The Sacred Space: Deities & the Altar

 

Learn about sacred deities and how to build an altar

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This course is for you if you want to explore yoga beyond asana classes, & cultivate a deeper personal practice. 

In this six-week online course, you will learn  how to create your own  personal sacred altar as well as get to know the symbolism and  meaning deities hold  in the Vedic and Hindu tradition. 

Have you ever wondered about creating a sacred space? What objects go on an altar and why? Perhaps you have seen fruits, incense, flowers and certain murtis ... do the objects, deities and their arrangement have a meaning? 

 

An altar is the anchor for your sadhana. It's home for your practice and a place for connection with the Divine . Yet, there is little information out there about how to create an appropriate altar and be in a respectful relationship with the tradition that doesn't appropriate or disrespect Indic culture or Hinduism.

 

Often altars are places for favorite or sentimental objects, but in Yogic traditions, it's  not about that. An appropriate sacred altar can help you deepen, connect and drive your practice as a yoga student (for Dhyana - meditation and contemplation). This course will show you how and why.

​Classes are 90 minutes, Live with recordings
 
Tuesdays at 12 :00 ET beginning October 18, 2022
(No Class Nov 15)

What will I learn in this course? 

  • How to build and personalize an altar in the Vedic / Hindu tradition

  • What exactly is the function of an altar and how can it deepen my practice?

  • What do you place on an altar (and what don't you place there)

  • What do you do in front of an altar once I create one (and what don't you do)

  • Who are the deities that grace the altars in yoga studios temples and sacred sites?

  • What is the symbolism behind the way they are depicted: Shiva austere with matted locks; Durga  seated on a Tiger, Ganesh with a stockpile of sweets? 

  • Which deity do I place on my altar?

  • Creating with care: What is considered appropriation or disrespectful in these traditions? 

  • What do I do in front of my altar once I create one?

This course is for you if:

 

You are a student of yoga who has a yoga practice and wishes to deepen into the culture that informs the tradition with practical information.  If you have an altar or wish to create one but aren't sure what to place on it beyond  the candles and crystals that the wellness world suggests.

You feel a connection with Hindu deities but aren't sure how to connect with them respectfully

This is a deep dive into the practices that take yoga from a once-a-week on the mat practice to a daily sadhana. It is for students who feel connected to yoga, vedic traditions and hinduism and wish to learn more. 

You may want to set up an altar for your practices, but most training programs don't share what an altar is and how to work with one effectively.  There are many types of altars; all are sacred and have a purpose. This course outlines the specific function of a Vedic / Yogic altar that serves to lead the aspirant to moksha.

 
 
Class details

  • NO experience with philosophy is required!

  • Beginners to yoga are welcome!

  • Classes are LIVE for 90 minutes, workshop style with time for questions

  • Class size will be kept small and intimate

  • Recordings are available

  • Tuesdays  at 12 noon ET beginning October 18 (No Class Nov 15).

  • 6 Week course.

  • Investment: $97 USD

  • Scholarships are available

What will be covered? 

Week 1 - From Bhakti yoga to the abstract. The altar is an anchor for all aspirants on the moksha path

Week 2 - Deities, the philosophy behind the personalities of The Divine. How to select your Istha Devata. Which aspect is the right connection for *you*? 

Week 3 & 4  - Popular deities and their symbolism along with their associated mantras

Week 5  - How to build an altar- setup up symbolism and necessary items, as well as items to avoid

Week 6  - What to do in front of your altar: intro to japa, arati, puja, meditation (the daily ritual) and what not to do.

Temple Candles
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Hosted by: Aarti Inamdar MScBMC, 500 RYT

 

Aarti is a lifelong practitioner of yoga and has been a teacher for 15 years. Aarti believes in preserving and sharing the teachings of yoga as sacred ancestral wisdom traditions. 

 

In addition to the formal classical hatha yoga training in the lineage of Swami Sivananda, Aarti’s first teachers are her parents, grandparents and elders. She continues to learn from them. 

Aarti believes that yoga is a healing practice; one that can open us into awareness and help us cultivate social consciousness, inner peace, health, wisdom and connection. Aarti shares traditional yoga philosophy and practices in an accessible way to help students to integrate yoga as a daily, lifelong practice.

Practising Yoga

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

During the past 11 years I have had the pleasure of knowing Aarti Inamdar, I have enjoyed attending her classical yoga classes, participating in meditation workshops and doing personal energy work with her. Aarti’s gentle, intuitive, sensitive and genuinely caring nature shines through all her work, creating a peaceful and relaxing environment which provides the ideal space to increase self-awareness and promote personal growth. Everything I learned from Aarti through the services she offers has played an integral role in assisting me build a strong mental, emotional and spiritual foundation which is enabling me to live a happy and purpose-filled life. I am deeply grateful to Aarti for the positive impact she has had on my life.

—  Julie Carrique