Bhagawaan Ji After 1968
by Shri S. N. Fotedar
with a Saint or even a mere touch or a single glance from him can transform a
man and make him Divine. His heart is full of universal compassion and he works
ceaselessly for redeeming suffering souls from ignorance. He guides them to a
life of joy, freedom and immortality. The Saint is verily God in flesh and
During the present century
one such saint of exalted dimensions was Bhagawaan Gopinath Ji of Kashmir, who
graced not only the sacred soil of Kashmir where he was born and lived
(1898-1968) but also played his part in the spiritual upliftment of India,
though he had never moved out of Kashmir in his physical body.
The people of Kashmir had
the good sense to realize this in his life time, they gave him the name
Bhagawaan while he was still in his earthly existance, a unique phenomenon
indeed. Such is a rare saint for whom a monument is raised and relics enshrined.
In his Ashram at Kharyar, Srinagar, where his marble statue has been installed,
regular Aarti is held everyday. His Mahanirvana and Jayanti festivals are
observed every year, where a Yagnya performed on the former occasion and a Sadhu
Bhandar and prayers are offered on the latter. A Trust (Regd) has been organised
for maintenance of the institution and other activities for spreading of
Bhagawaan Ji's message of universal love and brotherhood. The aim is to awaken a
higher level of consciousness amongest the masses. This is styled as "Bhagawaan
Consciousness" by his Australian devotees. Attempt is made to develop this
consciousness for the betterment of the whole world.
Since it is not possible
to give an exhaustive picture of Bhagawaan Ji's life, sadhna and his other
manifold activities in a small article, I shall confine myself to give a brief
sketch of his life.
Bhagawaan Gopinath Ji was
born in 1898 A.D. at Bana Mohalla, Srinagar. His revered father Pandit Narayan
Joo Bhan was a Pushmina Merchant and a man of liberal mind, Bhagawaan Ji's pious
mother Smt. Har-Mali was the daughter of Pandit Prassad Joo Parimu, a mystice
saint popularly known as "Zad-Bharata". In a vision at Khir Bhawani
the Divine Mother had told him that she would be taking birth in his house and
thus the blessed girl (Haramal) was born, who later got Bhagawaan Ji in her lap.
On account of strained family circumstances, Bhagawaan Ji had a very troubled
time in his early days. He had to give up his studies after passing the middle
He had studied Sanskrit,
Persian and other languages but all along he was detached, attending to 'Raslilas'
and other Bajan Mandalis and also visiting saints usually. He would sip at all
cups but drain none.
From his early boyhood he
had started going to Sharika Bhagawati Shrine at Hari Parvat, Srinagar. It
became routine for him to circum-ambulate the hill every day. When his age was
about 25 years he was blessed with Darshan of Sharika Bhagwati. He did not rest
at that but aspired for attaining perfection. He girded up his loins and plunged
himself headlong into intense sadhana for exploring all the aspects of the
Divine Reality and gaining mastery over Tattwas, with no hold barred and with
scant attention to his body welfare. This process was the same as Swami Ram
Krishna Parmahansa had adopted after having Sakshatkar of Maha-Kali. For some
time he continued to live with mundane affairs which gradually waned off and
later he took no interest in such matters whatsoever.
The most crucial period of
his Sadhana, a do-or-die effort, was while he was residing at Rangteng in
Srinagar (1929-36). He lay stretched on a bed all the 24 hours of a day,
absorbed in the Supreme with a small wick lamp kept lighted. He would sometimes
fast for months together and sometimes take large quantities of food at a time.
His body got swollen. He at times spit large quantities of blood. A rat had
bored a hole in one of his heels and he did not seem to be conscious of it. On
occasions he would eat handfuls of Datura and other lethal intoxicants. The
Sadhana continued for about 7 years after which he emerged a radiant soul but
with a battered body. His 'Chelum smoking' continued to be his constant
companion from an early age to the day he gave up his mortal coil.
Questioned why he was
fasting so often he said, "that he was taking tons of energy through his
puffs (smoking) and food was not necessary. "
After this Sadhana of 7
years, came to be recognized as a great saint and he began his saintly mission
of improving the lot of humanity and alleying the distress of people who called
on him for succour and hope. He even started helping sadhus and other people
monetarily and the practice continued till the end of his days in this physical
After attainment of
perfection he had, in pursuit of his mission, to contend with opposing immical
forces which, left to themselves would have harmed our country. He had to exert
a lot, to keep these forces in check. On some occasions, you would find him like
Aghura with flaming eyes rivetted upwards, parched and foaming lips, fasting,
refusing to take water even but addressing some invisible forces. To what extent
he was successful in taming those forces is known to all. One wonders at his
unrelenting efforts, his determination of not yielding to dark forces, for a
number of years with scant attention to his Physical comforts. Such a great
saint, with such endurance is really a God and Bhagawaan Ji displayed this.
