Who Are Aghoris?



Aghoris are a sect of Siva worshippers.

They are mostly found in the states of U.P., and Bihar.

Aghora is one among the five faces of Siva.

It literally means non-terrible.

Aghoris worship Aghora Siva or Bhairava.

However, their practices are terrifying to the common man.

Origin of the Aghoris

Sages Vishwamitra, Vasishta, and Vamadeva practiced Aghora rituals and so were queen Churala of Yoga Vasishta, Raja Vikramaditya and Abhinava Gupta of Kashmir.

Many of the famous Sanskrit works have descriptions of the Aghora tradition.

Some of these are positive while some others are negative.

Aghori practices

Aghori practices are guhya sadhana (secret) and are never exhibited in public.

  • They mostly live in cremation grounds or forests near rivers.
  • While doing sadhana, they stay away from the society.
  • They eat whatever is available in the cremation ground.
  • They wear clothes used to cover corpses.
  • They wear garlands of bones.
  • They carry human skull as a bowl for eating and drinking.
  • All of their sadhana and rituals are in the cremation ground.
  • They perform Shava sadhana sitting upon a corpse.
  • They drink their own urine and consume their own feces.
  • They are not bothered about what others think of them.
  • They do not believe in the caste system and also the Vedic rituals.
  • They don’t observe the purity - pollution principle.
  • They believed in Advaita Vedanta.

A true Aghori has only one purpose in life - to attain moksha.

Aghoris consider themselves as embodiments of Siva.

They live in cremation grounds because of their indifference to the world and to contemplate upon the worthlessness of worldly affairs.

Their perception on purity - impurity is: if everything in the world is a manifestation of Paramatma, then nothing is impure or one thing can not be purer than another.

Even though the Aghoris consume flesh from human corpses, they are never involved in human sacrifice or harming someone for this.

An Aghori internalizes the cremation ground to assert the insignificance and transient nature of worldly life.

For him, the cremation ground is a holy place.

Imposters who pretend to be Aghoris claiming miraculous powers  often terrorize and extort people.

A true Aghori is a highly spiritually evolved person and would never show off his practices in front of others.


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