Yoga dakshinamurthi is the form of Lord Shiva. Dakshinamurthi means ‘one who is facing south’ and Yoga is the art of being healthy in both physical and spiritual norms. It is believed that this form is the personification of Lord Shiva, where he represents knowledge, understanding and ultimate awareness. He is worshipped as the Lord of Wisdom, Yoga and Meditation. Hence, the name Yogadakshinamurthi.
The concept of Yoga and Meditation originated by Lord Shiva. In every temple of Dakshinamurthi, the statue of Lord Shiva is installed, facing towards south. He might be the only God, who faces the Southward direction.
Lord Shiva teaches the entire human race how to lead a healthy life in both physical and psychological aspects. As Lord Yogadakshinamurthi is regarded as the Ultimate Guru, Embodiment of Knowledge and Destroyer of Ignorance, he is worshipped by the people. The right hand of the God wills he showed Jnana Mudra, in which, the tips of index finger and the thumb touch each other to form a ring. Because of this he is also called ‘Jnana Dakshinamurthi’. He is worshipped by the people on Thursdays and some worship the Lord on the night of Guru Purnima and MahaShivaRatri. However, some of the Shaivite temples worship him all the days in the year.
In India, there are only few temples, where Lord Dakshinamurthi is the chief Deity. In one of the temples in Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, he is represented as Yoga Dakshinamurthi. The Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh, is the only one of the twelve Jyothirlingas, which is Dakshinamurthi.