adiyogi the source of yoga book pdf free

adiyogi the source of yoga book pdf free

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Whether formless or embodied, celestial or terrestrial, mythic or historic, Shiva for him is real. Urgent, immediate, throbbingly present. The final section of this book is devoted to discussions that explore this mystery. Since some of these dialogues unfolded on a journey to Mount Kailash, this section is an invitation to travel with a mystic.

It is a chance to see a world, however blurrily, through his eyes. It is a chance to hear him speak about ideas and images in ways that confound the boundaries between the mundane and the mystical.

And then there is Adiyogi himself — remote and up close, legend and reality. For Sadhguru, Adiyogi is the ultimate. For me, Adiyogi has been more often than not just an excuse. An excuse to be around a living yogi and hear him talk about a being who distils every contradiction — life and death, the here and the hereafter, time and eternity — into a great, swirling present continuous.

In these conversations, I ask questions that I believe readers will share. Some provoke only more questions. But it also felt right to leave some questions unanswered, shrouded in the kind of silence that often accompanies the presence of a mystic.

I believe these conversations address a single question I had to ask in multiple guises during the making of this book. It is a question I often asked in exasperation. It is a question that always received a different response — each time clearer and yet more tantalizingly mysterious. It is a question I am still asking, though now in deepening fascination and incredulity: just who is Adiyogi? He was a being unlike anyone had ever seen — nine feet tall, ash-smeared, with flowing matted hair. Sometimes he sat absolutely still.

At other times, he danced. His dancing was indescribable. Wild and ecstatic, it seemed to breathe exuberance into an entire universe. Planets and stars, rivers and forests, mountains and oceans exploded into life around him. When he was motionless, he seemed to become the ageless silence at the heart of all creation. He seemed to become life itself.

No one had ever seen anyone like him before. They did not know who he was, where he came from, what his origins were. People gathered in huge numbers around him because his presence was quite extraordinary. It was clear that while he was on this planet, he was not of it.

They waited, hoping for a miracle. Nothing happened. Much of the time, he just sat still, completely oblivious to what was going on around him.

Except for a few tears of rapture that fell from his eyes, he showed no signs of life at all. They could not see that his sitting still for days and months on end was the real miracle. They were expecting firecrackers. That did not happen.

Everyone left. Only seven men hung on. They could not leave. This mysterious being was no longer merely the centre of their worlds. He seemed like the kernel of the very universe, the key to all the mysteries of existence. When he finally opened his eyes, they pleaded with him to share his experience with them.

He dismissed them. But they persevered. Many long years later, unable to ignore their unwavering commitment and radiant receptivity, Adiyogi — or the first yogi, as this being came to be called — relented.

He directed his attention to these seven thirsty seekers and began expounding to them the nature of life. It was on that full moon day — the first full moon after the summer solstice — that an entire exploration of the mechanics of life unfolded on this planet.

It was on that day that Adiyogi became Adi Guru, the first Guru. That day is celebrated to this moment in the history of the Indian subcontinent as Guru Poornima.

What makes this day so important? It was on this day that the seed of liberation was planted in the human consciousness. It was on this day that it was declared for the first time in human history that biology is not destiny, that it is possible for a human being to evolve consciously. The finite can turn infinite. The particular can turn universal. Compulsion can turn into consciousness. It is possible for a piece of creation to become one with the source of creation.

The human creature can become a divine entity. This insight did not give birth to faith. It instead gave birth to science. A science that aimed at making human beings the rulers of their own fate, the architects of their own destiny.

Guru Poornima predates religion. It happened before the idea of religion even entered the human mind. The journey did not demand belief in a prescribed set of conclusions. The journey was about exploration — a fearless exploration of the profoundest depths of human consciousness. The ultimate aim was not God. The ultimate aim was liberation. What Adiyogi transmitted to those seven disciples were the fundamentals of a science called yoga — union — a science of radical self-transformation that continues to live on thousands of years after that first exposition, a science that continues to empower human beings to blossom to their ultimate potential.

The goal was mukti — freedom from a life of physical enslavement and psychological bondage. The goal was life itself — roaring, unfettered life. Ecstatic, boundless, infinite life. And that freedom, Adiyogi declared, is within the reach of every human being.

