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 Life of Shree Abhayjee

Early Life
  Early Life
Birth - Shree Abhayjee was born on Paush Purnima, which was also the auspicious occasion of Lord Shree Krishna's Pushyabhishek Yatra (7th February, 1920) at 2.a.m. He was born at his maternal uncles's house at Kumartuli area (potter's hub) near Bagbazar in the city of Kolkata, India. He was named Kamalakanta Bhattacharya, popularly called 'Bhola'. In the later years when he left home he named himself Abhay.

His Family - Shree Abhayjee was born in a Vedic Brahmin family and was brought up in an environment of learning, literary activities, music and spirituality. The family ran a reputed publishing company ‘Bengal Library’. Famous poet Sukanta Bhattacharya was their close relative.

Father – His father Karunakanta Bhattacharya was a graduate. He always encouraged learning, was very much hospitable and kind hearted.

Mother - His mother Hiranmayee Devi was very fond of learning, literature and writing. Among her published writings were two novels and a biography of Meera Bai besides many unpublished works and poems. She was profoundly spiritual minded. Her family was also an Vedic Brahmin family with talents in literature, art and music. Famous saint Lalita Sakhi belonged to this family.

EducationShree Abhayjee studied from class IV to Class X in Arya Mission Institution in North Kolkata, set up by Sri Panchanan Bhattacharya, a disciple of famous Yogi Shri Shyamacharan Lahiri. He ranked first all through till the test examination in class X. He passed Matriculation in 1936 in first division with high marks and two letters in Sanskrit. He took admission in Scottish Church college, but after sometime he left home for the search of God.

In Search of God
  In search of God
Leaving Home – While he was studying in Scottish Church College Shree Abhayjee left home twice in search of God. However his father brought him back. Finally he left home for the third time with the famous Saint Mata Anandamayee at the age of only sixteen.

  Basking in the affection of Anandamayee Mata– He   spent many years with Mata Anandamayee, who gave him   a special place of importance. He traveled with her to   many places throughout India. She was his divine mother   and her affection for him knew no limits.

His Main Teachings

Shree Abhayjee Almighty is the only one. There is no two, three or four.

Shree Abhayjee There may be many deities - gods and goddesses. But the Absolute one comprises each and every one. For eg. a hundred rupee note contains thirty , forty or sixty in it. If you stick to the Almighty you will get all.

Shree Abhayjee Truth is more important than anything else. Adhere to truth always, because Truth is God.

Shree Abhayjee Don't waste time on performing rituals. Think of God always - even while you are at work, or walking, traveling, eating or relaxing. Keep Him in mind. Always be in touch with Him. Be in tune with the infinity.

Shree Abhayjee Satya, Seva, Smriti these are the three most important things in life to proceed to God. Satya- Truth. Seva - to serve others by conveying the message of God. Smriti - remembering the Almighty.

Shree Abhayjee Come out of small, petty interests. Think of the wide nature, limitless sky and the universe.

Shree Abhayjee God is not someone who lives far beyond. Neither He is restricted in the walls of a temple. He dwells in every heart, He is your very self. Everyone, every being is God's manifestation, nothing else.

Shree Abhayjee To worship God nothing is required, only a soul that is keen to reach Him.

Shree Abhayjee Everyday sit with Him thrice a day, at least once. Talk to Him as you talk to your near one. You should be alone with the Almighty in a room, in a garden, by the river side wherever possible. He is your nearest and dearest. Unfold your heart to Him. You can call Him father, mother, brother or friend, as you wish. He is there for you.

Shree Abhayjee Solution to all pains and sorrows is awakening. Day by day as you communicate to God your soul will start waking up.

Shree Abhayjee Now or never. Start thinking of Him and pray to Him right now. It does not matter where you are. Any where you can pray to Him. Even while you are in bathroom.

Shree Abhayjee Do not call yourself a Hindu. If you consider yourself as a Hindu, automatically you will differentiate yourself from those who are Muslims, Christians, Parsis or other sects. But God is one and every religion has one aim, that is to reach Him, So there cannot be any discrimination, path to reach the Truth may vary.
  In search of God
His Guru ( Spiritual Guide)Shree Shree Siddhi Mata of Benares, who got her mantra from Lord Shree Krishna Himself, was a saint of very high level. Renowned Scholar Shri Gopinath Kaviraj was greatly influenced by her. She was very calm and quiet. She preferred to keep herself away from the public focus and was always merged in the thought of the Almighty. Mata Anandamayee brought Shree Abhayjee to her for Diksha.

