Practical Bhakti Yoga Training

16 September 2022 – 13 June 2023

In-depth and practical teaching, combining online lectures and interactive sessions, residential stays and personal coaching.

Certification for 400 hours.

For Sivananda Yoga Teachers

Ongoing coaching

The training will combine the study of scriptures with the pursuit of a yogic lifestyle through the practice of asana, pranayama, meditation and mantra chanting.

The lectures will be given online, except for the three retreats, which will take place online or at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram in Loiret, France. The teachings will be given by European Acharyas and Swamis.

Senior Swamis and experienced teachers from the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres will teach at the residential retreats and accompany you in personal mentoring.

Curriculum of the training course

STRUCTURE AND PREPARATION

Structure of the training course

Weekly online conferences

Weekly online lectures every Thursday from 18 to 19.45 CET. These lectures of 90 minutes will be taught live by the European Yoga Acharyas and recordings will be made available to all participants. Each lecture will end with a 15 minutes session for questions and answers.

Interactive sessions of 60 minutes

Every three weeks there will be online discussions of 60 minutes as a forum for group interaction of all participants

Personal tutor

Bi-monthly meetings of 45 minutes with a personal mentor to answer questions regarding your yoga practice

Unlimited online asana and satsang classes

Unlimited access to all online asana classes in English and French and all online Satsangs for the duration of the programme

Three residential stays in the ashram

Three onsite Retreats at the Ashram de Yoga Sivananda, Loire Valley, France (accommodation in shared rooms is already included in the tuition fee) :

  • 16 – 18 September 2022 : Online participation is also possible (no price reduction)
  • 10 – 17 February 2023 : Half-term Retreat. We strongly recommend onsite participation. The noon lectures and morning Asana classes will be shared online.
  • 5 – 13 June 2023 : Final Retreat and Graduation. Onsite participation is mandatory.

Subjects of Study

Fundamental principles of Bhakti Yoga

  • importance of Bhakti Yoga
  • history of Bhakti Yoga
  • the nine modes of Bhakti
  • the five Bhavas (devotional attitudes) of Bhaktas

Mantras and Kirtan

  • Mantras, understanding their power and purpose
  • the philosophy of nama-rupa (name and form)
  • Kirtan, understanding its power and purpose

Bhakti Yoga Mythology

  • Murtis (statues and images) and their significance
  • Vedic and Puranic Gods and their symbolism
  • Yogic symbols and rituals and their meaning
  • Yantras (Mandalas) – understanding their power and purpose

Bhakti Scriptures

Narada Bhakti Sutras

  • the great standard work on Bhakti Yoga in the form of aphorisms, attributed to Sage Narada. It teaches us that by attaining pure, unconditional love, we can overcome all suffering and experience everlasting peace and joy.

Mahabharata

  • “the great epic produces a moral awakening in the readers and exhorts them to tread the path of Satya (truth) and Dharma (righteousness)” – Swami Sivananda

Ramayana

  • the ancient epic on Lord Rama whose purpose is to show the path of righteousness to all beings. It teaches us the transformation from human into divine by living life to our full potential

Srimad Bhagavatam

  • this unique scripture on love and devotion has as main purpose to promote Bhakti and to open the heart and fill it with joy. It contains the stories of the Avataras (manifestations) of Lord Vishnu including the delightful Lila (Divine Play) of Sri Krishna

Siva Purana

  • Lord Siva is considered to be the Lord of Yoga, always practising austerities and deep meditation and enjoying the bliss of samadhi (super conscious state). This scripture also includes stories on Siva’s son Ganesha and his consort Durga

Devi Mahatmya

  • this scripture is all about the Divine Mother of the universe, the supreme Goddess in her various forms as Durga, Lakshmi, and Sarasvati. She is Shakti, the primordial energy who gives and maintains life and helps us to overcome our lower nature by killing various demons, representing our negative thoughts and habits

Practical Workshops

  • Mantra workshops – practice chanting various mantras for different occasions
  • Kirtan workshops – develop and fine tune your skills in chanting the Kirtans of the Sivananda tradition
  • how to set up a home altar
  • how to do Arati
  • Puja workshops – learn how to do a simple Puja at home
  • Prasad workshops – learn how to prepare sweet offerings to the Divine


Spiritual Journal

Detailed support

We recommend that you keep a spiritual diary throughout the course which you can share with your tutor for further guidance. The template for the spiritual diary will be provided to you.

References

Publications studied

Required books:

  • Bliss Divine by Swami Sivananda
  • Sivananda Yoga Kirtan book
  • Sivananda book of Meditation
  • Meditation and Mantras by Swami Vishnudevananda
  • Narada Bhakti Sutras any edition

Optional further reading:

  • In Indian culture: why do we? By Swami Vimalananda
  • Encyclopaedia of Hindu Gods and Goddesses by Suresh Chandra
  • Devi Mahatmya
  • Mahabharata by Kamala Subramaniam
  • Ramayana by Kamala Subramaniam
  • Srimad Bhagavatam by Kamala Subramaniam
  • Sri Shiva Lila by Vanamali
  • Sri Rama Lila by Vanamali
  • Sri Krishna Lila by Vanamali
  • Sri Devi Lila by Vanamali

Preparation

How best to prepare for the course

  • Join one of our free online presentations of the Sivananda Yoga Academy. Check our webpage or subscribe to our newsletter to obtain information on the upcoming dates and connection links.
  • For all online teachings, the programme “Zoom” will be used, so it is advisable to download it for free before the start of the course. Your device needs a working camera. For asana classes, position your device’s camera in such a way that your asana mat is visible slightly from above and such that you can still be seen while standing.
  • Active knowledge of the teachings of the TTC about the 4 paths of Yoga, Mantras and Kirtan is required. Therefore, please review the respective chapters in your TTC manual:
    • Chapter 2, lesson 6: The four paths of Yoga
    • Chapter 3, Meditation
    • Chapter 8, lessons 1 to 4: Introduction to Kirtan, Daily Chants, Dhyana Slokas, Om Tryambakam and Arati

  • Highlight during the Final Retreat :

    Bhagavata Saptaha

    With honoured guest: Sri Venugopal Goswami, Bhakti Yoga Acharya, Vrindavan, North India

    A seven-day evening programme.

    With live music: harmonium, vocals, bamboo flute and tablas. Readings and discourse from the classical Bhakti Yoga scripture Srimad Bhagavatam on the journey to the meaning of life. The storytelling, poetry, music and philosophy uplift the heart and the mind.

General Information

In addition to attending weekly lectures and interactive sessions, we recommend that students practice asana and pranayama daily, or attend asana classes regularly, as well as two satsangs per week, or more if your schedule permits.

Registration information

Language

English and French

Participation fees

The tuition fee includes meals and accommodation during the onsite retreats. No discount if an onsite retreat is taken online:

  • Shared room (3-6 beds): 3400 €
  • Double room: 4088 €
  • Single room: 4256 €
  • Single room with bathroom: 4400 €
  • Prerequisite

    TTC diploma of the Sivananda Yoga Teachers’ Training Course

    Potential Interview with one of the Academy teachers after the online application has been reviewed.

    Certification

    Final exam in the form of a written essay of 4 pages (free choice between a variety of topics). The month of May will be kept lecture-free to allow time for the writing of the essay.

    Certified for 400 hours (60 minutes).


    SIVANANDA YOGA ACADEMY

    Practical Vedanta Training


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    Practical Bhakti Yoga Training

    16 September 2022 – 13 June 2023