Monday, October 4, 2010

Mahayogi Gorakshanath and Natha Sampradaya

Sampradaya of Mahayogi Gorakshanatha is an ancient authentic Yoga tradition. Guru Gorakshanatha has founded this tradition. In India him regard as Shiva. Mahayogi Gorakshanatha has established and developed yoga which now are practised all over the world. Many scientists assigned of creation of tradition to 5-12th century A.D.; but as a rule all data are very contradictory. Gorakshanatha and other great Yogis are respected by Nathas as realized kaya-siddhi and attained immortality. It was Gorakshanatha that developed the Hatha-yoga which are known as well as kaya-sadhana, pinda-sadhana, etc. He also is known as great master of Tantra and miracle-worker. There are many legends about him. Practices of Nathas include the internal alchemy leading to immortality. During many centuries Natha-cult transferred knowledge through lineage from Guru to disciple, therefore the tradition was kept to our time; during this period various spiritual systems of India borrowed methods of Hatha-yoga from Nathas. Gorakshanatha is justly considered as the founder of Hatha-yoga.
Gorakshanatha has written about fifty texts on philosophy, metaphysical aspects of yoga and various methods of Yoga-sadhana. He has founded the order of Kanphata Yogis. The Kanphata yogis' distinctive attribute is big ear-rings in the ears, that symbolizes solar and lunar energy. Natha Yogis have another characteristic feature, some of thise is Nadi (ritual whistle), which yogis carry on a black woolen string (Janeo). and This symbol is related to Nada-anusandhana practice, which intend for work with sound vibration. The Janeo string is connected with IdaPingala channels. A few treatises about Yoga and Tantra which are traditionally attributed to Mahayogi Gorakhshanatha and his followers are given below:

Hatha-yoga Pradipika, Gheranda Samhita, Shiva Samhita, Svara Tantra, Siddha Siddhanta Paddhati, Goraksha Vacana Sangraha, Amanaska Yoga, Goraksha Siddhanta Paddhati, Viveka Martanda, Goraksha Upanishada, Yoga Siddhanta Paddhati, Yoga-bija, Goraksha Paddhati, Goraksha Samhita, Goraksha Shataka, Yoga Chintamani, Yoga Martanda , Jnyanamrita, Jnyana-sankalini, Amaraugha Prabodha, Yoga Mahima, Goraksha Gita, Yoga Siddhanta Paddhati, Atmabodha, Goraksha-sahasranama, Kulananda Tantra, Matsyendra-samhita, Akulavira Tantra, Jnyana Karika, Natha-sutra, etc.
Hatha-yoga of Natha-sampradaya accentuates on the Kundalini-jagaran (sadhana, which trace to Tantric doctrines) as distinct from the Hatha-yoga of Maharishi Patanjali. Guru Gorakshanatha has founded 12 panthas or branches of Yoga-sampradaya. The spiritual culture of India is greatly rich and various, therefore different groups of Natha-sampradaya contain elements of various religious cults in their spiritual practice. Hence were formed 12 pathas which base on yoga-discipline. They did not be drawn into confrontations with any doctrines and always to keep aside from socially-religious activity of its. The priority objective of Natha cult is mystical experience. When the Buddhism was superseded from India, many tantric Buddhists come over to Nathas' side. Among Nathas it's possible to meet Sufies, Vaishnavas, Shaivas, Shaktas and Kaulas. The first Guru, who has told the Natha doctrine for disciple Matsyendranatha was Shiva in the form of Adinatha. Then Matsyendranatha transferred doctrine to Gorakshanatha.

Practice of Nathas (Yoga sadhana )
n Natha Sampradaya the yoga practice is presented a mantra-yoga, hatha-yoga, laya -yoga and raja-yoga, as well as аshtanga-yoga (Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi) and shadanga -yoga (steps from Asana up to Samadhi, excepting Yama and Niyama).

Sadhaka realizes a mantra is received from his Guru and its siddhi by practice the mantra-yoga.


Following methods enter into hatha-yoga: sukshma -vyayama, shat-karma (cleaning technics such as netti, basti, nauli, trataka, kapalabhati), asana (steady position of a body), pranayama (the control of vital energy over respiratory exercises), mudra ("stamp") and bandha (muscular "lock"). These methods inter-direct a stream of a prana in the central Sushumna channel and contribute to awakening of sleeping spiritual power (Kundalini Shakti) which rises upwards on the central channel and joins with supreme-consciousness (Shiva). This union of spiritual energy and consciousness is called hatha-yoga. There are many definitions of term the "hatha-yoga" in classical Nathas' texts, some of them belowed: Surya-Chandra, Prana- Аpana, Dakshina-Vama, Yamuna-Ganga, Ida -Pingala, Shiva-Shakti, Kula-Akula, Dvayta -Advayta, etc. Ultimate aim of hatha -yoga is realized by full unity of contrasts and attainment of ideal balance (samarasya).

It is practice of Nada-аnusandhana. According to Nathas' texts the highest practice of laya-yoga is a concentration on a Nada sound by means of the consciousness reaches cleanliness, dissolving vibrations of mind (mano-laya). Mind dissolves into Nada sound. The sound is nothing but Kundalini Shakti, which is appeared in cakras as matrika (Sanskrit sounds).

