RAMASHRAM

 

Sufism and Santmat have been two streams in Islam and Hinduism respectively which have the same basic tenets barring the perfunctory traditions that have descended from their lineage. It was but natural that some enlightened individual would see the futility of this division. A great sufi mystic, Fazal Ahmed Khan Saheb, owing to his enlightened vision decided to demolish the boundary between the two sects by choosing a person belonging to Hindu faith his successor. These pages introduce you to some of the great flowerings that got birth from this great experiment. Now it is a path known by many names with Ramashram as prefix and having branches in India and abroad. This path had its origin in the Nakshbandia tradition of sufism but later branched out to dissolve into the stream of Santmat (or Bhaktimat).

PS: According to Mahatma Fazal Ahmed Khan Saheb, Sufism had its origin in ancient Indian mysticism, so it is coming back home, a circle complete.


MAHATMA RAMCHANDRA JI (LALAJI)

Mahatma Ramchandra Ji (Lala Ji) was born in the year 1873 in Farrukhabad City, UP, India. His mother was deeply religious and she left an indelible mark on young Ramchandra before she left for heavenly abode when Ramchandra was merely seven. A muslim matron raised him afterwards. His early education was at home by a maulvi and later he took his education at Mission School.

His father also expired soon after his marriage and he had to take over burden of the family in very difficult circumstances. Due to losing an old litigation, he had to sell all his belongings including house and property. He dropped his studies and settled for a secondary job in Collectorate. However with hard work and honesty, he retired at a considerably higher post.

When Mahatma Ji was eighteen, he came in contact with a great Sufi Master, Maulana Fazal Ahmed Khan Saheb. Khan Saheb was totally above the preposterous idea of man-man divide in the name of religion. "Khuda mazhab mein nahin, muhabbat mein hai" (God is not in religions, He is in love) was his fundamental belief. He was a siddha, an enlightened master. His followers included people from all faiths. He found in Mahatma Ji an able soul who could further his mission to awake general masses to devote themselves to the path of God.

Like his master, Mahatma Ji was a great humanitarian. He lived a simple life. Many of his disciples carried his mission of spreading the light of truth. A number of such organisations are today working pronouncing that the wisdom of sages are meant for the common people and boundaries dividing the mankind are only man made.

 

THAKUR SAHIB SHRI RAM SINGH JI

Thakur Saheb Shri Ram Singh Ji was a Sant in the lineage of Sufism and Santmat in India. A great generous and reformist Sufi mystic, Maulana Fazal Ahemad Khan Saheb chose to bestow his grace on his able desciple belonging to Hindu faith, Mahatma Shri Ram Chandra Ji Maharaj (Lala Ji). Thakur Saheb was one of the great disciples of Mahatma Shri Ram Chandra Ji Maharaj.

Thakur Saheb's life story is beyond belief in contemporary life. His disciples regard him Guru at the pedestal of God Himself, who preached them that the path to Superconsciousness lied in Simplicity. His preaching was not sermons directed at his followers but his life itself. He demonstrated how a person could live without being deterred by temptations of life while continuously pursuing elevation of one's consciousness. His aura attracted thousands to his personality as he led virtues of Sufism into Santmat Bhaktidhara of Hinduism. Samarpan (let-go) and Yaad (remembrance) are the essence of his teachings.

Thakur Saheb gave very few instructions verbally. These too were personal guidance to individual Sadhaks who he found were in need of it. He never demanded anything from his followers, not even disciplehood. However those who pleaded for it, he willed them to be at the feet of his Master thus demonstrating the super state of samarpan towards his own Guru who he lovingly called - Guru Bhagwan.

His teachings gathered from his lovers can be summarised as follows:

"Be in this world, play with all the available endowments but remain unattached. Do all the necessary works in your life but being duty-bound, not being governed by the desire of the outcome. Neither create belongingness nor any disengagement. Remember the mortality of the body and immortality of Yourself. Bear with the conflicts in life as these are transitory. Remain calm and happy and practice tranquility. Keep vigil on lust, anger, greed and cupidity. Fulfil duties sans desires and attain self realisation with a pure mind and understanding."

 

Ramashram