Life Story Of Jalaram

Basic Information

Jalram Bapa was born in Virpur, Rajkot district, Gujarat,India in 1799, on the seventh day of the Kartika month. His father was Pradhan Thakkar and his mother was Rajbai Thakkar who belonged to Thakkar clan, Which is a sub-group of Lohana clan. He was a devotee of the Hindu god Rama.

Jalaram Bapa was however not willing to live a household's life and not to continue to take care of his father's business. He was mostly engaged in serving pilgrims, sadhus and saints. He separated himself from his father's business, His uncle Valjibhai maa asked Jalaram Bapa and his wife Virbai maa to stay in his house.

Marriage of devotee Jaliyan

At the age of sixteen, in 1816, Jaliyan married Virbai, the daughter of Pragjibhai Thakkar ( Somaiya ) at Atkot. However, he was inclined to completely withdraw from materialistic life and become an ascetic, Virbai proved to be assets to him in his works of feeding poor and needy. She was also a pious and saintly lady and she also decided to follow the path of serving mankind. At the age of twenty, jalaram accompanied by his wife, decided to go for a pilgrimage to the holy cities of Ayodhya, Varanasi and Badrinath.

Jaliyan became the disciple of Bhoja Bhagat and open Sadavrat

At the age of 18, Jalaram Bapa became the disciple of bhoja Bhagat of Fatehpur, who accepted hm as his disciple. Jalaram was given the " Guru Mantra " (mantra) and japamala in the name of Rama by his Guru Bhojalram. With blessing of his guru, he started " Sadavrat ", a feeding center, a place where all sadhus and saints as well as the needy could have food any time.

Further Information

One day, a sadhu who came to his house gave him an idol of Rama, forecasting that Hanuman ( The monkeey - god ) and devotee of Rama, would follow soon. Jalaram Bapa accepted Rama as his family deity and after a few days, an idol of Hanuman appeared out of earth, on its own. The idol of Rama's consort Sita and his brother Lakshmana also appeared. Due to a miracle the container in the house of jaliyan, where grains were stored, become inexhaustible. Later other devotees and village folk joined him in his works of human welfare.

Soon his fame spread as a divine incarnation. Whoever came to Virpur, whether Hindu or Mislim irrespective of caste, creed and religion were fed by jalaram. This tradition of feeding people continues to this day in Virpur.

One a tailor named Harji, who was suffering from severe stomach-ache, came to him to get himself cured. Jaliyan prayed to God and Harji was cured. He fell at jaliyan feet and addressed him as Bapa. Since then he was known as JALARAM BAPA. Soon his fame spread and people came to him to get rid of diseases and problems. Jaliyan would pray for them in the name of Rama and miracles happend. Both Hindus and Muslims became his disciples. In 1822, Jamal, son of rich Muslim merchant fell ill and doctors gave up all hope. At that point of time, Harji, told Jamal of his experience ( parcha ), Jamal, prayed from his house, that if his son is cured of the disease, he would give 40 maunds of grain to Jaliyan for sadavrat. His son recovered and jamal visited house of jaliyan with cart load of grains and called his " Jalla so Allah !!".

At one time, God in the guise of an old saint told jalaram to send Virbai to serve him. Jaliyan consulted her and with her consent sent her with the saint. But after walking some miles and reaching a nearby forest the saint asked Virbai to wait for him. She waited but saint did not return. Instead, she heard and Akashwani stating that it was only to the test the hospitality of the couple. Before the saint disappeared. He left a Danda ( staff ) and Jholi ( Cloth bag ), with Virbai. Virbai return home to jaliyan as instructed by the celestial voice with Danda & Jholi. This Danda and Jholi are still at virpur and kept on display in a glass enclosure.

It is the birthplace of Shree Jalaram bapa. The main shrine of Jalaram Bapa is located at Virpur. The shrine is actually the house complex where Jalaram lived during his lifetime. The shrine housed the belongings of Jalaram and the idols of Rama, Sita, Lakshmana and Hanuman worshipped by him. It also has on display the Jholi and Danda said to be given by God. But the main attraction is the portrait of Jalaram Bapa. There is also an actual black and white photo of Jalaram Bapa, taken one year before his death.

The temple is one of a kind in the world in a way that it has not been accepting any offerings since 9th February, 2000.