Pandurang Shastri Athavale
|Pandurang Shastri Athavale|
Pandurang Shastri Athavale
19 October 1920|
Roha, Maharashtra, India
|Died||25 October 2003
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
|Other names||Dadaji |
|Occupation||Philosopher, Spiritual Teacher, Spiritual Leader|
|Parents||Vaijnath Shastri Athavale|
Pandurang Vaijnath Shastri Athavale(19 October 1920 – 25 October 2003), also known as Dada-ji, which literally translates as elder brother in Marathi, was an Indian philosopher, spiritual leader, social reformer and Hinduism reformist, who founded the Swadhyay Parivar and the Swadhyay Parivar organization (Swadhyay Family) in 1954, a self-knowledge movement based on the Bhagavad Gita, which has spread across nearly 100,000 villages in India, with over 5 million members. He was also noted for his discourses or "pravachans" on Srimad Bhagawad Gita and Upanishads.
He was awarded the Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion in 1997 and the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership and India's second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan in 1999.
When Athavale was twelve years old, his grandfather set up an independent course of study for the young boy with individual tuition. Thus, Athavale was taught in a system very similar to that of the Tapovan system of ancient India. In 1942, he started to give discourses at the Srimad Bhagavad Gita Pathshala, a centre set up by his father in 1926.
Athavale read diligently in the Royal Asiatic Library for 14 years, reading and digesting every non-fiction literature (ranging from Marx's philosophy to Whitehead's writings to ancient Indian philosophy). In 1954, he attended the Second World Philosophers Conference, held in Japan. There, Athavale presented the concepts of Vedic ideals and the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. All the participants deeply impressed by his ideas and wanted evidence of such ideals being put into practice in towns across India. A Dr. Arthur Compton was impressed with Athavale's ideas and offered him a post in the US, where he could spread his ideas. Athavale politely declined, saying that he had work to accomplish if he wanted to show the world a model community peacefully practicing and spreading the divine Vedic thoughts and the message of the Bhagavad Gita.Rev. Pandurangshastri Athavle in the top 10 most important person of India, which was declared by Indian gov in 2006.
Swadhyay Movement is a philosophy and the members of the Swadhyay Pariwar are called "Swadhyayees". Over the years, his followers (Swadhyayees), have taken his message of love for God and God's love for all to people across caste, social, and economic lines to about 100,000 Indian villages, and started various cooperative farming, fishing and tree-planting projects in the spirit of collective, divine work of the Lord. Their objective is taking the message of the universal Gita to every man. Today, Swadhyay has spread to numerous countries in the Caribbean, the Americas, Asia, Middle East and Africa. The divine parivar, or family, has extended to many millions. As Dadaji always dreamed of, Swadhyay is creating a "Universal brotherhood under the Divine Fatherhood of God."
Revered as an activist philosopher, Dadaji died on 25 October 2003, in at Khetwadi in south Mumbai, India. He was 83 years old at the time of his demise. He died of a heart attack. He was cremated on the evening of 26 October at Tatvagnyaan Vidyapeeth, Ghodbunder in Thane district, where around 10,000 people were present. Subsequently his ashes were immersed at Ujjain, Pushkar, Haridwar, Kurukshetra, Gaya, Jagannath Puri, and lastly at Rameswaram.
Tatvagnyaan Vidyapeeth is an institution in which Dadaji, himself, often gave discourses to the many youths those studied there. The youths study a broad variety of religious and spiritual subjects and live as they would have done in a "tapovan" thousands of years ago.
In popular culture
In 1991, noted film director, Shyam Benegal, directed a film, Antarnaad (The Inner Voice), based on the Swadhyay Movement of the Swadhyay Parivar, with Shabana Azmi and Kulbhushan Kharbanda in lead roles. In 2004, director, Abir Bazaz made a documentary, Swadhyaya, on the life and works of Pandurang Shastri Athavale.
- The Systems: The Way and the Work (Swadhyaya: The Unique Philosophy of Life), by Rev. Shri Pandurang Vaijnath Athavale Shastri (Rev. Dada). Vallabhdas J. Jhaveri, Bombay, 1992.
- Tributes paid to founder of Swadhyaya movement Times of India, 12 Nov 2003.
- Pandurang Shastri Athavale – Obituary
- Spiritualist from India is honored with religion's Templeton Prize The Seattle Times, 5 March 1997.
- Contemporary Hinduism: Ritual, Culture, and Practice, by Robin Rinehart. Published by ABC-CLIO, 2004. ISBN 1-57607-905-8. Page 375
- Year in Review – 2003 – Passages The Seattle Times, 29 December 2003.
- Indian Spiritualist Honored New York Times, 6 March 1997.
- Padma Vibhushan Official listings Govt. of India website.
- Biography Ramon Magsaysay Award website.
- Leader of Spiritual Movement Wins $1.2 Million Religion Prize New York Times, 6 March 1997.
- Social reformer Pandurang Shastri Athavale dead Rediff, 25 October 2003
- Pandurang Sahstri Athavale cremated Times of India, 26 October 2003.
- Self-respect as key to universal brotherhood The Hindu, 29 June 2006.
- Antarnaad at the Internet Movie Database
- A week-long festival of documentaries in New Delhi The Tribune, 5 September 2004.
- Documentary about Swadhyaya
- Dharma and Ecology of Hindu Communities: Sustenance and Sustainability, by Pankaj Jain. 2011; Ashgate, ISBN 978-1-4094-0591-7.
- Vital Connections: Self, Society, God : Perspectives on Swadhyaya, by Raj Krishan Srivastava. 1998; Weatherhill, ISBN 0-8348-0408-5.
- Self-Development and Social Transformations?: The Vision and Practice of the Self-Study Mobilization of Swadhyaya, by Ananta Kumar Giri. Lexington Books. 2008. ISBN 0-7391-1198-1.
- Role of the swadhyaya parivar in socioeconomic changes among the tribals of Khedasan: A case study, by Vimal P Shah. Gujarat Institute of Development Research, 1998. ISBN 81-85820-53-8.
- Swadhyay Movement Living Religions: An Encyclopaedia of the World's Faiths, by Mary Pat Fisher. Published by I.B.Tauris, 1996. ISBN 1-86064-148-2, Page 109.
- Swadhyaya: A Movement Experience in India – August 2003 Visions of Development: Faith-based Initiatives, by Wendy Tyndale. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2006. ISBN 0-7546-5623-3. Page 1.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Pandurang Shastri Athavale|
- The Official web portal of Pandurang Shastri Athavale : www.dadaji.net
- The Official web portal of the Swadhyay Parivar : www.swadhyay.org
- Ramon magsaysay site introduction of Pandurang Shastri Athavale
- Templeton award web-site referencing Pandurang Shastri Athavale's work
- An article by a well-known writer Suma Varughese
- By WAVENEY ANN MOORE, Times Staff Writer © St. Petersburg Times, published 29 June 2002
- In rural India, quiet introspection has outward effects By Chhavi Sachdev in Science & Theology News, July 2004