Yoga Siddha Research Project

This project had its origins around 1961, when Kriya Babaji Nagaraj gave to Yogi S.A.A. Ramaiah, the solemn task to gather the palm leaf manuscripts of the 18 Tamil Yoga Siddhas, and to preserve, transcribe and publish them. During the 1960's Yogi Ramaiah wandered all over Tamil Nadu collecting and carefully preserving them against destruction by white ants. In 1968 he published "Songs of the 18 Yoga Siddhas," a small anthology of these in their original Tamil language. From 1979 to 1982 he published the collected works of Babaji's guru, the Siddhar Boganathar, in their original Tamil, in three volumes, nearly 1,800 pages in length. In 1999, his student of 18 years, M. Govindan Satchidananda, the President of Babaji's Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas, and sponsor of the Project developed a research plan in four parts:

Study number 1, "An Inventory and Preservation in Magnetic Format of the Manuscripts Associated with Yoga contained in Libraries and Private Collections of Tamil Nadu", has resulted in the copying onto electronic media, CD Roms, all of the the Siddha Manuscripts related to Yoga ( but not on medicine) from the Government Oriental Manuscripts Library (GOML), Chennai, the Adyar Library, Chennai, and the Kerala University Mansucripts Library, Tiruvanathapuram. The number of works copied so far from the GOML is 357, the number of folios: 11,212, the number of verses: approximately 45,000. In the case of Adyar Library we have gotten photocopies of 85 Siddha Yoga manuscripts including 1366 folios, and 7,000 verses approximately. In Kerala University photocopies of five Siddha Yoga manuscripts have been obtained. In Kerala University we are fortunate to have a mutilated manuscript on the history of the Siddhas called Jnana-bodagam. The collection of works in the GOML started in the year 2000 with Dr. KR. Arumugam, who as a Research Associate copied the manuscripts in CD Roms,. He was ably assisted by Sri Senthil Vadivalagan, The manuscripts have subsequently been transcribed into modern Tamil by Sri G. Uthiradam, M.A., M.Phil, Dip. in Manuscriptology, and Dip. in Epigraphy, and the correctness of the transcription has been scrutinized by the well-known scholar Sri. P. Subramaniam, who is a Ph.D. in Manuscriptology, a rare scholarship indeed. A guide book to these is being completed by Dr. T.N. Pranaharan, Ph.D. In the fall of 2011, all of these transcribed manuscripts will be published on two DVD’s which will be inserted in an envelope in the rear cover of this guide book, which will be published by Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas.

Study number 2, "Translation into English with Commentary and Publication of Selected Manuscripts related to the Tamil Yoga Siddhas." This study has resulted in the publication of "The Yoga of Siddha Avvai." Much more is expected from this study as we identify and select the "gems" among the manuscripts copied and transcribed in Study number 1.

Study number 3, "Translation with Commentary of an Anthology of Selected Works of the 18 Siddhas," began in the year 2000, and with the collaboration of several scholars and yogis, it has been completed with the release of "The Yoga of the 18 Siddhas: An Anthology."

Study number 4, "Translation with Commentary of Selected Poems on Yoga by Siddhar Boganathar," resulted in the publication, in July 2003, of volume 1 of "The Yoga of Siddha Boganathar," and in 2005, with the publication of volume 2. It is based upon entirely upon the mammoth work of Yogi Ramaiah, cited above, "Bogar Kanda Yoga." At a later date, we hope to publish Boganathar's poem of 7,000 verses, and other works by this Siddha, in subsequent volumes.

See the Publisher’s address " Welcome Address for Yoga Siddha Research Center by M. Govindan Satchidananda" for the January 9, 2005, book release function, and the article "Biography of Yogi S.A.A. Ramaiah," in the "Kriya Yoga Articles" section of this website for further details on the purpose and history of the above cited undertakings.

See the "Publishers Address to Book Release Function - January, 17, 2010 by M. Govindan Satchidananda" for the January 17, 2010, book release function of the Tirumandiram, and the Tamil language editions of The Voice of Babaji: Triology on Kriya Yoga, and Kriya Yoga Insights Along the Path and the photo gallery of this important event.

Click the image below to view the photo gallery.