Or we could be invoking Shiva as Adiyogi, the first-ever yogi, the one who first perceived this emptiness. This can often seem confusing.

Let us look at it this way. This means that you cannot separate the one who perceives from that which is perceived. He is one with Shi-va, the ultimate emptiness. The two are not separate any more. When I speak of Adiyogi, I travel seamlessly between these two definitions. I cannot separate the two because, in my experience, they are not separate. The next section in this book tells the story of this larger-than-life yogi who walked the planet thousands of years ago.

But before we plunge into that tale, let us rewind to an even more ancient story. The biography of emptiness. The yogic creation myth. Can ultimate emptiness really have a biography?

And what do I mean by ultimate emptiness anyway? This is not an exercise in metaphysical acrobatics. It is a dimension that is always available, but most people are usually too busy or distracted to pay attention to it. You could simply begin by looking up at the night sky. At first glance, you see the moon, that mysterious orb that has fascinated lovers, poets and mystics down the ages. You also see a blaze of stars — some radiant, some more dimly luminous.

But if you continue to gaze upwards, what you gradually become aware of between that sprinkling of stars is just emptiness. An enormous expanse in which stars are just a small phenomena.

Stars, suns, planets — these celestial bodies come and go. Entire solar systems and galaxies come and go. But that dark emptiness — that endures. Light is produced because something is burning up. What is burning up can never be eternal. Whether it is a light bulb or the sun, both are sources of illumination with limited shelf lives. Both are burning up, and some day they will be over. It may take a hundred hours or a hundred billion years, but both will be over.

In this existence, the only thing that is eternal is darkness. So when you are a spiritual beginner, the divine is usually referred to as light. As you progress in yoga, we refer to the divine as darkness. And that is Shi-va — that interminability, that black infinitude. Does that mean Shi-va is nothing? Shi-va is no-thing. The hyphen is important. Shi-va is. But Shi-va is not something. Shi-va is that which is not. Shi-va is that lap of vast nothingness in which creation has happened.

Over 99 per cent of the atom and the cosmos are, in fact, as we are told today, emptiness — simply no-thing. Or, to put it another way, you have awakened to the unquenchable human thirst for that which is beyond physicality. You have begun to seek that which is beyond limits, beyond borders, beyond boundaries.

That which is beyond all definition. This is the familiar world of material phenomena — your body, your home, your work, your relationships. When you begin seeking your ultimate well-being, however, you are interested in a dimension beyond the physical. Once questions of material well-being are addressed, it is only natural for individuals to ask questions about their ultimate well-being. This has happened with all the ancient cultures on this planet.

This is the natural progression of human enquiry. In yoga, existence is divided into four dimensions: sthoola, sookshma, shoonya and shi-va. Sthoola means gross existence or physicality. Everything that you can sense through the five sense organs — everything that you can see, smell, taste, hear and touch — is considered physical or sthoola.

It is measurable, quantifiable, verifiable. It can be analysed by your intellect, understood and grasped. But when existence goes beyond the empirical — that is, beyond the perception of the five senses — and is still physical in nature, we call it sookshma.

Sookshma is a dimension that is still physical, but cannot be grasped through the five senses. Nor can you analyse it with your intellect. Gnana means knowledge. If you are able to perceive the dimension of subtlety beyond ordinary knowing, we call it visheshagnana or vigyan, extra-ordinary knowledge.

Vigyan is the ability to perceive those dimensions which cannot be perceived through the five senses. Today, science is entering those spaces. Nobody is ever going to see a Higgs boson; they can only perceive its footprint. Today science is acknowledging the subtle realm of visheshagnana. If you go even further, existence becomes shoonya — emptiness or the absence of form. There is no physicality here. Where there is no physicality, your sense organs and intellect become absolutely redundant.

This dimension is non-physical, but it exists. It is the basis of all physical existence. When this dimension is personified, Shi-va becomes Shiva. In his ultimate state, Shiva is eternally still. When Shiva moves, his initial phase of movement is dark. He is therefore known as the Dark One. When he emerges and becomes a part of this world, he is light. If you want to transact with him, you deal with him as light. You can worship him, be devoted to him, seek his blessings.

