peace was restored by Gurudev himself.
Celebrations in Bamanwara of the Status dedication
On Sunday, 20th November 1933 (samvat 1990) Gurudev proceeded from Virwada to Bamanwara. Seth Shikharchanji Rampuri had arrived there. On his, Sanghpati and Sangh participants the status dedication was celebrated over three days from 21st November 1933 to 23rd November 1933 with great joy. The formalities were completed on 21st November 1933. Shri Acharya Samrat recited the Panchparmeshti Manglik to the Sangh. It seemed as if Goddess Saraswati was virtually visible on Shri Acharya’s face.
Gurudev’s Bhishma Pledge for Kesariaji Tirth
Sometime after the bestowing of the Acharya status, the dispute related to Kesariaji Tirth heated up. The Jain Society was grieved by the disrespect of the Kesariaji Tirth but none of the institutions or Acharyas had said anything. After becoming Acharya the responsibility of leading and managing the Jains and Jainism rests with the Acharya naturally. With this in mind Gurudev through newspapers reminded the Udaipur Durbar to behave justly but the Udaipur state or Pandas did not pay any heed to it.
On 8th December 1933, Shri Jawaharlalji Lodha, Editor of Agra’s “Shwetambar Jain” came to Bamanwara to pay respect to Gurudev and also with the idea to discuss the Kesariaji Tirth issue. When Gurudev was delivering his sermon on 9th December 1933 at Bamanwara, Lodhaji reached there and asked a few questions to Gurudev. Lodhaji said that if the able and revered person alike Gurudev did nothing then Kesariaji Tirth will not remain with Jains. The replies given by Yogiraj to the questions were as follows-
Question #1- Maharaj! The condition of Kesariaji Tirth is not hidden from you. The world is looking to you. Would you be kind enough to tell us what you are doing for this Tirth?
Answer: I did not want to say anything on this subject but with what has been written by the newspapers and since you have asked it is an obligation on me to say something. Not due to what the world is saying but I am thinking about this in mind, words and body.
Question #2-On 8th December 1933 on the Jain page number 1127 under the heading Shri Kesariaji what critics have has been written about you that Shri Shanti Vijay etc.. “Why did he leave the peace and why now he us is after this” So in your opinion will the Kesariaji Tirth will survive by just maintaining peace.
Answer: Everything is tied to Affection. The relationship between the Udaipur Maharanas and Jains is ages old and the relationship of Maharana Shri Bhopal Singhji and the Jains and especially I are very friendly and special. We cannot forget the Services of the just Maharanas to the Jain Tirth and our Gurus. I am confident that the Shri Kesariaji Tirth matter will be resolved shortly and peacefully.
Question #3-What you are saying is a fact. The Jain Society does not want to break the relationship that our sect and Maharanas are having. We not only hold the Maharanas as our Leaders but also of the entire Hind and Hindu society. But as far as I come to know from what we hear, Sir Sukhdev Prasadji who is the caretaker of the states affairs is siding with the Pandas, so what do you think of Panditji.
Answer: Sir Sukhdev Prasadji has met me earlier and has affection for me. When I travelled to Jaswantpura in Jodhpur State he was the prime minister there. The Devotion he had shown there cannot be described. Due to this I have the right to request him to resolve this matter amicably and to the satisfaction of both the parties and in his last days he can benefit from having accomplished this noble deed. This is my wish. Whatever is in his heart will happen.
Question #4-What you are saying is a fact but till when the society will believe in peace and depend on it.
Answer: I am constantly paying attention to this matter. It’s my resolve that this work will be completed by 13th Day of Falgun.
Question #5- If the work is not completed during this duration then would you take necessary steps and set an example in this matter as done by various Acharyas in the past
Answer: When we constantly think of any matter then why will it now be resolved? I am confident that only by peace would a complete solution be achieved.
In the end, in the spirit of love one and all and not keeping any ill feeling towards any one, Gurudev announced if the dispute between the Jains and the Pandas of Kesariaji Tirth was not resolved by the 13th Day of Phalgun Shukla samvat 1990 (27th Feb 1934) by the Udaipur state, He will fast to death after entering the Udaipur state.
Once this news was published in the newspapers, telegrams and messages of various Rajas and Maharajas started reaching Maharana Bhopal Singhji to restore peace before Gurudev starts his fast.
The kind of Limbadi informed Gurudev that some kings have met in Palanpur and that their representative will meet the Maharana of Udaipur and seek a resolution. But Gurudev advised them not to do so. A long wire from Bikaner Durbar proposed to mediate the matter and requested Gurudev not to go on fast Gurudev sent the same message to all that there was no need for mediation.
Ogilvy and Jaipur Durbar met Maharana of Udaipur in Delhi and requested him to enter a Pact on the matter. Gurudev himself sent a message to the Maharana reminding him of his duty to ensure that the age old special rights of the Jains to freely pray at the Kesariaji Tirth are maintained. But all this had no impact. Sir Sukhdev Prasad was the highest authority in Udaipur. As the last date came close Gurudev sent Seth Chainkaran and Champaklal bhai to Udaipur in Advance. When the state government learnt about this they took stern steps to prevent Gurudev from entering the state. They posted police laced with weapon on the borders. According to Daddhaji their secret plan was to tie the limbs of Gurudev and make him a prey for the lions in the jungle. Several other plans were made but all failed.
Jodhpur and Sirohi states were advised not to send special trains as they will cause unrest. The special trains ran as per schedules. The list of the main leaders of the movement was made and they were depicted as Gundas. All preparations were made. But the judiciary opposed the decision to capture Gurudev until such unrest happens. Thus all preparations were cancelled.
At that time the Bikaner Durbar Sir Ganga Singhji, also made several efforts and sent a message to the Maharana of Udaipur. He even mentioned that he would appeal to the viceroy if he does not agree. Else I will go overseas to appeal to the Privy Council.
But Gurudev said he did not need any assistance. I have taken up the responsibility of protecting the Tirth with self confidence on my own abilities.
Champak Bhai writes that during that time I had to go to Ajmer on some work, there I went to meet Ogilvy Sahib. I spoke to him for an hour. He told me that he too was very worried by the oath of Gurudev to fast to death and hence he had planned an office trip to Sirohi and wanted to pay his respects to Gurudev. He sent some message to Shri Yogiraj through me. The day he was supposed to reach Sajjan road (Now Sirohi Road) he asked me to meet him at his saloon. I reached Bamanwara the very next day and apprised Shri Yogiraj of the facts. I went to meet When Ogilvy Sahib when he reached Sajjan Road. After having a cup of tea with him I came to Bamanwara with him in his car. Sirohi Durbar and Deewan Sahib also stayed in Bamanwara for an hour. Ogilvy Sahib spent an hour taking to Shri Yogiraj alone. He met Shri Yogiraj even before he returned from Sirohi.
