Shiva, one of the most revered of the Hindu Holy Trinity, is known for his power, character, anger and merriment. In his various avatars, he is known as Gangadhar–the bearer of the River Ganges, Bholenath–the innocent one, and Rudra–the ultimate destroyer. Shiva, part of almost every mythical legend, sits at the heart of the Hindu mythology.
Yet seldom, he is known as Adiyogi–the one from whom yoga came forth. The fascinating deity Shiva is as much a yogi as he is Nataraja, the king of dance. A yogi before whom there was none. This idea of Shiva’s enigmatic being has been crystallised by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev into Adiyogi: The Source of Yoga.
Adiyogi, in essence, is a tribute to the ascetic in Shiva. Written by Sadhguru in collaboration with poet and author Arundhati Subramaniam, the 2017 book slowly builds the interest of the reader beginning with Shiva’s arrival on the earth, the different forms in which he is worshipped, finally arriving at the fulcrum of the story–yoga. From here on, the narrative is focussed on yoga’s role in making ‘enlightenment’ attainable.
Each page of this book pushes and emboldens the reader to understand Shiva as never before by expanding the boundaries of their mind.
Using the book to explain Shiva’s life as Adiyogi, the author narrates many a legend associated with the deity as mentioned in ancient Hindu scriptures. Each narration enriches the reader’s understanding of these legends. Each page of this book pushes and emboldens the reader to understand Shiva as never before by expanding the boundaries of their mind. While Shiva may mean different things to different people, Sadhguru’s words below would strike the right chord in the deep recesses of the reader’s mind.
“Shiva does not spell religion. Shiva spells responsibility–our ability to take our very life process in our hands.”
The final pages of the book take the reader on a trip to Kailash (the abode of Shiva) and end with Arundhati’s philosophical discourse with Sadhguru on Shiva’s existence and his need in today’s world. Through his words, Sadhguru explains he is only delivering the message conveyed to him by the Adiyogi. He doesn’t claim that his words are the only way to hear what Shiva says, indeed life in its own wonderfully unique form tells a story Shiva wants us to hear and understand.