Fivefold Path mission USA

Fivefold path Mission USA is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to spread the science of happy living here after.

 Fivefold path is the essence of Vedas simplified by Param Sadguru Shree Gajanan Maharaj. This is part of his resolve to resuscitate Vedas or Santan Dharma for the welfare of humanity. Yagnya, Daan, Tapa, Karma and Swadhyaya are the very foundation of Vedic Dharma. It is the very science of life; life of peace, plenty and total fulfillment which can lead one to the supreme goal that I and the Almighty are One

Listen to E-Satsang

“Grace be with you all!
Oh! Travelers of kingdom of heaven, Light of the world has descended on earth. Divine Light is spreading throughout the whole planet. Kingdom of heaven is near at hand.
Blessed are those who saw the Light! Fortunate are those who walked in Light! Fortunate are they, for they will enter the Kingdom of Heaven!”
** Om Tat Sat**
Blessings by Param Sadguru Shree Gajanan Maharaj-Akkalkot-17-5-1978

Lord Dattatreya

Dattatreya was born to the sage Atri, who had been promised by Parameshvara (the Almighty), that He, Parameshvara, would be incarnated as his son. Some Hindu sects familiar with the trinity also attribute Dattatreya's incarnation as of all the three- Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma, indirectly meaning to be all powerful and above all. This is just one of the many legends related to the birth of Lord Dattatreya. Others suggest a more mystical origin of Dattatreya. Some of the sources claim that he was born in Kashmir jungles near the sacred Amarnath.

The same concept is echoed in an episode in the Dattatreya Purana. When Lord Dattatreya, the combined incarnation of the Trinity, was a child of five years, many old sages spotted His greatness and started insisting that He show them the path of Yoga. The child Datta wanted to test them. He disappeared into a pond and remained there for one hundred years. Some of the sages waited for Him on the banks of the pond while the infant Datta was in a state of complete Samadhi for one hundred years. Even after coming out of the pond he continued to test the sages. Dattatreya, who was 105 years old then, brought out His Yogic energy through His Brahma Randhra (an astral orifice found in the center of the skull, through which Yogis can leave the body), and gave it the form of a woman. Because the energy came out from Him, He was its natural owner. He declared her to be His consort. In order to test the sages, she drank wine and started dancing.
She was born as a youthful woman. Seeing her drink wine, some of the sages called her Madhumati. Others called her 'Nadee' because her dance resembled the dancing movements of a flooded river. Still others realized that she was none other than the Yogic Energy of Lord and prayed to Him. Some others went away.

Then Lord Dattatreya came out of Samadhi. She now appeared as an ascetic. Lord Dattatreya named her as Anagha. Those who called her as Madhumati and Nadee had identified her as one who possessed sin. But in reality she was sinless. Therefore Dattatreya had named her as Anagha (Sinless, Pure). Those who had recognized her to be the energy of Dattatreya, obtained the true vision of the Lord and could transcend all sorrows. In other words, because of her their sorrows (Agha or sin and sorrow) disappeared. This was another reason why Dattatreya named her as Anagha (one who removes sorrows).

Dattatreya left home at an early age to wander naked in search of the Absolute. He seems to have spent most of his life wandering in the area between and including North Karnataka, through Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh, and into Gujarat as far as the Narmada River. He attained realization at a town, now known as Ganagapura in Karnataka. The original footprints of Datta are believed to be located on the lonely peak at Girnar. The Tripura-rahasya refers to the disciple Parasurama finding Dattatreya meditating onGandhamadana mountain. Lord Dattatreya did tapas for 12,000 years in mount Girnar. Swami Vivekananda mentioned that for Hindus mount Girnar is considered holy as Dattâtreya stayed there.

As an avatar
In The Pathless Path to Immortality, Shri Gurudev Mahendranath writes:
Shri Dattatreya was a dropout of an earlier age than the period when Veda and Tantra merged to become one simple cult. It was men like Dattatreya who helped to make this possible. Three of his close disciples were kings, one an Asura and the other two both belonging to the warrior caste. Dattatreya himself was regarded as an avatar of Maheshwara (Shiva) but later was claimed by Vaishnavites as the avatar of Vishnu. Not such a sectarian claim as it appears; Hindus regard Shiva and Vishnu as the same or as manifestations of the Absolute taking form.

Indeed, the Dattatreya Upanisad, which opens proclaiming Dattatreya's identity with Vishnu, ends with the mantra Om Namah Shivaya, identifying Datta with Shiva. In the last portion of the third chapter, Mahesvara (Shiva) alone is said to pervade reality and shine in every heart of man. He alone is in front, behind, to the left, to the right, below, above, everywhere the center. Finally, Mahesvara is identified with Dattatreya, depicting the latter as an Avatar of Shiva. Guru Gobind Singh writes in the Dasam Granth that Dattatreya (Datt Muni, Datt Dev etc.) was an incarnation of Rudra (The Supreme Power). He has written the whole story of Dattatreya's life.


