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February 28 – April 18, 2021

Japa Meditation Challenge: The Practice of Mantra Yoga

Rukmini Chaitanya

8 WEEKLY SESSIONS, Sundays, 2:00-3:30pm EST

“Mantra Yoga is an exact science. By the constant thinking of Mantra, one is protected and released from the round of births and death. A mantra generates the creative force and bestows eternal Bliss. A mantra, when constantly repeated, awakens the consciousness” – Swami Sivananda, Japa Yoga

Yoga is a life journey. Japa (mantra repetition) is an extremely useful part of that journey, both while sitting for practice, but also in the middle of daily life.

Japa practice is the very heart of Yoga. It is mentioned in the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, and Patanjali Yoga Sutras. It is considered the best practice for our time, the ultimate purifier of the mind, and the universal path of meditation. This leads to the realization of one’s union with the one infinite or universal consciousness.

In this course, we will explore the power of Mantra and how to use it in our daily practice. Rukmini Chaitanya will guide you through the traditional ways of practicing Japa meditation. We will review how Mantra is used as a means of purifying the mind and how it is used for meditation.

The mantra will become a most important companion on your journey of Yoga.

This course is for people who are new to the practice of Japa as well as for those with an established practice. It is also for those with a subtler orientation to the spiritual or mystic journey.

Guest Presenters:

Gaura Vani started studying sacred music in Vrindavan, India, at the age of six. Today, he shares the magic he received and performs extensively with his kirtan ensemble throughout the world. His albums include Ten Million Moons and Nectar of Devotion.

Silvia Nakkach, MA, MMT, is a Grammy-nominated musician, award-winning
composer, and voice-culturist. A former psychotherapist and academic programs consultant, she is an accredited authority within the fields of sound in yoga and transformation of consciousness.

For more than 35 years, Silvia has studied and performed the ragas and North Indian classical music under the guidance of the late maestro Ustad Ali Akbar Khan and other renowned masters. She teaches raga singing in retreats and universities throughout the world, as well as in her international school, Vox Mundi School of the Voice. Her most recent book is Free Your Voice.

Course Assistants:

Iswara Chaitanya is a Sivananda Yoga practitioner and teacher of many years and a senior staff member at the ashram. He currently serves the ashram as the head of Reception and IT manager, as well as teaching many courses including in the ATTC.

Sivakami Chaitanya is a Sivananda Yoga teacher and a hatha yoga instructor in the Sivananda Yoga Teacher Training Courses. She teaches with clarity and a sense of humor. Her experience in bringing the foundations of Sivananda Yoga to students makes her a sought after and beloved teacher. She is also a student of Ayurveda and a gifted cook.

What You'll Learn:

  • Learn how to channel your consciousness from the lowest to the highest level of pure thought.
  • Experience directly the great physical, mental, and spiritual benefits that come from the daily practice of Japa meditation.
  • Explore how mantra repetition (verbally or mentally) can lift you into the telepathic stage and beyond to the transcendental.
  • Participate in weekly meetings and receive personal support and guidance from Rukmini Chaitanya and other senior teachers to develop a daily practice of Japa meditation. 
  • Progress in your daily practice and learn how to take your practice to a higher level. 
  • Learn how to work with Japa mala and counter, how to practice Japa while engaged in activity, how to establish a daily routine of Japa meditation practice, and how to gradually increase the number of daily mantra repetitions.
  • Understand the obstacles to the practice of Japa Meditation, how to overcome them, and how to sustain inspiration to continue the practice.
  • Discover theory of mantra, sound, and Japa meditation practice based on the teachings of Swami Sivananda in his renowned book Japa Yoga, which contains the most profound knowledge and vast information about Mantra, Japa practice, and the science of sacred sound.
  • Be inspired by guest speakers who are experts in sound, science, mantra yoga and nada yoga will also be sharing their knowledge on the subject during select classes.
  • Students will be invited to keep a spiritual diary to track their practice. Rukmini Chaitanya will be available throughout the week to review the spiritual diary, offer guidance, answer questions about the practice and share advice about any challenges.
"Another wonderful class! It has deepened my commitment to mala practice and I learned the proper way to do it. Very good course!"
- Dawn T.

Additional Information:

Offered as 8 weekly sessions on Sundays, Feb 28, Mar 7, 14, 21, 28, Apr 4, 11 & 18, 2:00-3:30pm EST

This program is offered live through Zoom webinar with the availability for students to interact through Q&A with the presenter.

For enrolled students, a video recording will be available after each class in the event you miss a class or would like to review the content.

It is possible to register and take the course at any time. You can catch up on any classes you miss with the recordings.

Requirements and Recommendations:

Course Includes:

Rukmini Chaitanya

Rukmini Chaitanya is a senior staff member of the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat Bahamas, and the personal assistant to Swami Swaroopananda, the Acharya, or spiritual director of the Ashram. She regularly teaches the Bhagavad Gita during the Sivananda Yoga Teacher training as well as other courses on the Bhagavad Gita, Vedanta, positive thinking, meditation, and yoga philosophy.

Rukmini Chaitanya is known for her enthusiastic and inspiring teaching style as well as for her devotion to the lineage and the scriptures. She is dedicated to each of her students and has an innate desire to share knowledge with them. She brings a great deal of clarity to every topic and is highly appreciated for her capacity to unfold complicated topics and present them in a coherent and pure way.

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