His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj

His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj was born to Dahiben and Manibhai Narayanbhai Patel on 13 September 1933 (Bhadarva vad 9, Samvat 1989) in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, India. A few days later, Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj, the founder of BAPS, visited Jabalpur, blessed the newborn child and named him Keshav. Shastriji Maharaj revealed to Manibhai, “Your child will grow up to serve Satsang in a big way.” His family lovingly called him Vinu.
Manibhai was originally a native of Anand in Gujarat and had settled in Jabalpur for business. Vinubhai spent his formative years in Jabalpur, completing his primary and secondary education in an English-medium school. He was exceptionally brilliant and completed his 12th grade at the Christ Church Boys Senior Secondary School in Jabalpur. Thereafter, he returned with his parents to his native town of Anand, where he enrolled at the College of Agriculture.
Despite his deep inner spirituality, his sharp intellect was inclined towards rational and logical reasoning. Only a great spiritual master could penetrate his reasoning and awaken the dormant spiritual spark within him. In 1951-52, he came into the contact of His Holiness Yogiji Maharaj, the spiritual successor of Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj. Impressed by Yogiji Maharaj’s spiritual charisma and selfless love, he travelled with Yogiji Maharaj during his summer vacations. Yogiji Maharaj’s love drew the young Vinubhai closer towards him. In 1956, Vinubhai graduated with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture, and through his association with Yogiji Maharaj he decided to take the path of renunciation. On 2 February 1957, Yogiji Maharaj joyously gave him the parshad diksha and renamed him Vinu Bhagat. Once Yogiji Maharaj, while addressing some youths inclined towards becoming sadhus, said, “Because of Vinubhai 51 youths will take diksha. The punya [of that] will go to him. He will be the first [to take diksha].” Then, Yogiji Maharaj told him to accompany him in his vicharan to look after his daily correspondence and other services. For four years he stayed with Yogiji Maharaj and received spiritual training.
On 11 May 1961, on the occasion of the Kalash Mahotsav of the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Gadhada, Yogiji Maharaj gave bhagwati (saffron) diksha to 51 educated youths. Among them, Vinu Bhagat was the first to receive diksha and named Swami Keshavjivandas. At that time many observed that the name ‘Keshav’, given by Shastriji Maharaj when he was a child, had reappeared when renamed as Keshavjivandas by Yogiji Maharaj. Thereafter, Yogiji Maharaj instructed the 51 newly initiated sadhus to study Sanskrit in Mumbai. Swami Keshavjivandas was appointed as their head (mahant) at Dadar Mandir. Hence, over time, he became respectfully known as Mahant Swami. Yogiji Maharaj used to frequently write to the newly initiated sadhus about the greatness of Mahant Swami, “All should remain under the instructions of Mahant Swami. If anyone feels troubled or worried tell Mahant Swami about it. He will solve it by giving spiritual knowledge.”
His outstanding virtues of austerity, self-control, devotion, humility and service earned him the blessings and joy of Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj. In 1968, Pramukh Swami’s 48th birthday was celebrated in Yogiji Maharaj’s presence at Dadar Mandir, Mumbai. In his address to the satsang assembly, Pramukh Swami spoke about the glory of Yogiji Maharaj and added, “I feel very peaceful about Yogiji Maharaj having prepared these [young] sadhus. My heart experiences peace on having the darshan of Mahant Swami. Just as sadhus and devotees felt peace on having the darshan of Sadguru Purushottamdas Swami, today, one feels peace on seeing Mahant Swami.”
In 1971, after the earthly departure of Yogiji Maharaj, Mahant Swami totally dedicated himself to Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the new guru, with the same devotion and allegiance he had for guru Yogiji Maharaj. His exposure to Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s pure saintliness and spiritual glory had begun in 1951, when he first met him. Since 1971, as per the wishes and instructions of HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj, he has relentlessly travelled throughout India and abroad to inspire and strengthen satsang in countless devotees. He has also offered his services during the Sanstha’s mega-festivals, in children and youth activities, the Akshardham projects, and other satsang activities. HH Mahant Swami Maharaj’s profound discourses have enlightened countless devotees and well-wishers and motivated them to adopt pious, addiction-free lives. His saintliness and devotion to Bhagwan Swaminarayan and gurus Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj have left lasting impressions on innumerable devotees.
On 20 July 2012, in the presence of senior sadhus in Ahmedabad, Pramukh Swami Maharaj revealed Mahant Swami as his spiritual successor. Following the earthly departure of Pramukh Swami Maharaj on 13 August 2016, Mahant Swami Maharaj was declared as the sixth guru in the Gunatit Parampara tradition of Bhagwan Swaminarayan. HH Mahant Swami Maharaj now presides as the guru and spiritual guide of countless devotees and helms the worldwide BAPS socio-spiritual activities fostered by HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj.

 

  • 1933
    Wednesday, September 13 | Bhādarvo vad 9, Samvat 1989
    Manibhai and Dahiben Patel, originally from Anand, Gujarat, moved to Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, in 1929 to start a dairy business. It was here in Jabalpur where they were blessed with a son, Vinubhai.
    Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj graced Manibhai’s home in Jabalpur when Vinubhai was approximately six months old and gave him vartmān and a kanthi. Shastriji Maharaj held the infant Vinubhai in his lap and affectionately named him Keshav. Manibhai’s family, however, continued to address him as Vinu.
    Railway Station, Jabalpur
    Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj
  • 1951
    Vinubhai lived in Jabalpur during his formative years, completing his primary and secondary education in an Englishmedium school. He displayed tremendous academic brilliance for which his teachers and peers regularly commended him.
