Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj was a God-realised saint whose entire life was dedicated to inspiring souls on the path of devotion to God and service to humanity. He was only the fifth Spiritual Master, a Guru, to be honoured with the title of Jagadguru, the Guru of the entire world, in history. And he was the only saint in history to be honoured with the title of Jagadguruttam, the topmost amongst all Jagadgurus. Thus he held the highest place among all Vedic saints and scholars of this age. He had a thorough knowledge and mastery of all Vedic scriptures in existence. Just like the Pope in Christianity, a Jagadguru is the greatest and the highest title among all Hindu saints and scholars. This title is given only to a saint who brings a spiritual revolution in the world through his divine teachings. He was the supreme exponent of Sanatan Dharma (Eternal Vedic religion) and his reconciliation of all philosophies and faiths was unique.
At present there are eleven main religions in the world – Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Shinto. They all appear to propagate contradictory views regarding the path towards the supreme goal of happiness. In fact there are contradictions within each religion itself. Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj reconciled all these apparently opposing views and expounded a universal path that respects all religions.
He appeared on earth in the year 1922 on the auspicious night of Sharat Poornima (the full moon night of the Divine Rasa dance by Shri Krishna) in Mangarh, a small village near the holy city of Allahabad in north India. Named Ram Kripalu at birth, he was known to the world as Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj and was lovingly called Shri Maharaj Ji by all. During his childhood he astonished his teachers and fellow students by his super intelligence and phenomenal memory.
He very quickly completed his basic education followed by few years of study of Sanskrit grammar, Literature and Ayurveda at Indore and Varanasi. This brief period of study did not include study of the scriptures!
At the tender age of sixteen He disappeared into the dense forests of Chitrakoot and Vrindavan for a year. During this period he remained totally immersed in the ecstasy of Divine Love, oblivious of the outer world. Gradually he controlled and concealed this supreme ecstasy of Divine Bliss and completely devoted Himself to grace conditioned souls with his inspiring divine wisdom and sublime chanting that spread powerful waves of Divine Love and Bliss and melted even the most stone-hearted.
Shri Maharaj Ji observed that people were misguided and totally ignorant about the actual essence of the scriptures and true form of devotional practice. To improve this dismal spiritual state of mankind he organized huge religious conferences at Chitrakoot in the year 1955 and in Kanpur the following year. These conferences were attended by the most eminent scholars and saints of India. It was during these conferences that his scriptural omniscience was revealed to the world and even the most learned scholars were lost in wonder.
Impressed by Shri Maharaj Ji's extraordinarily authoritative knowledge of all scriptures the Kashi Vidvat Parishat, a body of 500 topmost scholars of India who collectively represented the highest seat of spiritual learning, invited him to Kashi (Varanasi) for spiritual debate to test his knowledge. Shri Maharaj Ji delivered a series of discourses in Sanskrit, which left all of them spellbound and speechless. They were so highly impressed by his unparalleled knowledge of all the scriptures, which far surpassed their combined knowledge that they collectively honored him with the title of 'Jagadguru' (Spiritual Master of the whole world). This historical event took place on 14th January 1957. Shri Maharaj Ji was only 34 years old then. The Kashi Vidvat Parishat also honored Him with the special title of 'Jagadguruttam' (supreme amongst all Jagadgurus) and declared Him as 'Bhaktiyogarasavatara' (Personification of Divine Love and Bliss).
In the last 2500 years, only four other saints have been honored with the title of Jagadguru - Jagadguru Shankaracharya, Jagadguru Nimbarkacharya, Jagadguru Ramanujacharya and Jagadguru Madhvacharya. Shri Maharaj Ji was the fifth original Jagadguru.
Shri Maharaj Ji made no distinction of caste, creed, color or race. With his infinite love and compassion he gathered all into the purity of his divine embrace and his divine effulgence shined through all he said, all he did and all he was. Every seeker was amazed to see how approachable he was and enjoyed the special privilege of individual attention from him. Thus he made each one feel that he belonged to them. His tall, stately and regal yet childlike personality had an indefinable attraction that drew all, young and old, men and women, and even children, to him. The all-satisfying love, which emanated from him, made each one feel the love of a parent, friend and teacher, all in one. It was very easy to become a recipient because there was no other giver like Shri Maharaj Ji. True to his name 'Kripalu' he was the very 'Ocean of Grace.'
Besides inspiring people to the supreme goal of the attainment of Divine Love, Shri Maharaj Ji was exceptionally merciful with his overflowing generosity towards the poor.
Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj established a non-profit, charitable, educational and spiritual organisation called Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat. His spiritual discourses are broadcast daily on TV. View TV broadcast timings
Shri Maharaj Ji returned to the divine abode of Radha Krishna on November 15, 2013. His spiritual and charitable works are now being carried forward by the three Presidents of Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat appointed by Him - Sushree Dr. Vishakha Tripathi, Sushree Dr. Shyama Tripathi and Sushree Dr. Krishna Tripathi.