Gurudev proceeds towards Udaipur
IN those days the Chief Minister of Udaipur was Pundit Dharmanarayanji, but the work was handled as per the wishes of his father Sir Sukhdev Prasadji who was the Mayor. Sir Sukhdev Prasadji released an order that if Yogiraj Shantivijayji enters Udaipur he should be promptly taken into custody. He had the police stationed a t the borders of the Udaipur state.
On 20th February 1934 samat190) Gurudev proceeded from Bamanwara. Thousands of devotees had gathered to go along with Gurudev to Udaipur. Gurudev asked all o them to go back to their places this will be the most memorable day in the history of Jainism. The Nawab of Palanpur wanted to pay his respects to Gurudev. He sent Mehta Chimanlal and Minister Khodidas in advance to request Yogiraj to stay in Sajjan Road so that he could pay his respects before Yogiraj proceeds to Delhi to meet the Viceroy. Gurudev denied the request saying that it was not possible to change his programme. The discussions took more than an hour and this delayed the meal time of Yogiraj. At 5.15 pm Gurudev left his room and came downstairs to appear (give darshan) before the devotees. The 60 odd boys of the Gurukul wearing saffron Safas ( head gear) and many ladies wearing Odanhies welcomed Gurudev by chanting “Gurudev ki Jai” (Victory to Jai Gurudev). He went to the temple and paid respects to the Gods and proceeded to lead the Flags, Musical Organs and men and women on the path of his sacred sermon. Gurudev had to begin his meditation at 8 pm but the devotees in Pindwada did not allow Him to leave without taking a break there. The Raoji of Varkana accompanied Yogiraj. Sun was setting by the time they reached Jhadoli and they spent the night at the Siva Temple outside the village.
He proceeded from Jhadoli on the morning of 21st February 1934. On the way He was kept back at Pindwada to participate in the Devotion.
On 22nd February 1934 He arrived in Ajaari and rested in Saraswati Ashram Markandeshwas till 25th February 1934.
Early morning at 5 am on 26th February 1034 he proceeded for Udaipur along with about 150 disciples. After walking a mile he stopped and recited a Manglik for his devotees and asked them to return. At the continued request of the devotees he agreed to travel in a Doli (Palanquin) but sat in the Doli only until he was of sight of the devotees. There he asked the volunteers carrying the Doli to reach Udaipur and rest at a place while he alone proceeded to Udaipur. These volunteers had it written that they would be serving Gurudev.
Near the Mewar border the Police men saw the Volunteers but did not see their Doli, hence without being incepted they reached the nominated place Udaipur with ease. On 26th February 1934 many devotees left by three trains from Aaranpura to Udaipur.
Gurudev appears in Madar Village mysteriously
There was tight security at the border and the police stopped and questioned every Jain Sadhu. Many a times it so happened that the Saint whom the police was following would disappear or turn into an animal.
Gurudev proceeded form Markandeshwar on 26th February 1934 and appeared in Madar on 27th February 1934. Udaipur was 230 kms form Aaranpura by rail. On the way He appeared before the family of Pundit Sukhdev Prasadji at his Jaagir in Udaipur State. To travel 100 miles in a day was impossible without use of Yoga Knowledge.
In Madar Village Gurudev stayed at the Medhi of the small house of a Jain family man Virdhichand Talesara. The house was small and so was the Medhi. The news of Gurudev appearing mysteriously in Madar spread like lightning all over Mewar and thousands of devotees began to gather. One would get at max one minute to pay his respects. People would go up and return down after paying their respects.
Gurudev on way to fasting
Gurudev commenced his fasting on 28th February 1934. Gurudev announced that if there was a statement made on the subject of Shri Kesariaji it will be done by Chanda resident Shri Chainkaranji Golecha. His statement was as follows-
(1) Acharya Bhagwan Shri Vijayshanti Surishwarji Maharaj will arrive on the border of Udaipur on 28th February 1934.
(2) There is a private decision to be taken between His Highness Maharana Sahib and His Holiness Jagat Guru Vijayshanti Surishwarji Maharaj Sahab. It’s a matter of religion and hence no brother or sister should interfere in the decision, and all should live peacefully. Gurudev and Maharana Sahib have old relations.
(3) On the matter of Kesariaji no one should do any propaganda in Udaipur or release any handbills, or make lectures etc, if one does so he will not be a devotee and will be self responsible for his doings.
(4) No will use uncivilized language in any print media and if one does so will be responsible for his deeds
(5) No one should fast or rescind any thing along with Gurudev’s fast.
(6) Gurudev wants peace for both sides as he favours “love one and all”.
(7) All statements signed by Chainkaranji Golecha of Banda, (C.P.) be Read as published by Acharya Bhagwan.
(8) On page 5 in the issue of Bombay Samachaar dated 14th February 1934 someone has written that there are 5 other bodies that are working with Jagat Guru on the matter. But it is already stated by Gurudev and he reiterates that for this work he does now want the assistance of any Sadhu, Sadhwi, Shravak or Shravika. This work he has taken on himself.
(9) Many people use the word Satyagrah for this work but there is no need for Satyagrah here and this is purely a matter of religion.
(10) At this time this is not a Question of race but only that between the Maharana and Gurudev.
(11) The special train that was supposed to leave Aaranpura on 26th February 1934 for Udaipur to enable devotees to pay their respects to Gurudev has for time being been cancelled. All devotees are advised not to come to Udaipur for the time being.
(12) Gurudev Bhagwan will travel to Udaipur alone and hence he asks all of you not to come along with him.
Thousands of Shantivijay in place of one Shantivijay
Udaipur state alleged that Gurudev was trying to incite the devotees and disturb the peace of the state and hence they issued a warrant in Gurudev’s name, although the same was withdrawn on 25th February 21934.
Sukhdev Prasadji and other officers reached Madar along with the File containing the allegations against Gurudev after the second day of the fast and very politely paid respects and said in a faint voice.. I am your old disciple. I had paid respect to you in Jaswantpura region also. It is not befitting that you stay in this Dharamshala. Please come and stay in the palace of Udaipur state. The state will make all the arrangements so that we can make suitable arrangements for Shri Kesariaji. Hearing this Gurudev’s eyes turned red with anger. . Shri Gurudev spoke in the voice of a Lion and said “You are a sweet talker and back stabber and this is not hidden from me. Those who provide shelter to you Guru are guilty, those how provide food he is also guilty. You are the one who is responsible for the arrest warrants and restrictions from entering the state. Drink the cold water of Pichola Lake and live in the palaces. You have made appropriate arrangements for your Guru. What else could a disciple do?
