Swamiji was born in an affluent and religious Brahmin family at Hoshiarpur (Punjab) on 19th March, 1919. His father was a noble and pious Civil Engineer widely known for his honest and religious way of life. From the very beginning Swamiji was unattached with the material world and at the tender age of 19, he left his home at Vill. Shahpur near Sargodha (now in Pakistan) with absolute renunciation, in search of God and Real Truth of life. After about one year of visiting various places and seers, he arrived at Kailash Ashram Rishikesh (Haridwar) and met Maha Mandaleshwar Swami Vishnudevanand ‘Giri’ Ji Maharaj which marked the beginning of learning Sanskrit language and study of scriptures and spiritual books under the guidance of his mentor Swami Vishnudevanand ‘Giri’ Ji Maharaj.
Greatly impressed with his dedication, devotion and complete renunciation of wordly ways of life, Swami Vishnudevanand ‘Giri’ Ji always kept Swamiji in his company and after about 3 years the Guru sent Swamiji to Kashi (Varanasi) for extensive study of scriptures under the esteemed guidance of Swami Shankar Chetan Bharti Ji Maharaj, an authority on Sanskrit Language, Vedas, Scriptures and other spiritual literature. At Kashi, 6 years of concentration on learning equipped Swamiji with complete knowledge of his cherished Subject (Gyana). After spending about 6 years at Kashi, when Swamiji returned to Kailash Ashram, his Guru, highly impressed with his accomplishments and knowledge, decided to appoint Revered Swamiji his religious heir of the Ashram. Knowing this and considering it as shackles binding him to an institution, Swamiji left Kailash Ahsram without informing anyone and visited unknown places of Himalayas meditating on the hidden mysteries of life.
Swamiji practised ‘Dhyan Samadhi’ for 7 to 8 months in the ‘Beehadgufa’ the famous cave in a jungle near Badrinath Temple (Uttrakhand) sitting in ‘Lotus’ posture for days together without caring for Bhiksha etc. He thus became a truly realised soul visualising the presence of the same God (Narayana) in every living being. Swamiji observed deep penance in the cave, and attained Spiritual Wisdom and complete realisation of Paramatama. (Supreme Consciousness).
Upto the age of 80, Swamiji travelled on foot without using any mode of transportation through whole of India, some parts of Pakistan and Nepal. During travelling, wherever night fell, Swamiji used to spend his night at odd places, i.e. under the trees or in deserted and dilapidated places. Swamiji used to have meals only once a day after taking Bhiksha from five houses, in a Khappar (i.e. Coconut Pot).
Swami Dayanand Giriji’s qualities of absolute renunication, right knowledge and spiritual wisdom separate him from thousands of Sadhus, Sanyasis, Holy preachers and Katha Vachaks (narrators of various holy scriptures). The ways and means deployed in his journey on the path of spiritual knowledge are, by no consideration, common and ordinary. From the very beginning he loved seclusion, shunned publicity through print and electronic media or any other means, never accepted money from any individual or institution, i.e he never touched money and upto the end of his life, never allowed ladies to meet him alone, without some male companion of the family. Adopting most austere ways of living without material comforts, throughout his life, he did not establish any Ashram and never recruited or appointed followers by posing himself a Guru or a Preceptor. His personal belongings comprised of simple unstitched saintly attire, Kamandlu for carrying water for drinking and Khappar for collecting Bhiksha (Alms) from five houses for eating only once throughout the day, normally around 11.00 a.m. He always remained a seeker of spiritual knowledge and moved from place to place and from person to person wherever he could quench his thirst for knowing, learning and practising all aspects of spiritual secrets.
Blessed persons who had personal contacts with Swamiji are not many, but to-day his discourses and writings published in Book Form revealing the hidden secrets of human life on earth and beyond, as conveyed by Swamiji, have generated spiritual awareness among thousands of readers who have spontaneously accepted Swamiji as undeclared Guru (Holy Master). The greatness and uniqueness in Swamiji was that througout his life he remained absolutely free from influence of material values and human vices. He was free from pride about his knowledge, observations and experiences derived from deep study of almost all holy scriptures to illuminate the minds of seekers of truth of human existence leading them on the path of salvation. He made a thorough study of Vedas, other Hindu scriptures, Hindu philosophy, Upnishdas, puranas etc. at Kailash Ashram, Haridwar and at Kashi (Varanasi). He also studied almost all Budhist literature that was available in Sarnath. He meditated deeply over all that he studied, discovered the essence of right knowledge and right faith and the path to salvation and practised it fully in his personal life. He has communicated all that eternal spiritual knowledge in a simple language of common people through his discourses published in book form and his books Adhyatmic Jeevan Padyavali Vol. I & II (with explanations) and Katipaya Sangyaon Ka Vishad Vivarn and various other publications.
During the last days of Swamiji’s physical existence; when he visualised and realised that his end is approaching, Swamiji resorted to ‘Khechri Mudra’ for last 7 days and didn’t take any food or water orally till his end which is possible only by Rishis and spiritually blessed saints. This mudra can be performed and observed only by yogis who wish to leave their mortal body for their salvation and ultimate journey to Mukti Dham (Paramdham) at their own choice.
Swamiji, a compact of real wisdom, all known human virtues, knowledge of Truth and mysteries of life, simplicity, absolute renunciation of the world even while living in this world, surrounded by turmoil and turbulence, left this mortal world for his heavenly abode in early hours of Devuthani Ekadshi on 23rd Nov., 2004. at 4.00 a.m. in Brahm mahurat. His mortal remains were consigned to “Jal -Samadhi” on 24th Nov., 2004 at ‘Neel Dhara’ of Ganga Haridwar as per Sawamiji’s wish.
Swamiji has left behind no successor, no Ashram, no moveable or immovable property, no material belongings, etc. But he has left lakhs of devotees who are blessed with knowledge of his unmatched teachings through his spiritual books, personal sermons and occasional discourses.