    Thursday, May 10 | Vaishākh sud 4, Samvat 2007
    Shastriji Maharaj left his mortal body and returned to Akshardham. Vinubhai and his family traveled to Sarangpur and arrived after the cremation rituals were completed. Here, Vinubhai had darshan of Yogiji Maharaj for the first time.
    Thereafter, Vinubhai and his family traveled to Gadhada for the murtipratishthā festival. On Tuesday, May 15, Vinubhai met Pramukh Swami for the first time.
    Yogiji Maharaj, Pramukh Swami Maharaj and devotees after Shastriji Maharaj’s cremation rituals were completed | Sarangpur, Gujarat
    Wednesday, May 30 | Vaishākh vad 10, Samvat 2007
    On Tuesday, May 22, Yogiji Maharaj, Pramukh Swami Maharaj and a group of sadhus arrived in Anand and stayed at Manibhai’s home. This occasion marked Vinubhai’s first interaction with Yogiji Maharaj. On Wednesday, May 30, at approximately 5:00 p.m., as Yogiji Maharaj departed from Manibhai’s home, he humbly apologized to Vinubhai for any inconvenience he may have caused. Mahant Swami Maharaj considers this to be the moment that he was forever touched by Yogiji Maharaj’s unparalleled humility and affection.
  • 1952
    Vinubhai completed the 10th standard (10th grade) at Christ Church Boys’ Senior Secondary School in Jabalpur. Thereafter, Manibhai and family moved back to Anand, where Vinubhai attended Vitthalbhai Patel (V.P.) Science College. Thereafter, he enrolled in the Bansilal Amrutlal College of Agriculture in 1953.
    Christ Church Boys’ Senior Secondary School | Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh
    Vinubhai’s home | Anand, Gujarat
    Vitthalbhai Patel Science College
  • 1956
    Vinubhai completed his university education in four years and received a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the Bansilal Amrutlal College of Agriculture.
    Vinubhai during his college years
    Bansilal Amrutlal College of Agriculture | Anand, Gujarat
    Class photo of Vinubhai, his classmates and professors
    Once, while passing by Bansilal Amrutlal College, Ramanbhai Patel (Pujya Doctor Swami) mentioned to Yogiji Maharaj, “This is Vinubhai’s college”, to which Yogiji Maharaj joyfully responded, “Jay Vinubhaini College!”
  • 1957
    Saturday, February 2 | Mahā sud 2, Samvat 2013
    On this auspicious day at the Akshar Deri in Gondal, Yogiji Maharaj initiated Vinubhai as a pārshad and named him Vinu Bhagat. For the next three years, Vinu Bhagat traveled with Yogiji Maharaj and served as his personal attendant.
    Vinu Bhagat, after initiation into the pārshad-fold
  • 1960
    Vinu Bhagat, Balmukund Swami, Santvallabh (Sant) Swami, Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami | Africa
    Monday, July 3 | Ashādh sud 9 Samvat 2016
    In Kapolvadi, Mumbai, Yogiji Maharaj initiated Vinu Bhagat as a pārshad for the second time in a ceremony in which he initiated eight other youths as pārshads. Collectively, Yogiji Maharaj referred to these nine pārshads as the ‘nav yogeshwars’.
    Yogiji Maharaj and the newly initiated pārshads. Pramukh Swami is to his left and Vinu Bhagat is seated directly behind Yogiji Maharaj
    The 11th canto of the Shrimad Bhagvat introduces the nav yogeshwars as nine learned yogis who imparted invaluble knowledge of the mahimā of the Satpurush to King Janak. Bhagwan Swaminarayan refers to them in Vachanamrut Gadhada I 54.
    Nine Yogeshwars
    Seated (left to right)
    • 1. Pujya Arun Bhagat (Pujya Ishwarcharandas Swami)
    • 2. Pujya Narayan Bhagat (Pujya Viveksagardas Swami)
    • 3. Pujya Niranjan Bhagat (Pujya Siddheshwardas Swami)
    • 4. Pujya Suryakant Bhagat (Pujya Niranjandas Swami)
    Standing (left to right)
    • 1. Pujya Ranchhod Bhagat (Pujya Bhaktipriyadas [Kothari] Swami)
    • 2. Pujya Madhu Bhagat
    • 3. Pujya Vinu Bhagat (Param Pujya Mahant Swami Maharaj)
    • 4. Pujya Anupam Bhagat (Pujya Bhagwatpriyadas Swami)
    • 5. Pujya Mahendra Bhagat (Pujya Tyagvallabhdas Swami)
  • 1961
    Thursday, May 11 | Vaishākh vad 12, Samvat 2017
    On the occasion of the Kalash Mahotsav in Gadhada, Yogiji Maharaj initiated 51 educated youths as sadhus. Among the 51, Yogiji Maharaj first gave the bhāgwati dikshā to Vinu Bhagat and named him Sadhu Keshavjivandas.
    The newly initiated Sadhu Keshavjivandas is seated on Yogiji Maharaj’s right
    Still images from a color film of the dikshā ceremony
  • 1961-70
    Soon after initiating the 51 sadhus, Yogiji Maharaj instructed them to study Sanskrit at Akshar Bhuvan (Dadar Mandir) in Mumbai. Yogiji Maharaj appointed Sadhu Keshavjivandas as the ‘Mahant’ of Dadar Mandir and entrusted him with the responsibility of overseeing the young sadhus. Since then, he has been respectfully known as Mahant Swami.