This is the nature of every particle in existence. When it is still, it is dark. In the early stages of dynamism, it generates energy, but is still dark. Only when it moves at a certain speed does it become light. Anything that moves at the speed of light, as we know, becomes light.

But if you confront the dark face or go beyond that, you cannot transact with Shiva. If you want to go there, you need courage, you need to be willing to transcend, ready to leave everything you know.

You need to be prepared to be sucked into another dimension altogether. No worship is possible there. There is just dissolution.

There one exists not as an accumulation of memory and experience, not as an embodiment of love or compassion. There one simply exists in an intensity of inclusiveness. Modern science seems to be veering towards a similar understanding of the ultimate nature of existence. Both science and mysticism are, in fact, fuelled by the same spirit of wonder.

Both are fuelled by the deep desire to know. Neither is about belief. So, they are, in essence, not so very different, and never have been. At one time, it seemed like they ran on parallel tracks. But recent convergences suggest that we could be on the verge of a new dialogue between the two.

Modern physicists have accepted that all existence is fundamentally energy. But now they also acknowledge that there is something else that they have no instrument to measure. They have begun to realize that there is a dimension of energy that seems to hold everything together. They recognize its existence, but have no clue to its nature. For now they concede that it constitutes 73 per cent of the universe. It will take time and evolution for them to see that it is, in fact, a lot more than that!

At the centre of a black hole, they say, is a singularity, a place where creation and destruction happen simultaneously. In fact, scientists seem just one step short of saying: Shi-va! In the yogic tradition, Shi-va is the unfathomable emptiness from which creation springs and into which it collapses. This is why traditional mythology personifies him as the Destroyer. At the same time, Shiva is Mahadeva, the greatest of divine beings, and the very Creator of this cosmos.

An explanation for the process of creation and destruction is found in the very same figure. Some years ago, I attended a presentation by an eminent physicist on the Big Bang Theory. I found it amusing because science is now beginning to sound just like yogic lore! Scientists even seem to be describing the same forms that yoga has always held as sacred. Science today tells us that the universe is endless. Yogic culture talked of an ever-expanding universe millennia ago. It talks of the whole of existence as an eternal and ongoing dance between Shiva and Shakti.

The non-physical dimension is Shi-va. The physical dimension of energy that animates the universe is Shakti. They are two aspects of the same reality. Shi-va, the latent unmanifest dimension of reality, generates an energy called Shakti — an energy that is a consequence not of particles but emptiness, an energy without substance or basis. This energy ignites the void into a dynamic state of creation, maintenance and destruction.

And thus emerges the entire realm of time and space, name and form, birth and death. From this begins the whole drama of life. Shi-va is the centripetal force that holds existence together; Shakti is the centrifugal force that gives rise to the explosive diversity of existence. In yogic culture, we personified these ideas, infused plot and dialogue into existential insights and turned them into stories. There is a certain beauty to it, particularly because it means we found ways to talk about those dimensions that are beyond the realm of logic.

The story goes like this: Shiva, the Dark One, is in deep slumber. Since he is that which is nascent, that which is latent, Shiva can only be inert. So, he sleeps. You could think of it like this. Imagine an impenetrable darkness. Allow that darkness to thin infinitesimally, and for the purposes of our story, imagine the vaguest silhouette of a being — a gigantic shadow of a primal being, containing all cosmic space within him, his wild locks splayed far over the universe, lying on his side, lost in an unimaginably profound slumber.

Out of his navel emerges a flame of energy, fiery orange, somewhat feminine in nature. This twisty, serpentine shiver of energy — Shakti — shoots up high into the void, and since the only way it can function is to become one with him again, it bounces back, ricocheting deep into his heart.

This is a moment of union with far-reaching consequences. For there now arises from the depths of this supine being, a roar. And out of his mouth erupts a fiery ellipsoidal form that stretches into infinity. This great blast of furious intensity — this primordial roar of creation — resounds into the farthest reaches of the cosmos.

And this becomes the first form of Shiva. This is Rudra — literally, the one who roars. As this first form — singular and undifferentiated — begins to reverberate, there is a spellbinding explosion of sound and light.

Galaxies and planets, stars and moons, celestial realms and nether worlds, dimensions of the past and future, realms both subtle and gross, spew out of the mouth of Rudra, galvanized into life.