Tirumandiram Book Release Function - 01-17-2011

Results to Date

The above four studies were all completed between the years 2000 and 2006. As a result the following works were published:

  1. The Yoga of Siddha Boganathar, volume 1, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy, Ph.D
  2. The Yoga of Siddha Boganthar, volume 2, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy, Ph.D
  3. The Yoga of the Eighteen Siddhas: An Anthology, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy, Dr. Prema Nandakumar,Ph.D, Dr. S. P. Sabarathnam, Ph.D, Dr. T.B. Siddhalingaiah, Ph.D, Dr. K.R. Arumugam, Ph.D., Dr. P.S. Somasundaram, Ph.D
  4. The Yoga of Siddha Avvai, by Dr. S.N. Kandaswamy, Ph.D.
  5. The Yoga of Tirumular: Essays on the Tirumandiram, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy, Ph.D, and Dr. K.R. Arumugam, Ph.D
  6. The Tirumandiram, translation with commentary, in ten volumes, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy, Sri T.V. Venkatraman, former Chief Secretary of the Government of Tamil Nadu, Sri T.N. Ramachandran, Dr. T.B. Siddhalingaiah, Dr. P.S. Somasundaram, Ph.D., Dr. S.N. Kandaswamy, Ph.D and Dr. KR Arumugam, Ph.D

Contributing editors to the above works were M. G. Satchidananda and Durga Ahlund.

The Chairman of our Advisory Committee is Professor R. Balasubramanian, Former Chairman, the Indian Council of Philosophical Research, New Delhi, former Director, the Dr. Radhakrishnan Institute for Advanced Study in Philosophy, University of Madras, Emeritus Professor of the Sri Aurobindo School of Philosophy, Central University, Pondicherry. He is an outstanding scholar in the field of Vedanta.


DR. T.N. GANAPATHY, Director, The Yoga Siddha Research Center, was Post-Graduate Professor & Head, Department of Philosophy, RKM Vivekananda College, Chennai. At present he is a visiting professor at the Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, (Deemed University), Prasanthi Nilayam, Andhra Pradesh. He has participated in a number of national and international seminars and conferences. His publications include: Perspectives of Theism and Absolutism in Indian Philosophy (ed. 1978), Mahavakyas (1982), Bertrand Russell's Philosophy of Sense-Data (1984), The Philosophy of the Tamil Siddhas (1993), The Yoga of Siddha Boganathar (2003).

DR. T.B. SIDDHALINGAIAH, formerly Professor of Saiva Siddhanta and Director, Institute of Correspondence Education, M.K. University, Madurai, is a specialist in Saivism, Tamil language and literature. He has many publications including: Origin and Development of Saiva Siddhanta (1979); Samudaya Beedhi (1986); Meyyunarvu Malargal (1993). He was a member of the Advisory Committee of International Scholars, British Saiva Siddhanta Center, London and a member of the General Council and Tamil Advisory Board, Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi, 1988-93.

DR. PREMA NANDAKUMAR, has had a first class academic career in Andhra University. Her translations of Subramania Bharati's poems and of the classics, Manimekalai, etc., have won high praise. She has published biographies of Sri Aurobindo, the Mother of Sri Aurobindo Ashram and Subramania Bharati. Her critical studies include Sri Aurobindo's Savitri: A Study, T.V. Kapali Sastri, In Search of Hinduism, and Kulo-thungan: A Poet of Today and Tomorrow.

DR. P.S. SOMASUNDARAM, formerly Principal of D.G. Vaishnava College, Chennai and C.T.M. College of Arts and Science, Chennai, also held position as Professor and Head of the Department of Tamil in those colleges. His book in English entitled Tirujnanasambandhar-Philosophy and Religion was awarded first prize by the Tamil University, Thanjavur. His other publications include History of Tamil Literature.

DR. S.P. SABHARATHNAM, was a Reader in the Department of Saiva Siddhanta at the University of Madras. He is a Tamil and Sanskrit scholar with expertise in Vedas, Agamas, Vastu and Shilpa Sastras and honored with the titles of Saiva Acharya Ratna and Veda Agama Vastu Shilpa Vaachaspati.

DR. KR. ARUMUGAM, Research Associate, The Yoga Siddha Research Center, Chennai, has post-graduate and doctorate degrees in philosophy and Tamil Literature. He is a General Fellow of the ICPR, New Delhi, his project being The Social Concern of the Tamil Siddhas-A Study. He is a visiting faculty in the Sacred Heart Seminary, Poonamallee, Chennai. He has translated the book Babaji and the 18 Siddha Kriya Yoga Tradition from English to Tamil.

SRI T.V. VENKATARAMAN, former Chief Secretary of the State Government of Tamil Nadu, and a scholar of the Tirumandiram. He has been awarded the title of Tirumandiramani by the Dharmapuram Aadheenam, and the title of Tirumandira-c-chemma lby the Tiruvavaduthurai Adheenam.

