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Ancient Siddhars

The Incredible Powers of the Ancient Siddhars


Siddhars are a type of saint in India who are said to have had many powers and achieved a ‘god-like’ state through specific secret practices that were known only to them. These powers spanned from controlling time and space, to transforming the body, manipulating matter at the molecular level and achieving immortality.

The Siddhars were followers of the God Shiva and according to different texts there were 18 of them. Their teachings and findings were written in the form of poems in the Tamil language, a language spoken mainly by people in South India and parts of Sri Lanka. The poems were very difficult to interpret and were written in an encoded way so that only a few could understand them.

There is a debate as to who was the first Siddhar. Some legends talk about Sri Pathanjali, who was considered to be an incarnation of Adiseshan, the celestial five-headed snake associated with God Vishnu. But the prevailing tradition refers to Agasthya (or Agasthyar) as the first Siddhar, one of the seven sages (or Saptarshis) as mentioned in the Vedic texts, and he was the son of the god Brahma of the Hindu creation story. Agathiyar is considered to be the author of a lot of the first Siddhar literature and he was supposed to have lived in the 7 th century BC. About 96 books are attributed to him and that includes writings in alchemy, medicine and spirituality. Apart from the legends that exist, the beginnings of the Siddhars’ are lost in time.

The powers that the Siddhars possessed were separated in categories. The main category included 8 powers called ashta siddhis:

1. To become tiny as the atom within the atom (Anima)
2. To become big in unshakeable proportions (Mahima)
3. To become as light as vapour in levitation (Laghima)
4. To become as heavy as the mountain (Garima)
5. To enter into other bodies in transmigration (Prapti)
6. To be in all things, omni-pervasive (Prakamya))
7. To be lord of all creation in omnipotence (Isatvam)
8. To be everywhere in omnipresence (Vasitvam)
Thirumandiram 1780

But if this is not enough, there are ten secondary siddhis as described in Bhagavata Purana that include the following:

1. Being undisturbed by hunger, thirst, and other bodily appetites
2. Hearing things far away
3. Seeing things far away
4. Moving the body wherever thought goes (teleportation/astral projection)
5. Assuming any form desired
6. Entering the bodies of others
7. Dying when one desires
8. Witnessing and participating in the past times of the gods
9. Perfect accomplishment of one's determination
10. Orders or commands being unimpeded

Siddhar StatuesAmazing as they sound, these abilities could allegedly be achieved with the help of simple tools like controlling breath, concentrating the mind and raising the power of the ‘Kundalini’, which is related to the sexual energy.

Furthermore, the system of healing that the Siddhars possessed was allegedly given to them by the god Murugan, son of the Hindu god Shiva.

Another famous Siddhar was Tirumular, who was a Tamil mystic and writer of 6 th century AD and was also one of the 18 Siddhars according to the Tamil Siddha tradition. His main work is named “Tirumantiram”, a 3,000 verse text, which is the foundation of the Southern Shaiva Siddharta School of philosophy.

Another Siddhar, Bhogar (Bhoganathar), who lived between the 3 rd and 5 th century AD is said to have discovered the elixir of immortality – one his main works is the Pharmacognosy.

Palm Leaf ManuscriptsMany of the oldest Siddhar texts are palm leaf manuscripts and not all of them are translated in English. From generation to generation, copying from one text to another, many of the original texts have probably been altered and their meaning changed. Therefore what today we know as Siddhar texts may have nothing to do with the original texts, which may account for why the Tamil tradition does not accept the Siddha poems in its body of traditions.

Of course in the last few centuries, especially after the 15 th century, more and more “Siddhars” have appeared, composing poems, performing ‘acts’ to entertain people with interesting stories, acting as ‘Masters’ and gathering followers around them, all of which has nothing to do with the original tradition of the Siddhars. Unfortunately, the original Siddhar tradition today is ‘polluted’ by many interpretations, by modern Siddhars, and the imagination of people.  Some old Siddhar writings are preserved in Museums and private families in Tamil Nadhu.

Due to the closely-guarded nature of the Siddhar records, the original knowledge of this enigmatic group of saints has remained shrouded in secrecy. The question remains whether their powers were real and, if so, how they managed to attain them. Manipulating space, time and matter would require knowledge far beyond what we have today.

By John Black

Related Links

Sri Pathanjali

Encyclopaedia of Indian Literature: sasay to zorgot, edited by Mohan Lal


About the Siddhar Sages

Siddhar poems in English translation



Shiva and Vishnu are like nothing and everything ... According to me... I love researching about Siddhar... Nice article... But would disagree with their period of existence... I once read in some Siddhar text that most precious palm texts were washed in great flood and ones that remained were kept in a cave which the later siddhars learnt... Rest were locked into a cave .. Again these are in the songs of siddhar literature... My point is that Siddhars are older than what we can presume... There is plenty.

Lot of stuff on Esoteric stuff....and they sound like science fiction...could be true or false....But here are some areas that need to be incorporated.

Lord Shiva, Vishnu etc are from a high civilization of about five billion years long. They are our top Civilization in our corner of the Universe (super cluster).

They came here during Lord Rama Time (in a different name) that has space ships and artificial intelligence and quantum communication etc for the Rama People. In other words, what you read in Avengers (Thor group) is the basis.

But the Lord Shiva and Krishna people were even higher up than Lord Rama Civilization. Just think about the time.

So, any one from Lord Vishnu civilization has a baby with a human (not possible) may or may not be human in spirit...that is a messy affair...

No human has these incredible power, unless the spirit is of divine level which the human body could not contain. That person would be dead in about ten years. But it is possible for that 10 years.

While humans do have the genes, we are no there yet....perhaps another 1000 years...with improved healthcare...but Eat Indian spices and fruits and will get there...

So, perhaps, it is time to know what is what...that is actual...Thank you.

I like to work with the people who are doing research about Siddhar and their history. Please contact me at [email protected]

After coming to know more about Siddhars, I was very curious to meet an alive Siddhar in person in my life time and for the sake of this, I spent lot of time. One of my friend who knew my interest asked me to visit WWW.SIDDHAR.IN website to fulfill my desire. Through the above mentioned website, 100% beyond doubt I MET AN ALIVE ORIGINAL SIDDHAR. If you are also interested please visit the above website.

Folks, if you really connect to Sidhars you will be so humbled to accept its origin. Why are we so against Thamizh. Why are we so boasting about Thamizh? This language belongs to the whole world and beyond and if we are intelligent and spiritual we will simply embrace it enjoy the nectar meaning real nectar.


johnblack's picture

John Black

Dr John (Ioannis) Syrigos initially began writing on Ancient Origins under the pen name John Black. He is both a co-owner and co-founder of Ancient Origins.

John is a computer & electrical engineer with a PhD in Artificial Intelligence, a... Read More

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