This is the birth of plurality. Breathtaking plurality. Now begins the vibrancy and dynamism of physical creation. This, in essence, is the yogic creation story. Today, scientists speculate that the first form in the universe could have been ellipsoidal. Initially, this form could have been just one large roaring mass of gases.

But gradually these hot gases expanded, cooled, became less dense, and gave rise to masses of creation; and that is possibly how the entire universe came into being about fourteen billion years ago.

In an automobile if you take off the manifold and start the engine, it would sound like a volley of bangs. But if you throttle it up, the engine roars. So, a series of bangs in close succession does, in fact, sound like a roar. And, therefore, the Big Bang of modern science and the Big Roar of the yogic perspective could be closer cosmological models than we might imagine!

As human beings, it is natural to think of the creation of life in terms of sexuality; so the first form in yogic lore was seen as a phallus, suggesting that Shiva was aroused and ready for creation.

It is seen as the first form from which all other forms in the universe are said to have sprung. From inner experience, we know that the final form assumed by physical creation before it dissolves is also ellipsoidal. So the first and final forms are both lingas. The A and Z of creation, the alpha and omega of life, happen to have the same fundamental form. When someone once asked me what this really meant, I told him that existence actually resembles a sandwich! When Shi-va, or no-thingness, took on form, it took on the shape of a linga.

When creation dissolves, the final shape it assumes is also a linga. In short, the linga is the form at either end of creation, before and beyond which lies emptiness. Since it is a transitory phase, closest to the source of creation and dissolution, it is seen as a doorway — a doorway to the beyond from both ends.

It is both form and an invitation to the formless. It is only because a few human beings through history have found this passage that we realized that the ultimate nature of existence is boundless no-thingness.

Otherwise we would have definitely imagined that the ultimate resembled a human being — maybe bigger and wiser and more capable than us, maybe gifted with a hundred heads or a thousand arms! But we would naturally think of the divine as a bigger and grander version of ourselves.

It is because we found the passage through the linga that we realized that the nature of existence is actually infinite emptiness. As a combination of male and female sexuality, the linga which, in iconography, is always depicted as inseparable from the yoni or the womb is an audacious symbol of divinity. In the hierarchy of instincts, sex is considered to be the lowest, and the desire for the divine the highest.

But here divinity is represented by the metaphor of sexual union — a hugely courageous way of looking at life. Such an image would be impossible in a culture where perspectives of the sacred evolved out of narrow ideas of morality, good and bad, right and wrong.

This is only possible in a culture where an understanding of the sacred evolved out of consciousness. There is no distinction between the sacred and the profane in this symbol. With Shiva, nothing is, in fact, profane, nothing heretical, nothing taboo. Nothing is excluded, absolutely nothing beyond the limits of acceptability.

So what does this inspired symbol really signify? If the masculine and feminine meet at the mooladhara, the lowest chakra or energy centre in the human system, that is sexuality. But if they meet within the highest chakra, the sahasrara, that is spirituality.

That is the point at which the human meets the divine, the point at which creation begins and ends, the point at which birth and dissolution happen in endless simultaneity. That is selfrealization. In the yogic view, the masculine and feminine are seen as two fundamental qualities in existence. They have nothing to do with the biological condition of being male or female. As each one of us is a product of both father and mother, each individual is seen as a combination of the masculine and feminine in equal proportion.

It is the dominance of expression that varies from person to person. On the physical level, the sexual impulse is the creative force in existence. Sexual union denotes the biological propagation of human life.

The body is created out of this. On the spiritual level, once again the same inner union of masculine and feminine is the source of all creation.

It is the same energy. When it is dissipated on the level of the mooladhara, it is sex. When it moves to the sahasrara, the same energy becomes enlightenment. The sexual turns sacred.

Animal nature turns divine. The human animal, pashu, turns into the Lord of Life, Pashupati. Exuberant, mutable nature, Prakriti, becomes one with the imperishable Absolute, Purusha. Creation becomes one with the source of creation. The two are now inseparable. In tantric imagery, Shakti and Shiva are seen in terms of two chakras at either end of the human system.

Shakti who lies coiled at the lowest chakra — the mooladhara — has a tremendous urge to ascend and meet Shiva. But he is inert; he will not come down. So she rises to meet him. The whole process of human evolution is to make this energy rise to the highest point, rather than get frittered away at the lower levels.

