Siva Samhita 3


  1. Methods of liberation and philosophical standpoints
  2. Nadis, internal fire, and working of the jiva
  3. Winds in the body, importance of the guru, the four stages of Yoga, the five elemental visualizations and four asanas
  4. Eleven mudras and yogic attainments
  5. Obstacles to liberation, the four types of aspirants, technique of shadow gazing, internal sound, esoteric centers and energies, the seven lotuses, the "king of kings of yogas", and a global mantra


On Yoga Practice. The Vayus.

1. In the heart, there is a brilliant lotus with twelve petals adorned with brilliant sign. It has letters from k to th
(i.e., k, kh, g, gh, n, ch, chh, j, jh, n, t, th), the twelve beautiful letters.

2. The Prana lives there, adorned with various desires, accompanied by its past works, that have no beginning, and joined with egoism (ahankara.)
Note: The heart is in the center where there is the seed yam.

3. From the different modifications of the Prana, it receives various names; all of them cannot be stated here.

4. Prana, apana, samana, udana, vyana, naga, kurma, Krikara, devadatta, and dhananjaya.

5. These are the ten principal names, described by me in this Shastra; they perform all functions, incited thereto by their own actions.

6. Again, out of these ten, the first five are the leading ones; even among these, the prana and apana are the highest agents, in my opinion.

7. The seat of the Prana is the heart; of the apana, the anus; of the samana, the region above the navel; of the udana, the throat; while the vyana moves all over the body.

8. The five remaining vayus, etc., perform the following functions in the body: - Eructation, opening the eyes, hunger and thirst, gaping or yawning, and lastly hiccup.

9. He who in this way knows the microcosm of the body, being absolved from all sins, reaches the highest

(2) The Guru.

10. Now I will tell you, how easily to attain success in Yoga, by knowing which the Yogis never fail in the practice of Yoga.

11. Only the knowledge imparted by a Guru, through his lips, is powerful and useful; otherwise it becomes fruitless, weak and very painful.

12. He who devoted to any knowledge, while pleasing his Guru with every attention, readily obtains the fruit of that knowledge.

13. There is not the least doubt that Guru is father. Guru is mother, and Guru is God even; and as such, he should be served by all with their thought, word and deed.

14. By Guru's favour everything good relating to one's self is obtained. So the Guru ought to be daily served; else there can be nothing auspicious.

15. Let him salute his Guru after walking three times round him, and touching with his right hand his lotus- feet.

(3) The Adhikari.

16. The person who has control over himself attains verily success through faith; none other can succeed.
Therefore, with faith, the Yoga should be practiced with care and perseverance.

17. Those who are addicted to sensual pleasures or keep bad company, who are disbelievers, who are devoid of respect towards their Guru, who resort to promiscuous assemblies, who are addicted to false and vain controversies, who are cruel in their speech, and who do not give satisfaction to their Guru never attain success.

18. The first condition of success is the firm belief that it (vidya) must succeed and be fruitful; the second condition is having faith in it; the third is respect towards the Guru; the fourth is the spirit of universal equality; the fifth is the restraint of the organs of sense; the sixth is moderate eating, these are all. There is no seventh condition.

19. Having received instructions in Yoga, and obtained a Guru who knows Yoga, let him practice with earnestness and faith, according to the method taught by the teacher.

(4) The Place, etc.

20. Let the Yogi go to a beautiful and pleasant place of retirement or a cell, assume the posture padmasana, and sitting on a seat (made of kusa grass) begin to practice the regulation of breath.

21. The wise beginner should keep his body firm and inflexible, his hands joined as if in supplication, and salute the Gurus on the left side. He should also pay salutations to Ganesha on the right side, and again to the guardians of the worlds and goddess Ambika who are on the left side.

(5) The Pranayama.

22. Then let the wise practitioner close with his right thumb the pingala (right nostril), inspire air through the ida (the left nostril); and keep the air confined - suspend his breathing - as long as he can; and afterwards let him breathe out slowly, and not forcibly, through the right nostril.

23. Again, let him draw breath through the right nostril, and stop breathing as long as his strength permits; then let him expel the air through the left nostril, not forcibly, but slowly and gently.

24. According to the above method of Yoga, let him practice twenty kumbhakas (stopping of the breath). He should practice this daily without neglect or idleness, and free from all duels (of love and hatred, and doubt and contention), etc.

25. These kumbhakas should be practiced four times - once (1) early in the morning at sunrise, (2) then at mid- day, (3) the third at sun-set, and (4) the fourth at mid-night.

26. When this has been practiced daily, for three months, with regularity, the nadas (the vessels) of the body will readily and surely be purified.

