Bhagatji Maharaj 20 March — 7 November , born as Pragji Bhakta,   was a householder devotee in the Swaminarayan Sampradaya , a Hindu denomination. Through his discourses he was instrumental in propagating the belief that Swaminarayan was Purushottam , the Supreme Being, and that his own guru, Gunatitanand Swami , was Akshar , the divine abode of God. Pragji Bhakta was born on 20 March in the small, bucolic town of Mahuva into a family of tailors. His father was Govindbhai Darji his mother was Malubai Darji. He would often indulge in childish pranks like selling an ornamental portion of his mother's sari, on one occasion, to feed a group of swamis, that were evidence of his spirited good nature.
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A rare soul who always lived for others and at the same time remained totally absorbed in God. A peaceful, humble, simple and spiritual personality — this is Pramukh Swami Maharaj.
His childhood name was Shantilal. And true to his name, peace was the introduction to his personality. From his childhood, his inclination was to perform spiritual austerities in the Himalayas. After completing his initial studies at the age of 18, he renounced the world and was initiated by Shastriji Maharaj in , and renamed Narayanswarupdas Swami.
His striking humility, noble services, saintliness and selfless desire to help all, won him the love of everyone. Shastriji Maharaj passed away in , declaring Yogiji Maharaj as his spiritual successor. Thereafter, Pramukh Swami served under the guidance and blessings of Yogiji Maharaj. In , he became the spiritual successor of Brahmaswarup Yogiji Maharaj and his life has continued to be an inspiration to countless people, guiding them all to lead a spiritual life.
Out of his compassion for humanity, he has tirelessly visited over 17, villages, towns and cities. In addition to the renowned Swaminarayan Akshardham complexes in New Delhi and Gandhinagar, he has gifted the world with over 1, mandirs. These mandirs and cultural complexes have become hallmarks in preserving culture and performing social services.
Remaining aloof from caste or creed, his borderless love has touched the lives of many, whether young or old, literate or illiterate, and rich or poor.
As the spiritual leader of a worldwide socio-spiritual organization, BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, his selfless love and effort have directed the energies of youths to serve as volunteers. His selfless work has been applauded by revered spiritual luminaries, national leaders and other dignitaries. Innumerable aspirants have experienced peace and the bliss of God in his presence.
Many aspirants have reached the highest spiritual state, and today, many others continue to tread this path.
HIS HOLINESS PRAMUKH SWAMI MAHARAJ