Once Shakti and Shiva unite, the energy has reached its ultimate destination. This is the supreme homecoming. The journey is complete. Nothing more remains to be achieved. But the union is also annihilation. The birth of the infinite marks the dissolution and dis-illusion of the finite. This is why Shiva represents creation and the destruction of life as you know it. When your energies hit their peak, a new dimension of perception opens up, a dimension beyond all physical limitations.

Now begins the downpour of another dimension — the dimension of the beyond. In the yogic tradition, Shiva is referred to as Kala, the Dark One, and Shakti is referred to as Kali, his female counterpart. For Kala is not just the endless darkness of space. Kala also means time. And so, the yogic sciences employ the same word for both time and space. This is because these are not seen as different.

Recently, scientists have recorded gravitational waves on the fabric of space—time. But this also reconfirms a time-honoured yogic insight: that time is the fundamental basis of creation. One aspect of time relates to the physical nature of creation. Physical reality is cyclical: for example, a single rotation of the earth is a day, a revolution of the moon is a month, a revolution of the planet around the sun is a year. From the atomic to the cosmic, everything physical is always in cyclical motion.

This is the aspect called Kala. But there is an even more fundamental dimension of time that is beyond the cyclical. It is this ineffable dimension that holds the entire universe together.

This is non-cyclical time, eternity, or what the yogic system termed Mahakala. Only in time, space is possible. Only because of space, form is possible, and all physical reality becomes possible. When Mahakala — a formidable dimension, potent with life — begins to reverberate, physical existence begins to dawn.

Even gravity — the force that manages the time—space relationship and allows it to find expression — is seen as one small by-product of time. Everywhere in the world the spiritual process is about transcending the physical world of form and returning to the realm of deathlessness, of eternity. Not because there is anything inherently wrong with the physical world. The problem is just that it is perishable, subject to cycles of birth and decay. The dark, dynamic aspect of Shiva has therefore been personified in mythology as Kala Bhairava, the Destroyer of Ignorance, he who annihilates the compulsive cycles of birth and death, being and non- being.

When Kala Bhairava — this vibrant state of darkness — becomes absolutely still, he returns to the eternal, fundamental Mahakala. When the last vestige of cyclical existence is annihilated, Mahakala is all that remains. This is the ultimate nature of existence, time beyond cycles, the dimension of time that endures when space has been annihilated, where everything is eternally here and now.

This is the domain of raw, pulsating, unending life. This is Shiva. For the ignorant, Shiva spells destruction. He is synonymous with a terrifyingly nihilistic view of the universe. This has given rise to several crude misconceptions about Eastern culture in the West. There is even an unfortunate tradition in the Indian subcontinent right now which says that you should not keep an image of Shiva in your home.

It is based on a rudimentary understanding of Shiva as Destroyer. The premise is that if you keep Shiva out, you could keep death at bay. As if that were even possible!

What Shiva dissolves are your delusions. He destroys only your psychological drama which lives on duality and fragmentation, separating you from the existential. This seductive drama seems real and compelling, even though it is entirely manufactured by you.

This is what the ancients called maya. Maya does not mean illusion, although it is often reductively interpreted as such. It simply means our experience of life is relative. Modern neuroscientists confirm this. It does not mean reality does not exist; it simply means that we are not seeing it the way it is.

For the very way you see, hear, smell, taste and touch the world is your responsibility; it is your karma; it is the destiny you have written for yourself, unconsciously. It is your doing. The spiritual process is about learning to write your destiny consciously. It means beginning the journey from the psychological — maya — to the existential — Shi-va. And so, Shiva does not spell religion. Shiva spells responsibility — our ability to take our very life process in our hands.

When the old is destroyed, spirituality is not about filling up the empty space with a new set of beliefs. The aim of any authentic spirituality is never to convert you from one set of doctrines to another. The evacuated space — that you now see as emptiness — is tremendous intelligence. It is the intelligence from which the entire creation has sprung. That space is life. That space is enlightenment.

Every year, a group of Isha meditators sets out on a tour of the Himalayas. Accompanying them on this journey is Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev — a spiritual master considered by many to be one of the foremost living sages on the planet. This is a book for those who stayed behind.

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