27. When thus the nadas of the truth-perceiving Yogi are purified, then his defects being all destroyed, he enters the first stage in the practice of Yoga called arambha.

28. Certain signs are perceived in the body of the Yogi whose nadas have been purified. I shall describe, in brief, all these various signs.

29. The body of the person practicing the regulation of breath becomes harmoniously developed, emits sweet scent, and looks beautiful and lovely. In all kinds of Yoga, there are four stages of pranayama - 1: Arambha-avastha (the state of beginning); 2: Ghata-avastha (the state of co-operation of Self and Higher Self); 3: Parichaya-avastha (knowledge); 4: Nishpattiavastha (the final consummation).

30. We have already described the beginning of Arambha-avestha of pranayama; the rest will be described hereafter. They destroy all sin and sorrow.

31. The following qualities are surely always found in the bodies of every Yogi - Strong appetite, good digestion, cheerfulness, handsome figure, great courage, mighty enthusiasm and full strength.

32. Now I tell you the great obstacles to Yoga which must be avoided, as by their removal the Yogis cross this sea of worldly sorrow.

(6) The things to be renounced.

33. The Yogi should renounce the following; 1: Acids, 2: astringents, 3: pungent substances, 4: salt, 5: mustard, and 6: bitter things; 7: much walking, 8: early bathing (before sun-rise) and 9: things roasted in oil; 10 theft, 11: killing (of animals) 12: enmity towards any person, 13: pride, 14: duplicity, and 15: crookedness 16: fasting, 17: untruth, 18: thoughts other than those of moksha, 19: cruelty towards animals; 20 companionship of women, 21: worship of (or handling or sitting near) fire, and 22: much talking, without regard to pleasantness or unpleasantness of speech, and lastly, 23: much eating.

(7) The means.

34. Now I will tell you the means by which success in Yoga is quickly obtained; it must be kept secret by the practitioner so that success may come with certainty.

35. The great Yogi should observe always the following observances - He should use 1: clarified butter, 2: milk, 3: sweet food, and 4: betel without lime, 5: camphor; 6: kind words, 7: pleasant monastery or retired cell, having a small door; 8: hear discourses on truth, and 9: always discharge his household duties with vairagya (without attachment), 10: sing the name of Vishnu; 11: and hear sweet music, 12: have patience, 13: constancy, 14: forgiveness, 15: austerities, 16: purifications, 17: modesty, 18: devotion, and 19: service of the Guru.

36. When the air enters the sun, it is the proper time for the Yogi to take his food (i.e>, when the breath flows through the pingala); when the air enters the moon, he should go to sleep {i.e., when the breath flows through the left nostril or the ida).

37. The Yoga (pranayama) should not be practiced just after the meals, nor when one is very hungry; before beginning the practice, some milk and butter should be taken.

38. When one is well established in his practice, then he need not observe these restrictions. The practitioner should eat in small quantities at a time, though frequently; and should practice kumbhaka daily at the stated times.

39. When the Yogi can, of his will, regulate the air and stop the breath (whenever and how long) he likes, then certainly he gets success in kumbhaka, and from the success in kumbhaka only, what things cannot the Yogi command here?
The first stage.

40. In the first stage of pranayama, the body of the Yogi begins to perspire. When it perspires, he should rub it well, otherwise the body of the Yogi loses its dhatu (humours).

The second and third stages.

41. In the second stage, there takes place the trembling of the body; in the third, the jumping about like a frog; and when the practice becomes greater, the adept walks in the air.


42. When the Yogi, though remaining in padmasana, can raise in the air and leave the ground, then know that he has gained vayusiddhi (success over air), which destroys the darkness of the world.

43. But so long (as he does not gain it), let him practice observing all the rules and restrictions laid down above.
From the perfection of pranayama, follows decrease of sleep, excrements and urine.

44. The truth-perceiving Yogi becomes free from disease, and sorrow or affliction; he never gets (putrid) perspiration, saliva and intestinal worms.

45. When in the body of the practitioner, there is neither any ncrease of phlegm, wind, nor bile; then he may with impunity be rregular in his diet and the rest.

46. No injurious results then would follow, were the Yogi to take a large quantity of food, or very little, or no food at all. hrough the strength of constant practice, the Yogi obtains bhucharisiddhi, he moves as the frog jumps over the ground, when frightened away by the clapping of hands.

47. Verily, there are many hard and almost insurmountable obstacles in Yoga, yet the Yogi should go on with his practice at all hazards; even were his life to come to the throat.

48. Then let the practitioner, sitting in a retired place and restraining his senses, utter by inaudible repetition, the long pranava OM, in order to destroy all obstacles.