Connection with Guru Dattatreya
  Connection with Guru Dattatreya
Shree Abhayjee’s connection with the great saint Guru Dattatreya has been reflected in several incidences, including Mata Anandamayee’s observation. Sometime before his birth when his mother went to Chitrakut with her husband, she dreamt Guru Dattatreya with three heads. According to the instruction given in the dream she bathed in the River Godavari and in the temple near by she saw the same Great Saint’s image. Then just before Shree Abhayjee’s birth His mother again saw Rishi Dattatreya, who said “ I am coming to you as a son”. This time she was not sleeping and had a vision. Once again she saw Guru Dattatreya, while she was quite awake. It was on the day before the Annaprasan (First tasting of rice) ceremony of six month old baby Shree Abhayjee. His mother was talking with the playful laughing child and suddenly she saw Guru dattatreya in place of Shree Abhayjee . Just a few seconds, then everything was normal. Mata Anandamayee also told Shree Abhayjee that his soul had a very intimate link with Guru Dattatreya. Guru Dattatreya worked through Shree Abhayjee.
Harder Search for The Truth
In 1963 while he was living at Kirtan Kutir In Kolkata and spreading his messages of Truth, he had to live the place abruptly with Mata Anandamayee according to her directives. Then he spent long 17 years in hard penance at places like Vrindaban, Uttar Kashi and Benares. At Benares he spent 12 years in a small dark room without windows at the guest house of Mata Anandamayee´s Ashram. During this time his sadhana(penance) passed through many varied and unusual stages and phases. He did not deliberately kept silent but his power of speaking was stopped without suffering from any physical disease of throat. For 4 years it continued. During last two years of that phase he could only utter the words Ma, Guru, Durga and Narayan. During this time his writing by hand was also stopped. But during this time pointing at different letters in a dictionary he managed to make his followers take down about 2500 spiritual poems and songs besides many letters − all carrying spiritual messages for the mankind. The messages were very uncommon and unique. Songs were composed in the same difficult way. Poems and songs came to him spontaneously. Sometimes ha had to wait throughout a night or day till he found a person who can follow his instructions and take down the poem. In this phase his body lost flexibility, he could not even bend his knees and sit. In this long period of penance his body was covered with fungus and hairs were covered with dust. He did not touch any women for long 26 and half years. Women were not allowed to enter his room during that period. He did not even eat food cooked by a woman. All these situations appeared in his life as different phases of Sadhana, not deliberately imposed by him. Even when he was engaged in hard penance and could not speak, he took care of her mother, who suffered from cancer and spent her last days in Benares. She was kept in a small rented house and Shree Abhayjee´s women followers nursed her. The total responsibility was carried out under the guidance of Shree Abhayjee. It reflects another unusual aspect of his character.
Later Years
  Later years
Return to the City of Calcutta – In 1981 he had a severe brain stroke and got admitted at the Hospital of Mata Anandamayee’s Ashram at Vadaini. At first he was not responding much to the medical treatment. But miraculously he came round gradually with devotional songs and reading out from such books by his disciples. Then he was brought back to Kolkata and stayed for some time at one of the centers, Aradhana Jagat at Santoshpur, which exists no more. Later he stayed at his earliest center Kirtan Kutir at Bagha Jatin in Kolkata and mostly at Shantiniketan (Birbhum, West, Bengal). Those days in spite of his age and broken health he took the trouble of traveling to remote villages even in the summer to spread his message among people. He left his mortal body – on 16th April, 1998 he breathed his last at Kirtan Kutir at 4.20 p.m. According to his wish and instruction his mortal body was buried at Alok Tarani, Shantiniketan on 17th April, 1998.
Shree Abhayjee's Philosophy
  Shree Abhayjee's principle
He believed in one God. Instead of worshipping many gods and goddesses and following elaborate rituals one should pray to the single God, who comprises everyone and everything. He strongly believed in the philosophy of Gita. The word Sarba, widely used in Gita, was his favourite. He believed that the world is the manifestation of the Almighty. Everyone and everything is the image of God. He put emphasis on sincere yearning for God , not the rituals. He believed that worship could be performed by doing work. Satya (Truth) , Seva (service)and Smriti (remembrance)were three of his main concepts to proceed to God. He strived to bring peace and happiness for all, not only for human beings but for every being, including a small insect. He never called himself a Hindu and he told his followers that they can consider themselves like that too, because his philosophy was to follow the God who is the Absolute One. To him all religions were same, because everyone actually belongs to One God only. Even being a Vedic Brahmin by birth he discarded his sacred thread, because he did not like to be differentiated from other castes.
Unique Talents
  Unique Talents
Creative Genius – From childhood he wrote poems. Later he wrote many poems, songs, essays, short stories and numerous letters all conveying his spiritual message for the mankind. He wrote about 8500 spiritual songs, out of which about 2500 were created when he could not speak or write during one of the phases of his hard penance. Those were written and tunes were composed with the help of dictionary only, by his pointing out at letters one by one. A unique and painful process, that hardly any creative person ever resorted to for letting out his creative ability.

