The last phase (Shrimad Rajchandra's Dehotsarg Divas)
During late 1900 when Shrimad came to Ahmedabad with his mother and wife and stayed in Ägäkhän
building, the monks (Lallujiswämi and Devkaranji) had been there. Shrimad had the manuscript copies of
Digambar books 'Jnänärnav' and 'Swämi Kärtikeyänuprekshä'. They were offered to the monks at the
hands of his mother Devbä and wife Zabakbä. Meanwhile Dr. Pränjivandäs Mehtä came to see him. Shrimad
said to him, "These two monks, Lalluji and Devkaranji, are like those of the fourth era."
Shrimad said to Devkaranji, "I have publicly given up wife and wealth. It seems that the mother will give
permission for total renouncement." Devkaranji responded, "It should be the rise of our fortune that we
will get the benefit of your uninterrupted contact." The next day Shrimad sent for both the monks again
and while giving the final instructions he said, "Do not see any difference between us and the detached
Thereafter Shrimad went to Surendranagar. There he said to Lallubhäi and Naginbhäi, "Whether we meet
again or not, whether there be contact or not, keep faith in us intact. There is no distinction between us
and Lord Mahävir; if there be any, that relates only to this shirt." From Surendranagar he went to Rajkot.
There his younger brother Mansukhbhäi, Rewäshankarbhäi, Dr. Pränjivandäs, Mansukhbhäi of Limdi and
others remained at his service till the end. Mansukhbhäi has narrated Shrimad's last condition as under.
"I feel unhappy that I could not remain vigilant till the end. That pious soul had indirectly suggested, but
I could not make it out by virtue of my attachment. Now I can recall that he had given several indications
to me. The ignorant, blinded and dumb as I was, I was not able to understand his words.
"On the eve of departure he had said, 'don't worry, this soul is eternal, it is surely going to attain the very
high state; stay at ease and unperturbed. This is not the time for the words of enlightenment, which were
to be presented through this body.' But… we did not become cautious. We remained under the impression
that he was suffering from weakness. At 2.30 A.M. while he was in the grip of acute cold, he said not to worry
and that he was to leave in quietude. The impact of cold was reduced by resorting to certain means.
"Next morning we gave some milk at 7.45 A.M. His mind, speech and body had remained in perfect order.
At 8.45 A.M. he said, `Mansukh, do not feel unhappy; take care of the mother; I am now getting absorbed
in the true nature.' So saying he asked me to move him to a coach from the bed that he had been in since
7.30 A.M. As he was very weak, I thought that I should not make that change. Thereupon he commanded
me to move him immediately.
"I therefore made necessary arrangements on the coach so that he could quietly lie upon it; that body and
the pious soul departed on that coach in total tranquility. There were no signs of soul having left the body.
The brightness on the face continued to increase as the vitality of life went down. The very state, in which
his pictures were taken at Surendranagar, continued to prevail for five hours on the coach. Nothing like
urination, excretion, deformities, tears, perspiration etc. occurred from 7.45 A.M. to 2.00 P.M. when the
soul left. Normally he had to go for toilet one hour after taking milk; that also did not happen. Everything
remained in control like a key-winded machine. The pious soul left the body in tranquility. "
Navalbhäi, who was present at the time of Shrimad's departure, has written in a letter to Ambälälbhäi, "The
image of Shrimad at the time of departure was unique, full of consciousness, peaceful, fascinating and
worth looking at continually. Not only did it seem so to us, who are the admirers of his attributes; but
others, who were present there, also felt it surprising, and it raised a sense of worshipfulness in their minds.
It is not possible to express the feeling which arose within by the wonderful scene of that time."
The soul of Shrimad Rajchandra left the mortal body as well as this world on April 9 1901 at 2.00 P.M. and
attained a high state. The people felt that loss in proportion to their acquaintance with him. His wife spent
her time in loneliness while chanting the Mantra given to her. She also left shortly afterwards. His mother
was delicate at heart. Tears used to flow from her eyes when someone talked to her about Shrimad. Similarly
his loss was unbearable to every spiritual aspirant. Ambälälbhäi has presented that as under:
"In a vast barren area there may be a single tree that might be providing shade and coolness. There the
birds may be playfully living in peace, pleasure and happiness. How much miserable would they feel, if that
tree is set ablaze? Can they have peace even for a moment? Alas! Even the great poets are unable to
describe that misery. Oh Lord! Where did you go leaving behind such a misery for the low-laid people in
this dense forest of worldly life? Oh sacred land of Bhärat, could you not bear the weight of the Lord, who,
while being embodied, was prevailing transcendentally? If you did not bear, you should have ridden the load
of this low-laid person, who has been rendered unnecessarily burdensome on the earth!
