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Shikshapatri

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The Shikshapatri (Devanagari: शिक्षापत्री) is a text of two hundred and twelve verses, written in Sanskrit by Bhagwan Swaminarayan.[1] The Shikshapatri is a key scripture to all followers of the Swaminarayan faith and is considered the basis of the faith.

The Shikshapatri was written in Vadtal on February 11 1826.[2] It is a dharma text, providing detailed instructions on how to live.

Summary of teaching

The Gazeteer of the Bombay Presidency summarised the teachings of the Shiskshapatri as:

The book of precepts strictly prohibits the destruction of animal life; promiscuous intercourse with the other sex; use of animal food and intoxicant liquors and drugs on any occasion, suicide, theft and robbery; false accusation against a fellow man; blasphemy; company of atheists and heretics, and other practices which might counteract the effect of the founder's teaching. [3]

Governor Sir John Malcolm

On February 26 1830 an historic meeting took place between Swaminarayan and Sir John Malcolm, the then Governor of Bombay. At this meeting, Swaminarayan presented a Shikshapatri to Sir John Malcolm. This copy is now housed at the Bodleian Library of the University of Oxford. [4]

Languages

Swaminarayan instructed Nityanand Swami to translate Shikshapatri from Sanskrit into Gujarati. It has since been translated numerous times into other languages. It has been translated to Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Udiya, Urdu, Vraj, Afrikaans, Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Italian, Modern Hebrew, North Sotho, Portuguese, Russian, South Sotho, Spanish, Swahili, Xhosa, and Zulu,[5]

Notes

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