Bhakta was fearless from his very child hood.
Once his father went to the farm leaving him asleep. After a while,
he woke up and found his father's bed empty. It was midnight.
He thought of going to the farm. He took a stick in his hand and
went alone to the farm at midnight, chanting the name of Swaminarayan.
Having seen him arrive alone on such a dark night, his father
asked him : "Weren't you afraid of coming here alone at such
a late hour, my dear?" There was a common belief that the
road to the farm was haunted by ghosts
Dungar Bhakta replied in his simple and innocent language: "Haven't
you told me, father, that Maharaj accompanies him who walks chanting
the name "Swaminarayan,
Swaminarayan," and protects him? I have thus brought Maharaj
me. If the ghost had accosted me I would have
driven him away with this stick." Dhoribhai was greatly pleased
to hear such brave words from his son.
By now Dungar Bhakta had cultivated a habit of listening to religious
stories. He could not find himself at ease without listening to
them. When his father would ask him to prepare bundles of tobacco
leaves in the field, he would make a precondition : "I shall
make the bundles if you tell me the story of the Lord." Thus,
he found pleasure in nothing but the Lord.
When he was seven, he made it a point to go to Vadtal on every
full-moon day. There he would approach the sadhus individually
on their asanas (seats), listen to their discourses and enhance
his jnana (knowledge) and vairagya (sense of detachment). He had
to be searched for to be taken home. He did not like to returnhome.
He would pick up the pages of the scriptures discarded as waste
by the scribes in Vadtal, sit down on the verandah of the temple
in the posture of some learned shastri and read out from them.
He had not even started his schooling as yet, but such conduct
on his part predicted that he would be an erudite scholar in future.