Musical talentShree Abhayjee, who had an outstanding voice, was a master in classical music, Bhajan and Kirtan. He was an excellent violin player too. He .sang a number of times at Delhi and Nagpur Radio stations, which were broadcasted. Pandit Rabi Shankar and Annapurna Devi were impressed with his singing.. He sang at Uday Shankar India Culture Center at Almora. He taught many students privately and at Bengal Music College in Kolkata for sometime. His student Utpala Sen recorded two songs, written and composed by him - Aar kato din achhe baki and Jagore jagore mon ghumaye theko na re. Two of his songs on divine mother, Tui naki ma dayamayee, and Tor mato ma eto apan recoded by eminent singer Pannalal Bhattacharya became very popular . Recently one of his songs Ami sab bhule bhai pran bhore gai bhagobaner nam sung by Rathin Kisku, has been compiled in a CD of Hit Bengali songs published by Sa Re Ga Ma. Every year till date Gita Jayanti programme at triangular Park in Kolkata organized by Swami Debanada Saraswati Maharaj, has been inaugurated with a Gita song written and composed by Shree Abhayjee.

A personality with many splendours He was very lively, humorous and jovial. He himself wrote many humorous stories and wanted his followers to read it out to him and he would not stop laughing if he wished to. But all stories contained a spiritual truth in it. He always appreciated good qualities in every one and he believed that even a small talent should always be recognized. He was caring and had a motherly heart for every body. No one was restricted to come and see him at any time People from all caste or creed were warmly embraced. He could not help shedding tears at the misery of any person or animal or any creature. He got angry easily but cooled down easily too and the person who was scolded got so much affection that scolding turned out to be a reward for him. He did not care for money and affluence. Plain living and highest thinking was his motto.
A Divine Marraige
  A Divine Marraige
In spite of his unwillingness, he had to surrender to Mata Anandamayee’s wish to marry Yamuna Devi, who was one of her beloved and was brought up at Kanyapith. In March 1945 the marriage took place under the supervision of Mata Anandamayee at a Jagannath Temple at Berhampore, where a Yagna was being performed for a few days which was graced by many holy men. Yamuna Devi belonged to a Brahmin family. Her father’s name was Chintaharan Ray, who became a Sanyasi. Yamuna Devi’s mother passed I.A. Examination and was very proficient in needle work and cooking. .Yamuna Devi was not only beautiful, but had outstanding voice and talent in music. Once the then prime minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi, who visited Mata Anandamayee’s Ashram and listened to Yamuna Devi’s songs praised her immensely with tears in her eyes. Famous singers Smt. Chhabi Bandyopadhyay, Sri Satinath Mukherjee to name a few were all ardent admirer of her singing talent. Shree Abhayjee and Yamuna Devi had a very short domestic life together. They had a very lovely son, named Ananda, who passed away at the age of three only. But Shree Abhayjee remained unaffected and pursued his devotional work of spreading enlightment for all. Yamuna Devi left for the heavenly abode on 17 January, 2010.
Shree Abhayjee's association with saints
  Abhayjee's association with saints
He impressed many scholars, eminent persons and saints. Among them were Mahatma Gandhi, with whom he went to Noakhali during riot and had occasion to sing there and discuss with him. Shree Abhayjee also had close relationship with the great scholar Sri Gopinath Kabiraj and Sri Gobindagopal Mukhopadhyay. Among the saints were Swami Debananda Saraswati, Shree Ranga Thakur, Sri Shibanada Giri, Swami Paramananda Saraswati, Brahmachari Sisir Maharaj, Bijay Krishna Chattopadhyay, Swami Birajananda, Shanta Maharaj, Swami Antaratmananda, Shree Namji, Shri Dayal Baba, Swami Tarananda, Mata Sarbani, Sri Ganga Mata to name a few.
Shree Abhayjee's three main disciples
Shree Abhayjee’s three main disciples who played a major role in spreading his message and setting up the centers for spiritual work, were Sm. Ananta Devi, Sm. Prajna Devi and Sm. Chirantani Devi. They did not marry and dedicated their whole life for the work of their Guruji. They were from devout, educated Bengali families and had many talents.

