Parakaya Pravesha is power of entering into body of another person through Yoga.

Sri Adi Sankara entered the body of King Amaruka of Benares. Tirumular in Southern India entered the body of a shepherd. Raja Vikramaditya also did this. It is also the power of keeping a youth-like appearance for any length of time. Raja Yayati had this power.

If a person (his/her Atman) enters another person body, what happens to second person's Atman or Consciousness? Same is the case when a ghost or devil enters into another person's body. Ghosts do not have Physical body (Annamaya Kosha) but have other 4 koshas.

  • Will Koshas of first person (Yogi who enters into others) overlap with koshas of second person? If yes, which Koshas overlap?
  • What exactly happens during Parakaya Pravesha or a bhoota entering into human body?
  • What is the difference between Parakaya Pravesha and bhoota entering into a person?
  • 4
    Only those who have entered other's bodies will be able to answer these questions.And that too only possibly.
    – Rickross
    Commented Feb 4, 2016 at 18:11
  • 1
    it happens mostly in women..who get possesed by some spirit but i dont know any male was having this kind of experience. here this possesion reference is there in brandhrankya upanishad where udalaka tells yagnya valkeaya about getting knowledge from sprit possesing his Panchala gurus wife.. But possesing deadbody is different game. i havent have proper vedic or puranic reference except Shankara.
    – Prasanna R
    Commented Jun 6, 2019 at 11:33

1 Answer 1


The key to every power in Yoga comes from Samyama. If you apply Samyama to other body, then you enter that body. When the mind has attained to that state when it identifies itself with the internal impression of the object, leaving the external, and when, by long practice, that is retained by the mind, and the mind can get into that state in a moment, that is Samyama.

Patanjali Sutra

  1. त्रयम एकत्र संयम ॥ 3.4॥
    trayam ekatra sanyamah
    (These) three (when practised) in regard to one object
    is Samyama.

    Commentary of Swami Vivekananda on this verse

    When a man can direct his mind to any particular object and fix it there, and then keep it there for a long time, separating the object from the internal part, this is Samyama; or Dharana, Dhyana, and Samadhi, one following the other, and making one. The form of the thing has vanished, and only its meaning remains in the mind.

It is by applying Samyama yogi gain knowledge and power. See the verses of Patanjali sutra which describe how knowledge and power are described from power of Samyama.

By making Samyama on word, meaning, and knowledge, which are ordinarily confused, comes the knowledge of all animal sounds.3.17

By perceiving the impressions (ie. applying Samyama on past impressions), knowledge of past life. 3.18

By making Samyama on the signs in another’s both knowledge of that mind comes. By making Samyama on the form of the body the power of perceiving forms being obstructed, thepower of manifestation in the eye being separated, the Yogi’s body becomes unseen. 3.21

By making Samyama on friendship, etc., various strength comes. 3.24

By making Samyama on the strength of the elephant, etc., that strength comes to the Yogi. 3.25

By making Samyama on the sun, (comes) the knowledge of the world. 3.27

(By making Samyama) On the moon, (comes) the knowledge of the cluster of stars. 3.28

On the pole star (comes) the knowledge of the motions of the stars. 3.29

Hence it is by the power of Samyama everything is accomplished. For the process of entering other body here is a Patanjali sutra.

बन्धकारणशैथिल्यात प्रचारसंवेदनाच च चित्तस्य परशरिरावेश ॥3.39॥
bandhakarannashaithilyat pracharasanvedanach ch chittasya parashariraveshah

When the cause of bondage has become loosened, the Yogi, by his knowledge of manifestation through the organs, enters another’s body.

Here is commentary of Swami Vivekananda on this verse

The Yogi can enter a dead body, and make it get up and move, even while he himself is working in another body. Or he can enter a living body, and hold that man’s mind and organs in check, and for the time being act through the body of that man. That is done by the Yogi coming to this discrimination of Purusa and nature. If he wants to enter another’s body he makes a Samyama on that body and enters it, because, not only is his Soul omnipresent, but his mind also, according to the Yogi. It is one bit of the universal mind. Now, however, it can only work through the nerve currents in this body, but when the Yogi has loosened himself from these nerve currents, he will be able to work through other things.

Hence entering other body means gaining omnipotence of mind (by the practice of Samyama)

But in rare cases Yogi may enter a body also with Vijnamaya kosha , Anandamaya kosha and Soul (ie. total body transfer) also in the case of ghost possession. Then body behaves through total samskaras of manomaya koshas as manomaya kosha is the store house of samskaras. Intellect also behaves in similar way as it is just the reflection of soul.

[Remember the situation of a person who is possessed by ghost. It depends upon samskaras of manomaya kosha how his mind behaves. ie. If the samsakars of the person who is possessed are strong (godly), then ghost can't control him.] There is no problem for the Soul in this condition because soul is the mere witness of event. Both soul witness the event. Soul is just like a bird in tree which just witnesses the tree.

Adi Shankaracharya on Vivekchudamani says:

Of the tree of Samsara ignorance is the seed, the identification with the body is its sprout, attachment its tender leaves, work its water, the body its trunk, the vital forces its branches, the organs its twigs, the sense-objects its flowers, various miseries due to diverse works are its fruits, and the individual soul is the bird on it. (Verse 145)

Lastly parakaya pravesh is an advanced yoga. One can't make a person understand how sugar tastes by just saying it. He must taste it to know. Such is the case here. One must experience to understand the truth.

  • When a Yogi enters with other Koshas such as Vijnanamaya, Aananadamaya and Soul, will these Koshas of other person and koshas of Yogi overlap or mix each other resulting in new Vijanamaya, Aanandamaya Koshas? Or Are they present intact as separate entities with second person's Vijnanamaya, Aanadamaya Koshas dormant?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 1:53
  • @TheDestroyerIts not exactly intermixing. If manomaya kosha intermixes then samskara of two bodies will intermix whic will violate the law of Karma. Vijnamaya and Manomaya kosha of the two bodies try to control the same gross body at the same time. Body is controlled by mind and intellect. Hence body behaves as a mixture of command. Hence possessed body behaves abnormally and shaking occurs due to two separate koshas commanding the same body. People known as dhamis who are possessed by God and their body is not in their control. They donot remember what they, jump and shiver the whole time..
    – Tezz
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 2:31
  • It is because intermixing doesnt take place. Body seems to obey the command of that having higher mind power and intellect. But the lower mind power and intellect is also influencing the body hence resulting in seeming abnormal behaviour. It is also in the case of Godly possession. For eg. When Kapalika was sacrificing the head of Shankaracharya then his disciple Padmapada was possessed by Lord Nrisimha Thus resulting enormous power jumping and tearing the chest of Kapalika.
    – Tezz
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 2:33
  • "The Yogi can enter a dead body, and make it get up and move, even while he himself is working in another body". How is this possible? Which koshas Yogi take with him while he do Parakaya Pravesha?
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 3:26
  • @The Destroyer First of all it is the commentary of Swami Vivekananda... It is possible by identifying the mind of another person as the one ie, refers to making omnipotency of mind by Samyama..
    – Tezz
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 3:31

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