Mahashivratri is one of the most widely celebrated Hindu festivals of India. According to the Hindu calendar there are twelve Shivratris – one in every month – that are significant for the worship of Shiva. Mahashivratri, occurring on the 13th night, 14th day of the waning fortnight of the Phalguna month, is the most important among them all. Hindus all over the world fast and pray, keeping awake through the night.
Each year thousands assemble at the Isha Yoga Centre at the foothills of the Velliangiri Mountains (near Coimbatore) in Tamil Nadu. This year, however, the Isha Yoga Centre is set to see a celebration of an unprecedented sort.
A 112-feet iconic statue of Adiyogi is to be consecrated by Sadhguru on Mahashivratri, 24 February, 2017. Over 1.2 lakh devotees are set to attend the ceremony – the unveiling and consecration of this grand idol by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, the yogi and mystic who founded the Isha Foundation.
The Face of Adiyogi
The word Adiyogi means ‘The First Yogi’. Adiyogi is the first teacher of yoga, also credited with being the person who formulated Yoga as a science of self-realisation more than fifteen thousand years ago. While Adiyogi is worshipped as Shiva in Hindu religion, Adiyogi predates religion itself. So this statue of Adiyogi that is to be consecrated on Mahashivratri is the face of Shiva, eyes closed, face tilted slightly upward, in the grip of intense contemplation.
This statue will be the largest (face) statue installed anywhere in the word, apart from Mt. Rushmore. Isha Centre believes that it will inspire all of humanity to take up yoga and turn inward to seek out enlightenment.
Other Iconic Shiva Statues
Looking to visit some other iconic Shiva statues in India?
- The Murudeshwara Shiva statue is the tallest in the country. The 123-feet statue depicts Shiva seated in a yoga asana but with his eyes open. The silver coloured statue is set against the backdrop of a blue Arabian Sea in Murudeshwara town in Karnataka.
- The 108-feet Namchi Shiva statue in the state of Sikkim ranks next. The Siddheshwar Dham complex in which this gigantic image of Shiva is located is considered to be a very holy place since it enshrines the replicas of all 12 jyotirlingas and also the Char Dhams, the four holy places revered by the Hindus.
- The legendary 100-feet Shiva statue in Har ki Pauri, Haridwar, Uttarakhand is one of the tallest Shiva statues in a standing pose. Ganges, the holy river of the Hindus is believed to pay her tribute to this Shiva before she commences her journey through the plains.
- Next comes the 85-feet tall Shivagiri statue in pristine white. This statue is located in Shivapur on Sindagi Road, Bijapur (Karnataka). Unveiled in 2006, the statue is already a great crowd puller and is visited by a great many pilgrims each year.
- Shiva is also known as Nageshwar due to the serpent he wears as a garland. The Nageshwar Shiva statue is 82-feet tall and is located in the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Temple (district Dwarka), Gujarat. It is one of the 12 jyotirlingas.
- The 76-feet tall Shiva statue in Jabalpur is another wonder to behold. Located in Kachnar City this is another beautiful statue that attracts a number of devotees.