Nath Yogis are a group of ascetic yogis in India. They are also called the Natha sampradaya.
Nath yogis were founded by Matsyendranath, a Buddhist monk who became a Hindu guru, and his disciple Gorakshanath.
The Naths are an influential group within Indian yoga, with many different schools and sub-schools of thought.
Beliefs and ideas
They believe that Aadinath (Shiva himself) is their first Guru and they also worship Shiva as their supreme being. There have been many gurus since ancient times in this community, guru shree Gorakhnath (he is also called Gauraksh nath) is superior among all.
Guru Shree Gorakhnath, the founder of the nath community (Matseyendra nath is also consider as founder of the Nath community, he was guru of Gorakhnath) was a spiritual man and initiator who represents the entire yogi society and determines the condition and direction of the nation. He had dignity as a social reformer.
Shree Gorakhnath is also considered as Shivansh (a part of Shiva). That’s why, there is so much dispute in his birth time and place. The Nath community believes that, first of all, the nav (nine) Naths originated in the whole universe, having different directions. These Navnaths are the original promoters of the Nath community. Those who are not believed to be born from the ordinary process of birth. If we consider the names of Navnaths, the texts and scholars do not agree with the names of Navnaths either.
Are Nath Yogis Buddhist?
People may begin the path of yoga and meditation within a Buddhist context or a Hindu context or a Taoist context. These provide a framework for their beliefs and practices. But in more advanced stages the differences between these practices are less obvious. Perhaps just the terminology varies.
So, there are Tibetan tantric practices such as the Six Yoga’s of Naropa which require tantric initiation and personal instruction from a Tantric guru. These originated from Indian teachers, who taught Tilopa who taught Naropa who taught Marpa who taught Milarepa. So, these practices from India have taken on a Tibetan flavour.
Meanwhile India has maintained its Yogic traditions without necessarily having any Buddhist connections.
In most cases, Alchemy Nath Yogi's practice involved not only transforming the body with the help of mercury oxides into an immortal body but also transforming base metals into gold. This unique practice is combined with Hatha Yoga for complete spiritual transformation and also with the effort to raise the Kundalini.
Differences between the Nath and Dattatreya traditions
The Nath and Dattatreya traditions are almost identical. The Dattatreya tradition's teachings provide seekers with the Royal Road to Liberation, a path that connects the four paths of Bhakti, Jnana, Karma, and Lord Shiva's Dhyana. Even though they shared the same power, each of the subsequent masters in the Dattatreya tradition was unique. Every person who came before them was differentiated by distinctive types. Each master was an Avadhuta who is known as a person who has transcended the main concerns of the world. As a result, the Dattatreya tradition is also referred to as an Avadhuta tradition. This tradition is currently being carried on by Brahmarishi Mohanji, whose sole objective is to free living things from the cycle of birth and death.