Adiyogi Shiva statue

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Adiyogi statue
IMG j257.jpg
Coordinates10°58′21″N 76°44′26″E / 10.972416°N 76.740602°E / 10.972416; 76.740602 (Adiyogi (Isha Yoga Center, India))Coordinates: 10°58′21″N 76°44′26″E / 10.972416°N 76.740602°E / 10.972416; 76.740602 (Adiyogi (Isha Yoga Center, India))
LocationIsha Yoga Center, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India
Height34 metres (112 ft)
Completion date24 February 2017
Dedicated toLord Shiva as Adiyogi
Approximate heights of various notable statues:
1. Statue of Unity 240 m (incl. 58 m base)
2. Spring Temple Buddha 153 m (incl. 25 m pedestal and 20 m throne)
3. Statue of Liberty 93 m (incl. 47 m pedestal)
4. The Motherland Calls 87 m (incl. 2 m pedestal)
5. Christ the Redeemer 38 m (incl. 8 m pedestal)
6. Michelangelo's David 5.17 m (excl. 2.5m plinth)

The Adiyogi statue is a 34.3-metre-tall (112.4 ft) excluding plinth, 45-metre-long (147 ft) and 7.62-metre-wide (24.99 ft) statue of the Hindu deity Shiva with white Thirunamam at Coimbatore in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, which has been recognized by the Guinness World Records as the "Largest Bust Sculpture” in the world.[1][2] Designed by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, founder of the Isha Foundation, it was built by the foundation and weighs around 500 tonnes (490 long tons; 550 short tons).[3] Sadhguru said that the statue is for inspiring and promoting yog, and is named Adiyogi, which means "the first yogi", because Shiva is known as the originator of yog.

Adiyogi was inaugurated on 24 February 2017 by the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri – a Hindu festival celebrated annually as marriage of Lord Shiva with Maa Parvati. The Indian Ministry of Tourism has included the statue as a consecration destination in its official Incredible India campaign.[4] The Adiyogi Statue has been recognized as the "Largest Bust Sculpture" by Guinness World Records.[5]


"This face is not a deity or temple, this is an iconic inspiration. In pursuit of the divine, you don't have to look up because it is not somewhere else. Each of the 112 possibilities is a method to experience the divine within you. You just have to pick one. [...] The idea is not to build one more monument but to use it as a galvanizing force towards self-transformation."

Sadhguru on the purpose of the statue.[6]

Adiyogi is located at the Isha Yoga complex which houses the Dhyanalinga in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu at the foothills of Velliangiri Mountains, a range in the Western Ghats.[7] The statue was designed over two years and manufactured within eight months. The bust is cast in steel. The height of the statue, 112 ft (34 m), symbolizes the 112 possibilities to attain to moksha (liberation) that are mentioned in yogic culture. Sadhguru also said that the height represents the 112 chakras in the human system.[6][3]

The Isha Foundation plans to erect such statues in three more locations in the eastern, western and northern parts of India - in Varanasi, Mumbai and Delhi.[6] The statue's face is world's tallest bust of Shiva.[8][9] The tallest Shiva statue is the Kailashnath Mahadev Statue in Nepal 20-km east of the capital, Katmandu, which is 44 metres (143 ft) tall.[10]

A Linga called "Yogeshwar Linga" was consecrated through the ceremony called prana pratishtha, and is placed in front of the Adiyogi statue. This linga has five chakras – Muladhara (root chakra), Svadhishthana (sacral chakra), Manipura (solar plexus chakra), Vishuddhi (throat chakra), and Ajna (third eye chakra), and each one of them has sixteen dimensions. The linga specifically has no Anahata (heart chakra) as it is to represent "a heartless yogi", not heartless as being insensitive but inclusive who doesn't need emotions.[11] Sadhguru notes that the statue is named as "Adiyogi", which means "the first yogi", as Shiva is known as the originator of yoga.[12] The South-facing Adiyogi is also called Dakshinamurthy and Adi Guru (first Guru).[13]


In 2014, on Guru Poornima, a 6.4-metre (21 ft) version of the same statue was unveiled at the Isha Yoga Center. This version weighed 30 tonnes and was constructed in three months by a team of fifteen people. This statue was also made of steel.[14] On 30 January 2017, a replica model of the statue was taken out in a procession.[15]

