Saturday, July 19, 2008


Holding discourse on Geeta

An event associated with his childhood is still alive in the minds of the villagers of Devka. At the age of 13 years when Bhaishri was studying in standard seven, he collected friends of his age to organize a seven-day discourse on the Geeta on an amateurish scale. They collected donations of one rupee each to meet the expenses. A large tent was set up and invitation cards were distributed in person. Bhaishri still has a copy of this invite. Offerings of all kinds e.g., water, flower, prasadam, etc. were brought. To organize the whole program, committees were set up headed by one or two boys. A Vyaspeeth, which basically is a throne on which, normally a saint would sit to deliver his teachings, was installed to accommodate the preacher. Bhaishri would then take the Vyaspeeth preach the teachings of Geeta to the children. On the first day, the importance of Geeta was stressed and rest of the six days the eighteen chapters of the Geeta were completed in two sessions each day. In the beginning the village folk thought that this was just another childish prank and would get over no sooner it started, but to their dismay they observed that day by day numbers kept rising and the elders also started participating in the event. The discourses were extremely popular and included singing of bhajans and chanting of ‘mantras’.

Bhaishri was admitted to a Sanskrit school named Tatvajyoti in a nearby town called Rajula. During the very first year of his education in the school he exhibited signs of what he is today. The family culture, devotion of his grandmother and the environment in which he resided contributed to his disciplined, dedicated and devotional upbringing, which has made his life so divine and exemplary.

Thereafter he was admitted to a school in a town called Dungar for a short period. Here he completed standard nine and then came to Bombay, secured admission in the tenth standard and stayed in Bombay with his mother and father. After completing school he took commerce at college. It is noteworthy that during his entire span of academic activity he always stood first in his class. Never allowing any spare time for himself he was continuously engaged in studying Bhagwat, Ramayana, the Holy Geeta and several other religious texts. At other times he would sit quietly to meditate and engross himself in thoughts arising from the teachings of these texts and also from what he heard from the various saints that he kept interacting with.

Bhaishri grew into a smart young man, with radiance on his face, observant, attentive and intelligent. Nature endowed him with a melodious voice and a clear reverberating speech. He developed a unique style of oration, which held the listener’s attention and left him enchanted. His singing added to his personality, keeping listeners enthralled. His very presence emanated a glow suffused with spirituality, making a person feel so much a part of him, unmindful of his own identity.

Universal in appeal Bhaishri is accessible to just anybody. Time knows no limits with him and when one meets him, one feels he has all the time for them in the world. Logical in his presentation, he issues no commandments, says so little yet means so much. His messages are inspiring and thought provoking, helping people to transform radically into better human beings.

Bhaishri has now become synonymous with youthfulness and his scholastic aptitude, in depth thinking and pious life has given a tremendous boost to his personality akin to a fresh blooming rose in a divine garden. A true representative of Indian sainthood, he has the blessings of "Maa Saraswati" the Goddess of learning. Impressed by his intellect and spiritual awareness, saints from far and near conferred upon him various titles like ‘BhagwatAcharya’, ‘BhagwatBhushan’, ‘BhagwatRatna’. Despite his prodigious achievements Bhaishri is totally unassuming. He revels in simplicity and wholly detached from the trappings of luxury or self-glorification. This is the reason why he accepted to be called just "Bhaiji" or "Bhaishri" and nothing more than that.

Spiritual Development

From his early childhood, Bhaishri’s father inculcated in him the habit to recite Bhagwat Geeta daily. He thus developed a very special love for Geeta and this one book alone is the major driving force in his life. Bhaishri’s Uncle Shri Jeevraj Bhai Oza was himself a reciter of the Bhagwat katha. During his vacations after Std. seven Bhaishri would go to his uncle’s place to stay and travel along with him wherever he went to recite the Bhagwat. He gained considerable experience and confidence from accompanying him, coupled with his own study he was able to conduct discourses on Geeta right from his childhood at the age of a mere 13 years.

It was at the behest of his uncle that he was admitted to the Sanskrit school, which initiated him into the realm of spirituality. During his college days he used to attend the daily pravachans by his uncle, held in Borivali locality of Mumbai and on several occasions his uncle used to pass on the cord to him to do the pravachan. During such discourses there were recitations from the Mahabharat, Ramayana, Shivpuran, Bhagwat etc; he used to pick up the recitation from wherever his uncle left. In the evenings Bhaishri used to hold pravachans in the college at some place or the other and his fellow students would sit in front of him to listen to him ever so intently.

Destined to transform the lives of mankind Bhaishri’s interest started veering away at a tangent from his college studies. Initially he had decided to select science as his subject, planning to become a doctor but landed up in commerce to become a Chartered Accountant. By the time he reached the final year of his graduation academics appeared dry and uninteresting. The ‘adhyatmic sanskaras’ of childhood blossomed and his interest in Kathas caught on, taking him still closer to the Almighty Lord.

The first katha outside Bombay took place in a town called Mandvi in Kutch, a district in the state of Gujarat. In the beginning he started with 5-6 kathas a year and by the time he completed his graduation he became totally occupied, also because of the pravachans which kept taking place alongside with his uncle.

Now there was no stopping him. As Bhaishri followed in the footsteps of his Uncle who was also reciting the Bhagwat himself, he took to recitation of Bhagwat as his main subject. The underlying fact remains that while studying the Geeta, Bhaishri developed a very special attachment to Lord Krishna, which made him choose his path through Bhagwat.

Due to Bhaishri’s very special style of presentation and blessed by the nature with a beautiful musical voice, every body and anybody who listened to him got energised by the impact of his select verbosity and resonant voice, singing simultaneously with great feeling. The entire environment appeared so pure and serene that the listener could easily assimilate whatever was said. His in depth knowledge blossomed forth during the recitation of the kathas overwhelming the listener with his vast knowledge. The flow of well selected spiritual words held the listener in a trance, transporting him into a world of unalloyed joy and happiness.

Enlightenment of the general public became the focal point of his life. To achieve this he found Bhagwat, a very effective medium and also to develop feelings of love and devotion in the devotees towards the Almighty.

Many a time Bhagwat is recited in the house of a family after the death of an elderly family member so as to sanctify the departed soul. In fact what actually transpires is that the young ones get to hear the recitation of the Bhagwat and through this medium, prepare themselves to step confidently into the mainstream of life without the protective umbrella of the elderly who remain no more. It prepares them in stepping into the shoes of their departed elder and from then on to lead their life with responsibility and to hold the reigns of the family.

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