Pandit Dharam Prakash Sharma is a well-known film star, a prominent business executive and a member of the Indian Parliament. He was the only son of the chief priest of Pushkar Teertha (or tirth), Ajmer, Rajasthan. Pushkar Tirth is one of the only two temples in India dedicated to Brahma.
Even though Panditji was born in Pushkar Teertha, he had an intense hunger for the true living God. He was very much involved in all religious activities but he still did not have the real peace in his heart. He often wondered, “After all these fasts and religious ceremonies which I am performing every day, am I in right relationship with God? Is he drawing closer to me?”
A Mysterious Voice
In Agra University where he studied, he first heard about the “Sermon on the Mount” (Sermon on the Mount is an account of Jesus’ teaching found in the Gospel of Matthew in the Bible). He thought to himself, “I need not read the Bible as it is the religion of the British who ruled my country”. Both his parents were freedom fighters and went to jail to fight for India’s independence. But when he learnt that Mahatma Gandhi was greatly influenced by it, he decided to check it out. While he was reading it, he heard a mysterious voice saying, “I am the one whom you are searching from the childhood”. He was astounded and checked around the room but found no one. Again he heard the same voice. But he could see no one. Soon after that the whole room was lit with bright light. It was not any natural light he had seen before but a different kind of light. In it, he saw two hands stretched towards him and calling him. He was amazed by this and was very confused by this experience. He wanted to know who this Jesus Christ is. He immediately ran to his principal who was a Christian, the principal could not have answer for him, so he took him to a Roman Catholic Bishop who told him, “Only if you are a Christian, you can understand this”! He was very sad to hear this as he never could imagine becoming a Christian. He hated this religion to his core.
He started observing the lives of some Christian friends in his university. But unfortunately he found that their lives did not match the teaching of Jesus Christ, he read in the bible. This intensified his hatred for the Christian religion. So he went to the library took three Bibles in different languages and burnt them. Few of his Hindu friends who watched, applauded him for the act.
Life continued on and he tried to forget this experience at the University and moved forward. He had a brilliant career first as a well-known film star, then a prominent business executive and finally as a member of the Indian Parliament.
His Life-Changing Experience
When he was on the peak of his career, one incident rocked his life. It occurred in prime of his political career. V.V.Giri was the President of India back then. The president was leaving in a train after one of his trip, there was a throng of people waving him goodbye on a railway station. While he was also standing and waving, he heard an audible voice, “Where is he going?” Panditji said, “Who?”
The Voice said, “Him, where is he going”.
Panditji said, “He is going to his home”.
The Voice asked, “where will he go from there?”
Panditji said, “He will leave this world and go as everyone has to go.”
The Voice asked, “Do you know where he is going?”
Panditji said, “No.”
The Voice said, “Do you know where you are going?”
Panditji said, “I am not sure.”
The Voice asked, “Where will you go from here?” “How will you enter into eternal life? How will you save yourself?”
He did not have any answers to all these questions. But he was reminded of a bible verse, he read during his college days. “Even if you gain the whole world and lose your own life….” (Bible). Right at that place, in the same moment he prayed to Jesus Christ and asked him to come into his life. At that moment, he felt as if a son has met his Eternal Father. He felt a divine love, peace and comfort in his heart. He found his Lord and God in Jesus Christ. He resigned from his political career. He felt even if I reach to the highest political career and not have the love of God, it is all meaningless.
India was going through a political emergency and Indira Gandhi was the Prime Minister at that time. She requested Panditji to not leave politics but to help her in this time of emergency. But Panditji was determined. He also challenged her with the question, “Do you have the love and joy of the Lord?” She did not receive it positively and he left the office.
Purpose Driven Life
Pandit Dharam Prakash Sharma’s life is a living testimony of the quest for the living God, ultimately finding fulfillment, despite of all kinds of difficulties and opposition. It was through the spiritual strength of his wife Ashaji, which guided him to a very intimate relationship with the Lord and experience the true meaning and purpose of life. He has since devoted the rest of his life in sharing the Word of God and true meaning of atonement. Panditji has shared his entire testimony in a book ‘No greater love’.
Ten years after his knowing the living God and ten days before his father’s death, his father, Pandit Sohan Lal, told him, “My son, for ten years I have watched your life changed. You are on the true path and have found the way. Your Lord is my Lord too.”
Vedas and Doctrine of Sacrifice
Panditji says, “The desire of the Vedic rishis from ages were to seek the ultimate realization of the true God and His grace. The same desire of my own heart was fired through the power of this great good news of the heavenly Father and brought me at the feet of the eternal God.”
What the Hindu scriptures speak about Jesus? All mankind have sinned, having transgressed the law of God. Therefore, they devise various ways and means as to how to escape the wrath of God, and live. In our own country, the Brahmins perform sacrifices, and the non-Brahmins offer animals sacrifice.
An examination of the Vedas reveals that sacrifice is spoken of as the only means of salvation.
- “Prathamani Dharmani”; “Sacrifices are the foremost of our first duties.”
- “Yagnovai Bhuvanasya Nabhih”- “Sacrifice is the mainstay of the world”.
- “Yagne Sarvam Pratishthitam” – “It is sacrifice that bestows all things”.
- “Yagnovai Sutarmanowh”- “Sacrifice is the bark (boat) that enables one to live well”.
- “Yagnena Va Deva Divangatah” – “Only by means of sacrifice, the gods attained heaven”.
- “Rutasyanah Pathanaya Ati Viswani Durita”- “Deliverance through the path of sacrifice”.
The above doctrines proclaimed by the Vedas emphasize that sacrifices should be the foremost of all penances that must be performed for the atonement of sins.
You can hear the testimony of Pandit Dharam Prakash Sharma here on in 6 part series in Hindi.