Lord Shiva is the immortal vital force on whom there is no constrain of title, form and time. Also, he is the supreme power in the Hindu religion. In the story behind the Adiyogi Shiva statue, the great ‘Yogi’ is seen completely absorbed in profound meditation – the transcendental reality. And therefore, Yoga becomes a spiritual discipline that got support of a particularly subtle science, which aims towards bringing harmony between intellect and body.
One who encounters or experiences this unity of existence can master yoga, and they also become a Yogi.
Do you know who is Adiyogi?
Whenever we look at the history of Adiyogi, the representation of Shiva is as the first yogi; also as the first Guru or Adi guru who propagated the merits of yoga. Yogeshwara or ‘Great Lord of Yoga’ is the representation of divine meditation and spirituality.
Not only Adiyogi, but Nataraj, the God of Dance, is also an incarnation of Shiva. Read more about the Shiva Nataraj
Meaning of Yoga and its significance
“Yoga is the journey of the self, through the self, to the self”
– Bhagavad Gita
The word ‘Yoga’ is from the Sanskrit word ‘Yuj’, which means ‘to join’ or ‘to yoke’ or ‘to unite’. Also as per yogic scriptures, the practice of Yoga enables a person to be in union with individual and Universal Consciousness, indicating a perfect equilibrium of the Mind and body. There are several sources of learning yoga one can easily learn to cultivate and use for their regular lives. However, the main aim of yoga source is Self-realization, which leads to the state of ‘liberation’ (Moksha) or ‘freedom’ (Kaivalya). Therefore, Yoga works on these four broad classifications:
Karma yoga– Body
Bhakti yoga– Emotions
Gyana yoga– Mind and Intellect
Kriya yoga– Energy
However, by applying these classifications, we can connect to the inner core of our being. Only through the practice of Yoga, a human can attain a healthy and harmonious life. Because, Yoga is the attainment of the perfect union of mind, body and soul. Thus, this perfect union is what ultimately leads to mastery.
History of Adiyogi- the first Yogi
Lord Shiva is Adiyogi- from whose divinity Yoga took birth. He is the indispensable guru among the yogis, and the first to instruct the science behind Yoga. ‘Adiyogi Shiva statue’ story uncovers the self of Shiva who is meditating within the mountains of Kailash in silence, positioning himself in the shape of a lotus. While the height of his mental and yogic energies upto the level of realizing the very workings of the universe.
Adiyogi history also narrates of a tale of Shiva who bestowed his knowledge on Yoga and meditation to his spouse Parvati. On the night when Lord Shiva for the first time shared the secrets of Yoga to his spouse. Therefore, he was at that moment hailed as the Adi Guru of Yoga.
Adiyogi history reveals Shiva teaching Parvati 84 Asanas of Yoga which belong to the Vedic parampara. These 84 Asanas have the power to deliver the individual towards Rajyoga which is the ‘Goal of yoga’. Also, these Yogic positions eradicate the doshas in a person’s life and lead to the most favourable outcomes.
The eternal love Shiva had for his spouse Parvati was so strong that he never felt like sharing his Yogic insights with anybody else but her. However, Goddess Parvati who stands as a symbol of care and affection could not take in the sufferings of the people and considered it her duty to share these insights with them.
According to Adiyogi history, the convention of second set of yogic teachings was to the Sapta Rishis or the first seven sages, and His instructions were then exchanged to these sages on the banks of Kanti Sarovar, near Kedarnath.
Why is Lord Shiva known as Adiguru?
In the Indian culture, and the convention exchange of knowledge and instructions are through the lineage of teacher-disciple, ‘Guru Shishya Parampara’. The unceasing wellspring of knowledge flowed from the Supreme Godhead or master represented as Lord Shiva. Adiyogi history clarifies that Shiva first conveyed it to Parvati and after that to the seven sages called Sapta Rishis.
These seven sages travelled wide and far to different regions of the world to spread the divine knowledge to the entire of humankind. Subsequently, Adiyogi being the first Teacher in the universe, also known as the Adi Guru.
The supreme knowledge or the incomparable information is essential to know about the Universal Self (Paramatma) or what we call as God. Therefore, human being has become the most elevated creation since we got the control of knowing his existence, unlike other living creatures of the world. It seems that the Sat, Chit, Ananda – Truth, Awareness, and Bliss are the properties of the Supreme Self.