He seemed always in tune
with the infinite and used to come down from a higher plane of consciousness in
response to requests and appeals made by devotees and that too for a few moments
only. He started the practice of giving Ahutes, after the year 1936 in the first
instance into his fire pot (Kangdi) and later into an Iron Sekdi and then
offerings in Dhuni continued till the end.
Saints do not live in
their outer actions. It is not possible to speak of the inner Sadhana of
Bhagawaan Ji which is a closed book. It is possible however, to give an account
of his Sadhana as seen by common people in diverse fields and disciplines.
It is apparent that few
saints like Bhagawaan Ji emerged from the sacred soil of Kashmir during the last
three or four centuries or so, became so active in their spiritual realms. They
either seem to be spent up or have gone to higher unfathemable realms and we
have to depend solely on the divine protection of the Spiritual colossus
Bhagawaan Gopinath Ji, not only for succor but also for effectively combating
the satanic forces, bound on destruction of our culture and personality.
I smell and visualise that
the decade of nineties will be a period of great test for the lovers of
Bhagawaan Ji. They have to strengthen the spiritual exercise, be engrossed in
Bhagawaan Ji's worship through bajans, meditation, offerings. Dark clouds are
roaming but have to vanish. Bhagwaan Ji is active in the subtle plane we have to
develop the attitude to present ourself before Him. All the Ashramities have to
undergo strenous Sadhana to get in tune with Bhagawaan Consciousness. I have
faith in Pran Nath Ji to hold the internal front and Chrungoo Sahib for the
external, because the swallon ranks of devotees need guidance.
presence is not doubtful. Saints are heelers, masters and Spiritual guides. They
seek disciples and hunt for them so that the chord is framed between masters and
aspirants Gurus and Shishyas. He knew his sphere.
One day Bhagawaan Ji had
to face for a photograph and some close associates wanted to be included, but he
disallowed that. There was some annoyance. Next day Bhagawaan Ji very patiently
explained, "This photograph has to go to far far corners, that is why I
wanted it to be so". Today when thirteen years have passed we have been
seeing that Bhagawaan Ji's photograph has reached every home. It is placed in
Pooja rooms and Ashrams, that are coming up. The aura of spiritual and mental
shelter has spread so wide and far that Bhagawaan Ji's "Parivar" has
passed all the geographical boundaries. Devotees have taken him to Australia,
New Zealand, Japan and other parts of India. Bhagawaan Ji has been in gracious
for those who need Him and for those whom he needs.
In 1975, Justice S.N.
Katju a Sadhaka practising shakti worship was in a difficult and there was some
conflict in his mind about his sadhana. Bhagawaan Ji appeared in a vision to him
and said, "Your Gurdeva and I are one, and you have now been put under my
care for carrying out the mission of the masters, What you are doing under the
guidance of Papaji was all chalked out by me and your Gurdeva together".
Katju said, he spoke in Kashmiri, what I needed. Then he slowly faded out of my
vision and I opened my eyes; How keen Bhagawaan;Ji is for spiritual seekers.
In Feb, 1975 Philip
Simpfendorfer an Australian Bhakta had come on Kashmir yatra with some friends.
He alongwith his friends had came to see the writer and his problem was about
the mission and message for him from Bhagawaan Ji. The writer said, "Mr
Philip, do you remember how Bhagawaan Ji accepted your request when your
daughter was to be married". "Yes every detail of that day", said
Philip, "It was Saturday when my daughter Helen was to marry Peter. From
Friday it started raining, I went into my room and prayed before Bhagawaan Ji,
asking to take care of happiness of the children, give sunshine for the outdoor
wedding function. The miracle happened clouds got rolled, bright sunshine
appeared till function was over and by evening again clouds came, but it did not
rain. I was happy how Bhagawaan Ji helps when, we are in complete
"Again, it was 15th
of Feb. 1978 while in full concentration and meditation I met him in a very
awakened state." He said, "For the guidance of humanity we seek people
in every land, strengthen their faith. They fight against the dark ocean of
destruction. We guided when there was no religion, we do not interfere with
religion. Well being of the world and spirituality of man is the goal".
"My Mission and goal was made clear", said Philip.