You have unnecessarily troubled your police force for the past three days. I am present here in front of you. You can now imprison me. If you want to shoot at me my chest is wide open. Fire a shot and see that instead of one thousands of Vijayshanti will appear. Hearing this Sukhdev Prasadji was stoned.
In the life history of Gurudev this is the only incidence of its kind. After this he gave a sermon saying, “In the life time one must learn to recognize the truth. There is no assurance of life. You must restore peace by just fully deciding on the Kesariaji Tirth matter”.
Ceasing the fast and Gurudev’s taking the butter milk
Hearing the sermon the Secretary was stunned and deep I though. He assured to restore peace by making suitable arrangements for the temple over the next few days. He pleaded Gurudev to break his fast. Gurudev accepted Punditjis’ request and accepted buttermilk only.
When the officers returned they forgot the file containing the allegations against Gurudev Behind. Gurudev asked Chainkaranji to keep the file safely. When the officers returned looking for the file, Gurudev had it returned to them. When they received the file the officers realized that Gurudev was a great saint.
Beginning of the Fast again
For two days Gurudev only took butter milk. In this period with no resolution is sight he restarted his fasts. On the other hand when Pundit Sukhdev Prasad reached his home he fell sick with fever which later turned out to be typhoid. He was giddy and his health started to deteriorate. Then someone suggested that by disregarding the Great Gurudev he had offended him and only his blessings will bring peace. His son also expressed that they should seek Gurudev’s blessings upon which he was sent with a message to Gurudev. Gurudev went to Dharmnarayanjis residence and blessed them saying “that there are only a few month left for you to live and hence you should do good for the society and for your soul. Dharamnarayan’s wife became Gurudev’s devotee.
Conspiracy to poison Gurudev
On the 6th day of the fast a doctor came to Gurudev. The room was full of devotees. Gurudev called him with affection and asked him to sit besides and asked all to leave the room. The doctor was a friend of Sukhdev Prasad and was sent to poison Gurudev. On the way he crashed against a tree and his head was bleeding. He then told the whole story to Gurudev. Gurudev blessed him and he became a devotee.
I can live on air for 12 years
As the days of fast were passing by the devotees started to worry. Ummedraj writes that on the twenty seventh day Gurudev clarified it to me and Keshavlal Bhai Guntali that he could survive for 12 years on air.
Every day thousands of people came to Madar village to pay respect to Gurudev. Five special trains brought devotees form Godwal in which there was one train form Bholi Ma of Aahore and another from Sirohi state. Gurudev blessed them all and preached” love one and all” to them. He got them to leave alcohol l and meat and asked them to walk the right path.
Parana of Gurudev by Suryavanshi King at Moti Mahal
It was the 30th day of fasting on the 29th March 1934. That day he had visited a village named Deoli near Udaipur by this mental powers. The very same day the Maharana had an inspiration to meet Gurudev in his Moti Mahal palace (on banks the Fateh Sagar Lake). Gurudev sent a message. I am not well and come to meet me at the Boarding house instead of the Moti Mahal if you want to meet.
The Maharana agreed to meet in the boarding house and police arrangements were made. Water was also sprinkled. 10 minutes before the meeting time Gurudev arrived at the Moti Mahal palace with thousands of followers. Maharana had on the other side reached the Boarding house and later came back to Moti Mahal. Gurudev and Maharana spoke for an hour and a quarter in solitude.
Gurudev blessed him and said that you too are a devotee of Kesariaji baba; I just want to say that you should follow the path of truth, see without bias and restore peace. I do not want to side with the Jains and also do not have any ill feeling for the vaishnavs. My intention is for the betterment of human beings. Restoring peace is our main objective
The Maharana assured Gurudev that he will immediately restore peace by justful means. Please believe me and break your fast.
Owing to the promise of the Maharana Gurudev decided to break his fast and accepted Kheer from the Maharana and Maharani to break his fast. Maharana had prepared the Kheer in the palace and taken along with him. This is the first instance in past many centuries where a Suryavanshi Maharana has offered food from his own hands to any Jain Saint. The gathered devotees were delighted and Udaipur gave Gurudev a rousing welcome. On the eve of this happy moment God coins by Seth Anandji Sipani of Calcutta and Rupee coins by Shri Hirachandji Golecha were tossed.
Maharana appointed a neutral English judge to decide over the Kesariaji matter. After some time there was an announcement on behalf of the Maharana of Udaipur that Kesariaji Tirth belongs to Jains and no one else has any rights to it.
In this case Dr. Jaikar and Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru were the solicitors. It’s important to remember that the Vaishnavs stated that they too had 24 Tirthankars and that their 8th Tirthankar was Rishabh Dev but this claim was refuted for one simple reason. Gurudev informed that in the Government Notice released by Maharana Fateh Singhji it was mentioned that on the 8th day of Chaitra month, the idol of the Gods must be dressed with new clothes. No other religion or society has anything to do with this date and new clothes. In fact the Kesariaji Tirth belonged to Shwetambar Jains but the British also had a hand in it. Since Seth Hukumchandji had helped the British in the battle of 1914, the rights of both Shwetambar and Digambers were maintained in the Tirth.
Gurudev’s stay in Udaipur
On the day of the fast breaking the arrival of Yogiraj in Udaipur was celebrated with zeal. The city was greatly decorated. The procession included Horses and elephants. Gurudev was residing in Lakshmi Niwas near the Boarding house. The Maharana had come over there twice to meet Gurudev. Moti bhai says that Maharana and maharani had become staunch devotees of Gurudev. We sent them our Prasad and Maharana sent us the Prasad of Eklingji. All kinds of people came to pay respect to Gurudev. Gurudev also paid respects at all temples in which Shiv Mandir and Jagdish temple are the main ones. Everyone hailed Gurudev.
In the 5th day of Magh month in samvat 1991 (1935 AD) various Jain idols were installed and their Anjanshalaka (decoration of eyes) was accomplished under the guidance of Gurudev. In one of the Anjanshlakas there was an idol of Parshvanath Swami with one thousand Snake heads with black spots on the stone. Gurudev said that the spots would disappear in the time to come. And accordingly the spots vanished and nectar dripped from the eyes. The miraculous idol was installed in the temple of Ummedpur by Gurudev in samvat 1995.
