Shree Narnarayan Dev, the great king of Bharat Khand, manifests in two divine forms in the heavenly abode of Badrikashram, despite being a single entity.
How affectionate is Narnarayan Bhagwan? He sits in Badrikashram beneath the Bordi tree, practicing intense penance, and then bestows its benefits upon his devotees. While we enjoy life’s pleasures, Narnarayan Bhagwan performs rigorous penance on our behalf. Our bodies weaken after just one day of fasting, yet Shree Narnarayan Dev graciously endures such austerity and grants the rewards to his beloved devotees. Most of us cannot sit cross-legged for more than three hours, let alone perform penance. Even deciding to eat only once a day requires deep thought. How, then, can we manage to perform penance? Let us offer many praises to Narnarayan Dev, under whose protective umbrella we sit. Muktanand Swami extols the greatness of Shree Narnarayan Dev.
The Ayurvedic medicine of Ancient India involves treating sick babies by having their mothers consume medicine. Similarly, in Badrikashram, Shree NarNarayan Dev performs intense penance and bestows the fruits of his labour upon righteous spiritual individuals. Despite the poisonous and addictive nature of the current age, devotees of Bhagwan remain steadfast in their adherence to righteous behaviour and guide others to do the same. This is all thanks to NarNarayan Dev’s grace, which allows devotees to remain free from the temptations of worldly desires.
The necessity for NarNarayan Dev to perform penance is questioned, as He already has control over His five senses as Purshotam Narayan Bhagwan. The analogy is drawn of a mother consuming medication to help her child become healthier through her milk, with NarNarayan Dev being the ultimate source of grace and nourishment.
Only those spiritually enlightened have the ability to physically reach Badrikashram, where NarNarayan Dev resides.
Shankaraacharya once asked NarNarayan Dev how mankind can have a divine glimpse of Him in the current age of Kaliyug, to which He replied that bathing in Narad-Kund and establishing His form will allow humanity to achieve the fruits gained when doing Darshan of Badrikashram.
The worship at Badrikashram begins with NarNarayan Dev, followed by Laxmiji who resides on the outer side of the temple. Although an Emperor, NarNarayan Dev performs penance, resulting in heat emanating from his body. This allows him to bathe daily with cold water and apply sandalwood paste, despite the constant cold climate of the Himalayas. Laxmiji and Narayan reside together eternally everywhere, but only here, they are separated as Narayan is dressed as a yogi. Through his example, Prabhu has demonstrated the norm to follow when embarking on the path of penance to the world.
Let us sing a kirtan of NarNarayan Dev:
Shree Swaminarayan Bhagwan has installed the Idol of Shree Narnarayan Dev in the cities of Ahmedabad and Bhuj with His divine touch. He has made a solemn promise that anyone who has Darshan of this Narnarayan Dev will surely achieve the rewards of a Badrikashram pilgrimage. Those who have daily Darshan will be guided towards the path of ultimate liberation without obstacles. Before this Idol, those who recite the holy names, perform penance, study sacred Scriptures, perform worship, and celebrate festivals will attain everlasting spiritual salvation. All desires will be fulfilled. Innumerable Deities from heavenly Svarglok come daily to have Darshan of Shree Narnarayan Dev. Shreeji Maharaj says that those devotees who live in faraway villages and still come for Darshan of Shree NarNarayan Dev on the days of Ekadashi, Monthly or even yearly at NarNarayan Dev’s Patotsav will achieve the same rewards as daily visitors.