Recent Blog Posts

Why Does ‘Bhakti’ Mean Different Things to Different People?

By Hari-kirtana | December 22, 2017

Question: In the course of studying yoga and visiting different spiritual communities, I’ve come to find that there are a lot of different conceptions of what bhakti-yoga is and what bhakti is meant to teach us. Would you please explain why these differences exist and what those differences are? Answer: Bhakti does indeed play different roles in different schools of […]

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5 Keys to an Effective Dharma Talk

By Hari-kirtana | November 27, 2017

More and more practitioners are looking to yoga as much for sparks of inspiration, knowledge, or wisdom, as they are for a workout. And more and more yoga teachers are feeling inspired to share their personal realizations as they expand their knowledge of yoga philosophy. One way you can share the wisdom of yoga is through a short ‘Dharma Talk’ […]

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Can ‘Yoga’ Mean Whatever We Want It To Mean?

By Hari-kirtana | November 27, 2017

 Question: I’m enrolled in a Yoga Teacher Training program. On the first day of the training the instructor asked us to share our idea of what ‘yoga’ meant to us. Everyone had their own idea about what ‘yoga’ is and what it means to them. At the end of the discussion the trainer said, ‘whatever yoga means to you is […]

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Civility and Humility

By Hari-kirtana | November 26, 2017

What happened to civility? One could of course argue that the world has always been a very uncivil place – particularly for people outside the dominant power structure – but I think most of us would agree that rampant public incivility has become the new normal. Perhaps it’s because this behavior is socially contagious; if not confronted by corrective feedback […]

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How to Teach ‘Svadhyaya’ – Guided Self-Inquiry

By Hari-kirtana | November 26, 2017

Svadhaya, usually translated as ‘self-study’, is contemplation on the true nature of the self that’s guided by scriptural wisdom. Rather than mere speculation or self-psychologizing, svadhyaya is a process that provides us with a map to guide us on our journey toward accurate knowledge of our true selves. Pramana is the Sanskrit word for the methods by which accurate information […]

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Awakening Our Spiritual Senses

By Hari-kirtana | November 26, 2017

I routinely speak about ‘awakening our spiritual senses’ in my classes. As often as not, a student or two will linger after class to ask what I mean by ‘spiritual’ senses. The idea that we have a dormant set of spiritual senses waiting to be stirred is a curious notion. We assume that senses, by definition, are made of matter […]

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