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A yogi is a practitioner of yoga.1 The term "yogi" is also used to refer specifically to Siddhas,23 and broadly to refer to ascetic practitioners of meditation in a number of Indian religions including Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.
In the Classical Sanskrit of the Puranas, the word yogi (Sanskrit: masc yogī, योगी; fem yoginī) originally referred specifically to a male practitioner of yoga. In the same literature yoginī is the term used for female practitioners as well as for divine goddesses and enlightened mothers, all revered as aspects of the Divine Mother Devi without whom there would be no yogis. The two terms are still used with those meanings today, but the word yogi is also used generically to refer to both male and female practitioners of yoga and related meditative practices in Buddhism, Jainism, Taoism etc.
- Those who pierce through the "sun" (surya) by means of the various yogic techniques and
- Those who access the door of the central conduit (sushumna-nadi) and drink the nectar. As to what this nectar is, all meditation lineages focus on self-mastery of essence, both spiritual and sexual.
- neophyte/beginner (prathama-kalpika)
- one who has reached the "honeyed level" (madhu-bhumika)
- the advanced practitioner who enjoys enlightenment (joginath, giri, goswami, etc.)
Yogi - Siddha
[S]iddha means "realized, perfected one",note 1 a term generally applied to a practitioner (sādhaka, sadhu) who has, through his practice (sadhana), realized his dual goal of superhuman powers (siddhis, "realizations", "perfections") and bodily immortality (jivanmukti).8
The term siddha has become a broad sectarian appellation, applying to Saiva-devotees in the Deccan (Mahesvara Siddhas), alchemists in Tamil Nadu (Sittars), a group of early Buddhist tantrikas from Bengal (Mahasiddha, Siddhacaryas), the alchemists of medieval India (Rasa Siddha), and a mainly north Indian group known as the Nath Siddhas.82 The Nath Siddhas are the only still existing representatives of the medieval Tantric tradition, which had disappeared due to its excesses.9 While the Nath Siddhas enjoyed persistent popular success, they attracted the scorn of the elite classes.9 According to White, the term yogi
...has, for at least eight hundred years, been an all-purpose term employed to designate those Saiva specialists whom orthodox Hindus have considered suspect, heterodox, and even heretical in their doctrine and practice.1
According to White, the yoga as practiced by Saiva specialists is more closely identified in the eyes of those critics with black magic, sorcery and sexual perversions than with yoga in the conventional sense of the word.10
Traditionally, yogic training involved deferring the tantric practices of sexual yoga/marriage until such time that sexual self-mastery had been established, whereupon sexual union is considered to be the ultimate yoga of Shiva and Shakti.11
Brahmacarya for yogis, as stated in the Agni-Purana, embodies self-imposed abstention from sexual activity: fantasizing, glorifying the sex act or someone's sexual attraction, dalliance, sexual ogling, sexually flirtatious talk, the resolution to break one's vow, and consummation of sexual intercourse itself, with any being.
Married practitioners aspire likewise to abstain from unconscious/harmful sexual behavior, and to meditatively practice sexual yoga (as opposed to ego-centered sexual release) with their partner, but must practice aware chastity with regard to others.12
Modern science now understands that such a code of sexual conduct is also organically assisted by neurochemical changes in brain states of intense meditators (reduced dopamine and increased oxytocin) that induce general relaxation and mental stability, and is not sheerly by willpower alone.13
List of Yogis
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (May 2011)|
Historical Yogis and Yoga gurus:
- Siddhartha Gautama Buddha14
- Swami Nigamananda (1880–1935)151617
- Shree Mahayogi Adi Natha (Lord Shiva)
- Shree Mahayogi Matsyendra Natha
- Shree Mahayogi Guru Goraksha Natha
- Shree Pir Mahant Yogi Narahari Nath (Gorakshapitta Siddhal Mirgasthali, kathmandu, Nepal)
- Mahavatar Babaji
- Sivananda Saraswati (1887–1963)citation needed
- Tirumalai Krishnamacharya (1888–1989)citation needed
- Malladihalli Sri Raghavendra Swamiji (1890–1996)citation needed
- Swami Narayanananda (1902–1988)citation needed
- Pranavanda Saraswathi (1908–1982)citation needed
- K. Pattabhi Jois (1915–2009)citation needed
- Swami Chidananda Saraswati (1916–2008)citation needed
- Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar (1921–1990)citation needed
- Swami Venkatesananda (born 1921)citation needed
- Swami Krishnananda (1922–2001)citation needed
- Satyananda Saraswati (1923–2009)citation needed
- Swami Vishnu-devananda (1927–1993)citation needed*Swami Jyotirmayananda Saraswati
- Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev
- Niranjanananda Saraswati
- Paramahansa Satyaprajnananda
- Sadguru Hambir Baba1819
- Gagangiri Maharaj
- Sitaramdas Omkarnath
- Paramhamsa Yogananda
- Bharat Bhushan (yogi)
- Compare Siddhartha Gautama, one of the names of the Buddha.
- White 2012, p. 8.
- Zimmermann 2003, p. 4.
- White 2012, p. 8-9.
- International Yoga Bibliography, Howard R. Jarrell, 1981, p. 114
- Shambhala Encyclopedia of Yoga, p. 346
- Rosen 2012, p. 72.
- Shambhala Encyclopedia of Yoga, pg 343
- White 2012, p. 2.
- White 2012, p. 7.
- White 2012, p. 9.
- Tantra, The Path of Ecstasy, Georg Feurstein Ph.D., Shambhala Press, USA 1998
- Shambhala Encyclopedia of Yoga, p.62
- How God Changes Your Brain: Breakthrough Findings From A Leading Neuroscientist, by Andrew Newberg M.D., Ballantine Books, USA 2009
- Feuerstein, Georg (2001). The Yoga Tradition: Its History, Literature, Philosophy and Practice (Kindle ed.). Arizona, USA: Hohm Pr. p. Kindle Location 5720. ISBN 978-1890772185.
- Paramahamsa Prajnanananda (15 August 2006). My Time with the Master. Sai Towers Publishing. pp. 25–. ISBN 978-81-7899-055-2. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
- Benoy Gopal Ray (1965). Religious movements in modern Bengal. "He learnt and practices of Yog from Sumerudasji". Visva-Bharati. p. 101. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
- Amulya Kumar Tripathy; P. C. Tripathy; Jayadeva (2006). The Gita Govinda of Sri Jayadev. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Govt. of India. pp. Yogiguru "Swami Nigamananda" Book Translators :Shri Durga Charan Mohanty. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
- Jeevankalechi Sadhana
- Vishwavyapi Manavadharma Ashram
- Feuerstein, Georg (2000), The Shambhala Encyclopedia of Yoga, Shambhala Publications
- Rosen, Richard (2012), Original Yoga: Rediscovering Traditional Practices of Hatha Yoga, Shambhala Publications
- White, David Gordon (2012), The Alchemical Body: Siddha Traditions in Medieval India, University of Chicago Press
- Zimmermann, Marion (2003), A short introduction: The Tamil Siddhas and the Siddha medicine of Tamil Nadu, GRIN Verlag, p. 4, ISBN 9783638187411
- Yoga/Yoga Tales at Wikibooks