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The Yoga of the Yoga Sutras

YOG2002 This course takes the students into a journey of exploration of yoga as enunciated in the yoga sutras of Maharishi Patanjali. The yoga sutras encode the core tenets of yoga practice and yoga philosophy in the form of short, terse aphorisms. The foundational principles of yoga practices such as asanas (yoga postures), pranayama (yogic breath-work), dhyana (meditation), etc., are enunciated in the yoga sutras in a clear and thorough manner. One of the core teachings of the yoga sutras is the system of Ashtanga Yoga, a highly structured and carefully crafted set of eight holistic disciplines (limbs) of yoga. The yoga sutras also present a detailed analysis of the mechanics of the mind and how to transform the turbulent mind into a tranquil mind.  

In contemporary times, the yoga sutras of Patanjali has gained popularity as the key text of yoga practice. In fact, all of the yoga practices we do inside the yoga mat is rooted in the teachings of Patanjali. By applying the principles taught in the yoga sutras, we can profoundly elevate the quality of one’s yoga practice. Furthermore, the yoga sutras contain wisdom that can be applied in every aspect of life including outside the yoga mat. Examples include how to relate with different types of people in a way that promotes harmony, how to cultivate higher values and virtues, how to handle the impulsive tendencies of the mind, how to express excellence in action, and even how to be an effective leader in the communities we find ourselves in. 

 

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Course Code: YOG 2002

Credit Hours: 1

Course Level: 100

YOG2002 This course takes the students into a journey of exploration of yoga as enunciated in the yoga sutras of Maharishi Patanjali. The yoga sutras encode the core tenets of yoga practice and yoga philosophy in the form of short, terse aphorisms. The foundational principles of yoga practices such as asanas (yoga postures), pranayama (yogic breath-work), dhyana (meditation), etc., are enunciated in the yoga sutras in a clear and thorough manner. One of the core teachings of the yoga sutras is the system of Ashtanga Yoga, a highly structured and carefully crafted set of eight holistic disciplines (limbs) of yoga. The yoga sutras also present a detailed analysis of the mechanics of the mind and how to transform the turbulent mind into a tranquil mind.  

In contemporary times, the yoga sutras of Patanjali has gained popularity as the key text of yoga practice. In fact, all of the yoga practices we do inside the yoga mat is rooted in the teachings of Patanjali. By applying the principles taught in the yoga sutras, we can profoundly elevate the quality of one’s yoga practice. Furthermore, the yoga sutras contain wisdom that can be applied in every aspect of life including outside the yoga mat. Examples include how to relate with different types of people in a way that promotes harmony, how to cultivate higher values and virtues, how to handle the impulsive tendencies of the mind, how to express excellence in action, and even how to be an effective leader in the communities we find ourselves in. 

 

Click here to check if you are eligible for a scholarship

Registration for this course is not open yet

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Description

Course content

In this course, we will cover a variety of topics contained in the yoga sutras, including:

  • The meaning of yoga, and the ultimate objective of all yogic disciplines.
  • The three main streams of abhyasas (practices) that are presented by Patanjali, namely Kriya Yoga (yoga of action), Ashtanga Yoga (8-limbed yoga) and Samadhi Yoga (Inner practices to develop equanimity).
  • The obstacles in the path of yoga and strategies to overcome them.
  • We will especially highlight the popular practices such as asanas, pranayama, etc and how they fit into the broad scope of yoga. Specifically, what are the unique benefits of asanas? Pranayama? Dhyana? And so on. We will also learn how they beautifully complement each other.
  • In addition to the in-depth analysis and understanding of the 8-limbs of Ashtanga yoga, we will also gain clarity and precise definitions on important terms presented in the yoga sutras, such as abhyasa, vairagya, chitta, vritti, klesha, samyama, parinama, kaivalya, and many more. This clarity will extraordinarily help in one’s own yoga practice.

Course Learning Objectives:

In this course students will be able to:

  1. Understand and articulate What is yoga and freedom as enunciated by Patanjali 
  2. Assimilate the value of embracing a yogic discipline in one’s life
  3. Distinguish the four ingredients, three streams and eight limbs of yoga 
  4. Determine which stream of yoga may be appropriate for one’s own life
  5. Recognize the five afflictions of the mind, and the nine obstacles to quietening it 
  6. Integrate strategies for quietening the mind when it is gripped by emotion

Class Structure:

There will be a minimum of 1 contact hour with one or more faculty every week. The class is structured in a way that promotes discussion and debate based on self-study and reflection each week. While the content being discussed in each class will be concluded within 60 minutes, the discussion time will be free format, and can continue for an additional 30 minutes maximum. During the course, students will be required to submit one or two short essays. They need not be academic quality papers – but should be based on students’ self-reflection on what they have learnt and assimilated so far.  Selected essays may qualify for being published on the University’s website. 

Required / Elective: Elective

Prerequisites: Admission into a Program of Study 

Program: Community Education Program (CEP), Certificate Program in Hindu Studies (CPHS)  

Faculty / Instructor: Dr. Shriram Sarvotham 

Area of Study: Yoga Studies

Start Date: 17th July 2021

End Date: 25th September 2021

Time: 11:00 am EST – 12:30 pm EST

Quarter Offered: Summer 2021

Additional information

Quarter Offered

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