"Oh highly terrible Time, did you not have any trace of mercy! You have taken the toll of millions during
the famine of 1900 and still you are not satisfied! If you are not yet satiated, you should have first taken
the prey of this body. Why did you cause the lasting separation from the calm and tranquil Lord? You could
have used your mercilessness and harshness towards me! Why are you laughing at me!
"Oh goddess in charge of the religious order, how did your strength evaporate in face of the Time? The
graceful Guru was a leader in serving the cause of religious order. You were offering obeisance to him with
mind, words and body, and were remaining at his service. What type of happiness were you involved in
so that you could not think of what this wicked Time was up to?
"Lord, where can we now lodge our complaints in your absence? Who else is going to be compassionate
to us? Lord, how much do I remember your attributes of supreme grace, infinite compassion, delicate
heart, capability to win over the hearts of others, acute detachment, unique enlightenment, illustrious right
knowledge, right perception and right conduct, benevolent approach, unfathomable peace, innate
compassion, selfless teaching, unprecedented communion etc.? The learned poets and mighty kings are
unable to appropriately adore your virtues. Recalling your superb attributes, I bow at your feet with body,
mind and spirit. Let your vigor, your words and your instructions protect me forever. Your separation has
left me with chanting of your memory, which I am never going to forsake. Sadness, Sadness, Sadness!
Nothing else occurs to me. I have been spending day and night while crying; I do not make out anything."
Below are the extracts from a life sketch of Shrimad published by the reputed paper 'Pioneer' of Allähäbäd.
"After spending 10 years in the business Shrimad felt that the purpose for which he had started the business
has been fulfilled. Hence he expressed his desire to retire from the same. After getting knowledge, wealth,
status and family (He had left behind father, mother, wife, one brother, four sisters, one son and two
daughters.) he was preparing to renounce the worldly life and adopt the life of a monk. But at the age of
32 his health took an adverse turn. He was kept under the treatment of expert physicians and it once
seemed that he would recover. But the disease relapsed and in spite of the expert treatment and care of
his admirers he stayed bedridden for a year and left peacefully on April 9 1901 at Rajkot in Sauräshtra.
"During his long illness he has never sighed or shown the anxiety. Even when those by his bedside were
feeling sad, he remained cheerful.
"The above life sketch is enough to show that Shrimad was a man of noteworthy characteristics in every
respect. His mental capabilities were amazingly miraculous and the progress in his moral character was
surprising. His regard for truth, minutely following the moral principles in business, determination to resort
to what he considered right in face of the opposition and high level of idealism inspired those, who came
in his contact and led them to a higher level. His outward appearance was not awe-inspiring, but his
tranquility and serenity were unique. By virtue of his wide and accurate knowledge of religion and
philosophy, his amazing explaining capacity and extraordinary way of teaching, he was listened to very
attentively. Even in face of excitement his self-control was so high, his impartial presentation powers so
great, and his presence so inspiring that those, who came to discuss with him in a defiant and combative
frame of mind, returned quite humiliated and full of admiration.
"Shrimad Rajchandra deplored the present condition of India, and was always solicitous for its amelioration.
His views on the social and political questions of the day were liberal... Among all the agencies for reform,
he assigned the highest place to the religious reformer working with the purest of motives and without
ostentation. ... In his later years it was clear that he was preparing to fulfill his life mission in that capacity.
But unfortunately death intervened and that mission remained unfulfilled. Shrimad had, however, succeeded
in creating a new spirit among the Jains in the Bombay Presidency.
"It is generally believed that had he lived long, he would have revolutionized the whole system of the present
Jain religion, and would have taught the people what the Great Mahavir had naturally taught. He wanted
to do away with the numerous sects of Jain religion in order to establish one common religion founded by
Mahavir. That such an eventful life should have been cut short at his premature age was a distinct loss to