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|Region||Gajanan Maharaj at Shegaon, India|
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|Region||Gajanan Maharaj at Shegaon, India|
The early life history of Gajanan Maharaj is obscure, his birthdate being unknown. His devotees believe him as incarnation of Lord Ganesha and Lord Dattatreya. Biruduraju Ramaraju has tried to establish in his collection of books called "Andhra Yogulu" that he was a Telangana Brahmin. Some speculate that he might have in fact hailed from Sajjanghad, (which was the place where Sant Samartha had lived). Das Ganu Maharaj has written a 21 chapter biography, "Shri Gajanan Vijay," of Gajanan Maharaj in Marathi. Contemporaries of Gajanan Maharaj identified him by several names like Gin Gine Buwa, Ganpat Buwa, and Awaliya Baba. However, it is amply proved that as a handsome, tall lad of 18 years old he arrived at Akkalkot to meet Shri Swami Samarth. It is said that on seeing him Swami Samarth was overjoyed and made him sit in his lap and caressed him lovingly; people around Samarth who watched this scene sait to Swami that the boy was in his teens and not a child. Thereafter it is said that Swami asked the boy to go to holy place of Kapildhara near Nashik and perform austerities. As per the instructions, the boy performed severe austerities at Kapildhara and attained Atmadnyana and became a Supreme Yogi. Just before his Samadhi, Swami Samarth asked him to get himself 'polished' from Dev Mamaledar (yet another disciple of Swami Samarth and a realized soul) at Nashik. The boy did exactly the same and got blessings of Dev Mamaledar. Later he was asked to keep walking and the place where he stopped would become his Karmabhoomi and the name given by people around him would be his name. This is what happened exactly. After Swami Samarth's samadhi, the boy appeared at Shegaon. The evidence to this story comes from an old man who had seen the boy at Akkalkot with Swami Samarth and had come to Shegaon along with his son who was working in post office and was transferred to Shegaon. Maharaj accepting a human body is a mere pastime (Leela) as he is Brahmadnyani; that is why thousands of the devotees flock to Shegaon for his blessings. How he functions and transforms people from vile, wicked ways to great devotees is really unknown. None in his earthly days ever saw him chanting any special mantra holding japamala etc. But he is a supreme saint, whose blessings everyone must have. According to a legend, a money lender named Bankat Lal Agarwal first saw Gajanan Maharaj in a "superconscious state" on February 23, 1878 on a street. Sensing him to be a saint, Bankat took him home and asked him to stay with him. Legends say that in his lifetime, he performed many miracles such as giving a fresh lease on life to one Janrao Deshmukh, lighting the clay-pipe without fire, filling a dry well with water, drawing sugar cane juice by twisting canes with his hands, and curing leprosy of a woman. He took samadhi on 8 September 1910. A temple in his name is built on his Samadhi at Shegaon.
Head of the Gajanan Maharaj Sansthan-Shivshankarbhau Patil is the head of the trust and well known in India for his administration and management of the temple,bhojan kaksha,engineering and management college, Anand Sagar project and many other institution run by the trust located at Shegaon managed by shri gajanan maharaj sansthan shegaon affiliated to Amravati university. This college is one of the best institutes for engineering education. The Anand Sagar project is also developed by the trust over 650 acres for tourist with all facilities at nominal rates. The temple is famous in Maharashtra for its clean, neat, tidy environment and polite and respectful behaviour of the sevaks of gajanan maharaj trust who works there just for seva.
It is said by Gajanan Maharaj that he will appear again in Domak village (revealed in pothi) of Maharashtra (near Morshi) and his words proved to be true. He again reappeared in Domak village and giving darshan to the devotees since 13 years. Domak Gajanan maharaj looks same as Shegoan Gajanan Maharaj and has performed a lot of miracles in these 13 years. Devotees who seek for his darshan are growing day by day.