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Param Krupalu Dev: As a Householder

Param Krupalu Dev’s Divine Life is a mine of exemplary qualities. Digging deeper and deeper into His life, we unearth the hidden jewels. As we celebrate the 150th anniversary of His advent on this earth, let us view His life from various perspectives throughout the year, marvel at His unmatched virtues and draw inspiration to walk on His footsteps.

A lotus, having the beauty and charm of its own, blooms even amidst mud and dirt. Enlightened souls, by the virtue of their inner qualities live an exemplary life, no matter in which circumstances their karmas place them. Param Krupalu Dev’s life is a blazing example of how one can advance uninterrupted towards liberation even if he needs to fulfil worldly duties along the way. Let us look at Param Krupalu Dev’s role as a householder and seek inspiration to live a purposeful life.

A Perfect Householder

Param Krupalu Dev’s soul-focused studies, reflections and contemplations matured as He grew through His teens and resultantly His detachment towards the material world increased. He harboured a deep desire for renunciation. However, His parents out of their attachment for Him, did not grant Him permission to renounce the world. The twist of fate created by His preordained karmas carried Him to the marriage altar.

While He resided in His True abode, never did He neglect His duties of a householder. Like an expert actor who distinctly differentiates his real and reel identity and performs his role to perfection, Param Krupalu Dev too did justice to all his responsibilities.

A Supportive Husband

From a very young age, Param Krupalu Dev’s views on marriage were extremely mature, respectful and profound. He elaborated upon how to live a married life in a harmonious manner. Param Krupalu Dev tied the knot of marriage with Smt. Jhabakbai at Morbi on Maha Sud 12, V.S. 1944 at the age of twenty.

In those times, gender equality was not prevalent, the traditional society was conservative and narrow minded in its approach towards treating one’s wife. During such times, He advocated respect for the wife. After being married for about a year, He had written ‘My Views on Women’, in which He states His heartfelt beliefs in a straightforward manner with crystal clear transparency. He writes: A woman should be taught right conduct. She should be considered an aspirant. One should maintain the relation of a spiritual sister with her. From the depth of the heart, one should not, in any way, discriminate between a mother, a sister and her… As far as possible, speak with her in a language that is free from lust.’ While a newly married youth would be immersed in fulfilling his desires, Param Krupalu Dev’s soul brimmed with dispassion. In V.S.1956, Param Krupalu Dev had expressed that the quantum of attachment that ordinary beings experience for their wife in one day, has not been experienced by Him in His entire lifetime.

A Guiding Father

Param Krupalu Dev had two sons and two daughters who thought very highly of their father. He loved and guided them. Once, Param Krupalu Dev told His younger daughter Smt. Kashiben that she is not Kashi but a blissful soul thereby sowing the seeds of spirituality in her at a very young age. He fondly used to address His elder son Shri Chhaganbhai as ‘Chhaganshastri’. He left such an impression on His children that in his personal notes, Chhaganbhai highlighted Param Krupalu Dev’s heightened spiritual state by mentioning that it was crystal clear that Param Krupalu Dev’s soul would never ever be seen as a father again.

A Sincere Son

Right from a very tender age, Param Krupalu Dev performed His duties as a son with utmost sincerity. He ensured His parents’ spiritual well-being and progress by guiding them through subtle yet powerful teachings. He used to often ask Devba whether she would come to moksh. She would ask, what is moksh like? He would reply that I shall take you there. Such was His respect for His parents that His mother Smt. Devba said that she does not recollect Param Krupalu Dev disobeying her even once during His entire lifetime. At the age of 10, Param Krupalu Dev told His mother to whole-heartedly serve her aged and weak in-laws. Around V.S. 1934, the family was undergoing severe financial crisis. Param Krupalu Dev was needed to help His father and He accepted this responsibility. He discontinues His studies and joined His father in business. As a son, He was so concerned about His mother that even on His deathbed, amongst His last few words, was the advice to His brother to take care of His mother.

A Caring Brother

Param Krupalu Dev’s brother Shri Mansukhbhai was nine years younger to Him and shared a strong bond with Him. Param Krupalu Dev encouraged him to gain quality education. Mansukhbhai had enrolled for English schooling, which was rare during those times. After his matriculation, Param Krupalu Dev engaged him in business. As time passed and His health weakened, Param Krupalu Dev entrusted him with His responsibilities. Mansukhbhai served Him right till His last moments. Truly, this pair of brothers was akin to Shri Ram and Lakshman.

Such was Param Krupalu Dev’s perfection in all His duties that none of His relatives had any complaints for Him.

Even amidst worldly responsibilities, Param Krupalu Dev’s heart yearned for complete renunciation. This highlights that the best path for liberation is indeed the path of renunciation. However, if that is not possible then Param Krupalu Dev by His own example has shown that one can still strive for spiritual progress while discharging worldly duties. Like a fierce lion that defeats its opponents in their own dens, Param Krupalu Dev defeated delusion, while remaining in the house of delusion itself!

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