At midnight of 5th December, Sri Swamiji entered into Mahasamadhi. At the time of his Mahasamadhi, it had been twenty years since Sri Swamiji had come to Rikhia. You must have known from him that his life is divided into twenty-year cycles. For the first twenty years of his life, he lived at home. For the next twenty years, he lived at his guru’s ashram in Rishikesh and immersed himself in seva.
In the third cycle of twenty years he came to Munger and following his guru’s direct mandate to him, established yoga as a worldwide movement. He created a monument of yoga in Munger, and then offered it as tribute at the feet of his guru, Swami Sivananda. He said, “This was your mandate which I completed. Now I offer it to you.” In this way, after being here for twenty years, he walked away from it.
The last chapter of his life, Rikhia, was also a twenty-year period. It started in 1989 when he came to Rikhia and culminated in 2009. In Rikhia, he dedicated his life to live the sannyasa life and the teachings of his guru. Therefore, Rikhiapeeth is another monument created by him and dedicated to his guru.
Sri Swamiji always said that when I have to leave my body, it will not be in a hospital, surrounded by disciples and with tubes in my nose and mouth, but in a state of meditation. In a poem he says,
With nothing on the body,
And with nothing in my hands,
Let me roam on the bank of the Ganga
With the name of Shiva on my lips
And the thought of Devi and Durga in my mind.
Let me not even know that I exist,
And when I die,
I will not know that I am dying.
That is exactly what he achieved. A siddha, perfected being, works according to sankalpas, resolves, in his life and not according to personal wish or desire. In Sri Swamiji’s life we see the force of his sankalpa shakti and what he achieved through his sankalpa shakti – he hoisted the flag of yoga and of the Bihar Yoga tradition in the world from Munger and brought honour to Bihar. Thereafter, Rikhia became his tapobhoomi. He performed arduous higher vedic sadhanas there, which have been prescribed for paramahamsa sannyasins. He practised panchagni sadhana, along with other sadhanas. You all have also been witness to that. He lived a simple life and the lifestyle of a sannyasin. Sannyasa is a medium to realize and surrender to the guru and God residing within. In Rikhia, Sri Swamiji moulded and lived his life as per the teachings of his guru and also inspired others to live these teachings of ‘serve, love, give’. Sri Swamiji converted Rikhia village into Rikhiapeeth with the mandate to propagate these fundamental messages of spiritual life.
The fundamental message of spiritual life is: improve the quality of life. The quality of life improves when we are able to come out of our shells and connect with other people through service, through love and through sharing. These are the inspirations that Sri Swamiji himself gave in Rikhia.
The two eternal monuments created by him, Munger and Rikhia – one dedicated to the mandate of the guru and the other to his teachings – today offer their tribute to the great visionary, Sri Swami Satyananda, who was the crown jewel disciple of our Sadguru, Sri Swami Sivananda.