    Seated to Yogiji Maharaj’s right, Mahant Swami is facing Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj | Akshar Bhuvan, Mumbai
    Mahant Swami engaged in bhakti and various sevā at Akshar Bhuvan, Mumbai.
    Yogiji Maharaj swings Shri Harikrishna Maharaj during a festival celebration
    Mahant Swami reads a Vachanamrut while Yogiji Maharaj discourses
    Yogiji Maharaj discourses to an assembly of sadhus and devotees
    External view of Akshar Bhuvan, Mumbai
  • 1970
    February 5–July 7 | Vicharan to East Africa and UK
    Yogiji Maharaj embarked on his third and final overseas satsang tour. The highlights of the 5-month satsang tour were the mandir inaugurations in Nairobi, Kenya (February 10, 1970 | Mahā sud 5, Samvat 2026) and Islington, England (June 14, 1970 | Jeth sud 10, Samvat 2026).
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj addressing an evening satsang assembly | Nairobi, Kenya
    Murti-pratishthā ceremony | June 14 | Islington, London
    Chunibhai Patel’s photo studio | Mombasa, Kenya
    Seated first row (left to right)
    • 1. Pujya Purushottam Bhagat
    • 2. Pujya Narayan Bhagat (Viveksagardas Swami)
    • 3. Pujya Pragat Bhagat
    • 4. Pujya Anupam Bhagat (Bhagwatpriyadas Swami)
    Seated second row (left to right)
    • 1. Pujya Ishwarcharandas Swami
    • 2. Param Pujya Pramukh Swami
    • 3. Param Pujya Yogiji Maharaj
    • 4. Param Pujya Mahant Swami
    Standing (left to right)
    • 1. Pujya Yogeshwardas Swami
    • 2. Pujya Swayamprakashdas Swami (Doctor Swami)
    • 3. Pujya Nilkanthdas Swami
    • 4. Pujya Devcharandas Swami
    • 5. Pujya Narayanprasaddas Swami
    • 6. Pujya Ghanshyamcharandas Swami
    • 7. Pujya Siddheshwardas Swami
    • 8. Pujya Niranjandas Swami
    • 9. Pujya Prabhuswarupdas Swami
    • 10. Pujya Tyagvallabhdas Swami
  • 1971
    Saturday, January 23 Posh vad 11, Samvat 2027
    “Where is Pramukh Swami? Where is Mahant Swami?” Yogiji Maharaj asked the sadhus, devotees and doctors surrounding him as he lay in his hospital cot in Mumbai. Yogiji Maharaj then told Pramukh Swami that he is ready to leave his body. At approximately 12:45 p.m., Yogiji Maharaj bid his final ‘Jai Swaminarayan’ and left his corporeal body. Later that evening, Yogiji Maharaj’s body was flown to Rajkot and driven to Gondal, where his cremation rites were performed the following day at 4:00 p.m.
    Final procession of Yogiji Maharaj’s mortal body | Gondal Mandir
    In 1985, Mahant Swami reflected, “When Yogi Bapa returned to Akshardham, I thought that was it; the play was over. However, slowly but surely, Pramukh Swami seamlessly led in such a way that we didn’t even know what happened. Naturally, we joined in his effort, because at the root, they are one and the same. In fact, only the face had changed.”
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj and Mahant Swami with the newly initiated sadhus and pārshads | January 31 (Vasant Panchami) | Gondal, Gujarat
    Mahant Swami
    Mahant Swami and Doctor Swami in conversation with Pramukh Swami Maharaj
  • 1977
    August 13–November 11 | North America Vicharan
    On his second visit to North America, Pramukh Swami Maharaj was accompanied by Mahant Swami. This year marked the first time that Mahant Swami had graced North America. This particular vicharan is notable for the extensive travel and hardships that Pramukh Swami Maharaj and the sadhus endured as they crisscrossed the country by car, from New York to California, to nurture a fledgling Satsang community.
    BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir | Flushing, New York
    Toronto, Ontario
    Flushing, New York
    Visiting devotees’ homes in New York City
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj and Mahant Swami in conversation
  • 1981
    March 7–April 13 | Bhagwan Swaminarayan Bicentenary Celebrations, Ahmedabad
    Inspired by Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha organized its first international cultural festival to commemorate the bicentenary celebrations of Bhagwan Swaminarayan in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The festival was celebrated for 37 days with a variety of spiritual, humanitarian, and cultural programs. A special exhibition was created and dedicated to world peace and universal brotherhood. The festival grounds featured conventions, music concerts and majestic gates and mandirs created from jute and bamboo by Bengali artisans, highlighting the beauty of Indian art, architecture and wisdom.
    The festival site was spread across a lush, 200-acre campus in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. Under Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s direction, Mahant Swami led the landscaping department during this celebration and all subsequent mega-festivals.
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami, senior sadhus and dignitaries during the Bhagwan Swaminarayan Bicentenary Celebrations in Ahmedabad
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami and Doctor Swami offering prayers
    Before the murti of Bhagwan Swaminarayan in the main mandir during the festival
  • 1985
    July 15–August 18 | Cultural Festival of India (CFI), London, England
    The CFI, held on the grounds of Alexandra Palace, showcased the cultural and spiritual wonders of India to the West. This 33-day festival attracted over a million visitors from across the globe to London. The CFI featured 4 intricately designed mandirs, 16 magnificent displays, and 5 beautiful gates. All of these structures were skillfully crafted in India and then shipped to London, where they were assembled on the festival grounds.