Asato Ma Sat Gamaya (Untruth to Truth)
Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya (Darkness to Light)
Mrutyorma Amrutam Gamaya (Death to Immortality)
In this journey, the Supreme Energy known as Shiva assists man through the Gurus that he has trained. Therefore, in Adiyogi history the eternal wisdom flows from the Adiguru through the seven sages; as a result to their successors and to the whole of humankind.
Adiyogi Shiva statue – the world’s largest sculpture in the world
Adiyogi Shiva statue is one of the world’s largest statue that depicts the Hindu deity, Shiva. It is built from 500 tons of steel. It got recognition from the Guinness book of world records. For designing the statue, it took almost 2.5 years and the face of Shiva, which is made of small pieces of metal put together is a first-of-its-kind.
Location of the temple and Adiyogi statue history
There are greenery farms, coconut groves, and the Velliangiri hills around the Adiyogi Temple. 112 feet statue stands tall in Coimbatore, India which celebrates the history of Adiyogi statue and Shiva as the origin of yoga. Shiva is popular in many forms across the land, but depicting the deity as the ‘first Yogi’ is not common.
The height of 112 feet Adiyogi symbolizes the 112 methods to obtain freedom—or moksha—a theme in yogic culture. It’s height seems to represents the 112 chakras; points of focus in the body used in meditation.
Magnificent Adiyogi Shiva statue story- the symbol
In Adiyogi Shiva history, he appears to be seated in the lotus pose (padmasan) in a meditative and reflective posture that reflects supreme bliss. His body is spread with a holy cinder which shows the passing nature of the universe. He wears a crescent moon that symbolizes wisdom and mystic knowledge.
The three eyes tell us that he is the Master of the past, present and future, being the pioneer of sun, moon and fire. The snake coiled around his neck is a sign of his vitality or the Shiva principle implanted in each human being. The Ganges streaming from his tangled hair stands for interminable and perpetual purity.
Do you know when and where the Adiyogi statue was unveiled?
On the auspicious night of Mahashivaratri in 2017 at Isha Yoga Center, an iconic face of the Adiyogi Shiva temple was unveiled by the Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A towering 112 feet high, this remarkable and glorious face represents the 112 ways one can attain to one’s ultimate nature.
Adiyogi statue was placed near the Yogeshwar Linga, which was consecrated by Sadhguru, as a manifestation of five of the major chakras in the human body. Adiyogi temple with the presence of the Yogeshwar Linga has become a living entity.
Sadhguru has written a book about Lord Shiva called, “Adiyogi-the source of yoga.” This explains best about Adiyogi meaning, history and its significance. Sadhguru quotes,
“Adiyogi is here to liberate you from disease, discomfort and poverty-above all, from the very process of life and death”
This might interest you-Physical, Mental, and Spiritual health benefits of Yoga
Five interesting facts on Adiyogi statue
The making of Adiyogi statue from steel
The construction of Adiyogi statue is from steel, and it is not just for aesthetics but also has its geometric significance. It’s making was in a unique way of crafting a metal statue
Construction of statue took 8 months
It took about 2.5 years to design the face of Adiyogi, and to construct it as an iconic structure took another eight months
Adiyogi statue weighs 500 tons
The remarkable grand structure of Adiyogi weighs around 500 tons!
The reason behind the number 112-foot Adiyogi statue
The number 112 feet statue represents Adiyogi who opened up 112 possibilities for human beings to reach their ultimate potential. There is also scientific importance —that there are 112 chakras in the human system, to explore 112 elements of life.
The face of Adiyogi will be the largest face of its kind in the whole world
We can see in Adiyogi history that Lord Shiva as the first yogi – the originator of yoga. He was the one who put this seed into the human intellect and started yoga. This makes a difference in us to attain harmony between intellect and body.
The most prevalent posture of Lord Shiva is the posture of Adiyogi in contemplation. He is unceasingly engages in the state of Samadhi or Nischala (without any movements). Shiva is an entity beyond the temporal physical presence. To form a happy and serene world, humankind must know that one can only find genuine prosperity from inside, and they must propell and enable with the fundamental tools to turn inwards.
As a result, travelling through the process of Yoga, spiritual aspirant creates the two critical qualities specifically Viraga (determination) and Vairagya (detachment). He engages with his internal self, travelling towards interminable bliss or Ananda.
Therefore, Lord Shiva is the encapsulation of Yoga, and the term Adiyogi embodies assimilation or the state of flawlessness which perfectly applies to Him.