History of Holy Pādukā-s

On the 28th of February 1977, a group of nine of us from BeṅgaĪūru (group photo at the end of this article) representing CYMA – Chitrāpur Young Men’s Association – a volunteer body in BeṅgaĪūru, initiated and blessed by HH Parijn͂ānāshram Swāmījī III, reached Ṛshikesh after a long journey. 



On the 28th of February 1977, a group of nine of us from Bangalore (group photo at the end of this article) representing CYMA – Chitrapur Young Men’s Association – a volunteer body in Bangalore, initiated and blessed by PP Parijnanashrama Swamiji, reached Rishikesh after a long journey. The purpose of our visit was to pray to HH Parijnanashrama Swamiji III to kindly reconsider His decision to renounce the Mathadhipatya. At the end of our brief stay of two days in the holy city, even though we were abundantly blessed by being in the Divine Presence of Beloved Swamiji, our actual mission had not been accomplished.
Envisaging this contingency, we had taken with us from Bangalore, a Shawl to be presented to Poojya Swamiji, a blow up of Swamiji’s photograph to be brought back with His autograph, and a set of new Padukas to be brought back as Prasadik after getting them blessed by Swamiji. In the morning of 1st of March – coincidentally Poojya Parijnanashrama Swamiji’s Ordination Day – the Shawl was draped on Him by Durganand Mullerpatan. Then, the ever compassionate Swamiji placed His autograph on the photograph we had taken... and also blessed the Padukas by keeping His Lotus Feet on them.

We left Rishikesh early on 2nd March bringing with us the sacred Padukas to Bangalore. On Ugadi day, 20th March 1977, CYMA organised an Utsav with the Photograph and the Padukas. The palki was taken in a grand procession from Canara Union to Shri Chitrapur Math. The Padukas were then kept in the custody of Vidyanand & Durganand Mullerpatan (two of the nine devotees from our group and office bearers of CYMA), at their residence. (Sometime at a later date, when Durganand casually asked Swamiji where the Padukas should be kept eventually, He had spontaneously replied that naturally, they should be kept in the Math!).
Many of the devotees in Bangalore, especially the members of CYMA, started taking the Padukas to their homes for worship on special occasions like Satyanarayana Vrata and Saptahas. So much so, that for four or five years after Swamiji attained Maha Samadhi in August 1991, a group of devotees from Talmakiwadi, Mumbai used to take the Padukas all the way from Bangalore for Datta Jayanti celebrations. At all other times, the Padukas remained with the Mullerpatan brothers and they regularly offered the daily Pooja with great fervour.
In January 1998, when the office bearers of CYMA met Parama Poojya Sadyojata Shankarashrama Swamiji, they apprised Swamiji of these sacred Padukas. Poojya Swamiji then expressed His wish to have them in His possession for worship. CYMA members were only too happy to offer them to Swamiji. On the auspicious day of Sankranti, 15th January 1998, the Padukas were handed over to Poojya Swamiji at the Pavitra Sthana of the Samadhi of our Adi Guru, Shrimat Parijnanashrama I – Bhandikeri Math, Gokarn.

Now, after nearly 31 years, these very Padukas will be taken first to Karla, and after a ceremonial Pooja there, will be taken with the Guru Jyoti to Gokarn via Goa. In the final lap of the journey, the Padukas will be carried with pomp and pageantry from Bhandikeri Math, Gokarn to Shri Chitrapur Math, Shirali, a distance of 90+ kilometres. The Padukas will be escorted by the devotees on foot, led by Parama Poojya Sadyojata Shankarashrama Swamiji, to the accompaniment of Jaijaikars, Bhajans and Namasankeertan.

This stupendous journey on foot between Gokarn and Shirali, termed Guru Jyoti Pada Yatra, a pet vision of our Poojya Swamiji, has been meticulously planned out by Lt. Gen. Prakash Gokarn and his team. This will be the inaugural event, and the most important function of the Tercentenary celebrations of our Math and the Guru Parampara.
The padayatra will commence from Shri Bhandikeri Math, Gokarn at 07:00 Hrs. on Wednesday, 13th February 2008 and will culminate at Shirali in the morning of Friday, 15th February 2008. The Dindi (in Varkari style), will make halts at designated places for rest and refreshments.
The Holy Padukas will then be installed (pratishtha) in their rightful place, a Sannidhi created specially for THEM in our Math at Shirali – a truly befitting homage to His Guru, by the 11th Guru in our illustrious Guru Parampara.


(On Ashadha Ekadashi – 26th July 2007, Divgi Jayashri pachi of Pune handed over to Poojya Swamiji at Karla, the Prasadik Padukas of Poojya Parijnanashrama Swamiji given to her by Swami Parijnanashrama soon after giving her the Mantra Deeksha in the year 1972. She had been worshipping these ever since. When Poojya Sadyojata Shankarashrama Swamiji expressed His pleasure at this magnanimous gesture of hers, Jayashri pachi simply said that it was quite commonplace for devotees to offer fruits and flowers to the Guru, but she considered it her extreme good fortune to be in a position to offer this veritable treasure to her Guru.These Padukas were reverentially accepted by Poojya Swamiji and have now been placed among Swamiji’s personal deities for His Upasana ).

Sitting (l to r): Baindur Krishnarao, Vinay Kallianpur, Vidyanand & Durganand Mullerpatan
Standing (l to r): Bhalchandra Naimpally, Gourang Kodical, Vasant Bijur, Gurunandan Kallianpur, Maruthi Naimpally and Raghavendra (Appu) Hattangady – PA to H H

** Both photographs (of Charans/Padukas & the group) by Vidyanand Mullerpatan in Hrishikesh **