The Aghoris are Shaiva sadhus more popularly known for engaging in rituals considered taboo. They are known to smear cremation ashes on their body, drink urine, and add human feces to their meals! While it is all very repulsive for the layman, it is spiritual for the Aghori sadhus.
These 7 facts about the oft misunderstood Aghori sadhus will not fail to leave you a little shocked and a lot more informed.
#1 Devotees of Shiva and Kali
Aghoris are devotees of Shiva who follow an extreme form of asceticism to attain Moksha. They believe that the multitude of deities in Hinduism is nothing but various manifestations of one supreme god.
#2 They seek purity in filth
Nothing is impure or filthy for the sadhus of this sect. They are known to consume human feces, urine and even sprinkle feces on their devotees. Aghoris believe that if one can concentrate on God even while performing the most repulsive of acts, they become closer with the supreme creator.
#3 Legitimate cannibalism
Apart from consuming human feces and urine, Aghoris also consume rotting human flesh! They usually retrieve human body parts from pyres and eat them as part of their ritual. Consuming such repulsive items as excreta and human flesh is said to destroy ego and the false perception of beauty and purity.
#4 Meditate atop corpses
For the Ahgori, cemeteries and cremation grounds serve as perfect spots to meditate in peace. Night time is considered the best time to visit the sites. And what’s more horrifying? Aghoris are known to sit atop of human corpses while meditating.
#5 Taboo sexual practices – necrophilia
As per the Aghoris, when goddess Kali demands for sex, they need to find a corpse to have sex with! If they are to have sex with a living woman, the woman must be smeared in ashes of the dead and be menstruating.
#6 The human skull or ‘kapal’ is the true sign of an Aghori
To begin living as an Aghori, a person must give up all worldly attachments. However, he is to own a bowl carved from a human skull. The bowl will go on to serve in his rituals as well as act as his meal plate.
#7 Every human is born an Aghori
A newborn baby cannot distinguish the clean from filth; feces, toys or dirt, it is all the same for a baby. Only when parents and society intervene, a child learns to distinguish. With this logic, Aghoris claim that every human is born an Aghori but gradually lose their divine trait over time.