This is the fifth part of Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s detailed biography, covering the period from 1983 to 1986.
Swamishri’s focus was now firmly on the 59-day Bicentenary Celebrations of Aksharbrahma Gunatitanand Swami scheduled at the end 1985. However, Swamishri’s heart attack in early 1983 plunged the worldwide satsang community into deep shock and concern, and abruptly stalled his hectic vicharan. Timely treatment and rest aided Swamishri’s recovery, after which doctors advised that his schedule be revised to ensure a regular, more relaxed routine. However, for Swamishri, visiting the devotees in their villages, towns and cities and preparing for the Bicentenary was real relaxation. Rejuvenated, his vicharan continued unabated and with even greater vigour. He never let his health limit the extent or intensity of his work. The year ended with the murti-pratishtha of the new shikharbaddha mandir in Mumbai.
In 1984, Swamishri completed a gruelling eight-month overseas satsang tour to the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, East Africa, South Africa, Australia and other countries to promote the Bicentenary. One of the many highlights of this vicharan was Swamishri’s cordial meeting with His Holiness Pope John Paul II at The Vatican.
In 1985, Swamishri visited the UAE, Oman and Bahrain and was honoured in a devotional Suvarna Tula during the 33-day Cultural Festival of India in London. From October to December, the Bicentenary Celebrations of Aksharbrahma Gunatitanand Swami took place in Ahmedabad.
After his heart attack Swamishri’s workload was unrelenting. Always full of energy and enthusiasm and constantly encouraging and engaging others, Swamishri never reduced or restricted his itinerary. His timetable was physically demanding and mentally taxing, yet due to his innate spirituality, devotion to Bhagwan Swaminarayan and genuine affection for the devotees, he was always relaxed and ready to render service in ways ordinary mortals could not even imagine. His positivity and dedication to duty amid health and other challenges provide truly exemplary lessons on how to tackle and triumph over any trials life throws up.
The book also features a selection of photographs that add to the reading experience and 35 specially edited videos of Swamishri during this period can be accessed online through the QR codes printed in the book.