“ Adinath ko isht hai, Veer dharma ko naim|
Dridhta apne dharam mein, Sare Jag se prem||”
Status of Supreme spiritual Leader of the Age
In samvat 1992 on the 10th day of Vaishakh (1936 AD) in the temple of Bisalpur village (near Jawai Dam Station) Gurudev performed the Anjanshalaka and installation of idols. As the news spread of Gurudev’s arrival some 20-25 thousand people arrived form outstation. In the summers there is water shortage in Marwar, and it appeared to be difficult to provide water for such a gathering. Buy Gurudev was heavenly empowered (labdhi sampanna). He gave such a blessing that all work was completed happily and without any hitch. There was plentiful of water available from wells and ponds and no shortage of anything.
On the same occasion the All India Jain Shwetambar annual Conference was also held under the leadership of Gurudev which was attended by renown people of Jain society, Officials of Jodhpur state, Congress leader Mani bhai Kothari and Jainarayanji Vyas. After the successful conclusion of the conference the Shri Sangh had a meeting and bestowed the status of Supreme spiritual Leader of the Age on Gurudev. At the time the Gods sprayed Kesar water on the tents.
From Bisalpur Gurudev arrived at Bamanwara Tirth. There due to his sermon a huge school and boarding house were established. He spent the rainy season (chaturmas) of samvat 1992 (1936 AD) there. Thousands came to hear his sermons and pay respects every day. The environment was joyous and people were happy. Whenever Gurudev left for the forest people would gather and follow him. They enjoyed the meditation by Gurudev.
Once the Chaturmasa was over Gurudev left for Achalgarh via Markand Ashrama in the summers of samvat 1993 (1937 AD). One Bholamuni came there to get Gochari for Gurudev. He was deaf and dumb but after serving Gurudev he began to speak and hear. Gurudev spent the Chaturmasa of samvat 1994 (1938 AD) in Delwara. There he suffered tooth ache and doctors removed some of his teeth.
The Ceremony of life Infusion at Mandoli
The Shree Sangh approached Gurudev with a request to perform the ceremonies of infusion and Anjanshalaka at the temple of Sumatinathji in Mandoli and the temple of Dada guru Dharamvijayji. On the 3rd day of Phalgun samvat 1994 (1938 AD) Gurudev proceeded for Ramseen and arrived there on the 6th day of Phalgun. On the 7th day of Phalgun the path form Ramseen to Mandoli was filled with hoards of people who wanted to pay respects and take a glimpse of Gurudev. A Varghoda procession marked the celebration of arrival of Gurudev. On the 9th day the Anjanshalaka ceremonies were completed. On the 10th day the infusion of life into the Idols of Sumathinathji Bhagwan and Dada guru Dharamvijayji and their installations at the temples were completed with great joy and happiness by the hands of Gurudev. On the day after the installation Gurudev sat meditating in a room to counter the impact of Fire hazards. A few miles away there was a fire near a hut which was extinguished. Gurudev had predicted the event and had assured the people not to worry and that he will resolve it.
In samvat 1995 the Gurupurnima in Mandoli was grandly celebrated in which several presents form kings and Officials were received. Seth Kishanchand Lekhraj cited his experiences on how Gurudev had saved his life. He said I was asleep in my home in Hyderabad (now part of Sindh Pakistan). There was a fire due to a short circuit at night. I woke up to find that my house was on fire. By the grace of Gurudev the lives of many men and women, children and I were saved.
On the 6th day of Shravan month the Nirvana anniversary of dada guru Dharamvijayji was celebrated. Gurudev enlightened all gathered with the life history of Dada guru. On the anniversary day at a specific time milk and Ganges water flows from his foot prints. Dada guru Dharamvijaji had independently gained self-realisation while meditating at the Khandala Ghat. He was powerful and able that he was visible and blessed people in various places while he sat meditating at one place. Shri Dharamvijayji had already asked disciples to sow four dry Neem tree stems around his last rites are performed at least a month before his death. You will not need to use flames. The four stems will grow into four trees in the future. Whenever a great ideal person is born one of the trees will vanish. As professed by Him, He proceeded to His heavenly abode away on the 6th day of Shravan samvat 1949. The flame appeared on itself from the thumb of his right foot. The clothes, Instruments and flag remained intact while his body turned to ashes.
One day Gurudev got Bholamuni (who was earlier deaf and dumb) to render a sermon on the problems related to various sects and Panchs in Mandoli. Factually there was hidden power (Gurudev’s Soul-power) acting through the body of Bholamuni at that time.
One day Gurudev called for opening a Jain University. Many form the listeners pledged huge sums. Seth Kishanchand Lekhraj also pledged 8-10 Lac Rupees but no one took the lead to take this forward in the future.
“ Aisi Dehu udarata, Kari karuna prabhu mohi|
Saboko dekhun ek sam, kabhoon na bhoolon tohi||”
The great deeds of animal kindness and travels
After having spent 9 joyous months in Mandoli, Gurudev left form Ummedpur to perform the infusion ceremony in the 3rd day of Mingsar month oh samvat 1995 ( 1939 AD). The Panchs of 48 villages had requested him for it. He reached Ummedpur in the afternoon on 9th day of Mingsar 1995 at 3 pm, via Siyana, Manadar, Harji along with Vijaylalit Suriji, many sadhus and numerous people. On the 10th Day the infusion of life and installation of idol of Amijhara Parshvanathji was joyous completed. (Read earlier paragraphs-nectar had poured from the idol’s eyes).
On the 13th day Gurudev proceeded to Takathgarh via Padarli. There is a village named Vitia around 2 km form Takathgarh. 500 Goats were slaughtered every year at the temple of a folk deity. By gods grace on 6th Dec 1939 (samvat 1995) Gogishwar Shrimad Vijayshanti Surishwarji arrived in Vitia at 4 pm. The Bhopa (priest) heard about Gurudev’s arrival and fearing that he will preach against the slaughter he ran away to another village some 4 miles away. When Gurudev learnt that the Bhopa was not there, he looked at the grave of the Vir with delightful eyes and moved on to reach Bankali village at 3 pm.
The Vir appeared in the dreams of the Bhopa that night and said “Gurudev has visited the village and made it pious and now I am a disciple of his and hence I do not want any animal sacrifices form today. You too go to Gurudev and as per my advice take a wow of non-violence against animals.