    Mahant Swami performing the ground-breaking ceremony for the CFI site
    Mahant Swami inaugurating the CFI souvenir book
    October 22–December 19 | Aksharbrahman Gunatitanand Swami Bicentenary Celebrations
    The Aksharbrahman Gunatitanand Swami Bicentenary Celebrations was a 60-day festival held in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. This event was one of the longest cultural festivals ever celebrated. It showcased India’s rich heritage through numerous cultural performances and exhibitions.
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami and senior sadhus participate in the yagna
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami, Doctor Swami and dignitaries inaugurate the Bhakta-Bhagwan Conference
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Governor Shri B.K. Nehru, Mahant Swami and senior sadhus inaugurate the festival grounds
  • 1986
    August 28–November 5 | North America Vicharan
    This year marked the first time that Mahant Swami led a group of sadhus on a world tour. In addition to fostering Satsang around the world, during this vicharan, extensive research was conducted to develop the exhibitions for Akshardham in Gandhinagar.
    Mahant Swami performing the ground-breaking ceremony for the BAPS hari mandir| October 18 | Houston, Texas
  • 1988
    Friday, December 16 Māgshar sud 8, Samvat 2045 Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 68th Birthday
    During his 9-month vicharan, Pramukh Swami Maharaj visited 17 countries. From India, Mahant Swami led a group of sadhus to Nairobi for Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 68th birthday celebrations.
  • 1990
    June 25–October 18 | North America Vicharan
    On his sixth visit to North America, Pramukh Swami Maharaj was once again accompanied by Mahant Swami. During this trip, the kickoff ceremony for the Cultural Festival of India (to be held in Edison, New Jersey, in 1991) was conducted in New York City.
    CFI Kickoff Ceremony, Jacob K. Javits Convention Center | Saturday, June 30 | New York City
  • 1991
    July 9–August 31 | Cultural Festival of India, USA
    The CFI was a 30-day celebration held on the grounds of Middlesex County College in Edison, New Jersey. This festival was an amazing display of Indian talent and art. Craftsmen created beautiful mandirs, gates, and artifacts featuring intricate designs. The stunning Indian villages, charming dances, enchanting musical performances by maestros, and awe-inspiring exhibitions shared India’s majestic culture with North America. The festival’s three exhibitions displayed moral stories highlighting universal values of family harmony, compassion, and love. The CFI featured 4 magnificent mandirs and 5 beautiful archways, with 40 acres of landscaped gardens and fountains. Everyday, over 150 children and youths performed 26 different types of traditional Indian folk dances from various parts of India. The CFI shared and celebrated India’s culture with over 1.2 million visitors from North America and the world.
    Inauguration day of CFI | Tuesday, July 9 | Edison
    Platinum Tula Mahotsav, New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center (Expo Hall) | Saturday, July 20 | Edison
  • 1992
    October 29–December 2 | Yogi Shatabdi and Inauguration of Akshardham, Gandhinagar
    Yogi Shatabdi commemorated the centenary celebrations of Brahmaswarup Yogiji Maharaj. The festival was celebrated in Gandhinagar, the state capital of Gujarat. The highlight of this 35-day festival was the inauguration of Swaminarayan Akshardham, a cultural and spiritual complex illustrating India’s ancient architecture, culture, and spiritual wisdom.
    Inauguration assembly
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami and senior sadhus during the murti-pratishthā ceremony in the Akshardham Mandir | Monday, November 2
  • 1995
    July 21–September 9 | UK & North America
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj inaugurated the first BAPS traditional Hindu mandir outside of India in Neasden, London, on August 20, 1995 (Shrāvan vad 10, Samvat 2051). The 6-day Mandir Mahotsav included a vishwashānti mahāyagna and a nagar-yatrā. This mandir was hand-carved in India by 1,526 skilled craftsmen and consists of 5,000 tons of Italian Carrara marble and Bulgarian limestone. Prior to the London murti-pratishthā, Mahant Swami also visited North America with a group of sadhus.
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj and Mahant Swami during the murti-pratishthā and yagna rituals of the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir | Neasden, London
    Satsang sabhās | North America
    November 25–December 31 | Amrut Mahotsav Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 75th Birthday Celebrations in Mumbai
    The following sentiments by Mahant Swami were originally published, serving as a preface, in publications that were released during the Amrut Mahotsav celebrations.
    Hrudayormi
    Sentiments from the Heart
    Swami! Āp swayam amrut chho. Āpnā amrut sabhar Amrut Mahotsave, sau amrut santāno, amrut sāthe rasbas thashe, amrutrup (brahmarup) thashe.
    Swami! Be-ek varsh pahelāno e divas amne yād chhe. Āpnā Amrut Mahotsavni ujvanini darkhāst laine ame āpni pāse āvyā’tā! Rasākasi jāmi’ti! ‘Shāno Amrut Mahotsav? Shu chhe ā badhu? Kai nathi ujavvu. Badhu ujvāi gayu…’ Āpni nārāj mukhākruti ane ā udgāro amne yād chhe. Āp sammati āptā ja nahotā! Chhevate sākshāt Shri Hari amārā pakshe bhadyā ne āp hāryā! Āpne harāvvānu ame āpni pāsethij shikhyā chhie ne! Guru Shastriji Maharaj ane guru Yogiji Maharaj nā Jayanti Mahotsavni ujavni vakhate āp emne āmaj harāvyā’tā ne!