49. The wise practitioner surely destroys al his karma, whether acquired in its life or in the past, through the regulation of breath.

50. The great Yogi destroys by sixteen pranayamas the various virtues and vices accumulated in his past life.

51. This pranayama destroys sin, as fire burns away a heap of cotton; it makes the Yogi free from sin; next it destroys the bonds of all his good actions.

52. The mighty Yogi having attained, through pranayama, the eight sorts of psychic powers, and having crossed the ocean of virtue and vice, moves about freely through the three worlds.

Increase of Duration.

53. Then gradually he should make himself able to practice for three gharis (one hour and a half at a time, he should be able to restrain breath for that period). Through this, the Yogi undoubtedly obtains all the longed- for powers.

Siddhis or Perfections.

54. The Yogi acquires the following powers: vakya siddhi (prophecy), transporting himself everywhere at will (kamachari), clairvoyance (duradristhi), clairaudience (durashruti), subtle-sight (shushma-drishti), and the power of entering another's body (parakaypravesana), turning base metals to gold by rubbing them with his excrements and urine, and the power of becoming invisible, and lastly, moving in the air.

II. The Ghata Avasta.

55. When, by the practice of pranayama, the Yogi reaches the state of ghata (water-jar), then for him there is nothing in this circle of universe which he cannot accomplish.

56. The ghata is said to be that state in which the prana and the apana vayus, the nada and the vindu, the jivatma (the Human Spirit) and the Paramatma (the Universal Spirit) combine and co-operate.

57. When he gets the power of holding breath {i.e., to be in trance) for three hours, then certainly the wonderful state of pratyahar is reached without fail.

58. Whatever object the Yogi perceives, let him consider it to be the spirit. When the modes of action of various senses are known, then they can be conquered.

59. When, through, great practice, the Yogi can perform one kumbhaka for full three hours, when for eight dandas (=3 hours) the breathing of the Yogi is suspended, then that wise one can balance himself on his thumb; but he appears to others as insane.

III. The Parichaya

60. After this, through exercise, the Yogi reaches the Parichaya-avastha. When the air leaving the sun and moon (the right and the left nostrils), remains unmoved and steady in the ether of the tube sushumna, then it is in the parichaya state.

61. When he, by the practice of Yoga, acquires power of action (kriya shakti) and pierces through the six chakras, and reaches the sure condition of parichaya, then the Yogi, verily, sees the three-fold effects of karma.

62. Then, let the Yogi destroy the multitude of karmas by the pranava (OM); let him accomplish kayavyhua (a mystical process of arranging the various skandas of the body), in order to enjoy or suffer the consequences of all his actions in one life, without the necessity of re-birth.

63. At that time let the great Yogi practice the five-fold dharana forms of concentration on Vishnu, by which command over the five elements is obtained, and fear of injuries from any one of them is removed. (Earth, water, fire, air, akas cannot harm him.)
Note: He should perform 5 kumbhakas at each centre or chakra.

64. Let the wise Yogi practice dharana thus:— five ghatis (2 1/2 hours) in the adhara lotus (muladhara); five ghatis in the seat of the linga (svadhisthana), five ghatis in the region above it, (in the navel, manipur), and the same in the heart (anahata); five ghatis in the throat (visuddha) and, lastly let him hold dharana for five ghatis in the space between the two eye-brows (anjapur). By this practice the elements cease to cause any harm to the great Yogi.

65. The wise Yogi, who thus continually practices concentration (dharana), never dies through hundreds of cycles of the great Brahma.

IV. The Nishpatti.

66. After this, through gradual exercise, the Yogi reaches the Nishpatti- avestha (the condition of consummation). The Yogi, having destroyed all the seeds of karma which existed from the beginning, drinks the waters of immortality.

67. When the jivan-mukta (delivered in the present life,) tranquil Yogi has obtained, through practice, the consummation of samadhi (meditation), and when this state of consummated samadhi can be voluntarily evoked, then let the Yogi take hold of the chetana (conscious intelligence), together with the air, and with the force of (kriya-sakti) conquer the six wheels, and absorb it in the force called jnana-sakti.

68. Now we have described the management of the air in order to remove the troubles (which await the Yogi); through this knowledge of vayu-sadhana vanish all sufferings and enjoyments in the circle of this universe.

69. When the skilful Yogi, by placing the tongue at the root of the palate, can drink the prana vayu, then there occurs complete dissolution of all Yogas (i.e., he is no longer in need of Yoga). 1
70. When the skilful Yogi, knowing the laws of action of prana and apana, can drink the cold air through the concentration of the mouth, in the form of a crow-bill, then he becomes entitled to liberation.

