With the tragic death of Nirankari Baba Hardev Singh on May 13, the world has lost a great spiritual leader – an apostle of love, peace & harmony, who dedicated his life to forge human unity. Sixty two years old Baba was the fourth head of the Nirankari Mission. He succeeded as the spiritual head of the organisation in 1980, after the assassination of his father and the then Nirankari chief, Baba Gurbachan Singh.
During Baba’s 36-year-long spiritual stewardship, the Nirankari Mission spread rapidly. Baba Hardev Singh worked tirelessly to spread mission’s message of love, peace and universal brotherhood to the farthest corners of the world. He undertook extensive salvation tours in India and abroad and it is the result of his great efforts that today Nirankari Mission has more than one cr. followers spread across 27 countries.
Nirankari Mission, with its motto- ‘Know One, Believe One & Become One’, focuses on the oneness of Nirankar (Formless God). The Mission centred around the relationship between Formless God & humans, aims at spiritual upliftment of mankind. It endorses and accomplishes the established age-old truth that realization of God through the living true master is the goal of human life and it leads to the cherished achievement of universal brotherhood, which is inherently essential for peace and progress in the world. One of the main factors that has contributed to the rapid growth and mass acceptance of Nirankari Mission is that its approach to spiritual enlightenment is devoid of any rituals. It is an all- embracing spiritual movement that endeavours to bring spiritual enlightenment within the reach of every individual, irrespective of one’s caste, creed, colour, religion, cultural and social background.
Nirankari Baba propagated that man is a spiritual being in human form and the purpose of his life is to lead a spiritually awakened and meaningful life. He would tell that spirituality equips us to deal with the adversities of life and take control of our life. He stressed on spiritually strong families. And for that, he gave great emphasis on ‘Bal Sangats’ (exclusive holy congregations of children) and even started English medium congregations to bring more and more youngsters into the realm of spirituality. As spiritually awakened youngsters are a great asset to build a healthy and happy society, Nirankari Mission under the stewardship of Baba Hardev Singh, has been playing a pivotal role in empowering youngsters with divine knowledge. He talked of global peace and harmony through oneness of mankind, which he said, could be achieved only when God is made the basis of life. He exhorted all to stay connected with God through Satsang (Company of saints), Simran (God remembrance) and Sewa (Selfless service).
Along with spiritual upliftment, Baba Hardev Singh has also been emphasising on human welfare as he would preach that love and care for humanity is the true religion. He institutionalized Mission’s welfare activities by founding Sant Nirankari Charitable Foundation (SNCF). The Foundation, besides running educational institutions , has been extending healthcare facilities through charitable dispensaries and organising health checkups and blood donation camps. It’s the result of Nirankari Baba’s vision and foresightedness that now a global Nirankari Health City is coming up in New Delhi.
Nirankari Baba always stressed on equality through spirituality. As Mission’s principle of divinity revolves around the gender less existence of human beings, he emphasized that faith based organisations should play a leading role in empowering women. As a result of his efforts, Nirankari Mission was invited to participate in the United Nation’s 58th session of the Commission on Status of Women. The Mission has also been making significant contribution in the sphere of social reforms by promoting simple, dowry less mass marriages. Under his spiritual leadership, Mission’s volunteers have been doing yeoman’s service during natural calamities. They were admired for their relief and rescue mission during recent furious floods in Uttarakhand and Kashmir and devastating earthquake in Nepal.
Nirankari Baba preached his followers to work for clean pollution- free environment, in addition to remove pollution from the mind. Every year on February 23, to mark Baba’s birthday, a nationwide cleanliness drive is undertaken. Recently, the Mission was applauded by the Railway Ministry for its great contribution in cleaning railway stations under ‘Swatcch Bharat’ campaign. The Mission was also provided ‘Brand Ambassador’ status by the Union Urban Development Ministry for ‘Swatcch Bharat’ campaign.
The wide range of socio- spiritual activities of the Mission under the leadership of Baba has won it world acclaim. The United Nations has granted Nirankari Mission, a special consultative status to achieve Millennium Development Goals for the upliftment of world community. Baba Hardev Singh was presented Mahatama Gandhi Award by United Nations for exemplary work for humanity by Nirankari Mission under his leadership.
Today, Baba Hardev Singh is physically no more with but as a true spiritual master, he will continue to have a special place in the hearts of millions of his followers and his universal message of love, peace and harmony will continue to guide future generations to tread the path of truth.