The Immortal Words of the Supremely Venerable Avadhoot Baba Bhagvan Ram "There is no place not only in the 'Jambu continent' (India) or the world, or even in the entire solar system, so sacred as our sacred city Kashi, nor a place so full of divine souls as it is.
The tradition of the Vishveshvara Siddhas (the Yogis accomplished in the state of being characteristic of Shiva in His Lord of the world manifestation) has continued in Kashi from time immemorial, and has flowed like a veritable Ganges of knowledge. This tradition which began from Shiva Himself gave rise to great personalities from time to time. This tradition had been dormant since the time of the aghori Bhairavacharya (5th_6th century B.c.). Baba Keenararn reignited the dying (flame for the sake of society's good. In Baba's company people routinely got lifted from their miseries, got answers to questions even without asking them, and found peace of mind effortlessly. One felt one's soul elevated simply by being in His presence. Baba roamed all four comers of the sacred land of India and witnessed for himself the suffering of people and kept striving to remove it, feeling moved by it. Finally, Baba ignited the akhand dhooni (never-dying sacred fire) in that very century (l6th century), with wood brought from the cremation ground. This fire is witness to the eternal city of this tradition. This yogic land is today famous as 'Krecm Kund'. The divine souls of the aghoreshvars (the aghora masters) remain circulating inside this place in a subtle form, in the atmosphere which is brahmanda khappar (the 'skull' representing the cosmos). Now the question is: how do the sadhakas come in contact with them? When one stabilises one 'consciousness and meditates peacefully one will feel their presence. These pure souls are so pervasive that each can appear before different sadhakas all over the globe simultaneously. The sadhaka will thus begin 10 feel their presence, will begin to go into trance, will begin to feel resonance in one's soul.
The Baba Keenaram Sthal ('spot') and the Aghora Tradition
People have many misconceived ideas about this place -and tradition. People very glibly call it 300-400 years old, whereas, in reality, both the place and the tradition are very ancient. There have been a many great saints in this tradition even before Baba Keenaram, and this place has existed even before and shall continue to exist even in future.
The introduction to the sthal
This sacred place of penance is called 'Aghora Peetha Baba Keenaram sthul'. Its address is 'Kreem Kund, Shivala, Varanasi.' It is an incomparable place of penance dating from time immemorial. It has been described in a special manner in holy texts that after the universe came into being the Supremely Generous Lord Shiva became concerned because the basis of its creation was 'finding a gati (outcome) according to one's karma'. The Lord Shiva is called "Rudra' because of his characteristic of weeping upon seeing the suffering of suffering people and making weep those who commit atrocities. Hence. he became concerned because, going by the basic law behind (the Cosmos, people committing bad acts would never be able to-find a good fate. Hence, the Lord separated Kashi from (he Cosmos and ruled that whoever shall die in Kashi shall have his bad Karma reduced fast via the Bhairavi trana (torture at the hands of Shiva Himself, in His Bhairava form) and shall become entitled to an excellent fate via the taraka mantra. The Lord Shiva was not satisfied with only this and He addressed the southern part of the city as "Kedar Khand' and ensured H is presence here for all times. According to Shiva's prescription for this area anyone dying here will get taraka mantra even without having to undergo the Bhairavi torture.
Since there was a huge forest of bel (wood apple) trees in the southern portion of this area hence it came to be called Belbaria To its west was situated a dense forest of aak trees. In the beginning its spread ranged from the present day Bhelupur police station upto the temple of the goddess Renuka (via the road on which the Murikatta Baba shrine is located) right upto Lolark Kund in Assi. The eastern boundary ranged along the Godowlia-Assi road. The western strip of Kedar Khand was the place of aghora seekers of the Vashnavite tradition. With the passing of time (his group of Vaishnavitc aghoras disappeared from (the aghora map because it lost its way' so to say. Bel and Aak arc believed to be favourite trees of Lord Shiva. On ihc north-eastern corner was situaied a lovely pond called 'Hingara taal', named after goddess Hingalaaj. Right in the middle of this is situated the 'Kreem Kiund' (pond) named after the bccj mantra (the 'seed' sound of a deity from which the deity manifests Himself/Herself) of the goddess Hingalaaj- 'Kreem' All these names are even today available in ancient land records. In the middle of this is situated the "Aghora Peeth Baba Keenaram Sthal' on whose south- western corner is situated the temple of Goddess Renuka (in Ravindrapuri). Renuka was the wife of sage i and the mother of Parshuram. To the north-east of this aghora place used be the Kashi residence of the king Madan, ruler of Kashi after whom the locality of Madanpura is named Renuka was his daughter. After marrying her Jamadgni resided with her at the spot where the presen day Renuka temple is situated, and established himself as a sage. It was his ashram that later became the Renuka temple. This extensive portion of the Kedar Khand came to be called 'Shivala '. 'Shivctla' means the 'alaya of Shiva' (the house of Shiva), the residence of Shiva where Lord Sadashiva resides forever. In order to regulate life on earth the Supremely Generous arranged for one of his forms to remain here forever. This place has also at one time been the theatre of action of the sage Sumedha whose name is mentioned in the text Durga Saptshati. This is that Kreem Kund where the ever-truthful king Harishchandra passed the test of truth. The ancient texts address if as a Sarovar (pond).
In the 161h century the Lord Sadashiva was forced to adopt the human form made of the five elements for the sake of human welfare. He took the form and name of Baha Keenaram. Thus, Baba Keeneram appeared on the scene. When an even more specialised form was needed for the 20th century then the Lord Sadashiva incarnated as Aghoreshvara Bhagvan Ram and he established the "Sarveshvari Samooha" in response to the need of the times, again for the sake of human welfare.
At the aghora spiritual centre, the Baba Keenaram Sthali, where on one hand numerous human-welfare including rays keep emitting from various sources, on the other hand one also finds here illustrated and direct instructions about the aghora path. The three human skulls, one on the top of the other, situated on each side of the main gate symbolise the state of abheda (non-discriminating cognition). It says, in effect, that three is no difference between Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. All three are one, and are depicted as three only in their functional aspect.
The present book is meant for those who wish to know and understand the aghora sect. People whose lives have transcended material cravings and boundaries and have set their aim to be the attainment of the true meaning and purpose of live will find this book especially rewarding. A saint never dies, he renounces his physical body, the truth of this maxim is easy for seekers to attain. Shri Asthana Ji came into contact with Aghoreshvara Bhagvan Ram in childhood itself and he has here revealed the internal as well as the external spiritual values of the aghora sect which he acquired through his long association with it. His revelations give us the true picture of the aghora way of life.' It is also at the same time an effective counter-reply to the widespread misperceptions and allegation.; about the aghora cult, in the society at large. The book highlights the special features of the *Kreem Kund' in terms of its benefit for ordinary people as well as for spiritual seekers. Finally, information has been given about the various heads of this order. The book contains biographies of the successive religious heads right from His Holiness Baba Keenaram Ji down to the present head, Avadhoot Siddharth Gautam Ram Ji.
Although there are several other books about the aghora cull, yet this book has been brought out to satisfy the ever increasing curiosity of foreigners about this cult. The contribution made by Shri Sufal Ji (Journalist, Press Trust of India) in bringing out this book is admirable as i.e the tireless effort of another journalist, Skri GopaJi. Both deserve our thanks for their selfless effort, Shri Vimal Mehra (Assistant Hindi Instructor, the University of' Wisconsin College Year in .India Program) has contributed importantly to the English translation of the original Hindi text and deserves our thanks, too. Finally, all those who have contributed directly or indirectly to the bringing out of this book receive our sincere thanks for their generosity.
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