Shiva Bala Yogi Virtual* Darshan  
   * (Virtual:  non physical, but being such in essence or in having the power or practical effect)

Tapas in Four Directions for Twelve Years

According to the Yoga Shastras, a medieval Indian textbook on the practice of yoga, a yogi is required to master tapas facing each of the four directions, an austerity known as dikh tapas, “dikh” meaning direction. Each particular direction has its own specific mantra that is repeated while doing tapas in that direction. Tapas is done in the same direction until siddhi is attained. “Siddhi” means accomplishment or perfection and also implies spiritual power. Dikh siddhi could be translated as victory of a direction.

Doing tapas in each of the four directions has its own characteristics. Tapas in the eastern direction gives the yogi problems and difficulties of a comparatively minor nature. Siddhi is gained soonest by doing tapas facing east. North is the best direction for ease of meditation. The yogi faces little or no problems or obstacles, enjoys good health, and experiences ananda (bliss) during meditation. The western direction is the most difficult for doing tapas and is fraught with danger. The yogi must overcome seemingly insuperable mental obstacles and endure almost unbearable physical afflictions. In addition, the yogi is subjected to several tests. Tapas to the south is a neutral direction having no particular benefit or obstacle. Meditation continues normally. There is neither ananda nor ashanti (restlessness).

Uninterrupted tapas for twelve years is known as yuga tapas. “Yuga” refers to the period of twelve years, an amount of time that takes into account the physical body, the movement of life current, and the effects of doing the tapas. It is written in the Yoga Shastras that one who attains dikh siddhi of all four directions (which Shivabalayogi completed in eight years instead of the minimum sixteen) and completes the twelve-year cycle of yuga tapas is known as a rishi or sage. Such a person is a true yogi, a jnani yogi, one who has attained God realization and the ultimate knowledge. Only such a person can claim to be fully Self realized and fully God realized.

Shivabalayogi attained dikh siddhi of all four directions in a little less than eight years, meditating twenty-three hours every day. He mastered the east in four years; north in two years, west in nine months, then south in fifteen months facing. At the beginning of meditation in each direction, God appeared as guru and initiated him through appropriate mantras, and when the spiritual practice (sadhana) was completed — perfected — God appeared before him as Lord Shiva.  The first two years of tapas while facing east, during the nine months he faced towards the west, and again during the last year of tapas, he underwent especially severe trials and tribulations. Yet Shivabalayogi persevered through tapas with perfect equanimity, declining all medicine and treatments, resigning himself solely to the protection of the divine guru.

 After eight years of tapas, when he successfully mastered all four directions, Shivabalayogi was twenty-two years of age. Following his divine guru's instructions, he adopted the following daily routine for another four years. From four in the morning until four in the afternoon he meditated, mostly in samadhi. Then devotees would come to the dhyana mandir for his darshan and to sing bhajans. At midnight he had his daily bath, followed by about three hours of rest until four in the morning.

For eight years Swamiji had restricted his diet to no more than a measured quantity of milk which he drank after his midnight bath. Now he began a diet of milk and fruit twice a day, once early in the morning just before sitting for samadhi, and again in the afternoon after he finished twelve hours of meditation.


His Life

childhood stories
beginning tapas
early obstacles

dhyana mandir
& Tapaswiji

four directions
tapas completion
Linga & Devi
India travels
Banagalore ashram
Adivarapupeta ashram
in the West

His Words

spiritual leaders
Jesus & Buddha
forms of God
Swamiji's mission
initiation, vibhuti
samadhi (enlightenment)
tapas & Self realization
bhajans(devotional song)
bhava samadhi
(spiritual trance)
world conditions
Swamiji's words
Virtual Darshan

Shiva Home

Shri Shivabalayogi Maharaj
International Trust
P.O. Box 293
Langley, WA 98260 U.S.A.


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