Sadhu is a Hindu ascetic, who have left behind all material, family, social position, money and live in caves, forests, mountains and temples. Sadhus occupy a unique and important place in Hindu society, particularly in Indian villages and small towns. A Sadhu in India is also referred as Baba by common peoples and most sadhus rely on the donations of lay peoples. There are female sadhus as well — known as sadhvis.
Lifestyle of a sadhu is very difficult, early morning bath then sadhus gather around the dhuni or holy fireplace and begin with their prayers and meditation for the day. Sadhus typically survive on bhiksha provided by other families, people or depend on natural resources, they spend most of their time in meditation.
You can find Sadhus in ashrams, temples in the midst of major urban centers, in huts on the edges of villages, in caves in the remote mountains or in the jungle. But you can’t find sadhu always at one place, they always on their way to move from one place to another, Sadhus worship The Lord Shiva. They are generally allowed free passage on the trains to go anywhere is India or Nepal.
To become a sadhu a new person has to follow a guru for many years, serving him by doing menial tasks until acquiring the necessary experience to leave his leadership. Naked holy men belong to Naga group of sadhus they never wear any clothes even in severe winter. Most of them smear their bodies with ash and have long matted hair. Aghora sadhus who live in cemeteries have company with ghosts, they practices cannibalism, eating rotten dead meat and meditating on human corpses.
The Maha Kumbh Mela
The Kumbh Mela is the Biggest religious gathering in India, last Kumbh Mela was the largest gathering anywhere in the world in recorded history. Kumbh Mela is that pilgrimage occurs four times every twelve years, once at each of the four locations Allahabad, Haridwar, Nashik and Ujjain one of the oldest living city in India.
The Sadhus, saints and yogis who live in Himalayan caves gather together for bathing into The Holy River and to bless the people. Hundreds of foreigners joined Indian pilgrims in the festival. Haridwar has hosted the Purna Kumbha mela on Makar Sankranti 14 January 2010, Next Kumbh Mela at Prayag Allahabad in 2013.