That Night Gurudev also came to the Bhopa’s dreams which strengthened the faith of the Bhopa. On the 11th December at 3 pm the Bhopa went to Bankali and in the presence of numerous travelers form worldwide paid respects to Gurudev and narrated his experiences of the previous night. Upon receiving Gurudev’s blessings the Bhopa took a Wow not to slaughter any animals at the temple of the folk deity.
Aha what a heart change and what delightful eyes.
After staying for 3 days in Bankali Gurudev reached Khiwandi village on the 6th day of Paush month. There he resolved a 70 year old feud in the society. For 8 days he gave the devotees the joy of Devotion and preached to bring about social reforms. He said that using law to bring social reforms encourages corruption. Thus it is important to educate the masses so that they can change their cultural beliefs and practices on their own.
A pond near the Khiwandi village was dry. The people were distressed for lack of water. Gurudev meditated there and looked at it with his delightful eyes. The next day water appeared at the pond. Everyone was filled with joy. Gurudev had supernatural powers.
On the 13th day of Posh samvat 1995 Gurudev proceeded towards Pomava. An Idol of Shri Kunthunathji Bhagwan had to be installed and Shanti Snatra was organized. On 10th day of Posh sudi he proceeded to Shivganj. He stayed there for one and a half months. He taught religion, gave the message of Love one and all and practice devotion. There was happiness all over the city.
Then He reached Suli village via Badgaon, Kalapara, and Radbar. He stayed there for one and a half months. Proceeding form Suli He rested in a village called Ujhman. Here Gurudev sent his disciple Nagindas to call Sadhvi Pramod Shriji. Sadhviji refused to go saying that Gurudev never calls him at night time. A while later Upadhyaya Manisagarji Maharaj also came and conveyed the same message and said there is nothing to worry as Bhagat Nagindas and he come along with her. Thereafter Pramod Shriji, Rajendra Shriji and other Sadhvis went together. They saw Gurudev in his supernatural form. He was sitting amongst many Lions, Cheetahs, snakes and scorpions. A lion slept with his head in Gurudev’s lap and Gurudev was patting him. Sadhviji asked Gurudev.. What am I seeing.. Gurudev replied “the whole world is our family”.
He then arrived in Athwada village where he resolved a 60 year old dispute and restores peace. Form here he visited Posaliya, Bhev, Paladi, Vaaran, Sirohi, Gohali, Padiv and Khambha on his way to Anadar on the early morning of 6th Day of Vaishakh Sudi samvat 1996 (1940 AD). On the 7th day he installed the idol in an n old temple and stayed there for some time.
“ Asha ke sambal ko lekar satya dharam utsah|
Aare Batohi badhta ja toon sat chit mayi Aum ki rah||”
On the Basant Panchmi of Samvat 1996 Gurudev completed his 50 years. On this eve the devotees decided to celebrate the Golden Jubille in Anaadar Village. Devotees gathered from all over India. The festival was celebrated for 8 days with devotional singing and festivities.
Here in the upashray at the temple in the village Sadhvi Pramod Shriji and others were staying. There were 50 idols there that Gurudev had installed. In the evening when the Sadhvis praying a white snake passed by and then went to one of the Idols and covered it with its hood in worship and after dancing for a while vanished.
In the morning when Sadhviji went to pay respects to Gurudev, He asked if a snake had come to her last evening. Hearing this everyone was astonished of how Gurudev knew about it. Whatever ever was happening around Gurudev knew it in minor details.
In the Nitisurijis Sanghada in Anadar village, a Muniraj came to visit Gurudev, He was earlier in the Sthankawasi sect and then his name was Deepchandji. In the evening Gurudev was sitting in a small house outside the village. The Muniraj also came and sat next to Gurudev. Gurudev touched him and asked.. Hope there is no fear?. Just then the Muniraj saw a Lion in the place where Gurudev was sitting. A while later Gurudev was visible again. IN the morning after the Sermons when the Muniraj stood up to narrate his experience Gurudev said Om shanti and silenced him. He left the gathering and went into His room.
He held prayers for Navpadji n Anadara during the month of Chaitra Sudi and left for Delwara.
“ Jeevan jyoti Aasamay, Saahas ho Guru-mantra|
Nirasha, Vishad, Adheerata, Chinta Chodo Tantra||”
Last Three years
After the Chaturmasa He sat in the temples of Delwara in Abu mountains for self awakening. The worship of Navpadji was completed with pomp and shown in Ashwini month.
From Delwara Gurudev proceeded for Achalgarh. In the year 1941 (in Chaitra month Samvat 1998) many people had gathered for the prayers of Navpadji. Gurudev used to give a sermon on ShripalRaja’s Ras for some time. On the 13th of Chaitra sudi on the eve of Mahavir Jayanti, Gurudev gave a sermon for about 2 to 3 hours in a big open place. Many religiously accredited people were present in the gathering. Gurudev gave a very touching and soul enriching discourse on Adhyatma to purify the minds of the people. In the gathering there was a gentleman named Seth Kanwarlalji Nimani was present from Falodi. He had a doubt in his mind, what kind of a Yogiraj is He, He is called Acharya but speaks about Aarambh-Samaarambh, and In the worship of the Oliji people craft fountains and plant plants and trees which all tie you to worldly things. The sermon clarified all this and brought purity to the minds of many such persons. They realized that Gurudev was completely free of any attachments or detachments. He has understood the doubts in our minds and has put them to rest.
In Bhadawa Month of samvat 1998 (1942 AD) Gurudev slipped while returning from a neighboring room. His hipbone was fractured hence Gurudev could not stand. Neither Nagindas Bhagat or any other person realized that there was a fracture and hence no one tried to treat or cure him. In such condition Gurudev could only sit or lie down when he met visitors. In one and a half months the bone was rejointed and Gurudev could walk with the help of a stick but had lost weight and weakened considerably. At that time Pragyachakshu Shri Gangeshwaranandji Maharaj who was Kulguru of Seth Kishanchandji came to Gurudev. He recited many shashtras and Shlokas and began to discuss them. As soon as he uttered a word Gurudev would complete the rest of the words. Gangeshwaranandji had a disciple who though that all these shlokas are from Scriptures and hence Gurudev has knowledge of them. I will create some new shlokas tomorrow and bring. Early morning he created some Shlokas and went to Gurudev. As soon as he uttered the first word, Gurudev recited all the Shlokas he had written. After this discussion Gangeshwaranandji was very pleased and he told Seth Kishanchand that he had made a completely learned man his Guru and that earlier he had a misconception that he had made a common man his guru.
Gurudev asked Seth Kishanchand to buy “Shanti sadan” which is a bungalow near the bus stand in Mount Abu at a cost of Rs 42,000 for charitable purposes.