    Swami! Jiv prāni mātramā Bhagwan rahyā chhe pan āpnāmā Bhagwan sivāy biju kaij nathi! Āp koinā thharāvyā thharyā nathi. Swayamsahaj Bhagwannā dhārak chho. Koinu thharāvyu, koimā thharāvyu nathi chāltu. Thharāvelu ketlu chāle? Sihannu dudh suvarna pātraj mānge! Etlej, ā ek Amrut Mahotsav to shu? Anekānek āvā Amrut Mahotsavo ochhā pade evu āpnu vyaktitva chhe, evu āpe amārā māte, jiv prāni mātra māte karyu chhe. Bhaktoj āpnu jivan, bhaktoj āpnā shvāsochhvās!
    Āpnā Amrut Mahotsave, āpni sadā vaheti divyatā ane kāryadhārā, anek ādhyātmik, sāmājik pravruttiomā navtarrupe vaheshe. Temā, lekhan dhwāra, āpnā amrut vyaktitvanā ārādhan, chintan, manan ane anubhavpoot nididhyāsanni chhodo udshe. Jo ke ahi fari pātratāno, kshamtāno gajāno savāl āve chhe. Āpnā māte lakhvu etle ākāshno parichay karāvvo. Gurutvākarshanni bahār gayelā avkāsh yātrione je anubhav thayo tenu varnan pruthvi par rahelāthi kai rite thāy? A varnavvā jāt-anubhavaj levo pade. Tem, āp māyāthi par, dehnā bhāvothi rahit, akhand Bhagwānmay. Āp dehātit nartanudhāri ane ame sāmānya dehdhārio. Kai rite āpne shabdomā mukvā? Chhatā, kaik guru rhun adā karyāno santosh levā māte, ‘Hā hā gadthal’ rupe kaik karvāno umadko chhe. Vadi, āpni drashti vishāl chhe. Anu jetli amāri sevāne āp Meru tulya māno chho, tethi ame vishesh fāvyā chhie. Ahi je kāi gungān lakhyā chhe temā, lābh-alābhni parvāh nathi, koine dekhādvānā abharkhā nathi, mātra hrudayormi thhālvi chhe.
    Ā hrudayormio swikārshone Swami?
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj Amrut Mahotsav Samiti vati
    Sadhu Keshavjivandas
  • 1996
    Wednesday, June 26 | Ashādh sud 10, Samvat 2052 | Nairobi Mandir Ground-breaking Ceremony
  • 1997
    May 23–August 31 | North America Vicharan
    Mahant Swami visited 36 centers and conducted 12 Regional Kāryakar Adhiveshans in Charlotte, Orlando, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Chicago, Cleveland, Toronto, New York, New Jersey, San Jose, and Los Angeles.
    Arrival at BAPS Mandir | Edison, New Jersey
    Murti-pratishtha ceremony | Sunday, August 17 | Birmingham, Alabama
    September 4–December 1 | Asia-Pacific Vicharan
    On Mahant Swami’s tour in the Asia-Pacific, he visited Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia and Fiji. Notable events on this tour were the mandir inaugurations in Sydney, Australia (Sunday, October 19, 1997 | Āso vad 4, Samvat 2053) and Perth, Australia (Sunday, November 2, 1997|Kārtik sud 2, Samvat 2054).
    Visit to a devotee’s home | Brisbane, Australia
    At the site of the future mandir in Auckland, New Zealand, Mahant Swami and sadhus offer prayers to Shri Harikrishna Maharaj | Auckland, New Zealand
  • 1999
    July 31–October 21 | Africa Vicharan
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj inaugurated the first BAPS traditional Hindu mandir on African soil in Nairobi, Kenya, on Sunday, August 29 (Shrāvan vad 3, Samvat 2055). The 6,000 sq. ft. mandir was created entirely in accordance with the ancient Hindu Shilpa Shāstras. The Mandir Mahotsav was celebrated over four days from August 26 to August 29.
    Nagar-yātra | Saturday, August 28
    Murti-pratishthā ceremony | Sunday, August 29
  • 2002
    June 10–December 16 | North America Vicharan
    During their 190-day visit to North America, Mahant Swami and three sadhus presided over 24 shibirs catering to different age groups. The theme of the shibirs for Sanyukta Mandal, Kishore-Kishori Mandal, and Bal-Balika Mandal were ‘Mālānā Mankā’, ‘Earn It’, and ‘Mandir — Inside Out’, respectively. Additionally, Mahant Swami inaugurated seven mandirs, performed the ground-breaking ceremony for five mandirs, and placed the first sculpted stone for the shikharbaddha mandir in Houston, Texas.
    During a charity walk | Los Angeles, California
    Pujan of first sculpted stone for the shikharbaddha mandir | Houston, Texas | Saturday, November 9
    Presenting an award | Fresno, California
  • 2003
    December 16, 2002–February 3, 2003 | Asia-Pacific Vicharan
    During Mahant Swami’s vicharan, he conducted sabhās and satsang shibirs to inspire youths and elders alike. He visited New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Hong Kong.
    With youths in Sydney | Australia
    Blessing an assembly, BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Sydney, Australia
  • 2005
    Sunday, November 6 | Kārtik sud 5, Samvat 2062 | Inauguration of Swaminarayan Akshardham, New Delhi
    On the morning of Sunday, November 6 (Lābh Pāncham), Pramukh Swami Maharaj, together with Mahant Swami and other senior sadhus performed the murti-pratishthā ceremony of the murtis in the Akshardham Mahamandir.
    In the evening, Pramukh Swami Maharaj and senior sadhus presided over the public dedication ceremony alongside President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, and the Leader of the Opposition L.K. Advani.
