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The Aghori

The 1000-year old Hindu sect that challenges traditional religious beliefs and follows an unconventional, radical path to enlightenment, the Aghoris. Death, their spiritual teacher; the cremation grounds their home and Shiva, their God, the destroyer and the embodiment of death.

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Aghoris believe that Shiva induced the best and worst of the world and nothing is profane, everything is sacred for them. Hence, what other Hindu sects regard as unacceptable or taboo, the Aghoris embrace it the ‘dark forces’ or ‘impurities’ – leads them to a level of higher consciousness.

Aghori Sadhu is associated with cannibalism and rituals using human skulls and animal sacrifices.Aghoriss are distinguished from other Hindu sects by their alcoholic and cannibalistic rituals. Aghoris in India are beyond human imagination with their rituals and mysterious practices.

Aghoris eat left over from human dead bodies on the banks of river Ganges. They drink in a bowl made of human skull. They apply ash from the human pyre. They are the followers of Hindu God – Lord Shiva, they are the “Aghoris”. A place considered dreadful by others is home for Aghoris, the Hindu cremation ground. Out of the various sect of Hindu priest, the most extreme and the most feared of all are the Aghoris. The term “Aghori” is derived from the Sanskrit word – “Aghor” which has various meanings. Aghor means not to forget or non-terrible in one perspectives. And on the other, it means absence of darkness. Agor implies a simple and a natural state of consciousness in which there is no fear or disgust. But on the contrary, the Aghoris have rituals that has seen as being disgustful and feared by common people. As for the Aghori sect, the true meaning of the termAghoriis the one who is fearless and who does not discriminate. The followers of Lord Shiva, the most powerful of all Hindu Gods and considered as a destroyer.
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The practice of cannibalism, animal and human sacrifices are mostly related to tantric rites of the worshipers of the Mother goddess in any of the worship form – Kali, Dhurga, Kamakhya or Chammunda
The life of an Aghori Sadhu is not easy, to become like them one has to meditate about twelve years and complete certain rituals under the guidance of an Aghori guru in order to enhance one spiritual strength. Aghoris use woods from pyre, clothes from dead bodies, and ash of burnt bodies for the various rituals. There are certain rules one must follow to become an aghori. Firstly an Aghori must find a teacher and do what the teacher tells him to do. And Aghori must find a human skull known as “kappala”. And use only this as a ritual tool before initiation. An Aghori must apply pyre on his body to symbolically show the nature of the Lord Shiva. The final part of ritual requires eating of rotten human flesh and also meditating sitting on a dead corpse. It symbolizes the rise from Savak(human nature) to Siva.
Agori follows the simple rule that the universe recites in them. And they try to attain enlightenment by self-realization. Many of the Aghoris roam around naked representing the true human form and their detachment from the world of mortals who according to them live in the world of illusion (“maya” in Sanskrit). Through this they transcend human feelings of love, hatred, jealousy and pride. There are many Aghoris walking in the streets of Northern India, with their own kappla ( bowel made of human skull). They eat things like rotten food and left over food from garbage tins, animal’s fesses and animal’s urine. They regularly perform the rituals to highest level in “agaratuva” (enlightenment). Agories belief the God exists in everything whether it is cow dunk or food. Nothing is unholy or not auspicious for them, but everything is sacred. They gain their powers by doing things that is considered unholy or unclean by societies. They believe true Aghori should break all ties with families, friends and all earthly possessions and should live entire life at the cremation ground and eat and drink only through the human skull. They roam freely anywhere they want to, wherever they go they will find their home – cremation ground.

“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” – Bible

– Sachin Sengar (Editor)