Gurudev used to say about the powers of the great men-“ Great man can do what not? He can move the Brahmanda, meaning nothing was impossible for them. It is about the time of the second world war that the British Government requested all saints to pray for their victory. Gurudev also received the request of the Viceroy via the AGG. “Me and my family remember you every day and please send your blessings.” Gurudev sent back a message “I will soon pray and restore peace if you so promise to announce the ban on killing of milk giving animals”. Gurudev had several correspondences and exchanges with Lord Chamberlain the then prime minister of Britain. The British government was not ready to accept this suggestion then, but when in 1943 the morale of the British government was at a low in the war and the allied nations were making progress, India too was at risk from Japanese invasion, then Governor General Linglithgo sent a wire to Gurudev when he was in Achalgarh along with it was the type written letter from George Sixth requesting- “please pray for us we are ready to accept your condition”. When the letter and wire was received George Jutjeletter and Roopchand Hemaji were sitting besides Gurudev.
Gurudev mentioned the contents of the Wire received form Lord Chamberlain but now he is short of time and will not be able to do the requested. I had informed them that if the Government accepts my request then I would get peace restored quickly, I would have to perform one more Bhuv.
“Gayee vastu soche nahin, aagam Chintan nahin|
Vartman varte sahi, so gyani jag mahi||”
About 3 to 4 months prior to his Nirvana Gurudev had announced in newspapers that no one should come to visit him and that he was going to sit for meditation, and move to Gurushikhar. Even then if someone would come he would say that Now you cannot meet me and I am going to Gurushikhar. He said “Great men do not need a Body; I am pleased that I could do whatever I did with this body”. He bid farewell to Seth Kishanchand and many other devotees and sent them away about 4 months before his Nirvana. At that time Saint Chhogmal Dhannaji had kept 51 fasts and he slept outside Gurudev’s room in the gallery. During his fasting, by grace of Gurudev, he had the vision of Chakreshwari, Saraswati and other Devis. After the Parna when Tapasvi ji recovered slightly, Gurudev sent him back to his village too.
After the completion of the Parushan Parva Gurudev went to pay respects at the temple of Choumukhji Adinath Bhagwan at the peak of Achalgarh and all other idols in the dumanjil.
Gurudev barely ate during these days and meditated day and night. For two to three days he would remain shut in his room and never was visible to anyone.
On the 18th September 1943 Seth Phoolchand Manakchand Shah along with his wife Leela Behan has come from Mumbai. His son had passed away two days earlier. Gurudev promised them to get them to meet him and that he has gone to heaven. On 23rd September 1943 both of them left for Virnagar. But Gurudev sent a person on cycle to Mount Abu and called them back to Achalgarh. At 10 pm that night Gurudev called them and in torchlight got them to meet their son Kantilal and again on the wall with the help of a torch light. Then he consoled them and spoke a few sentences for the peace of the Atma.
At that time Gurudev had fever and rapid breathing. Knowing that Gurudev was not in good health Phoolchand Bhai, Leela Bahan, Champak Bhai, Surajmalji and Kamalaprasadji sat besides Gurudev all night. Gurudev referring to the Nirvana time of Bhagwan Mahavir said “No one can increase his life time by even a second, When Bhagwan Mahavir could not increase a second of his life time then I don’t even get counted.”
At about 2.30 am that night his pulse started to weaken. On the 10th day of Aasojvadi samvat 2000 (at 3 am on 24th September 1943) having completed 54 years of his journey, in the state of meditation, in eternal peace, Yogiraj departed his perishable body for his heavenly abode.
Before departing his body, Gurudev appeared to many of his devotees and indicated to them about it. The writer too heard the sound of the departure from the Photo of Gurudev in the afternoon of 23rd September 1943 in Ahmadabad.
The news of Gurudev’s Nirvana and Agnisanskara was conveyed through wires, telephones and radio all over the country. On 24th September 1943 Shanta Bahan was also informed in Ahmadabad over phone and hearing the same 18-20 people reached Achalgarh by midnight. Gurudev sat in semi-Padmasana; half open eyes seemed to be deep in meditation. 21-22 hours had passed since Gurudev had departed his body but his eyes had a divine glow. His face appeared to be very calm, beautiful, attractive and lively. One could not believe that the soul had departed by seeing the body.
Gurudev in his semi-Padmasana posture was taken to Achalgarh in a Palanquin on 25th September 1943. In the afternoon they reached Mount Abu where a rousing welcome was arranged by the market place and the AGG. Then the palanquin was put into a truck and via the “Gurudev Shanti Vijay animal hospital” left for Mandoli. In the evening they rested at the foothills. Seth Kishanchandji joined from here. As soon as they arrived Seth Kishanchanji and Rukmini Bahan sang a devotional song in prayer. Seth sahib saw Gurudev alive. Gurudev restored the confidence of the Seth and as soon as he realized his responsibilities he left.
Early morning on 26th September 1943 many buses arrived and Seth Kishanchand ji arranged free transportation for all the people to Mandoli. They arrived at Mandoli in late evening. At 10-11 in the night the bidding for the last rites commenced. Gurudev appeared before Shanta Bahan and ultimately she cornered the rights at Rs 51,000.
All night people arrived via Bagra and Sirohi routes. BY morning a huge human gathering took place. Gurudev’s mother and brother also arrived.
At sunrise on Monday the 27th September 1943, The palanquin carrying Gurudev was placed above the pyre of sandal wood and the last rites were performed. Tonnes of sandalwood, coconut were offered to the pyre. 30 to 40 tins of Ghee, Roses, Camphor and perfumes spread a fragrance all around. The pyre continued to burn for three days.
In the evening Kinkerdas was sitting with many devotees and singing Bhajans. Devotees who arrived after the last rites had begun were grieving their misfortune that they could not catch a last glimpse of Gurudev. Just then on top of the flames of the pyre appeared the image of Gurudev in Abhay Mudra which brought joy and charmed all present.
After the rites were performed, Seth Kishanchand ji, Nageendad Bhagat, Champaklal, Shantilal Bhagat, Kamala Prasad returned to Achalgarh. At the “Parmarth Dispensary” which was under the charge of Nagindas Bhagat several rare herbs and medicines, Yantras, idols of worship, rosaries of precious stones were received. These were listed and kept in the prayer box and locked. The keys were handed over to Seth Ksihanchandji. On Diwali in samvat 2024 (1968) the same were displayed along with Gurudev’s ogha (guidelines of conduct) and other belongings.
At the site of the cremation Seth Kishanchand ji built a large temple of marble.