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj performs the murti-pratishthā
    Mahant Swami performs rituals during the murti-pratishthā ceremony
    Swaminarayan Akshardham Inauguration Assembly. (L to R): Shri L.K. Advani, President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, His Divine Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Shri Vijay Kapoor
  • 2007
    December 13–December 17 | BAPS Centenary Celebrations, Ahmedabad
    BAPS Centenary Celebrations, Main Assembly | December 17, 2007
    One hundred years after its inception in 1907, the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha celebrated its centenary throughout the world. The year-long celebrations culminated with a grand, four-day finale held in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. From December 13 to 17, half a million people from around the world attended these spectacular celebrations. Each day was filled with colorful cultural programs highlighting the core values of Sanātan Dharma and BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha.
    Mahant Swami installing the murtis in the village where Pramukh Swami Maharaj was born. Friday, December 7 | Chansad, Gujarat
  • 2009
    July 24–November 28 | Africa Vicharan
    Mahant Swami and ten sadhus traveled to Africa to commemorate the 10th Pātotsav (10th Anniversary) of the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Nairobi, Kenya. During this visit, Mahant Swami conducted an enlightening series of discourses on the Yogi Gita (a scripture containing a compilation of Yogiji Maharaj’s divine spiritual wisdom). The celebrations included the installation of the Nilkanth Varni murti on Sunday, August 9.
    Nilkanth Varni abhishek murti installation ceremony | Nairobi
    With youths who performed a traditional dance during the 10th anniversary celebration assembly | Nairobi
  • 2011
    August 1, 2011–January 16, 2012 | North America Vicharan
    On October 6, 8, and 9, sadhus, devotees, and well-wishers celebrated the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the Akshardham Mahamandir in Robbinsville, New Jersey. The celebration consisted of six sacred Vedic ceremonies – two on each day – marking the start of construction of the Akshardham Mahamandir. The first ceremony commenced on the morning of Thursday, October 6, when Pramukh Swami Maharaj led the shilānyās ceremony from Mumbai, India, via live video conference, as Mahant Swami, Ishwarcharandas Swami, and other sadhus and devotees performed the rituals in Robbinsville.
    After this unique event, Mahant Swami’s vicharan continued in North America for another 99 days.
    Swamishri performs the foundation stone-laying rituals of Robbinsville mandir in Mumbai | Thursday, October 6
    Mahant Swami performs foundation stone-laying rituals in Robbinsville
    Thursday, October 6 | Robbinsville, New Jersey
    Viewing a model of the shikharbaddha mandir | Los Angeles, California
    Addressing youths | Atlanta, Georgia
    Waving a BAPS flag after the Tulsi Tulā Mahotsav | Saturday, November 12 | LA, California
  • 2013
    Wednesday, March 6, 2013 | Mahā vad 9, Samvat 2069
    Due to old age and failing health, Pramukh Swami Maharaj had been unable to meet devotees personally and offer his divine guidance. Therefore, while in Ahmedabad, Pramukh Swami Maharaj wrote a letter directing all sadhus and devotees to meet Pujya Mahant Swami for guidance on all of their personal matters.
    To all sadhus and devotees of BAPS Sanstha
    You are all aware that for some time now my health has not remained well and so I have been unable to meet everyone in person. Therefore, from now on, all sadhus and devotees should meet Pujya Mahant Swami for guidance on their personal matters and questions, to obtain solutions.
    Jai Swaminarayan with blessings from
    Shastri Narayanswarupdas
    March 6, 2013
    Wednesday
    After writing the letter, Pramukh Swami Maharaj blesses Mahant Swami as he shares his letter with the global Satsang community | Wednesday, March 13 | Ahmedabad, Gujarat
    June 26–July 15 | North America Vicharan
    From July 4 to July 14, Mahant Swami blessed the Bal-Balika, Kishore-Kishori and Yuvak-Yuvati National Conventions in Atlanta, Georgia. Over the course of these conventions, a total of 8,200 delegates explored the theme ‘Ekantik’ by learning about the life of Pramukh Swami Maharaj.
    Mahant Swami lights the inauguration lamp
    Mahant Swami inaugurates a small book of quotations
    Mahant Swami blesses the youths
    Mahant Swami addresses sadhus present during the convention
    Mahant Swami, swamis and youths watch the shibir program
    Mahant Swami intently views an exhibit
    An inspirational message written by Mahant Swami
    Mahant Swami delivering a discourse during the National Convention
  • 2014
    July 21–September 23 | North America Vicharan
    During his 65-day vicharan, Mahant Swami installed the murtis for five mandirs in North America – Seattle, Scarborough, Kansas City, South Boston, and Washington D.C. Additional highlights included the Shikharbaddha Mandir Dashābdi (10th Anniversary) Celebrations in Houston and Chicago.
    Furthermore, on Friday, July 11, to the complete surprise and tremendous joy of the North American Satsang Mandal, Mahant Swami announced through a letter that Pramukh Swami Maharaj would be blessing the Akshardham site in Robbinsville, New Jersey, with his presence. Pramukh Swami Maharaj arrived on Tuesday, August 5 and during his 13-day visit, he performed the murti-pratishthā ceremony of the shikharbaddha mandir and the Akshardham Bhumital Pujan rituals.
    Performs the murti-pratishthā rituals of the BAPS hari mandir | Thursday, August 21 | Seattle, Washington
    Murti-pratishthā rituals | Saturday, September 6 | Kansas City, Kansas
    Mandir Dashābdi Celebrations | Saturday, August 2 | Chicago, Illinois
    Mahant Swami garlands Pramukh Swami Maharaj | BAPS Mandir, Robbinsville
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj interacts with Mahant Swami and Ishwarcharan Swami | Robbinsville
    Akshardham Bhumital Pujan | Friday, August 15 | Robbinsville, New Jersey
  • 2015
    March 21–June 20 | Asia-Pacific Vicharan
    With the blessings of Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Mahant Swami and a group of sadhus visited the Asia-Pacific region. The highlights of the satsang vicharan were the mandir inaugurations in Adelaide, Australia, and Rotorua, New Zealand.
