Guru is indeed 'Nirupama', incomparable. Guru alone is most adorable!
Disciples, Devotees, Admirers, Critics, Intellectuals, Recipients of help, Public (as audience), Leaders, Rulers, Religious heads, Mahatmas, Children and people of all hues, levels and ages have admired and adored Poojya Swamiji, each understanding Him in his/her own way, and appropriately too. Each could relate to Him intimately as well – even as Father, Mother, Teacher, Benefactor and Everything.
It requires an Adhikarittvam and understanding to know Him as a great Acharya from the Sampradaya, an Uttama Brahmavit. Not everyone, not even most disciples, could know Him in His vast dimensions and depth of Janana. Surely, it would need a Dayananda, to know a Dayananda!
How many have had their sorrows addressed and erased, tears wiped away – only those who received His grace thus, know. Others can only infer the impact upon those lives!
Those who knew Him as a Visionary and Master Organizer alone knew that aspect of Him – we see all that unfolding with time!
Those personally touched alone know the Parental touch He blessed them with.
Those who led their lives upon His advice alone knew the worth and value of it in their lives, and His uncanny wisdom in solving problems.
Hundreds who really feel 'orphaned' alone know what complete support means, and what it is to lose it.
Children alone knew the joy of always getting edible sweet Prasadam from this smiling, bearded Mahapurusha – who was for them 'Madhuradhipati'.
Astute Intellectuals alone knew the flight of His deep thoughts and words, full of reason and wit.
Linguists could surely celebrate the finesse He had in wielding words, like sheer magic.
Vidwans and Bhagavatas alone would comprehend His choice of Ragas, their nuances and richness, and His creative genius in compositions even like Deekshithar, and the abiding soulful vibrance of His Krtis, though almost everyone enjoys them! However, it would need a student of Vedanta to understand their import, and know them to be like 'Prakarana Granthas' each!
Well then, could we say that Poojyasri was just all the above put together? Hardly!! Indeed most people could appreciate a little of the many dimensions of His colossal personality, and yet, He is far beyond all these put together! Words may not do justice as well!
However, if one were to ask what everyone perceived in Him universally, the 'Hallmark of Poojya Swamiji' , it is perhaps Ananda. It is Ananda people felt in His presence, felt in their lives intimately. He was all joy, all through. "Ananda" describes Him so characteristically, almost like a synonym – unmistakably! आनन्द-विग्रहाय नमः!
Another 'phenomenon', a corollary of the first, manifestation of पूर्णता was felt by almost everyone who knew Him… felt in small or large measure, for a time or constantly. Another synonym is that mellifluous word 'compassion', Daya !! It is as if the word 'compassion' is exemplified and personified by Him – दया-मूर्तये नमः!
"Dayananda" He is, indeed! His compassion can be testified to by everyone, with joy and gratitude indescribable, the love felt being non-quantifiable… not only by those in apparent distress, but by all disciples alike!
Compassion is built into a Sadhu, true; but to teach Brahmavidya to a 'Samsara-daavaagni-dagdha-shishyah' – the disciple scorched by the fire of Samsara, (and who has the discrimination about it), …requires an 'extra ounce of compassion' He would often tell us. "स गुरुः परम-करुणया उपदिदेश…"…….and He had for us, that very extra ounce of compassion, for He could empathize with us all, having undergone the pain Himself. Not dismissing it as an 'as if pain', when the disciple feels it to be real! 'Extra ounce' it was indeed!!
Most fortunate we all are, to have our lives touched by Ananda, by Compassion (Daya) – by DAYANANDA!!
As a tribute to Him, let us hear Him deliver a TED Talk (recorded at Chautauqua Institute, New York in Aug. 2009). They introduce it thus:
'Swami Dayananda Saraswati unravels the parallel paths of personal development and attaining true compassion. He walks us through each step of self-realization, from helpless infancy to the fearless act of caring for others…'
Dayananda Saraswati: The profound journey of compassion
We also take you down the memory lane, to Rishikesh, His Kutiya (hermitage) there, His Adhyatma-vidyalayam (where he taught), the banks of Ganga where He strode, and finally the ground He rests under (Bhu-samadhi-sthala)…the great Banyan tree under whose boughs humanity found rest and peace, rests in peace….two big trees standing vigil on either sides symbolically, the Linga (indicator) indicating the exact spot…..and finally the Samadhi Mandapam that has come up there.
श्री गुरुभ्यो नमः !!