Trouble For Bhagatji's Sadhus
Bhagatji’s spiritual tours comforted innumerable devotees in Gujarat. Motilalbhai of Pij used to chant bhajans incessantly. Once Maharaj appeared in his dreams and said, “I manifest in Satsang through Pragji Bhakta.” He was overjoyed by this darshan. He wrote letters to each and every town about this revelation. Thus, the glory of Bhagatji spread. Certain jealous sadhus could not tolerate this. They managed to get Bhagatji’s disciple-sadhus excommunicated from the Satsang.
Vignandasji, Yagnapurushdasji and many other sadhus arrived at Mahuva during their tour of Gujarat. At first Bhagatji remained indifferent to them, but then he made arrangements for their stay at the Gopnath mandir. He scolded them for glorifying him. The sadhus used to visit the Swaminarayan mandir in turn and seek Bhagatji’s company. By Bhagatji’s grace Yagnapurushdasji and Purani Keshavprasad were permitted to stay with him in the mandir. This gave the sadhus an opportunity to serve Bhagatji throughout the day.
Many devotees came to the mandir to listen to the religious discourses. Once, in the mandir at Mahuva, Yagnapurushdasji told the assembly of devotees and sadhus from Gadhada, citing the Vachanamrut, that Bhagatji was the Param Ekantik Sadhu and described his glory.
One of the devotees, Vitthalbhai, asked, “How did you come to know about these divine qualities of Bhagatji?” Yagnapurushdasji replied, “He belongs to your town and you know him better. Tell me from your experience whether he is a righteous man or not?”
Vitthalbhai replied, “There isn’t a more righteous man than Bhagatji in the entire town. Although he sews clothes for women of Nagar, Bania and other communities, he never entertains any kind of unholy ideas in his mind. On the contrary, he wins them over to the Swaminarayan fold by explaining to them the divine greatness of Bhagwan Swaminarayan.” The sadhus from Gadhada endorsed his views and observed, “We, too, are purified by his company. So, how can there be any impurity in him?”
Yagnapurushdasji said further, “Bhagatji is a gnani too. The entire Satsang declares with one voice that there is nobody as gnani as Bhagatji. Since, whether he is praised or abused, he remains unruffled by any insults. Again, all the principles described in the Vachanamrut have been attained by him under the divine guidance of Gunatitanand Swami. Therefore, we can say that Bhagatji is a gnani in the truest sense of the term.
“His asceticism is also unique. He is a householder, yet he remains above attachments. Whenever he receives any message from Acharya Maharaj he leaves home immediately. He harbours no worries. If Acharya Maharaj commanded him to renounce, he would renounce this very moment. We have talked about him. But those who seek his company also become detached and overcome all desires. Otherwise, how is it that devotees run to him from distant places, forgetting all their domestic chores and concerns?”
Yagnapurushdasji talked about Bhagatji’s great qualities of dharma, gnan and vairagya and said to the gathering, “Now, you tell me, whether or not he has faith in Shriji Maharaj.” Thus he asked the assembly to testify to Bhagatji’s qualities of an ekantik bhakta.
Vitthalbhai said again, “Bhagatji is a man of firm determination. Even when he was thrown out of Satsang, he continuously worshipped Maharaj. He sat at the mandir gate and sought darshan of sadhus and devotees. He pleased all with his humility. His discourses have helped many people attain true nishchay in Maharaj, so there is no doubt about his supreme nishchay in Shriji Maharaj. He believes Maharaj as the all-doer and nobody else affects him.’’
On hearing this, Yagnapurushdasji said, “In this way we can manifestly see all the four qualities of dharma, gnan, vairagya and bhakti in Bhagatji. And Shriji Maharaj, as depicted in Vachanamrut, eternally dwells in him. This is the reason we follow him wherever he goes.”
Then, some of the sadhus went to Gujarat as instructed by Bhagatji.
During a festival at Vartal, it was decided by influential sadhus to make Bhagatji’s sadhus wear white robes. But the followers of Bhagatji did not agree to their proposal. So the sadhus had to work for Satsang from outside and they all returned to Mahuva.