71. The wise Yogi, who daily drinks the ambrosial air, according to proper rules, destroys fatigue, burning (fever), decay and old age, and injuries.

72. Pointing the tongue upwards, when the yogi can drink the nectar flowing from the moon (situated between the two eye-brows), within a month he certainly would conquer death.

73. When having firmly closed the glottis by the proper yogic method, and contemplating on the goddess Kundalini, he drinks (the moon fluid of immortality), he becomes a sage or poet within six months.

74. When he drinks the air through the crow-bill, both in the morning and in the evening twilight, contemplating that it goes to the mouth of the kundalini, consumption of the lungs (phthisis) is cured.

75. When the wise Yogi drinks the fluid day and night through the crow-beak, his diseases are destroyed: he acquires certainly the powers of clairaudience and clairvoyance.

76. When firmly closing the teeth (by pressing the upper on the lower jaw), and placing the tongue upwards, the wise Yogi drinks the fluid very slowly, within a short period he conquers death.

77. One, who daily continues this exercise for six months only, is freed from all sins, and destroys all diseases.

78. If he continues this exercise for a year, he becomes a Bhairava; he obtains the powers of anima &c, and conquers all elements and the elementals.

79. If the Yogi can remain for half a second with his tongue drawn upwards, he becomes free from disease, death, and old age.

80. Verily, verily, I tell you the truth that the person never dies who contemplates by pressing the tongue, combined with the vital fluid of Prana.

81. Through this exercise and Yoga, he becomes like Kamadeva, without rival. He feels neither hunger, nor thirst, nor sleep, nor swoon.

82. Acting upon these methods the great Yogi becomes in the world perfectly independent; and freed from all obstacles, he can go everywhere.

83. By practicing thus, he is never reborn, nor is tainted by virtue and vice, but enjoys (for ages) with the gods.

The postures.

84. There are eighty-four postures, of various modes. Out of them, four ought tot be adopted, which I mention below:— 1, Siddhasana; 2, Padmasana; 3, Ugrasana; 4, Svastikasana.


1 Or "freedom from all diseases". [Variant reading.]

1. Siddhasana.

85. The Siddhasana that gives success to the practitioner is as follows: Pressing with care by the heel the yoni, the other heel the Yogi should place on the lingam; he should fix his gaze upwards on the space between the two eyebrows, should be steady, and restrain his senses. His body particularly must be straight and without any bend. The place should be a retired one, without any noise.

86. He who wishes to attain quick consummation of Yoga, by exercise, should adopt the Siddhasana posture, and practice regulation of the breath.

87. Through his posture the Yogi, leaving the world, attains the highest end and throughout the world there is no posture more secret than this. By assuming and contemplating in this posture, the Yogi is freed from sin.

2. The Padmasana.

88. I now describe the Padmasana which wards off (or cures) all diseases:— Having crossed the legs, carefully place the feet on the opposite thighs {i.e., the left foot on the right thigh, and vice versa); cross both the hands and place them similarly on the thighs; fix the sight on the tip of the nose; pressing the tongue against the root of the teeth, (the chin should be elevated, the chest expanded) then draw the air slowly, fill the chest with all your might, and expel it slowly, in an unobstructed stream.

89. It cannot be practiced by everybody; only the wise attains success in it.

90. By performing and practicing this posture, undoubtedly the vital airs of the practitioner at once become completely equable, and flow harmoniously through the body.

91. Sitting in the Padmasana posture, and knowing the action of the prana and apana, when the Yogi performs the regulation of the breath, he is emancipated. I tell you the truth. Verily, I tell you the truth.

3. The Ugrasana.

92. Stretch out both the legs and keep them apart; firmly take hold of the head by the hands, and place them on the knees. This is called ugrasana (the stern-posture), it excites the motion of the air, destroys the dullness and uneasiness of the body, and is also called paschima-uttana (the posterior crossed posture.) That wise man who daily practices this noble posture can certainly induce the flow of the air up through the anus.

93. Those who practice this obtain all the siddhis; therefore, those, desirous of attaining power, should practice this diligently.

94. This should be kept secret with the greatest care, and not be given to anybody and everybody. Through it, vayu-siddhi is easilyobtained, and it destroys a multitude of miseries.

4. The Svastikasana.

95. Place the soles of the feet completely under the thighs, keep the body straight, and sit at ease. This is called the Svastikasana.

96. In this way, the wise Yogi should practice the regulation of the air. No disease can attack his body, and he obtains vayu-siddhi.

97. This is also called the sukhasana, the easy posture. This health-giving, good svastikasana should be kept secret by the Yogi.