Swiss national Mr. George was also had reached Mandoli via Palitana. IN the memory of Gurudev he went to the red caves of Abu and started meditation and fasting. On the third day Gurudev appeared to him and said.. “George, Shanti is great Yogi”. Likewise after his death Gurudev appeared in the dreams of many of his devotees and many others were ridden of their problems by just remembering Gurudev.
In the words of Yoganishta Acharya Shri Vijay Kesariaji Maharaj (writer of various books on Yoga practices and Spiritual books)-
“If I have seen something astonishing in my life then it is only Yoganishta Mahatma Shri Shantivijayji. He is a repository of high level spiritual knowledge. Among the Sadhus of current times, He stands supreme in the fields of Yoga Kriya and Spiritual Knowledge. Only a great and powerful soul with a long term experience can understand a Great Yogishwar like him”.
Extract from the book “Shanti Sandesh”.
Acharya Shri Vijay Kesarsuriji firth met Gurudev in May, 1928 (samvat 1985) at the Markandeshwar Ashram, where they discussed Yoga. When Kesarsuriji was departing, Gurudev paid respects to him out of protocol, Kesarsuriji said, “I am Acharya because I was afforded the Title, but you are an Acharya in the real sense of it, Hence I should be paying respects to you first”. The next time He travelled from Palanpur to Shanari to discuss with Gurudev and stayed for a few days.
He had asked Gurudev Shanti Suriji to alert him when His (Kesarsuriji) end time had arrived so that he could remain in Meditation at the time of death. From Abu where Gurudev was residing he appeared before Kesarsuriji in Ahmadabad and alerted him. On the morning of the 5th Day of Bhadva Sudi samvat 1988 (1922 AD) Due to this He informed Mahodaya Shri Devijaji, Pundit Labhvijayji and other disciples “I refuse all me my four meals today. Yogiraj Shanti Vijayji has informed me from Abu that my end time has come and I am ready for it. Hence please prepare, time is up..And then at 6.35 pm while in his meditation that evening he left this world for his heavenly abode. (extracts from page 352 of the book “Brihat Jeevan Prabha tatha atmaunnati karak vachanamrito)
Sir Prabhashankar Pattani, Divan, Bhavnagar-
He was the chief minister of Bhavnagar state (Saurashtra) until 1933 (Samvat 1999) during that duration he came in touch with Gurudev and expresses the following thoughts for Gurudev-
“Shri Shantivijayji is a high level great man. Even then his heart is as pure and innocent as a Child. The characteristics of great men may have been written in Scriptures but such Intelligence and power of thoughts from the heart and simplistic childlike innocence and the beautiful combination is only found very rarely. I feel that is the real form of Mahatmaism. Whenever I have been in his company, my mind and heart have been in such sync of thought that do not occur by any other means. Every devotee has the same feelings; this is what I have observed. What else can describe mahatmaism more? He was far away from the desire of Lokeshna. I had the opportunity to come in touch with many a great men but the closeness with him felt unparalleled. This is the outcome of what kind of and how much practice, if one understands this and it is possible to do so, then one would want to do so.
(extract from the book “ Param Kalyan Mantra”)
Memoirs of Sardar Madhavrao Vinayak Kibe M.A. from Indore
He was a deputy minister and minister in Indore state for years. He was accorded the status of Shrimant by the state and was very wealthy. He had 360 shops at various places. He was very accomplished and learned and visited sadhus and saints. Upon hearing of Gurudev he visited him and had the following thoughts to share –
“When I left Indore for Abu, I read in the Times of India that there is a great and eminent Guru residing in Abu. He has the unusual Aura and divine Strength. Europeans, Paresis, Jains, Hindus and Muslims all pray and pay homage to him. I also thought I should meet His Holiness and we went to see him.
We found him to be a unique Devaratna (God’s Angel) and as we got to know him better, we got convinced that His Holiness is a supreme human being and our faith in him increased further.
Gurudev Shantivijayji looks like a simpleton from the outside but form the inside he is different and a great Atma. To know him in his full glory requires one to be a thinker and a pupil of faith.
When this great soul showers his blessings on persons suffering from incurable diseases, where doctors have given up all hope and astrologers have predicted doomsday, the patients got well with his intervention. Our sins get destroyed by our submission to him and His Blessings. Everyone knows him as Gurudev but we can only see the cosmic power inside if we are the blessed ones. I will not say anything more. His blessings are so powerful that he can cure any patient with incurable diseases. This is my experience.
I consider him as a great Yogishwar (A Yogic Holy Soul). Several holy souls do exist in India and fierce animal’s lions and tigers come and sit down in his proximity. It is not easy to meet such a great soul. I recommend strongly everyone to meet a great should and take blessings at least once.
Lord Chamberlain Prime minister of Britain
Oh Lord! You are the Highest of the Higher and God of the Gods. Your words are the essence of all scriptures.
Lieutenant Colonel Sir George Ogilvy KCIECSI York House, Upper Montague Street, London
Oh Lord of Lords! For the welfare of all living beings you are sending blessings through wireless around the world.
He was the Agent to the Governor General for Rajputana. He used to visit Gurudev frequently in those times. Later he was posted as Resident of Hyderabad state by the Viceroy. He used to write to Gurudev and kept in touch from there too. He wrote a letter from London on 11th January 1938 and in that acknowledged the gratefulness for Gurudev’s Blessings by saying “I will never forget you and will always remember you with respect and creed.”
Shri Prabhudasbhai Amritlal Mehta @ Shri Banshi-
(Author of many great books such as Param Kalyan Mantra, Nehru-Flower of Humanity, Discovery of Japan, etc)
He came in touch with Gurudev during His youth and studied and learnt a lot about yoga. One summer he was walking in Marwar and was very thirsty. He found a Pot but could not drink from it. He was forced to think, just then Gurudev appeared under a tree. Upon seeing Gurudev his thirst was quenched automatically and he felt a great sense of calm in Gurudev’s eyes He wrote about Gurudev in Gujarati-
“After an extended period of learning under Gurudev, I have experienced with my mental thumb rule that:
Yogi Shri Shantivijayji life amongst the myriad problems of existence and continuous struggle of human beings is a classic example of a live cool and sweet watershed.
The humankind amongst the usual and daily routines of worship with its meaningless gestures does not understand the inner cosmic pleasures of the Yogis and a Yogi cannot help it.
I have seen on Gurudev’s face a continuous stream of benevolence emanating from the inner self during 24 hours (day and night). The nectar streaming out from his eyes comes from his inner cosmic yogic power and this cannot be missed.
