BANGALORE: Swamy Vivekananda has said that the greatest men in the world have passed away unknown. Silently they lived and silently they passed away.
Samarth Sadguru Shri Ganapapathrao Maharaj Kannur, is one such dedicated saint who is known to his thousands of disciples in Karnataka and Maharashtra. He left his mortal frame on 20th September, 2004 at the age of 95 years. He always believed in simple living and high thinking.
People belonging to all castes and creeds all walks of life, rich and poor uneducated and highly educated used to get of peace of mind in his company and his teachings. Even just a visit to his Shanti Kuteer Ashram and some time spent with him used to bring peace of mind to the visitors due to his calm serene and tranquil nature. He was a great thinker and mystic. His charming and affectionate looks pleasing speech purity and parity in thought and pinnacle of spiritual knowledge contributed to his great personality. According to him both mundane and spiritual life should be led simultaneously. One need not renounce the materialistic world and go to forests to reach the ultimate destination of realising the god. He by his own example had shown this to his disciples in particular and to the world in general. He was looking after his ancestral agricultural property and lived with his relatives. He has shown to the world that mundane life never came in the way of attaining the pinnacle of spiritual knowledge.
He was born at a village Kannur in Bijapur District on Ganesh Chaturthi in 1909 A.D. and that is why he was named as “Ganapati”. Since childhood he was inclined towards spirituality. At the age of thirteen he was initiated by Shri. Samarth Sadguru Siddharameshwar Maharaj, he along with his education he also pursued his spiritual practice. He graduated in Mathematics in 1932 from Ferguson College, Pune. He devoted his life by his vow of celibacy to the noble cause of uplifting a multitude of his disciples. He founded the hermitage Shanti Kuteer near his birth place Kannur, Bijapur district in Karnataka. In his Ashram he treated all his disciple equally and encouraged community life. Shri
Dattareya Temple was constructed to enable the continuation of Guru Shishya Parampara. People believe that Guruji is incarnation of Lord Dattaraya. As per wish, his samadhi temple was constructed by the side of Dattareya Temple. Shri Ganapatrao Maharaj started a spiritual quarterly “Shanti Kuteer Sandesh” in Kannada and Marathi. He has written nearly 100 books for spiritual guidance of his disciples. The book “Sulabha Atma Jnana” in Kannada is the crest of all his books. This book has been translated in to Marathi, Hindi and English.
Shri Ganapathrao Maharaj founded Bharateeya Surajya samstha in 1993 based on spiritual values and directed its activities even in his
declining age. Its activities included fight against social evils like corruption alcoholism etc, social service and propagation of devotion moral and ethical values in day to day life. One can achieve salvation through different path viz. Jnana, Bhakthi, Karma and Rajayoga. In his preachings there is no one sided
approach but synthesis of all the paths. Though all paths converge into Jnana each path has its own importance. So in the daily spiritual practice, he has included worship, prayer meditation and reading of spiritual books. This holistic approach will lead to salvation the ultimate destination of all human beings.