“A yogi is one who has actually completed tapas.  By comparison, a spiritual leader
 is one who gets knowledge from books.”


The Meaning of Yogi

His Childhood

Stories from Childhood

His Tapas

His Name

His Prior Lives

His Purpose

Travel in India

The Yogi in the West

His Mahasamadhi



HIS TREASURE Experiences


Swamiji’s Devotees


Quotes from the Source


His Samadhi, Successors







The website that Shivabalayogi blessed.

Shivabalayogi Currents
a Blog about Shivabalayogi

Shivabalayogi Writer’s Corner 
about Yogis, Teachers & Saints; Bhava Samadhi; the Living Yogi; Yoga Vasistha

 About this Site, Links


For more information,
contact info@shiva.org



You can read what Shivabalayogi had to say about yogis, tapas, samadhi, God realization and
Self realization.

“Yogi is love”

Yogi Means One Who Has Completed Tapas

Shivabalayogi uses the word “yogi” with a very specific meaning:  A yogi is one who has attained Self realization through tapas.

Tapas, sometimes translated as spiritual austerity or penance, is meditation in the state of enlightenment (samadhi, no thoughts).  Shivabalayogi described tapas as at least twelve continuous hours of meditation every day, usually for several years, until one attains God realization or Self realization — Swamiji used the terms “God” and “Self” interchangeably.

The true meanings of “samadhi”, “tapas” and “God realization” cannot be put into words.  They have to do with the spirit.  Words can only give suggestions, connotations and preconceptions.  Religions provide us with words and beliefs, but the mystics say that the experience is beyond the ordinary and incapable of being categorized by the mind.  How can the mind understand its own source, that which is beyond thought?

What we can know is the presence and inspiration of yogis, and our own experiences when we practice awareness.  Between the spiritual vibrations of the yogi and the awareness we expand through meditation, we come to understand that the two are linked.  The outside guru is the yogi who guides others to the inner guru, the Self.

“One can control the mind through meditation and if the mind comes under control, then you’ll get a lot of peace, your health will improve, and you will know the right path.”

Agents of God

If tapas is undertaken without any personal desire, the yogi becomes what Shivabalayogi called an agent of God.  There is no more ego; no desire for personal benefit.  The yogi has merged with the Higher Self, pure consciousness.  Although they may teach in words, what they really have to share is in silence.  They serve all people regardless of gender, social status, or religion.


Yogis in History

Yogis have inspired people throughout history.  Shivabalayogi gave Moses, Budhha, Jesus, and Mohammed as examples.  Buddha, he said, completed tapas in only eight years.  Jesus completed twelve years of tapas in India.

Yogis of more recent times include Lahiri Mahasaya (the guru’s guru of Yogananda who started Self Realization Fellowship), Ramakrishna (whose disciple, Vivekanada, started the Vedanta Society), Nityananda (whose disciple Mukhtananda founded Siddha Yoga), Shirdi Sai Baba, Ramana Maharshi, Hazrat Babajan (one of five yogis who empowered Meher Baba), and Neem Karoli Baba.

There are yogis in all spiritual traditions.  Traveling in the United States, Shivabalayogi told many that are yogis among the Native Americans.  Although each yogi’s personality differs and each reflects different experiences and context, they are all related and reflect the same truths.

Yogis Belong to No Religion

Shivabalayogi, outspoken as a child, remained outspoken when people asked him questions about spiritual leaders and religion.  Although Shivabalayogi reflects Indian culture and rituals, he considered Hinduism to be a religion like any other.  Religion, he would say, is spirituality mixed with politics.  He explained that spiritual leaders start religions and that no yogi started any religion.  Swamiji was particularly angry with any suggestion that one religion or its followers are better than any other.  It is politics that makes people say that their God is the only one.


Shivabalayogi on Yogis

Shivabalayogi talks about yogis, how they have many astral bodies, how Jesus completed tapas to become a yogi to serve the people, but was murdered, and how there are many yogis in the world today, including among the Native Americans.

Approx. 8 minutes.

Recorded April 16, 1991, at the home of Dr. V. A. Ram in Las Vegas.  More excerpts from this conversation can be found at
Jesus, Yogis & Spiritual Leaders.