Nishkulanand Swami

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Nishkulanand Swami (1766–1848) was a saint of the Swaminarayan Sampraday and one of Swaminarayan's paramhansas.[1][2]


Nishkulanand Swami was born on 15 January 1766 to a Suthar family residing in a small village called Shekhpat, near Jamnagar in present-day Gujarat, India.[3] His parents were Rambhai and Amritbai and was named Lalji on birth.[4] He grew up to be an expert at carpentry.[1]

He became a follower of Swaminarayan after the passing away of his Guru-preceptor Ramanand Swami.[5]

It is said that when Swaminarayan wished to leave this world, he informed Nishkulanand Swami 3 days in advance and asked to prepare a palanquin for his bier. Nishkulanand Swami prepared it during night only. When he left the human body, all the other saints asked him to prepare a palanquin. He said, "It is ready" and brought it. Everyone asked him, "When he was alive, how did you prepare it?" He replied, "I am a heavy hearted obedient servant. Any damn or any hard order may be, I must obey it."[6]

He helped in the building of Dholera Temple as a good sculptor. In Vadtal, he built a 12 door Hindola. He was a strong renunciate and known for his intense vairagya, or detachment from worldly objects and relationships. His poetic creations displayed this intense sense of detachment. He authored NishkulanandKavya, a book that is famous within the sampraday. He also knew about music, as he was a renowned poet a wrote numerous poems. He kept on writing scriptures until his death. He died in VS 1904 in Dholera.

In Swaminarayan Hinduism, Nishkulanand Swami is regarded as an ideal example of vairagya, or non-attachment to worldly objects. His name implies this "Nishkul" meaning one who is devoid of family (maya)[5] He died at the age of 82 while residing in Dholera.[7]


Nishkulanand Swami composed a scripture named Bhaktachintamani, which describes the life of Swaminarayan along with his sermons and his activities.[8] He has also composed twenty two other scriptures on various subjects (Purshottam Prakash, Yamdanda, Dhirajakhyan, Chosathpadi, among others) which are compiled as Nishkulanand Kavya.[1][7] He was also a poet and composed many kirtans, or devotional songs.[9]

The swing with the twelve doors in the Vadtal Temple and the carved wooden doors in the inner temple of the Dholera Temple are a few of his works of art. In Gadhpur he used to display his artistic skills during Diwali celebrations by presenting decorative plants and trees adorned with kindling lights and lighted canopy to cover the seat of Swaminarayan.[10]

23 Granths of Nishkulanand Swami

1. Bhaktichintamani

22 Granths are from Nishkulanand Kavya

1. Vachanvidhi

This Scripture has Fifty Two (52) Stanzas and Thirteen (13) Verses.

Vachan means commandments of the Lord and Vidhi means testament.

One can attain closeness to Purushottam Narayan through various devotional practices. Dharma (Righteous Codes of Conducts) is an important aspect of these practices. Dharma refers to the commandments of the Lord that are followed by His devotees leading them on the righteous path.

The Vachan Vidhi Scripture covers four main aspects:

  1. The merits of abiding by the righteous codes of conducts
  2. The demerits of non-abidance of the above
  3. Ways of strengthening one's will-power in abiding by these conducts
  4. Shunning those who blaspheme these conducts

Sadguru Nishkulanand Swami has described these simple terms and with effective examples.

2. Bhaktinidhi

3. Dhirajakhyan

4. Hraday Prakash

5. Manganjan

6. Hari vicharan

7. Hari Smruti

8. Pursotamprakash

9. Lagna Shakunavali

10. Vruti Vivah

11. Kalyan Nirnay

12. Shiksapatri Padhyarupa

13. Pusp Chintamani

14. Avtar Chintamani

15. Chinh Chintamani

16. Sneh Geeta

17. Haribal Geeta

18. Yam Dand

19. Arjivinay

20. Sarsidhi

21. Gun Grahak

22. Chosath Padi


  1. ^ a b c Sujit Mukherjee (1998), A Dictionary of Indian Literature: Beginnings-1850, Orient Blackswan, ISBN 81-250-1453-5, retrieved May 7, 2009 Page 265
  2. ^ Williams 2001, pp. 189
  3. ^ Sadhu Ishwarcharandas (2009). Satsang Reader Part III. Ahmedabad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith. p. 37. ISBN 81-7526-293-1.
  4. ^ Sadhu Ishwarcharandas (2009). Satsang Reader Part III. Ahmedabad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith. pp. 37–38. ISBN 81-7526-293-1.
  5. ^ a b "Vairagyamurti Shri Nishkulanand Swami". Shree Swaminarayan Gurukul Rajkot. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  6. ^ Nishkulanand Swami - An ideal non-attachment, archived from the original on October 7, 2007
  7. ^ a b Sadhu Ishwarcharandas (2009). Satsang Reader Part III. Ahmedabad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith. p. 47. ISBN 81-7526-293-1.
  8. ^ Deshpande, Arvind (1997). Western India: History, Society, and Culture. Itihas Shikshak Mahamandal. p. 47.
  9. ^ Sadhu Ishwarcharandas (2009). Satsang Reader Part III. Ahmedabad: Swaminarayan Aksharpith. pp. 47–49. ISBN 81-7526-293-1.
  10. ^ "Nishkulanand Swami". Shree NarNarayan Dev Gadi. Retrieved 22 May 2013.