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Shrila Rajendra Das Swami

Madhya Pradesh – a state at the heart of India, wherein the proud village of "Acharra" or "Acharya gram" is situated in the Tikamgarh district of Bundelkhand region. For ages, Acharra has been home to acharyas & virtuous Vedic brahmins. In fact, the word acharra has colloquially evolved from the word "acharya" (a spiritual teacher, leader & mentor). Shri Maharaj Ji's ancestors belong to this same place.

The holy month of Bhaadrapad is purified by the appearance day of Shri Krishna. The fifth day of the waxing moon (Bhaadra Shukla panchami) of this month is also known as "Rishi Panchami". On this very day our beloved Shri Maharaj ji appeared in this world to gladden our hearts & bless our lives. Shri Maharaj Ji’s father Pt Shri Ramswaroop ji Pandey is a very virtuous, pious, erudite personality and a saintly devotee and used to do Sanskrit teaching & satsang discourses of Shri Ram – Krishna katha along with Shri Bhaktamal. Smt Brijlata devi is the mother of Shri Maharaj Ji. Shri Mahraj Ji's parents got Vaishnava initiation from the venerable Bhagavat of Shri Vrindavan, Anant Shri Vibhushit Shri Ganesh das ji "Bhaktamali" ji Maharaj. At the time of initiation Shri Mahraj Ji's mother was still pregnant with her second son. This very fortunate son is our dear, beloved master, friend, philosopher & guide – Anant Shri Vibhushit Shri Malook peethadhishwar Maharaj.

Param Sadgurudev Shri Bhaktmali ji had, in his childhood, escaped twice from his home for learning Sanskrit at Kashi, relinquishing the local school. Though he didn’t succeed in his initial endeavour, he managed to escape in his second attempt & walked all the way to Varanasi from his village, Kursi in the Naimish region (near Lucknow). Similarly, Shri Rajendra das ji adamantly relinquished his studies in his local school due to a specific incident and told his father "I shall not go for studies to that place again." This decision of his caused much worry in his family. But by the grace of Shri Hari, the arrival of Sadgurudev Shri Bhaktmali ji from Vrindavan ended the consternation. He quickly resolved it – "Let me to take him to Vrindavan for further study" said Maharaj. This ushering of the young Shri Rajendra das ji Maharaj for study to Vrindavan by a Ramanandi saint was the implicit mercy of Shri Ram-Krishna through Shri Sadgurudev.

Prior to leaving for Shri Vrindavan, during his stay in the village, Shri Maharaj ji was blessed with the purifying association of Pujyapad Shri Swami Sharananand ji Maharaj for nearly a year. Shri Swamiji was a disciple of Shankaracharya Jyotishpeethadhishwar Shri Bramhananda Saraswatiji Maharaj & junior God-brother to Shri Swami Karpatri ji Maharaj. Pujyapad Sharananand ji was firmly fixed in Sanyasa-dharma – completely detached from the attraction for money and women. He was venerated by all the saints of the age.

Sadgurudev Shri Bhakatmali ji Maharaj was in those days in Vrindavan, writing his great commentary on Shri Bhaktamal while living at Sudama kuti. There he initiated his newly surrendered disciple into the storied Vaishnava tradition, formally accepting him under his tutelage. He also initiated his formal Sanskrit-shastra eduction. The newly initiated disciple was now named Rajendra das. In time, Shri Bhaktamali ji Maharaj got him initiated into the renounced order at nearby Khak chowk from the great siddha saint – Yogiraj Shri Deva das ji Maharaj also known as "Shri Pahadi Baba".

The cultured Vaishnava student Shri Rajendradasji serially studied and obtained Masters degrees in Sanskrit Grammar, Vishishtadvait Vedant & Literature. On 8th January 2018, on Jagadguru Ramanandacharya Jayanti, Shri Tulasipithadhish Divyang University chancellor Pujyapad Jagadguru Shri Rambhadracharya ji Maharaj offered the honorary degree of D. Lit (Vidya vachaspati) to Shri Maharaj ji at the hands of Hon. President of India. All of this proved to be the visible fruit of Shri Maharaj ji's Guru nishtha (faith & service to Shri Guru).

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