The main statue was inaugurated by Narendra Modi(Current Prime Minister of India) on Maha Shivaratri, 24 February 2017. He also inaugurated the book Adiyogi: The Source of Yoga written by Sadhguru and Arundhathi Subramaniam, and lit the yajna fire for the Maha Yoga Yagna. Notable politicians present at the event include Tamil Nadu Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, Minister Pon Radhakrishnan, and Puducherry Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi. Along with politicians, various celebrities from Bollywood as well as Kollywood like actresses Juhi Chawla and Kajal Aggarwal were also present.[7][16]

To mark the unveiling of the statue, the song "Adiyogi - The source of Yoga" was released by the Isha Foundation on YouTube on 19 February 2017. The song was sung and composed by Kailash Kher with the lyrics being written by Prasoon Joshi and also performed live at the inaugural function by Kher.[17] Narendra Modi at the inauguration mentioned that "[by] practising Yoga, a spirit of oneness is created. Oneness of mind, body and the intellect, oneness with our families and with the society we live in, with fellow humans and with birds, animals and trees."[18] Another 6.4-metre (21 ft) statue of Adiyogi was unveiled in Tennessee, USA, on October 2015 by the Isha Foundation. The abode called "Adiyogi: The Abode of Yoga" in Tennessee is spread over a 2,800 m2 (30,000 sq ft) area and the project cost over $8 million.[19]


Various environmental activists and groups protested the inauguration claiming that the statue was built in the catchment area of the Noyyal River, thus affecting biodiversity and violating building bylaws. A Public Interest Litigation was also filed by Vellingiri Hill Tribal Protection Society in the Madras High Court challenging the construction of the statue. The Isha Foundation however stated that it has acquired all the required approvals of the construction.[20] On 1 March 2017, the Deputy Director of Town and Country Planning filed their report stating that the statue and various buildings like the arch, road, a parking lot and mandapams (outdoor hall or pavilion) were constructed without taking proper approvals.[21][22] The matter is currently sub judice as the High Court will wait for responses from all the concerned twelve respondents in the case before making the decision.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 'Adiyogi bust' declared world's largest by Guinness Book of World, Hindustan Times, 12 May 2017.
  2. ^ Vincenzo Berghella, Chennai and Coimbatore, India, Page 68.
  3. ^ a b "Shiva as Adiyogi". Mathrubhumi. 17 February 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  4. ^ "Maha Shivratri 2017: PM Modi unveils 112-foot Shiva statue in Coimbatore". Daily News Analysis. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Largest bust (sculpture)". Guinness World Records.
  6. ^ a b c "PM Narendra Modi to unveil first 112 feet Shiva idol at Isha Foundation". The Indian Express. Chennai. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  7. ^ a b "Coimbatore: Narendra Modi unveils 112-feet Shiva statue on Mahashivaratri". Deccan Chronicle. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  8. ^ "PM Modi unveils 112-foot tall bust of Adiyogi Shiva in Coimbatore". Business Standard. Coimbatore. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  9. ^ "PM unveils Adi Yogi, world's tallest bust". Coimbatore: kaumudi. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  10. ^ "Nepal President to inaugurate `world`s tallest` Shiva statue". Zee News. 12 June 2010. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  11. ^ "Yogeshwar: A Heartless Yogi". Isha Foundation. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  12. ^ "Shiva, the First Yogi". Huffington Post. 28 May 2015. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  13. ^ Sadhguru. "The first Guru is born".
  14. ^ "Adiyogi Statue Unveiled at Isha Centre". New Indian Express. 13 July 2014. Retrieved 2 March 2017.
  15. ^ "Adiyogi replica taken out on procession". The Hindu. 30 January 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  16. ^ "Politicos, celebrities flock to Coimbatore". The Times of India. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  17. ^ "Prasoon Joshi and Kher Collaborate". RadioAndMusic. 23 February 2017. Retrieved 5 March 2017.
  18. ^ "Maha Shivratri 2017: Kailash Kher's 'Adiyogi - the source of yoga song' is a must-listen for all Shiv bhakts". Daily News and Analysis. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  19. ^ "21-foot statue of Adiyogi unveiled and consecrated in Tennessee". India Post. 6 October 2015. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  20. ^ Abraham, Bobins (24 February 2017). "On Maha Shivaratri PM Modi Inaugurates 112- Feet Tall Adiyogi Statue!". India Times. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  21. ^ "TN govt says Adiyogi statue is illegal, Environmentalist asks why govt allowed inauguration to happen?". South Live. 1 March 2017. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  22. ^ "Counter filed in Isha foundation case". Outlook India. Chennai. 1 March 2017. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  23. ^ "Isha's Shiva statue has no approval, buildings illegal: TN government takes a stand". The News Minute. 1 March 2017. Retrieved 6 March 2017.

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