The Raja-yoga is intended for achievement of deep trance state (Samadhi ). Raja-yoga is method of work with consciousness which play a fundamental role in yoga.

Ten Yamas:
1. Ahimsa - nonviolence.
2. Satya - devotion to true in actions, speech and thoughts.
3. Asteya - non-stealing.
4. Brahmacharya - the control over all sensual bents and following to Brahma.
5. Kshama - forgiveness of defects and faults of others.
6. Dhriti - patience and stableness under any situations.
7. Daya - compassion to all people and other creations and help being a trouble.
8. Arjava - simplicity of life.
9. Mitahara - strict regulation of nutrition.
10. Shaucha - clarification of body and mind.

Ten Niyamas :
1. Tapas - asceticism.
2. Santosha - satisfaction that is.
3. Astikaya - belief in the sacred scripture, the Guru and all enlightened saints.
4. Dana - the donation.
5. Ishvara-pudjana - devoted worship to deity.
6. Siddhanta-vakya-shravana - regular hearing (study) scripture, especially yoga-shastras, comprehend and understanding of the truths opened in it by spiritual experience of enlightened Gurus.
7. Hri - to be conscience and aspire to correct one's faults.
8. Mati - development of fineness of intellect and deep comprehension.
9. Japa - the recitation of a divine Name so often and continuously, as far as possible, mentally and aloud with deep devotion.
10. Homa - the offering to a deity of meal, drink and subjects which are value for worshipper.

Asana is steady positions of a body in which yogi can controls a prana, mind and feelings. There are great variety of Asanas, but all of them lead to qualitative mastering Siddhasana, Padmasana, etc. positions in which it is possible to make Dhyana so easily.

Prana-ayama or prolongation, increase in abilities of vital energy (prana). Results of pranayama are attaining through work with breath. There are about ten basic methods of pranayama.

It is the control of senses through the mind control, as mind (manas) is considered as one of the perception organ (indriya). The consciousness goes to the Absolute from the limited objects by means of pratyahara.

Dharana is a direction of a spiritual concentration on object.

Dhyana is perception. There are number kinds of dhyana which are described in Nathas' texts: sthula-dhyana, sukshma-dhyana, joti-dhyana, etc.

This is state of a deep trance when borders between object, subject and their correlation (sambandha) disappear. There are many varieties of this state: savikalpa-samadhi, nirvikalpa-samadhi, dhyanayoga-samadhi, layayoga-samadhi, nadayoga-samadhi, rajayoga-samadhi, rasananda-samadhi, bhaktyoga-samadhi, mahabhava-samadhi, jada-samadhi, etc.

System of initiations

Natha-sampradaya are subdivided on three categories:

I. Аvalambi or Sathi (disciples and followers of Natha cult). Sometimes they are called Jigyasu, who wants to study the tradition and adhere to it. These are those who have accepted the Guru of the Natha line and receive upadeshas (instructions) to yoga practice. Guru gives diksha with guru-mantra to such followers. Such sadhakas get in touch with variety of phenomenal reality and follow a purnata principle (fullness or kula) most strongly.

II. Аughara is another category of sadhakas belonging to Nathas. These Nathas receive during the initiation certain symbols of Natha-sampradaya which they use in ritual practices. Aughara's symbols are nadi (whistle), representative of Shabda Brahman, and Janeu (string), representative of nadis (such channels as Ida, Pingala, Sushumna and 72,000 channels of an inner body). During nada-anusandhana practice Nath yogi hears a Nada sound in his anahata-cakra and contemplates the Guru and Ishtadevata in the same place of his heart. As a rule at this stage of initiation the chela (disciple) chooses the main Guru, who represents him to all Sampradaya.
Аughara can be compared with murti which during carving out of stone and cutting off of all unnecessary gets features of the Deity. Awakening of the Deity within murti are correlated with the spiritual birth of Siddha or Natha-yogi which then becomes Darshani.

III. Кanphata or Darshani is the highest initiation of Natha tradition. At the time of initiation with this diksha Guru neatly cuts a hole in the center of ears of his disciple and inserts there the kundalas or darshanas (earrings). They are linked with two energy channels which assist to direct sexual energy to sahasrara-cakra. These channels in the center of the ear help to control amrita (nectar of immortality) which descends from sahasrara-cakra. Finally the absorption of it by jathar-agni (digestive fire) and animal instincts, which yogi learns to control, is prevented. The person who has received such kind of initiation is considered as purnasannyasi in Natha sampradaya and is more respected then Aughara. Only Darshani can be considered as Guru and shall be able to represent the Natha tradition completely.


  1. the great science of soul ..that purges mind of all impurities..ohm namah shivay

    I want to get intention of NATH sampraday
    Guru ji Mujhko kya krna chahiye? Kaise deeksha le skta mai?

    I want to get intention of NATH sampraday
    Guru ji Mujhko kya krna chahiye? Kaise deeksha le skta mai?