The Greatness of Nar-Narayan Dev
The names of 24 Avatars of Bhagwan, including Nar-Narayan Dev (the first human avatar) are mentioned in many Hindu and Sikh scriptures (Sri Dasam Granth Sahib).
Nar-Narayan Dev has immense divine qualities and powers, making him the perfect human being. The path to Akshardham and attaining Athyathik Kalyan can only be achieved by bowing and submitting oneself to the very feet of Nar-Narayan Dev. This is the reason Shri Swaminarayan Bhagwan chose to build the first Mandir and install the murti of Nar-Narayan Dev in Ahemdabad, India. We should remember the following commandment (Agna):
"I will keep Nar-Narayan Dev by force in the murti and tie him with a rope in the form of love. So, please keep faith that the murti on paper is truly Nar-Narayan Dev. Knowing this, never leave a murti without having performed puja in the morning, after bathing, you should perform puja of bhagwan. Then, you should attend to your daily duties. As long as you follow the panch vartman, and perform puja of Nar-Narayan Dev, He will remain in this murti. This is my agna, which you all should believe with firm faith" (Vachnamrut, Gadhada Pratham 48)
"It is my wish that all Haribhaktas receive a murti of Nar-Narayan Dev printed on paper for you to perform puja. This puja is accepted by all shastras. (Vachnamrut, Gadhada Pratham 28)
Just like a dog is obedient, submissive and loyal to his master for the rest of his life, we should have the same loyalty and love to Bhagwan to be considered as Nar-Narayan Dev nau Wafada. Loyalty and love for Nar-Narayan Dev can develop and grow in many ways (from your actions and thoughts) including:
- Be a good human being by showing your good qualities and eradicating the bad qualities
- Be close and involved in activities with those close to Nar-Narayan Dev
I was once asked by a friend:
"Who is your Ishtadev?"
I replied, "Nar-Narayan Dev"
He looked at me with a quizzical expression and said, "I thought Swaminarayan Bhagwan was your Ishtadev?" "He is…as is Nar-Narayan Dev", I replied.
I explained, there is absolutely no difference between Shri Swaminarayan Bhagwan and Nar-Narayan Dev…they are the same!
"…that same Shree Krishna Bhagwan took birth as Shree Nar-Narayan from Dharma and Bhakti. Therefore, realising this Shree Nar-Narayan to by my svarup, I have installed his murti for the first time here in Shree Nagar. Therefore no one should perceive even the slightest difference between Shree Nar-Narayan and myself. It is he who is the dweller of Akshardham.” (Vachnamrut, Ahmedabad 6)
The qualities, power and energy that radiate from Nar-Narayan Dev are also present in his chosen representative and son here on earth, His Holiness Acharya Shri Koshlendraprasadji Maharaj, Bhavi Acharya Shri Vrajendendraprasadji Maharaj and His Holiness Nivrut Acharya Tejendraprasadji Maharaj.
"Mate sau dharmkul manjo, sau karjo eni sev
Anya jan jeva eh nahi, eh che janjo mota dev ||1||
Ek Brahmin jano bhakt ati, vari kave amaru kul
Ene sevta sau jann tamo, pamsho such atur ||2||
anvanchit vaat malshe, vari sevta ena charan
Eh che amari agna, sarve kaalma such karan ||3||
Mann karm vachane manjo, ema nathi sanshay laghaar
Eh dvare mare anekno, aaj karvo che udhaar" ||4||
(Nishkulanand Kavya, Purshottam Prakash Prakaan 40)
They have the power to burn all our paaps and re-write our karmas built up over millions of previous births, turn stone into living flesh and guide us directly to the path of Salvation (Moksha).
All this is possible because of the greatness of Nar-Narayan Dev.