    Thursday, April 16 | Sydney, Australia
    Performing the murti-pratishtha rituals | Sunday, April 12 | Adelaide
    Performing the murti-pratishtha rituals | Saturday, May 2 | Rotorua, New Zealand
    Thursday, April 16 | Sydney
    Sunday, April 5 | Perth
    Sunday, April 17 | Sydney
    August 22–23 London Mandir 20th Anniversary
    The 20th anniversary of the London mandir was joyously celebrated in the presence of Mahant Swami, Ishwarcharandas Swami, Atmaswarupdas Swami and other sadhus on Saturday, August 22 and on Sunday, August 23.
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj lights the 20th anniversary celebration assembly inauguration lamp in Sarangpur, while Mahant Swami and Ishwarcharan Swami light the lamp in London
    Mahant Swami blesses the 20th anniversary celebration assembly
  • 2016
    Saturday, August 13 | Shrāvan sud 10, Samvat 2072, Sarangpur
    At 6:00 p.m., in Sarangpur, Pramukh Swami Maharaj left his physical body and returned to Akshardham. Pujya Swayamprakashdas Swami (Doctor Swami) announced that four years previously, on Friday, July 20, 2012, Pramukh Swami Maharaj had written a letter that Param Pujya Mahant Swami Maharaj would succeed him as the Guru and President of BAPS.
     
    Swami Shriji
    Shri Akshar Purushottam Mandir
    Shahibaug, Ahmedabad
    July 20, 2012
    Shrāvan sud 1, 2068
    Friday
    I would like to inform all the sadhus and householder devotees of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha, established by Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj Swamishri Yagnapurushdasji, that I appoint with happiness and joy, and in my fullest conscious state, Pujya Mahant Swami, Sadhu Keshavjivandas (Guru Jnanjivandas), as the President of BAPS, that is, as the guru, after my physical departure.
    Jai Swaminarayan from
    Shastri Narayanswarupdas
    Guru Yagnapurushdasji
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s Cremation Rites | Wednesday, August 17 (Shrāvan sud 14, Samvat 2072) | Sarangpur, Gujarat
    Friday, August 19 | Sarangpur, Gujarat
    Offering obeisances at the memorial shrine of Pramukh Swami Maharaj | Thursday, September 22 | Sarangpur, Gujarat
    Saturday, October 15 Āso sud 14 (Sharad Punam), Samvat 2072 Asthipushpa Visarjan and Dikshā Ceremony, Gondal
    After performing his morning puja on the banks of the Gondali River in Gondal, Mahant Swami Maharaj gave the pārshadi dikshā to two sādhaks for the first time. Thereafter, along with senior sadhus, he performed the Asthipushpa Visarjan of Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s sacred ashes into the Gondali River.
    Mahant Swami Maharaj reads the Shikshapatri during his morning puja
    Mahant Swami Maharaj blesses the newly initiated pārshads
    Mahant Swami Maharaj and Doctor Swami disperse the sacred ashes of Pramukh Swami Maharaj in the River Gondali
    Swami-Shriji | Param Pujya Pramukh Swami
     
    The Sacred Akshar Deri, Gondal
    30.10.16, Sunday
    To All Santos, Kāryakars and Devotees – Young and Old,
    A gift for Diwali and the New Year,
    Jai Swaminarayan with deep love from Sadhu Keshavjivandas.
    Through the tireless efforts of santo and kāryakars, you are all spreading satsang; of this there is no doubt. Congratulations to you all.
    Now, to develop satsang even more and strengthen one’s own satsang, unity is very necessary. For this, one thing must be understood. That is, what we can do individually for unity is important. Do not have any expectations from others. If they support, that’s fine, but we have to maintain unity. How should we think to increase unity? What should we say to increase unity? And have a dislike for whatever lacks in unity.
    In fact, to what extent did Pramukh Swami Maharaj emphasize this? He said, “Even at the expense to oneself, samp must be maintained.” And Yogi Bapa, even in times of severe financial difficulties, said, ‘I do not want money, but I want unity.’ These mahapurushes have lived by example. [Bhagwan Swaminarayan] has said that one who has friendship with devotees is very dear to him.
    For this, observing dharma and niyams is the main requirement. Without observance of dharma and niyams, unity will definitely break. There will be conflict, and no joy. If niyams are observed, there is no need to tell anyone anything; unity greatly flourishes. If someone is lax in observing niyams, others should support and help him. But do not speak about his faults.
    Keep these two – unity and niyam-dharma. Then, Shriji Swami and our Gunatit Gurus will be extremely pleased.
    Jai Shri Swaminarayan.
    Performing the annakut ārti in Akshar Deri
    Mahant Swami Maharaj offering thāl to Shri Harikrishna Maharaj
    November 27–December 7 Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th Birthday Celebrations and Dikshā Ceremony, Surat
    The 10-day celebrations of Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th birthday were held in Surat. The festival grounds featured a full scale mandir replica and eight enlightening exhibitions based on the life, work, and teachings of Pramukh Swami Maharaj. During this festival, Mahant Swami Maharaj gave bhāgwati dikshā for the first time to 44 sadhus.
