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The Bicentennial Anniversary of
Bhagwan Swaminarayan's Advent in Loj, Gujarat.

( A.S.1856-2056, C.E. 1799-1999 )


Swaminarayan Mantra
A few days after Ramanand Swami's departure, Sahajanand Swami introduced the 'Swaminarayan' mantra. When followers chanted it they experienced samadhi. As cited earlier, samadhi resulted only after mastering Ashtang Yoga. Yet through His grace, people entered samadhi, in which they experienced divine bliss and the vision of the deity they worshipped. Henceforth He came to be known as Swaminarayan.

The essence of His teachings emphasized worshipping the Lord Purushottam by transcending the three bodies (gross, subtle and causal) and identifying one's Atma with Brahman (Aksharbrahman) (Shikshapatri 116). This would lead to moksha - ultimate salvation. He further stipulated that the manifest form of Aksharbrahman, also known as the God-realised sadhu, was the gateway to moksha and God-realization (Gadhada I.54), echoing the injunction of the Shrimad Bhagvatam(3/29/20). For this the devotee needed to develop profound love for such a sadhu (Vadtal 11). Finally, Bhagwan Swaminarayan promised to remain manifest on earth forever, through the lineage of Gunatit gurus. After His departure on Jeth Sud 10, Samvat 1886 (1st June 1830), He manifested through Gunatitanand Swami, His first spiritual successor.

Little did the villagers of Loj realise that Neelkanth's silent footsteps in the early hours of Shravan Vad 6, Samvat 1856, heralded a scintillating overture in the spiritual realm of Bharatvarsha. Striding forth to the four corners of the world in only two centuries, His lotus-feet would transform the unassuming village into a sacred venue for pilgrims.

Source References:

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Bacon, Lieut. Thomas. First Impressions of Hindostan. Vol.I. London:   W.H.Allen & Co., 1837, pp.305, 306, 309.
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Mukundcharandas, Sadhu. Handbook to the Vachanamrutam. Amdavad:   Swaminarayan Aksharpith, 1999, p.xiii, Bhakti renaissance.
Mukundcharandas, Sadhu. Bhagwan Swaminarayan (An Introduction).   Amdavad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith, 2nd ed., 1999, pp. 4-16.
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Shri Swaminarayan's Vachanamritam. Amdavad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith,   3rd. ed., 1992, Vadtal 16, Kariyani 5.
Varma, Rommel & Sadhana. The Himalaya-Kailasa-Manasarovar.   Switzerland: Lotus Books, 1985.
Viharilalji, Maharaj Acharya. Shri Harililamrutam. Amdavad:   Swaminarayan   Aksharpith, 1997, (4/3/41-42).
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© 1999, Bochasanwasi Shree Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha, Swaminarayan Aksharpith