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Monday, July 28, 2014

Universality of Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj (Original Article)

[An original Vrindavan Times article describing just some of the many aspects of the Universality of Jagadguru Kripalu and His teachings. The contents expressed herein are the opinion and experience of the author, an Irish Catholic]


Kripalum Vande Jagadgurum - All glories to supreme master Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj
Kripalum Vande Jagadgurum - All glories to supreme master Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj

July 28th 2014 - (The Vrindavan Times): As the Jagadguru, Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj revealed himself as the foremost Saint of all the religions, not only for the Hindus.

Muhammad Rūmī and Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj's teachings were the same
Muhammad Rūmī
In the line of Sufi Islamic Saints, his transcendental love poetry far surpassed that of even the great historical Sufi Islamic masters of Persia, Iran, India and Pakistan like Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī. As with Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj, Rumi's importance is considered to transcend national and ethnic borders. Iranians, Turks, Afghans, Tajiks, and other Central Asian Muslims as well as the Muslims of South Asia have greatly appreciated his spiritual legacy in the past seven centuries and he has been described as the "most popular poet in America" and the "best selling poet in the US".

In His Radha Govind Geet too, Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj has revealed some doha directly in Persian language, a language he had never studied.

Qawalli, mehfil in the courtyard of Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj

Grand, stately and lively mehfil sessions would be held daily in the courtyard of the Jagadguru, where Shree Maharaj ji would astound, entertain, amuse and inspire his devotees and guests with the most eloquent and potent spiritual poetic expositions ever uttered. The mehfil sessions originally took place outdoors in the old courtyard and were some of the most precious, nectar filled memories in the lives of many. Later, they were held inside the palace courtyard and also replicated wherever and whenever Shree Maharaj ji travelled.

It was a tradition in these sher-o-shayari sessions that guests would also recite their self-composed poetry to Shree Maharaj ji, a perfect opportunity to convey their true, inner feelings to the Lord. Often, Shree Maharaj ji and a devotee would engage in a playful tête-à-tête, each challenging the other in a poetic debate of love. On winning the debate, Shree Maharaj ji would give a sweet signal of victory in the form of shābāsh. During the mehfil sessions, a feast of sumptuous food, sweets and sweet chai was served to every guest.

Devotees would also sing heart-felt ghazals, thumri or old film songs which Maharaj ji would enjoy a lot. Maharaj ji would regularly tease the devotees’ singing style or make fun of the singer in some way. One foreign boy started singing “Ehsaan tera hoga mujh par…”, to which Maharaj ji interrupted (in Hindi) with a serious face, “What’s wrong? Did you not get enough to eat?” which made the assemblage and the singer burst out laughing. Other times, he would tell someone else to start singing while another person was in the middle of their song; encouraging each of them to sing louder and louder, to outdo the other one.

A sample of some of Shree Maharaj ji’s sher-o-shayari is given below:

Mere dil mein rehta hai, to phir kyon jalaata hai?
Aray dushman akal ke, Apna Bhi Koi Ghar Jalaata Hai?

Meri Aakhon Mein rehta hai, to phir kyon rulaata hai?
Aray dushman akal ke, apna bhi koi ghar dubaata hai?


You live in my heart, then why are you burning it in the fire of separation? Are you crazy? Does anyone burn their own house?
You live in my eyes, then why are you making me cry? Are your crazy? Does anyone drown their own house?

Teri tasveer mein tujhse bhi ek baat nirali hai.
Kitna bhi chiptao na shokhi hai.. Na gali hai


There is some thing special in your photo as compared to you.
However, and upto whatever extent I hug it.. It doesn't resist or blame.

He has adopted the qawwali style for many of his kirtan compositions, some of which are most beloved of many devotees. Sample below for illustrative purposes:

Ik nazar unko dekha gazab ho gaya,
hale dil ab to mera ajab ho gaya.

A devotee says, “I looked at Krishna once and a sweet, loving disaster happened. I lost my heart to Him with that glance. Now my heart and mind are acting very strangely.”

Deeno duniya ki daulat sanjoi thee jo,
lut gayi pal mein ya rab gazab ho gaya.

“One more strange thing has happened. The effects of whatever actions I performed and whatever worldly attachments I had all vanished in one moment.”

Tan gaya man gaya akla hairan hai,
darde dil badh raha hai gazab ho gaya.

“My brain is perplexed because my body and mind are no longer under my control. Another disaster is that the pain of my separation from Krishna is always increasing.”

Ve taras bhi na khaye mere hal par,
phir na aye dubara gazab ho gaya.

“But Krishna had no sympathy for my pitiable condition. He did not give me His vision a second time. This is like a calamity for me”.

Darde dil mein magar aisa paya maja,
ab kahenge ‘Kripalu’ gazab ho gaya.


Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj says in the words of a devotee, “In spite of all this, the pain of separation from Krishna is so sweet that now I will tell everyone about my condition and that something wonderfully unusual has happened to me.”

Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj explains the world religions

Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj would regularly quote Islamic Sufi Saints in his lectures, as well as give discourses on the real meaning of celebrations such as the real meaning of Eid. An excerpt is given below for illustrative purposes:

There are two types of Eid. One is idulphitar and the other is idul jaha. Idulphitar is what is celebrated in the month of ramadan. There is a story behind idul jaha. There was one paigambar (prophet) named Hazrat Ibrahim, like Prophet Mohammed. Haztrat Ibrahim was a great saint. Paigambar (prophet) means the saints who have been sent by God. God decided to test Ibrahim and so God sent a message to Ibrahim in his dream and said that now you leave your wife and son in a dessert where water will also not be available to them. Ibrahim took their wife and small child Ijrael to the dessert. But God serves those who completely surrender to him. Hence, God had made all the arrangements for the upbringing of the child.

Then again God came in Ibrahim’s dream and said that now you sacrifice your son to me by cutting his head and offering it to me. Then Ibrahim inquired about where his son is and found him. Ibrahim told his son that God has told me to sacrifice you, so will you follow my advice? His son said that if this is the wish of God then why wouldn’t I support it? So Ibrahim now prepared himself to cut the head of his son. Ibrahim covered his eyes with a cloth because if his eyes were open then he would not be able to cut the head of his own son. So Ibrahim covered his eyes and sacrificed and cut the head of his son. When Ibrahim opened his eyes he saw a sheep was there which had been sacrificed. God saved his child, and Ibrahim cleared the test of God.

This is the real meaning of Eid, to sacrifice yourself completely to God or in other words surrender yourself to God, but due to ignorance, people are doing violence and slaughtering sheep in the name of religion and naming it “Bakri Eid”.

The Real Significance of Eid is:

Idurjaha hai aaj Govind Radhey,
Dil ke gunaho se tauba kara de.
La illahi lilillaha Govind Radhe,
Mohamaddarsul allah dil me bitha de.

Revelations of Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj in English

Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj leads kirtan in Bhakti Bhavan, Mangarh
Jagadguru Kripalu Ji Maharaj leads kirtan in Bhakti
Bhavan, Mangarh
Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj also revealed a kirtan in English, such that even English-speakers may find a place in his world.

Once Shree Maharajji led singing of the following devotional lines in English and soon the entire Bhakti Bhavan resounded in singing of these sacred words:

Give me Divine Love,
My dear Krishna
Give me Divine Love,
O my dear Krishna
Take my life Krishna,
You are welcome.

Religion of Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj adoptable by all

Although thousands of people of all religions have adopted the philosophy of Shree Maharaj ji, yet no one has ever claimed, or thought of himself, as a convert. Shree Maharaj ji, having adopted many of the traditions such as qawwali, mehfil, sher-o-shayari and having reconciled various philosophies has shown a religion which is virtually indistinguishable from mystical Islam. Indeed, the mood of his philosophy is indistinguishable from the mystical streams of all the world religions as revealed by the original masters of those religions. Furthermore, anyone of any religion, or branch of a religion, can see their own religion in a perfected, more beautiful, more understandable, more practical and more relevant form. A Catholic may come across the religion of Shree Maharaj ji and see their own religion reframed in a new light, then adopt that religion. Yet, it never seems to anyone that they have adopted anything new; just a more perfected form of their original belief. Same for Muslims, Christians, Hindus etc.

What to speak of followers of the world religions, when even avowed atheists have found their truth in him. Acclaimed writer and Padma Vibhushan awardee Khushwant Singh once famously declared:

Of the two dozen men and women who appear regularly on TV channels to give discourses on spiritual matters I find what Kripaluji has to say makes more sense to a non-believer like me. All of them have the gift of the gab but he is more forthright, logical, lucid and gives chapter and verse of the sacred texts he quotes from…

In this way, Shree Maharaj ji became known for revealing the true path to God adoptable by anyone in the world. For this reason, he was awarded the title Nikhildarshansamanvayacharya by the Kashi Vidvat Parishat. There are literally thousands of lectures or devotional songs which reveal the Divine aspect of all the worlds’ holy days and celebrations of all religions. In his inimitable way, Shree Maharaj ji even revealed the following doha for Saint Patrick’s Day, a day in honour of the 5th-century Irish Catholic Saint (Green is the traditional colour of Ireland and associated with Saint Patrick):

आज संत पैट्रिक डे है गोविन्द राधे
इस दिल के मरुस्थल को प्रेम से हरा बना दे ।

Today is Saint Patrick’s Day.
Make the desert of my heart green with Divine Love.

Religion of Divine Love

To quote Rumi:

ملت عشق از همه دین‌ها جداست — عاشقان را ملت و مذهب خداست

The nation of Love has a different religion of all religions — For lovers, God alone is their religion.

Thus, the Religion of Love is the religion of Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj, which is the same Religion as the Master's of all the world religions. To this end, Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj has established the very embodiment of Divine Love, Prem Mandir, in Vrindavan.

Rumi and Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj revealed many universal Divine truths via their writings and poetry, but the glaring difference is that the reach of Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj's revelations were on a much larger scale, while also revealing the practical aspect of the spiritual path (sadhana) so that others could know exactly what to do, with no equivocation, follow the instructions, and reach the Divine.

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