His oath of Shanti is in itself a great vocal expression, since his eyes and not the tongue express the inner most thoughts.
He speaks less but from his silence comes many a scriptures and preaching. In spite of living in the jungle, je is in touch with the developments (currents) taking place in the world and sublimates from his inner peace.
A decorative sheet dedicated in honour of their Gurus by disciples
`Bhishma` means `He of the terrible oath`. It refers to his vow of life-long celibacy. Devavrata became known as Bhishma because he took the Bhishma Pratigya the vow of life-long celibacy and of service to whoever sat on the throne of his father (the throne of Hastinapura).
Charan paduka refers to places where Hindu gods are said to have walked on earth, and where their footprints are now visible.
Our religion not only does not approve but are against the outward decoration of the religion. We call this (Aarambha- Samaarambh) because it binds you to this sansar and does not liberate you to reach moksh.
Purnata: the ultimate salvation is knowing Purnata of Being followed by
spontaneous ending of “me”.
I currently view myself as a limited individual. I am constantly seeking – money , power, love, comforts, health – no matter who I am or where I am or how much I have – the one constant in my life is ever a
sense of want, I find myself unacceptable to myself.
I understand I am non-separate from the whole, I am complete, and I am poornam. Nothing can add to my
fullness nor can anything take away from my sense of fullness. The peace in this knowing is salvation or Purnata.
Is a type of salted laddoos made of udal dal.
According to Jain belief Siddha are liberated souls who have destroyed all the karma bonding. Siddha do not have any kind of body, they are soul at its purest form.
Dhoopam – Offering perfumed Incense.
“Teshameva sarvadasweekaranam dhoopam”
Dhoopam is perfumed incense smoke. The pleasures which our indriyas or senses give us are like its perfumed smoke which vanishes quickly. Offering Dhoopam is recognizing this and is an undertaking to control our sensory pleasures.
Sutra: religious text, esp. collection of aphorisms on any of various aspects of life (Hinduism, Jainism)
Shravak who keeps faith on the words said by Sarvagna Parmatma and performs all the religious works such as Samayik, Worship the almighty, Pratikraman, and Paushad etc and also worship almighty and Saints honestly.
Gochari (Alms): Jain Sädhus and Sädhvis do not cook their food, do not get it prepared for them, and do not accept any food, which has been prepared for them. They go to different householders and receive a small amount of vegetarian food from each house. This practice is called Gochari. Just as cows graze the top part of grass by moving from place to place, taking food.
Bhāvanā (Sanskrit, cultivation). The general term used in Buddhism for any type of meditational practice involving continuous attention by the mind.
The Bhopas are the priest singers of the folk deities in Rajasthan state of India. They perform in front of a scroll, known as phad or par in Rajasthani that depicts the episodes of the narrative of the folk deity and functions as a portable temple. The Bhopas carry this phad traditionally, and are invited by villagers to perform in their localities during times of sickness and misfortune. Traditionally, the phads are kept rolled in transit. After reaching a village or town, the Bhopas erect the phads between two poles in a suitable public place shortly after nightfall. The performance goes on throughout the night and terminates only in early morning [
Special oblation for universal peace
This activity has been regarded as the most auspicious and beneficial. This is organized on the last day of any minor or major ceremony. On this occasion, oblations are performed to the image of the Lord 27 or 108 times with absolute devotion. Moreover, worship is offered to the Lord with special and auspicious articles. As a part of this ceremony, the Mangal Kumbh (The sacred vessel) is installed; the holy light is installed; worship is offered to the nine grahas; and to other divinities. This observance seeks the welfare of all beings in the universe. On this occasion, Sanskrit shlokas are chanted and this great wish is expressed: “May felicity, bliss. cheerfulness and holiness prevail everywhere”.
Shashtras … Scriptures.
(Applying holy collyrium to the eyes of a new image) The name Anjanshalaka is given to the ceremony of decorating the eyes of new images of Jins with collyrium made of many special substances. using in the process a gold-stick. On this occasion, the following five auspicious events relating to the Lord are celebrated.
1. Chyavan- incarnation The incarnation of the Lord in his mother’s womb.
2. Janm – birth The birth of the Lord.
3. Deeksha- Renunciation The event of the Lord’s renunciation of worldly life and commencement of a life of austerity, discipline and attainments.
4. Kaivalya gnan -The event of attaining absolute enlightenment after performing austerities and tapasya.
5. Nirvan- Being completely delivered from the body and the karmas. Only the event of the Kaivalyagnan is called Anjan Shalaka and it is arranged to be carried out at an auspicious and sacred period, at midnight, The smearing of collyrium to the eyes of the image with a gold-stick can be done only by the Acharya Bhagavant, in the Jain command or by the Anuyogacharya, the one next to him.
Prana pratistha (Sanskrit: prāṇa pratiṣṭha) is the Hindu theological term for a rite or ceremony by which a deity is infused or brought to inhabit a murti or icon of that deity. According to Gavin Flood, “A ritual of consecration in which the consciousness or power of the deity is brought into the image awakens the icon in a temple.” According to orthodox Hinduism it is only after this rite is properly performed that worship should be offered to the murti
The holy Chariot procession
Rathyatra means taking the resplendent image of the Lord in a procession, in a chariot along the main roads of the city or town so that all people might have a darshan of the Bhagawan’s radiant face. The Rathyatra is accompanied by a band (of musicians and players on various instruments) and by thousands of devotees, and by the fourfold society of Jains. It Is a procession of sublime radiance. It is called in spoken dialect Varghoda but its actual name is Rathyatra or Chaityayatra. Chaityayatra means having a darshan and worshipping the Chaityas or temples in the City.
dharmadesana (Skt.) dharma teaching.
A path to achieving salvation through loving devotion to a particular deity, open to all persons irrespective of sex or caste.
Upashray is a place where Sadhu and Sadhvis stay.
An upashray is a very simple place with a big hall and a few rooms. It does not have air conditioner or any fans but has many windows. An Upashray does not have any furniture except a few wooden paats for sadhus to sit and sleep. The place where the sadhus and the nuns stay is called an upashray. Usually monks or nuns do not stay more than a few days at one place except during rainy season. Then they don’t travel and stay in these places for four months. The Sadhu and Sadhvis do not stay together in the same upashray at the same time. But same upashray can be used by either sadhus or Sadhvis at different times.
An upashray is also used by householders (house holders and shravikas) to study or perform samayika and other religious activities.
The Sadhu and Sadhvis deliver their religious lectures in upashray.
Means the guidelines of conduct.