Tat Wale Baba Cave: a mystic yogi in the Himalayas
This cave was once home to Tat Wale Baba, a holy man who is said to have had mystical powers. Today, the cave is a popular tourist attraction, and visitors can see the spring where Tat Wale Baba used to drink and cook.
Tat Wale Baba lived at the ashram with his guru for about three months during which time he was initiated into Raja Yoga. He then left in search of a reclusive retreat for himself. He was intuitively led to Manikut mountain where he came upon an old, emaciated man with very long Jata (hair) living in a secluded cave.
Tat Wale Baba Cave was located near a freshwater spring, which Tat Wale Baba used for drinking and cooking. He mainly relied on Kanda Mula leaves and roots, as well as fruits he found in the surrounding forest, for sustenance. Rather than spending time doing asanas, Tat Wale Baba preferred to meditate for long periods of time.
Tat Wale Baba approached the man and was invited to sit and talk. At the conclusion of their talk, the old man left saying that his time was finished and that he was going to the Himalayas to take Mahasamadhi. He left the cave for Tat Wale Baba to occupy.
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Tat Wale Baba Rishikesh
Tat Wale Baba, a yogi who took long periods of silence in a cave, occasionally emerged from his retreat to gather leaves and sticks for sale in Rishikesh. Pilgrims began to come by the hundreds to try to visit Tat Wale Baba after word spread of his whereabouts. Because of the demand for his time, he altered his schedule to include some visitor time.
On December 2, 1974, Sri Tat Wale Baba was tragically murdered by a crazy gunman while he was getting ready to take his bath at 4:00 a.m. The man responsible for his death ran a small ashram near Tat Wale Baba’s cave.
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Tat Wale Baba & Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
March 30, 1969, was a momentous day. I was at Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram, in the midst of a course to become a teacher of the Transcendental Meditation program. The ashram had a stunning location on a hill overlooking the Ganges, and we were just a kilometer below the retreat of Tat Wale Baba. Suddenly, we received word that Maharishi Mahesh Yogi had invited “the wise man of the mountains,” Tat Wale Baba, to come to visit us that afternoon.
Tat Wale Baba was born to spiritual parents who were middle-class farmers in Punjab, India. Tat Wale Baba had little formal education and spent most of his time helping his parents with farm work. When he was about eight or nine years old, Tat Wale Baba’s innate spiritual nature led him to begin meditating. This he did ardently whenever he had time between chores. As he grew older, Tat Wale Baba took on a more muscular build.
His friends encouraged him to join the Army because of his physical prowess, but he didn’t like military life and left after just two months. He seeks out the reclusive, sadhu lifestyle for himself and met Sri Jagannath Dasji at Ayodhya. This guru named him Sri Mahavir Dash Ji, but later when Tat Wale Baba started wearing jute, people called him Tat Wale, meaning “one who wears jute.” The sobriquet stuck.
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There are no known records of Tat Wale Baba’s age. However, a man who was a classmate of Tat Wale Baba’s in elementary school, and who had seen Tat Wale Baba later in life, commented that Tat Wale Baba had stopped aging when he was about thirty-five years old.
By assuming that Tat Wale Baba was of equal age as this classmate, Tat Wale Baba’s year of birth was about 1890. That would place Tat Wale Baba’s age at about eighty-five years when he was killed. Had he not been killed, perhaps he would have lived to his rumored age of 120.
Daily Life of Babaji
His daily schedule consisted of meditating from 2:00 a.m. until 10:00 a.m., eating and resting from 10:00 a.m. until noon, meditating again from noon until 4:00 p.m., and then exercising for two hours from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. His exercise routine typically involved taking long walks of about ten kilometers, collecting firewood, and working hard to expand the dimensions of his cave.
Since Tat Wale Baba was an advanced meditator who spent most of his time in extended deep meditation, this may explain how he retained his youthful appearance.
We hope you enjoyed our article on visiting Tat Wale Babaji cave in Rishikesh. With this knowledge, we know that you can make the most of your experience when visiting this mystic site. So what are you waiting for? Book your trip now.
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