THE SHIVA SIDDHAS : Babaji Nagaraj ?
One of the 18 Maheshvara Siddhas responsible for founding a school of yoga based upon the ancient teachings of Sanat Kumara – the founder of the Gnostic-Alchemical Path – was the Siddha Babaji. Also known as Nagaraj, “King of the Nagas,” Babaji was a student of both Agastyar and Boganathar. Babaji’s school of yoga, called Kriya Yoga, was based upon the Kaya Kalpa science of pranayama or breath control.
According to the authorized biography in Babaji and The 18 Siddha Kriya Yoga Tradition by Babaji devotee M. Govindam, Babaji was born in 203 B.C. to a priest of the Shiva temple in Parangipetttai, southern India. Within his father’s temple was a life-sized image of Sanat Kumara or Lord Murugan that had originally been a huge Shiva lingam before magically transforming into the forever young form of the Kumara, Babaji spent much of his earliest years assisting his father in the temple and immersing himself in the worship of this image of Murugan.
At five years of age Babaji was kidnapped, but then set free again soon afterwards. Rather than return to his home and family, however, Babaji decided to renounce worldy life and travel throughout India as a mendicant and renunciate. During his subsequent wanderings Babaji encountered many enlightened Siddhas, each of whom taught him some facet of Yoga. At one point his travels led him to the shrine of Murugan in Sri Lanka where he met the Siddha Bogarnath and gained instruction in both alchemy and meditation Then, following six months of intensive spiritual practice under Bogarnath’s expert guidance, Babaji achieved a deep state of transcendental absorption or Samadhi during which he achieved spiritual communion with the forever young boy.
After leaving Sri Lanka, Babaji journeyed to the Pothigai Hills with the goal of receiving the spiritual blessings of the Siddha Agastya With great determination Babaji camped at the Courtallam Falls which were nearby the sage’s secluded ashram and vowed to undergo severe austerities until he was blessed with the divine presence of the diminutive sage. Following forty-eight days of rigorous tapas (austerities) Babaji’s resolve bore fruit and the diminutive Siddha spontaneously appeared from behind a tree. Agastyar blessed Babaji and initiated him into that branch of Kaya Kalpa known as Vasi Yoga, the science of breath control. Following this initiation, Agastyar gave Babaji instructions to travel to the Himalayas and master pranayama.
Babaji immersed himself in intensive yoga within the Himalayan caves before founding an ashram near the Shiva Temple of Badrinath. In due time he achieved immortality and became patriarch of his own school of Vasi Yoga called Kriya Yoga. Through the dynamic yogis who subsequently achieved enlightenment under Babaji’s guidance, including the Siddhas Lahari Mahasaya, Shri Yukteswar, and Paramahansa Yogananda, Kriya Yoga eventually spread throughout the world. Babaji Nagaraj is said to currently be approximately 2000 years in age while continuing to anchor the high frequencies of Spirit in an immortal physical form in his Himalayan retreat.
From: The Return of the Serpents of Wisdom ?
by Mark Amaru Pinkham