Ananta Devi
Ananta Devi – She came into contact with Shree Abhayjee, as his student when she was only twelve years old. She had an angel like voice and later on Shree Abhayjee’s songs were popularized through her heart touching rendering. She left home and spent all her life in the ashram centers and engaged herself in teaching songs of Shree Abhayjee, spreading his message and looking after him, when he came back to Kolkata. Ananta Devi left this world in 1997, a year before her Guruji’s passing away. She was an excellent composer too. She added tunes to many of Shree Abhayjee’s songs. She wrote some songs and two small books on her guruji which are very touching and informative. She was a good organizer and could greatly inspire people. Her inspiration drew many young women and men to the center who later on became dedicated followers of Shree Abhayjee and joined hands to work for the same cause. She had a charming personality and a motherly heart.

Prajna Devi
Prajnaparomita Devi – She came to know Shree Abhayjee, when she was a school student. Her father Mahendra Kumar Dey was a great admirer and devotee of Shree Abhayjee, who spent some years in his house before he left Kolkata for many years for the long penance. Her family was blessed with the affection of Shree Abhayjee. Sri Mahendra Dey’s brother Sri Brajen Dey was a famous Drama (Yatra Pala) writer. The well known globe trotter Sri Bimal Dey also belonged to this family. Prajna Devi had an opportunity to see Shree Abhayjee from a close distant. Many spiritual discussions, songs, Gita discourses were held during Shree Abhayjee’s stay there. Prajnaparomita Devi, who got her guruji’s affection, later decided to remain single and also left home to dedicate her life to her guruji’s work. She was a good writer, wrote books on Shree Abhayjee and was in charge of some publications of Shree Abhayjee’s books and ashram’s souvenirs. She composed a couple of tunes for her guruji’s songs also A school teacher by profession, she had extra ordinary organizing qualities and was instrumental in setting up the Ashram ‘Alok Tarani’ at Shantiniketan, taking charge of the construction work almost single handedly. She was an excellent cook and Shree Abhayjee used to call her affectionately ‘ Baikunther Randhuni’ (the cook of Lord Krishna). She, although a strict disciplinarian, had a soft and caring heart. She left the world a few years after her guruji’s passing away.

Chirantani Devi
Chirantani Devi – She came in contact with Shree Abhayjee when she was a teenager. Her house was near Kirtan Kutir, the earliest center of Shree Abhayjee. Her grandmother used to go there. Chirantani Devi, was spiritual minded from the childhood. She was never after outward attractions that other young women get attached to. She also left home and dedicated her life to the work of her guruji. She proved herself an untiring and efficient nursing for her guruji’s mother. She took care of Shree Abhayjee in his later years of his life when the women ere allowed to touch him. She was a good singer and composed tunes for many songs of Shree Abhayjee. She took part in spreading messages of Shree Abhayjee. She was a spiritual solace and guide for all the follwers of Shree Abhayjee. After Shree Abhayjee’s passing away some got Diksha from her. She had a very sweet calm and quiet nature. She could heal many souls with her beautiful behaviour and guidance. She was always to be found in a smiling face with immense patience and tolerance. She passed away in 2004.