His Holiness Shri Bhola Nathji (1902-1992) was a great spiritual luminary of his time, who was the Founder of the World Prayer Day for Peace, which he had founded in 1984 to save the world from a nuclear holocaust. He was fondly known as " Shri Nathji". In 1932 he had founded the Divine Love Society for bringing about peace and unity amongst people of various faiths.
He was born on the 23rd of June 1902 in Abbotabad, which was a hill station in India. He left his bodily frame at the age of 90 on the 5th of September 1992 at New Delhi after giving peace and beatitude to humanity all his life.
His early years were spent in the Punjab, in Amritsar and Lahore, and in later years he was in the state of Uttar Pradesh in Northern India, where he finally made Mussoorie his home town. He was known widely in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and regions of Maharashtra where many homes still carry his portraits. He was in Europe and America briefly during the years 1963-1967.
His incredibly beautiful personality glowed with a divine radiance. He was often described as the handsomest man in the whole world, as his portraits clearly show.
He would say: "God is Love". Although accredited with the power of doing miracles, he attached little importance to them and would say:
"I have no mission except Love in this world
My mission is Love and my work is Love"
He was the humblest person upon the planet earth and called himself, in all humility,
Ghulam Rue Zameen, which is Persian for, The Servant of the Earth.
Many people regarded HH Shri Bhola Nathji as an incarnation of God come down upon the planet earth. Amongst his foremost followers was the late Shri Ganesh Prasad Bhutt, who was then the Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh.
The father of HH Shri Bhola Nathji was Shri Devi Das Mehta,(1940-1967) who was an intensely pious and spiritual person. He was a millionaire land owner of Dinanagar in the Punjab, but gave away his wealth to the poor. He lived in Batala in the Punjab during the early years, and later was in Simla, Amritsar and Lahore.He came to be known as Shri Babaji Bhagwan, and multitudes thronged to him for his benedictions.
HH Shri Bhola Nathji was married in Lahore in 1939 to Savitri Devi who was the daughter of Lala Hargopal Khanna a leading senior advocate of Lahore and the Legal Adviser of the Punjab National Bank.
Shri Bhola Nathji had two sons, Pran Nath and Priya Nath. Pran Nath is an electronics engineer in London, while Priya Nath is a former nuclear physicist and scholar of Harvard University, USA, who is carrying on with the work of his father.
All his life HH Shri Bhola Nathji gave peace and beatitude to countless souls, relieving them of their sorrows and sufferings through his message of love and peace. All who came to him found themselves flooded with an indescribable feeling of Divine Love. Their ills and sorrows disappeared miraculously.
His speeches and writings transcended boundaries of race, religion or nationality. He wrote numerous books in Hindi, Urdu, and English, which still go to enlighten mankind. When he was only 15 years old he wrote a book entitled "Payaame Muhabbat" or "A Message of Love". The 200 book was written by him in a 24 hour sitting. It was described as a masterpiece of Urdu and Persian literature. The spiritual revelations in the book transformed the lives of many persons. His books on "365 Thoughts for Peace of Mind" and "The Secret of Death" still go to enlighten the lives of many.
His speeches and writing were marked for their irrefutable logic which expressed the most complex of spiritual truths in the simplest of words and served to convert many an intellectual and scientist to God. On the literary front his writings were marked with a beautiful poetic flavour of their own in which Urdu and Persian Verses found a great place. During the last 10 years of his life he wrote virtually non-stop, leaving behind a legacy of 30,000 spiritual ghazals for mankind, more than any poet had ever written at his age.
He founded the World Prayer Day for peace in 1984 at a time when the world was threatened by the grim specter of a nuclear holocaust from the nuclear weapons in existence. His appeal for a World Prayer Day went out to 170 Heads of State.
He wrote a joint letter to President Reagan of the USA and President Gorbachev of the USSR in April 1986 urging the two world leaders to forget their differences and to come together in peace. And then a great miracle occurred. The two world leaders who had barely been on speaking terms with each other, began writing letters of friendship to one another, resulting soon in the Helsinki Peace Treaty for the reduction of Nuclear weapons. By 1992 the entire face of the world had changed and the era of the cold war had come to an end.
In 1992, His Historical Prayer for the preservation of the environment was read out at the Earth Summit at Rio de Janeiro Brazil by his special emissary, amongst a large gathering which included several heads of state.
The World Prayer Day is still observed in the memory of HH Shri Bhola Nathji on the 23rd of June every year.