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Other names Machindranath, Matsyendranath, Macchindranath
Known for Founder of Nath

Matsyendranatha (c .1st century CE) was one of the eighty-four mahasiddhas. He was the guru of Gorakshanath, with whom he founded the school of hatha yoga. He is considered as the author of the Kaulajñānanirṇaya ("Discussion of the Knowledge Pertaining to the Kaula Tradition"), one of the earliest texts on Hatha Yoga in Sanskrit.[1] He is revered by both Hindus.[2] Matsyendranatha is believed[by whom?] to be the founder of the Nath.

Early life[edit]

Giuseppe Tucci states, on the authority of two Tibetan works (Wylie: grub tob, Wylie: bka' babs bdun ldan) that Matsyendranath, who was looked upon in Tibet as an avatar of Avalokiteśvara, was a fisherman from Kamarupa.[3] The statement of Haraprasad Shastri that Minanatha was a native of Bengal belonging to the "Nath" or weaver caste is evidently incorrect.[4]

Minanatha is supposed to have been the author of a work known as the Akulaviratantra and he is mentioned in the Sabaratantra as one of the twenty four Kapalika siddhas.[3]


Matsyendranath had eight disciples. Along with Matsyendranath they are called the Navnath.[5]

  1. Gorakshanath or Gorakhnath
  2. Jalandharnath or Jalandernath also known as Jan Peer
  3. Kanifnath or Kanhoba
  4. Gahininath also known as Gaibi Peer
  5. Bhartrinath or Bhartarinath or Raja Bhartari
  6. Revananath
  7. Charpatinath
  8. Naganath or Nageshnath

Associated places[edit]

Spiritual seats[edit]

Machindranath temples[edit]

  • Toyu (white) Machindranath temple in Kathmandu.
  • Machhindranath temple in kille-Machhindragad Tal: Walwa (Islampur) Dist :Sangli, Maharashtra.
  • Macchendranath Guru Peeth in Sri Guru Parashakthi Kshethra, Madyar, Mangalore.
  • Hyangu (red) Machindranath temple in Patan[6]
  • Vishwayogi Swami Machindranath Mandir, Mitmita, Aurangabad
  • The samadhi place of Machindranath is in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh
  • Mayamba Temple (Garbhagiri Pravat as mentioned in Navnath Grantha) at Shri Kshetra Machindranath Devasthan at Sawargaon, Tal: Ashti, District: Beed.
  • Machhindra Nath Mandir, Inside Ambagate, Amravati.
  • Machindra Nath Tapobhumi,Devacho Dongar, Kudal, Maharashtra, Dist Sindhudurg.(This Holy place is mentioned in the 6th Chapter of Navnath Grantha )Lord Shiv Shankar Bholenath & Lord Machindra Nath have both together meditated at this place for three days.

In popular culture[edit]

In the Dasam Granth, Guru Gobind Singh narrated a huge discourse between Matsyendra Nath and Paras Nath on Intuitive (Bibek) and Non Intuitive Mind (Abibek). Parasnatha subdued kings of the world and turned egoistic, and was broken by Matsyendranatha's spiritual preachings. This granth is regarded among Spiritual warriors of Khalsa Panths called Nihang Singhs.[citation needed]

There are a few films about this legend in Indian cinema.


  1. ^ Larson, Gerald James; Bhattacharya, Ram Shankar, eds. (2008). Yoga: India's Philosophy of Meditation. Encyclopedia of Indian Philosophies. Vol. XII. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. p. 436. ISBN 978-81-208-3349-4. 
  2. ^ Flood, Gavlin (1996). An Introduction to Hinduism. Cambridge University Press. p. 98. ISBN 978-0521438780. 
  3. ^ a b Journal and Proceedings of the Asiatic Society of Bengal XXVI (1): 133–141. 1930.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ Pandit, M. M.; Shastri, H. P. Bauddha Gan O Doha. 
  5. ^ Frydman, Maurice (2012). "Navanath Sampradaya". In Dikshit, Sudhakar S. I Am That: Talks With Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj. Acorn Press. ISBN 9780893860462. 
  6. ^ "Historical Monuments & WHS". Lalitpur Sub-Metropolitan City Office. Retrieved 2015-03-22. 
  7. ^ Maya Machhindra (1932) at the Internet Movie Database
  8. ^ Maya Machhindra (1939) at the Internet Movie Database
  9. ^ Maya Machhindra (1945) at the Internet Movie Database

Further reading[edit]