Sadhguru: Why would a mountain become sacred? I am calling the Velliangiri Mountain sacred not because it is hard to climb. For many, this Mountain became sacred because a long time ago, there was a young maiden named Punyakshi, in the southernmost tip of India, who aspired to hold Shiva’s hand as his wife. She was a woman of great perception and an oracle.

She started working towards making herself suitable to draw him, and she remained absolutely focused upon him. Seeing the intensity of her passion, Shiva’s compassion and love were stirred. He reciprocated her love and was willing to marry her. 

But the society in which Punyakshi lived was worried. They believed that if Punyakshi married, she would lose her abilities to foresee the future and to protect and guide them. So they did everything possible to stop this marriage. But nothing could move Punyakshi from her determination and her devotion towards Shiva, and she set up a deadline, “If I am not married to him by sunrise on this day, I am going to leave my body.”


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Shiva came to know of this and started hurrying down to South India. But the community elders conspired and when Shiva was just a few kilometers from the place where Punyakshi was, they created a false sunrise by setting fire to a huge mound of camphor.

When the light came up, Shiva who was so close, just 22 kilometers away, thought it was a sunrise and turned back, thinking he had failed. And when she saw that Shiva had not arrived, Punyakshi left her body standing. Even today she stands as Kanyakumari. There is a shrine at the very tip of the Indian landmass which is the maiden’s shrine.

So Shiva turned back, despondent and frustrated with himself for not having made it in time. He started walking back and he needed a place to sit and work out his despondency. So he climbed up this Mountain and at the peak, he sat.

It is a very strange kind of place because he was not sitting here in blissfulness, he was not sitting in meditation, he sat here in a certain kind of despondence and anger about himself. He stayed there for a considerable amount of time, and wherever Shiva stepped and spent a little bit of time, people called that place Kailash. So they called this the “Kailash of the South.” It is a fortune that we are sitting here at the foothills of this Mountain.

This Mountain is known as the Seven Hills because if you climb, there are seven undulations which make you feel like you are going up seven hills. The last peak is totally wind-blown – nothing grows there except grass. There are just three very huge boulders which have formed a shelter between themselves which is like a little temple with a small linga. It is an incredibly powerful place.

So many beings, the kind of men that Gods would be envious of because they lived with such grace and dignity, have walked the Velliangiri Mountain. These great beings let the whole Mountain imbibe what they knew, and it can never be lost.

If you have to create this kind of energy, what it takes is not simple. It would take phenomenal work. It is so monumental it is almost humanly impossible, but it is all done and kept ready here in a natural form.

There is a tremendous amount of information here and for me, everything about how to consecrate the Dhyanalinga, was from here. This is also a Mountain where Sadhguru Sri Brahma left his body. And this is a Mountain where my Guru walked and the place he chose to shed his body. So for me and everybody here, it is not just a mountain, this is a temple for us.

Editor's Note:  Shivanga Sadhana, a powerful 42-day vrata (period of sadhana), is available for those who wish to enhance their receptivity to Grace. Shivanga Sadhana begins on January 28 and culminates in a pilgrimage to the Velliangiri Mountain on Mahashivaratri. The sadhana, which includes initiation into the practice of Shiva Namaskar, is an opportunity to bring forth devotion from within. Shivanga literally means “a limb of Shiva”, and the Shivanga Sadhana is an opportunity to bring our connection with the source of creation into our awareness.