Yogis of the Vedic tradition have been demonstrating extraordinary feats that seem to defy the human threshold for pain tolerance. An example of one such feat is ‘Thimithi’ – an ancient ritual practiced in Tamil Nadu in which an individual walks on burning embers. As a devotional practice, a fire is lit and the God or deity is invoked in the fire, following which the fire is spread out over a ‘pit’, the length of which is walked on by the devotee as a sign of his sacrifice and devotion.
This ritual has faced heavy opposition and debate, to the extent that it has been banned in the state of Karnataka. Opponents cite superstition and health risks as reasons to get rid of the practice. The real context however needs to be voiced out to preserve this magnificent tradition that literally makes people transmute to superhumans.
Paramahamsa Nithyananda, who appears in this video boldly marching on fire – his face not even flinching – explains the Vedic context behind this ritual:
“Fire walking is one of the most powerful mutations. If you walk on fire, the small wounds may, may not get created, whether it gets created or not, it is mutation of the body. See one of the side effect is health, there are other side effects where certain intense energies are awakened and negativities are nullified.
See, the depth with which you feel violence and violated with, that same depth, if you feel sacrifice and commitment, devotion, that violence in you will be muted. The actions which you will feel violated if you are forced, you are doing it voluntarily in the name of your devotion, and commitment and sacrifice to the God or Goddess becomes Tapas, mutation of your fundamental instincts.
If you are pierced you will feel violated. If you are put in fire you will feel violated, you’ll become violent. That same instinct is kindled, you go through that same instinct, that same action, that same thing, with the clarity – dedicated to my Kula Devata, dedicated to my Ishta Devata. My sacrifice to my Ishta Devata, Kula Devata, the same intensity is awakened but muting your feeling violated.
Sacrifice mutes, transmutes the feeling violation. Tapas transmutes the feeling violated, violence. Understand, certain acts like fire walking, body piercing, all this are the third dimension of Aushadha.”