June 30 – August 4, 2021
The Yoga of the Supreme Spirit: Teachings from Chapter 15 of the Bhagavad
6 WEEKLY SESSIONS, Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30pm ET
The Bhagavad Gita is a message of divine wisdom addressed to mankind for all times, in order to help human beings face and solve the ever-present problems of birth and death, of pain, suffering, fear, bondage, love, and hate. It enables man to liberate himself from all limiting factors and reach a state of perfect balance, inner stability, and mental peace, complete freedom from grief, fear, and anxiety. Human drama is revealed within the Bhagavad Gita’s eighteen chapters. This is the experience of everyone in this world, the drama of the ascent of man from a state of hopelessness, utter dejection, sorrow, and total breakdown, to a state of perfect understanding, clarity, renewed strength, and triumph.
This discourse is entitled “Purushottama Yoga” or the “Yoga of the Supreme Person”. Here Lord Krishna tells us about the ultimate source of this visible phenomenal universe from which all things have come into being, just like a great tree with all its roots, trunk, branches, twigs, leaves, flowers and fruits which spring forth from the earth, which itself supports the tree and in which it is rooted. Sri Krishna declares that the Supreme Being is the source of all existence, and refers allegorically to this universe as being like an inverted tree whose roots are in Para Brahman, and whose spreading branches and foliage constitute all the things and factors that go to make up this creation of variegated phenomena. This is a very mysterious “Tree” which is very difficult to understand, being a product of His inscrutable power of Maya; and hence a marvellous, apparent appearance without having actual reality. One who fully understands the nature of this Samsara-Tree goes beyond Maya. To be attached to it is to be caught in it. The surest way of transcending this Samsara or worldly life is by wielding the excellent weapon of dispassion and non-attachment.
In verses four and five of this discourse the Lord tells us how one goes beyond this visible Samsara and attains the supreme, imperishable status, attaining which one does not have to return to this mortal world of pain and death.
Lord Krishna also describes for us the wonderful mystery of His Presence in this universe and the supreme place He occupies in sustaining everything here. The Lord declares that it is a part of Himself that manifests here as the individual soul in each body. He Himself is the indwelling Oversoul beyond the self. He is the effulgence inherent in the sun, moon and fire. He is present as the nourishing element in the earth. He is the inner witness of all beings. He is the supreme Knower even beyond Vedic knowledge. He is the resplendent Person who is beyond both this perishable phenomenal creation as well as the imperishable individual soul which is a part of His eternal essence. Thus, because He is beyond perishable matter and superior to the imperishable soul (enveloped in Maya), He is known in this world as well as in the Vedas as the Supreme Person.
What you'll learn:
Offered as 6 weekly sessions on Wednesday, June 30, July 7, 14, 21, 28, Aug 4 6:30-8:30pm ET
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:
Swami Brahmananda is Manager of the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat and senior staff of the Sivananda organization. A long-time practitioner of yoga, he regularly teaches yoga philosophy and meditation for the Sivananda Yoga Teacher Training Courses as well as meditation immersion courses. He is a much-loved, inspiring, and knowledgeable teacher.