Jagadguru Shree Kripalu Ji Maharaj
The Personification of Divine Love and Grace
Eternally liberated Divine personalities sometimes descend upon the earth for the welfare of humankind. Jagadguru Shree Kripalu ji Maharaj is such a Divine personality. “Shree Maharajji”, as he is lovingly called by his devotees, was born on the auspicious night of Sharad Poornima in 1922, in the village Mangarh, near Allahabad.
Childhood and youth
Jagadguru Shree Kripalu ji Maharaj spent his childhood in youthful fun, playing games and frolicking with his young friends. But at the same time, he would display intense gravity and excel effortlessly in his studies. Then at the age of fourteen, he left the village and attended three Universities, in Kashi, Chitrakoot and Indore. There he covered a whole series of courses in the space of just two-and-a-half years.
Absorption in Divine Bliss
At the young age of sixteen, Shree Kripalu ji Maharaj suddenly gave up his studies and entered the dense forests of Chitrakoot. There he spent his time absorbed in intense of love for Radha Krishna. Often he would lose all external consciousness, and go without eating and drinking for many days at a stretch. For long intervals, he would remain in mahabhav, the highest stage of devotion that manifests in Radha Rani. The very same manifestation of mahabhav love was last seen in Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, about 500 years ago.
He emerged from the forest after two years to begin his mission of revealing the glories of Radha Krishna devotion to the world.
He then started conducting ‘satsangs’ that brought about a revolution of Bhakti or devotion in the states of UP and Rajasthan in the 1940s and 50s. He would lead kirtans imbued with intense devotion, which would continue throughout the night. These kirtans, which he wrote himself, have been compared by scholars with those of Meerabai, Soordas, Tulsidas, and Ras Khan.
Shree Maharajji’s Divine kirtans have secured a place for themselves in the hearts of sincere devotees across the globe.
After accepting the title of Jagadguru, Kripalu ji Maharaj traveled throughout the country for fourteen years. He would deliver month-long discourses in each city, in which he would unravel the mysteries of the scriptures before tens of thousands of people, who would throng the venue for a glimpse of this extraordinary scholar and Saint whose words left them spellbound. Shree Maharajji’s lectures tantalize the masses with humor, worldly examples, practical instructions and playful chastisement, much to the delight of the crowd. It was a unique experience as he made the deepest scriptural truths accessible to everyone in the simplest language.
As a cut runs deep, his penetrative words have such Divine power that even an atheist’s heart can melt when Shree Maharajji describes the nature of the ultimate and Absolute Truth.
Jagadguru Shree Kripalu ji Maharaj has written thousands of inspiring verses revealing the Divine pastimes of Radha Krishna. His style of writing is unique in the entire history of saints: First, he begins the chanting of a pada or kirtan, and as the kirtan progresses, he keeps adding lines to it, bringing it to a consummate close. In glorification of Shree Radha Krishna Devotion, he has named one of his principal creations as “Prem Ras Madira”, or “Divine Love Intoxicant”. A literal (verbatim) translation of the name of one of the greatest treasures of a devotee is a naïve and futile attempt. One is lost for words to describe the intensity and greatness of the pads and kirtans written by Shree Maharajji. It is only by singing the inebriating kirtans that we can get a glimpse of the unfathomable Divine love that pours out from the heart of a true devotee of Shree Radha Krishna.
The kirtans conducted by Shree Kripalu ji maharaj are famous the world over for the fervent intensity of devotion that they create in the minds and hearts of the sincere follower, forever binding him or her to the path of God-realization. Whenever Shree Maharajji graces the prayer and Sadhana hall, the kirtans reach a feverish pitch as the lord’s innumerable names and pastimes are sung in unison by ecstatic voices across the floor. It is a sight to behold and participate in these highly charged kirtans that mesmerize even the most phlegmatic of people, drawing them ever closer to the Shree Radha Krishna.
It is Shree Maharajji’s vision that every soul should get a chance to practice Bhakti or devotion in its simplest form, so that the soul may attain its true goal of God-realization. In order to help people around the world in their quest towards this goal, Shree Maharajji began training devotee preachers and sending them to different parts of the globe. He also created a formal organization and began the construction of huge ashrams, to provide facilities for devotees who wished to practically apply the teachings in their lives. This organization is today known as the Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat.Every soul seeking divine love & bhakti realizes the indefinite grace of Shree Kripalu ji maharaj.