A deity of Dattatreya along with four dogs and a cow
The appearance of Shri Dattatreya in pictures varies according to traditional beliefs. The most commonly trusted form is the one described as below
मालाकमंडलुरधः करपद्मयुग्मे, मध्यस्थ पाणियुगुले डमरूत्रिशूले
यस्यस्त उर्ध्वकरयोः शुभशंखचक्रे वंदे तमत्रिवरदं भुजषटकयुक्तम
(I bow to the son of Atri, who has six hands and whose lowest two hands have maalaa and kamandalu, middle pair of hands hold damaru and trishool and top two hands have holy Shankh and Chakra) Other depictions, however, show other weapons like 'Gada' in the hands of Dattatreya sometimes.

The nectar of the honey-bee
Rigopoulos (1998: p.xii) conveys the motif of the '"honey bee" Yogin' (as an aside, the literary point of origin of this motif may be the Nad-Bindu Upanishad of the Rig Veda) common to nondual Dharmic Traditions and champions Dattatreya as the archetypal model of inclusionismand syncretism by implication:
Furthermore, the unfolding of the Dattātreya icon illustrates the development of Yoga as a synthetic and inclusive body of ideologies and practices. Although fundamentally a jñāna-mūrti, Dattātreya is a "honey bee" Yogin: one whose character and teachings are developed by gathering varieties of Yoga's flowers. For all religious groups whose propensity it is to include ideas, practices, and teaching from the ocean of traditions, Dattātreya is truly a paradigm.

Werness (2004: p. 138) ventures the semiology of the four dogs each of a different colour oft-depicted in Dattatreya iconography as holding the valence of the fourVedas:rigveda, yajurveda, atharvaveda & samveda
Pre-Vedic Indian dogs were regarded as auspicious symbols, and later deities assumed dog forms, became associated with dogs, and were linked with the glory and fidelity of warriors. Four different-coloured dogs accompanied the Dattatreya, who represented the four Vedas...
There is other symbolism attachable here. Dogs also held the cultural significance of 'dog eaters' (Sanskrit: chandala), those who existed beyond the confines of Varnashrama Dharma. Dogs are both wild and tame, and symbols of fidelity and devotion (Sanskrit: bhakti).

Dattatreya is one of the oldest deities. The first reference to this deity is found in epics like Mahabharata and Ramayana. In Mahanubhav panth Dattatreya is worshipped as the Supreme Lord who wanders the earth taking different forms. Similarly, in the Dattatreya Upanishad, which is a part of the Atharva Veda, he is described as being able to appear in the form of a child, madman, or demon in order to help his devotees achieve moksha, liberation from the bonds of worldly existence. Even today He is believed to appear before yogya purush (men and women who have cleansed themselves and are worthy of moksha).
The single head for Dattatreya can be explained if one considers the Tantric traditions which prevailed in India about 1000 years back. It was Gorakshanath who changed/removed the aghori traditions and gave the Nath sampradaya the acceptable civil form it has today. Dattatreya may have been a very powerful sage existing before this time, and over the centuries he acquired a divine status. It has been argued that the three heads came later, in the last 900 years or so.

According to the book "Shridattareya Shodashavatar Charitanee" by Shri Vasudevananda Saraswati, Dattatreya is supposed to have taken 16 Avatars. The names and their birthdate (as per the Lunar calendar) are given in brackets.[13]
1. Yogiraaj (Kaartik Shu.15)
2. Atrivarad (Kaartik Kru.1)
3. Dattatreya (Kaartik Kru.2)
4. Kaalaagnishaman (Maargashirsha Shu.14)
5. Yogijanvallabh (Maargashirsha Shu.15)
6. Lilaavishambhar (Paush Shu.15)
7. Siddharaaj (Maagh Shu.15)
8. Dnyaasaagar (Faalgun Shu.10)
9. Vishambhar (Chaitra Shu.15)
10. Maayaamukta (Vaishaakh Shu.15)
11. Maayaamukta (Jyeshtha Shu.13)
12. Aadiguru (Aashaadh Shu.15)
13. Shivarup (Shraavan Shu.8)
14. Devdev (Bhaadrapad Shu.14)
15. Digambar (Aashwin Shu.15)
16. Krishnashyaamkamalnayan (Kaartik Shu.12)
In the Dasopanta tradition, all 16 are worshiped and Dasopanta is considered as the 17th avatara.

In the Datta Sampradaya the first avatar in Kaliyuga is Shripad Shri Vallabh, the second is Narasimha Saraswati and the third is Sri Ganapathy Sachchidananda Swamiji. These are the poorna incarnations of Lord Dattatreya. Other incarnations include Akkalkot Maharaj, Shirdi Sai Baba (Shirdi, Maharashtra) (Though Shiridi Sai Baba is essentially an incarnation of Lord Hanuman who was asked to incarnate on the earth by Sri Pada Vallabha) and Gajanan Maharaj (Shegaon).
The Upanishads Avadhutopanishad and Jaabaaldarshanopanishad mention that this philosophy was put forward by Dattatreya.