    Mahant Swami Maharaj performs ārti of Thakorji and murti of Pramukh Swami Maharaj on the celebration grounds
    Mahant Swami Maharaj blesses the newly initiated swamis | December 5, 2016
  • 2017
    Sunday, February 19 Mahā vad 8, Samvat 2073 Shikharbaddha Mandir Pratishthā, Pune, Maharashtra
    After becoming guru, Mahant Swami Maharaj performs first shikharbaddha mandir pratishthā.
    Mahant Swami Maharaj performs murti-pratishthā rituals
    Mahant Swami Maharaj with Shri Harikrishna Maharaj on the mandir podium | February 20, 2017
    Monday, March 13 Fāgan vad 1, Samvat 2073 Pushpadolotsav, Sarangpur, Gujarat
    Lake Victoria | Tuesday, April 4 | Mwanza, Tanzania
    Wednesday, April 5 | Kampala, Uganda
    Sunday, March 26 | Lenasia, South Africa
    Mahant Swami Maharaj being welcomed at the BAPS Mandir by Masais performing a traditional dance | Friday, March 17 | Nairobi, Kenya
    Welcomed at the Swaminarayan Mandir | Thursday, June 15 | Neasden, London
    Mahant Swami Maharaj with Thakorji on the River Thames, London
    Dispersing the sacred ashes of Pramukh Swami Maharaj
    Pramukh Swami Maharaj had visited London 19 times between 1970 and 2007, creating and opening the Neasden mandir, the first traditional Hindu mandir outside of India. After becoming the spiritual leader, Mahant Swami Maharaj visited London for the first time on June 15, 2017. On Sunday, June 18, Mahant Swami Maharaj dispersed the sacred ashes of Pramukh Swami Maharaj into the River Thames. The River Thames had also been sanctified by Yogiji Maharaj in 1970 after he bathed the murti of Shri Harikrishna Maharaj in the river following the Islington mandir inauguration.
    June 21–September 21 | North America Vicharan
    For the first time as the President and Guru of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, Mahant Swami Maharaj traveled to North America. During his North America vicharan he visited Atlanta, Chicago, Toronto, San Jose, Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas, Robbinsville and Edison.
    Friday, June 23 | Atlanta, Georgia
    With Thakorji during the 10th anniversary mandir celebration | Tuesday, June 27 | Atlanta, Georgia
    Sunday, June 25 | Atlanta, Georgia
    First Guru Purnima celebration as Guru | Sunday, July 9 | Chicago, Illinois
    Thursday, July 27 | Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
    Thursday, July 27 | Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
    Tuesday, August 1 | Los Angeles, California
    Sunday, August 13 | Houston, Texas
    Thursday, August 24 | Robbinsville, New Jersey
    97th Birthday Celebrations of Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj | Monday, November 27 | Anand, India
  • 2018
    Yogiji Maharaj Smruti Mandir Murti-Pratishtha Mahotsav | Sunday, January 21 | Gondal, India
    Re-Inauguration of Shri Akshar Deri | Monday, January 22 | Gondal, India
    Shri Akshar Deri Sardh Shatabdi Mahotsav | Monday, January 22 | Gondal, India
    February 3–April16 | Asia Pacific Vicharan
    Swamishri engrosed in darshan at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Sunday, February 4 | Singapore
    Swamishri performs pratishtha arti of murtis of BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Hamilton | Monday, February 19 | Auckland, New Zealand
    Swamishri performs the Swaminarayan Jayanti Celebration arti | Sunday, March 25 | Sydney, Australia
    Swamishri, senior sadhus and dignitaries on stage |Monday, April 9 | Bangkok, Thailand
    Traditional welcome for Swamishri | Thursday, April 12 | Hong Kong, China
    98th Birthday Celebration of Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj | Saturday, December 15 | Rajkot, India
  • 2019
    Sunday, February 10, Mahā sud 5, Samvat 2075 Shikharbaddha Mandir Pratishthā, Dhule, Maharashtra
    Mahant Swami Maharaj performs shikharbaddha mandir pratishthā.
    Swamishri, senior sadhus and devotees during the yagna | Saturday, February 9 | Dhule, India
    Swamishri performs the murti-pratishtha rituals| Sunday, February 10 | Dhule, India
    BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Sunday, February 10 | Dhule, India
    April 18–29 | UAE Vicharan
    HE Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Al Nahyan escorts Swamishri towards the airport terminal | Thursday, April 18 | Dubai, UAE
    BAPS Hindu Mandir Foundation Stone-Laying Ceremony | Saturday, April 20 | Abu Dhabi, UAE
    Mahant Swami Maharaj Visits the Grand Mosque with HE Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan | Sunday, April 21 | Abu Dhabi, UAE
    August 8–October 7 | Africa Vicharan
    Divyam Karayakar Shibir | Sunday, August 11 | Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
    BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Thursday, August 29 | Kampala, Uganda
    HH Mahant Swami Maharaj's 86 Birthday Celebration | Friday, September 13 | Johannesburg, South Africa
    BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Wednesday, September 25 | Nairobi, Kenya
    98th Birthday Celebration of Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj | Wednesday, December 4 | Mumbai, India
  • 2020
    Thursday, January 30 Mahā sud 5, Samvat 2076 Shikharbaddha Mandir Pratishthā, Navsari, India
    Mahant Swami Maharaj performs shikharbaddha mandir pratishthā.
    Nagar yatra in the mandir grounds | Tuesday, January 28 | Navsari, India
    Swamishri performs the murti-pratishtha rituals | Friday, January 30| Navsari, India
    BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir | Friday, January 30| Navsari, India

 


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