Haricharitramrut Sagar literally means ‘the ocean of the nectar episodes of Hari,’ which is another name of Bhagwan Swaminarayan. Considered as the authoritative biography of Bhagwan Swaminarayan, an eye-witness account, its staggering length of 80,000 sakhis (a system of poetic versification), renders this an epic in its own right, over three times the length of the Ramayana.
The history of the creation of this masterpiece is as intriguing as its contents. On several occasions, Bhagwan Swaminarayan related His life, from birth until arrival in Loj, to Muktanand Swami. In Vikram Samvat Year 1881 (1825 CE), Bhagwan Swaminarayan bestowed upon Muktanand Swami the opportunity to offer bhakti by writing His life episodes until his last breath. Muktanand Swami performed this task diligently, writing details in the form of Kharda, a rough format to be systematically restructured later. He continued writing and dictating the Khardas prolifically until Bhagwan Swaminarayan passed away in 1830. Grief-stricken by His departure, Muktanand Swami's poor health deteriorated rapidly, and he passed away one and a half months later. In Vikram Samvat Year 1914 (1858 CE), Adharanand Swami, himself an artist and sculptor, but not a poet, commenced the mammoth versification of the Haricharitramrut Sagar from Muktanand Swami's Khardas. Divinely inspired, Adharanand Swami composed the sakhis, akin to that of the Ramayana, in Vraj Hindi. The work is comprised of 28 chapters, beautifully named as purs, or waves, each divided into tarangs, or ripples, in consonance with the sagar's (ocean's) imagery.