Skip to main content.
A non-profit service providing academics, religion professionals and other researchers with religion & cult news
ReligionNewsBlog

Religion news articles about religious cults, sects, world religions, and related issues

Home | About RNB Related: Cult FAQ | Cult Experts | Apologetics Index | Cult Information Search Engine
More articles about: Swadhyaya:

5,000 here pay tribute to revered Indian spiritual leader Dadaji

Chicago Sun-Times, USA
Mar. 7, 2004
Art Golab
www.suntimes.com

ReligionNewsBlog.com • Monday March 8, 2004

In life, Pandurang Shastri Athavale, the spiritual leader of 30 million people, visited the Chicago area nearly every year since 1979.

In death, he returned one last time Saturday, and more than 5,000 of his followers went to the Rosemont Theater to view his cremated ashes.

Athavale, known to his followers as Dadaji, developed a philosophy that helped economically revitalize 100,000 villages in India, an accomplishment that helped him earn the $1.2 million Templeton Prize for progress in religion, an honor he shares with Mother Teresa, the Rev. Billy Graham and Bill Bright, the founder of Campus Crusade for Christ.

As leader of the Swadhyaya (pronounced swad-HE-ya) movement, Dadaji preached a philosophy that God is in everyone, and therefore we should treat everyone as if they were a member of our family. Most of his followers are Hindu, but members of all religions are welcome and encouraged to continue practicing their religious beliefs.

In thousands of villages in India, Dadaji’s ideas translated into farmers and fishermen pooling part of their produce to benefit the entire community. Followers also build housing for the needy.

Among the many speakers at a service, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) called Dadaji a “holy man who changed the lives of millions of people with his simple vision of love and respect and equality.”

“He was an individual who changed the world,” said Dr. Frank Morales, a local follower. “He was an individual who in his own humble way started a spiritual movement that changed the face of India and is now beginning to change the face of the entire globe.”

A short video featured Dadaji’s daughter Jayshree Talwalkar and emphasized her role as her father’s spiritual heir.

After the service, she said her father’s death last October at 82 was an emotional blow to his followers. “… But it doesn’t affect the work,” she said. “We will continue, the same way he wanted us to continue.”

info Original content is © Copyright Religion News Blog. All rights reserved.
    Do not republish or repost. Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

share this article Share this article

tag Related Articles

arrow
arrow Topic(s): Swadhyaya

Comment Comment

Join Religion News Blog at Google+ to comment, share, and follow.

RSS Feed Follow Us


 Follow

Religion News You May Like This As Well

Why are you not using Nozbe?

Don't you need to get things done?

Religion News Search Search Religion News Blog