DR. T.N. RAMACHANDRAN, an advocate by profession, is a great scholar in Tamil and English literature, and has been acknowledged as a reference person by scholars all over the world. Popularly known as Sekkizar-Ad-p-podi. His translation of the Tiruvasagam, is acclaimed as a master piece in English translation. He has translated eleven out of fourteen Meykanda Sastras in English and four out of twelve Tirumarais. The Dharamapuram Adheenam has conferred the title SaivaSiddhanta Kalanidhi on him, and is the Director of the International Institute of Saiva Siddhanta Research, Dharmapuram.

DR. S.N. KANDASWAMY, obtained his Ph.D. from Annamalai University, and has served in various departments of that University and in the University of Malaya. He retired as Professor and Head of the Department of Literature in the Tamil University, Thanjavur. More than fifty of his books have been published, including “The Yoga of Siddha Avvai.” The titles of Siddhanta Kalanidhi, Tamizhakarar, Siddhanta-c-cemmani, were conferred upon him respectively, by the pontiffs of the Saiva Mutts of Dharmapuram, Kunrakkudi and Tiruvavaduthurai, Tamil Nadu.

MARSHALL GOVINDAN SATCHIDANANDA, is the President of Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas, and a disciple of Babaji Nagaraj, the famed Himalayan master and originator of Kriya Yoga, as well as his late disciple, Yogii S.A.A. Ramaiah, (1923-2006). M. G. Satchidananda has practiced Babaji's Kriya Yoga intensively since 1969. He studied and practiced Kriya Yoga in India for five years with Yogi S.A.A. Ramaiah, assisting him in the establishment of 23 yoga centers around the world during an 18 year period as a dedicated. During this period he practiced Kriya Yoga for eight hours per day on average, and as a result attained Self-realization.

While in India he studied the Tamil language and the works of the Tamil Yoga Siddhas. In 1980 he assisted in the collection and publication of the complete writings of Siddhar Boganathar in Tamil. In 1988 he was asked by Babaji Nagaraj, the founder of Kriya Yoga to begin teaching. In 1991, he wrote the best selling book, Babaji and the 18 Siddha Kriya Yoga Tradition, now published in 16 languages. In 1992 he founded Babaji's Kriya Yoga Ashram on a beautiful 80 acre mountain top site in St. Etienne de Bolton, Quebec. He offers classes, seminars and retreats there year round. In 1993, he edited and published the first international English translation of Tirumandiram: a Classic of Yoga and Tantra.

In 1995 he retired from a 25 year career as an economist and later a systems auditor to devote himself full time to teaching and publishing in the field of Yoga. Since 1992, he has travelled extensively throughout the world guiding about many Kriya Yoga study groups in over 20 countries, ashrams in Canada and Bangalore, India, and a lay order of teachers of Kriya Yoga: Babaji's Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas, a non-profit educational charity, incorporated in the USA, Canada, India and Sri Lanka. It’s twenty five Acharyas, expert teachers, reside in a dozen different countries. Since 1989 he has personally initiated over 14,000 persons in Babaji's Kriya Yoga in a series of intensive sessions and retreats.

In October 1999 he was blessed with the darshan of Babaji Nagaraj near his ashram in Badrinath, Himalayas. He 2003, he was again blessed with His darshan, at Val d’Aosta, in the Italian Alps, and given the name “Satchidananda.”

From 2000 to 2001, he completed the writing of, and publication of Kriya Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and the Siddhas, in several European languages. Since 2000, he has co-sponsored with Dr. Georg Feuerstein, Ph.D., a team of scholars in a large scale research project engaged in the preservation, transcription, translation and publication of the whole of the literature related to the Yoga of the 18 Siddhas. In 2006 he completed The Wisdom of Jesus and the Yoga Siddhas, now published in five foreign languages.

He is a 1970 graduate of Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and a Master’s degree in 1976 from George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

DURGA AHLUND, has been practicing and studying Yoga since 1967, and teaching Yoga since 1984. She teaches Hatha Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Kriya Yoga and also practices as a Yoga therapist. She is the author of Babaji’s Kriya Yoga: Deepening Your Practice, The Grace of Babaji’s Kriya Yoga, The Yoga Toolbox: An Everyday Guide for Shaping Your Life, and the video, Kriya Hatha Yoga: Self-realization through Action with Awareness. She was a contributing editor to all of the publications produced by the Yoga Siddha Research Project. She was inducted into Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas in Bangalore, India in January 2003. She is married to Marshall Govindan Satchidananda.

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