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Yoga Philosophy & the Paradox of Embodiment: Unpacking Vedānta’s Chariot Analogy

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May 11 @ 7:00 pm 8:30 pm

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Yoga Philosophy & the Paradox of Embodiment:
Unpacking Vedānta’s Chariot Analogy

Popular conceptions of Hinduism’s Yoga and Vedanta traditions have tended to articulate embodiment as a problematic state to be transcended. And yet these traditions also emphasize the need to live in, and engage with, the world of matter; indeed, for all but a few monastics, the sphere of embodiment is the battlefield we will invariably find ourselves on. How do we reconcile the apparent paradox? In this seminar, we will do a deep dive into one of the most beloved analogies offered in ancient India’s wisdom texts– the chariot of the self, found in the Katha Upanishad. Instructor Vineet Chander, Hindu chaplain at Princeton University and Vedanta Studies Fellow at NYU, will unpack each facet of the analogy and present a fresh take on the lessons it presents us with. The seminar will journey from the abstract and theoretical to the practical and applicable, inviting us to consider how living out the analogy may offer us a radical approach to living a life of awareness, intention, and grace.

In this seminar, participants will learn:

  • how to unpack and analyze each piece of a classical Vedantic analogy on embodiment.
  • how to bring commentarial tradition into dialogue with contemporary lived experience.
  • how to recognize unhealthy patterns of behavior in ourselves, and how to establish healthier habits through self-awareness and alignment.
  • how to draw from yoga philosophy to offer spiritual care, empathy, and authenticity to others.

This talk was live and interactive on Tuesday, May 11 at 7:00 pm ET.  Convert to your timezone here. In case you cannot make the live session, all who register will receive a 48hr-active link to watch the recording. 

Once you have registered, you will be sent an email confirmation with information about how to view/attend the webinar. Please check your inbox and if it lands in “spam”, drag the email into your inbox to ensure you receive the emails you need to attend. For support, please reply to your confirmation email or contact [email protected].

About the Speaker

Vineet Chander is the Coordinator for Hindu Life and Hindu Chaplain at Princeton University and a Religious Life Leader at the Lawrenceville School. He has also served as an adjunct professor, attorney, and communications consultant. His areas of specialty include Bhakti theology, models of pastoral counseling, and the Hindu-American diaspora community. His writing has appeared in a number of publications, and he is co-author of Hindu Chaplaincy (Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, 2017) and co-editor of Hindu Approaches to Spiritual Care: Chaplaincy in Theory and Practice (Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2019).

A student of His Holiness Radhanath Swami for more than two decades, he is a sought-after speaker and teacher in his own right— particularly known for his ability to infuse ancient wisdom with humor, relevant examples, and avenues for application. He has spoken at a number of conferences and educational institutions, including the American Academy of Religion, the Global Dharma Conference, the Global Chaplains Conference, Yale University, Cornell University, and the Harvard Divinity School at Harvard University. In addition, he has offered wisdom teachings in a number of temples, ashrams, and yoga studios, including the philosophy portions of YTT courses at Gratitude Yoga (Princeton, NJ), Prana Yoga Shala (Princeton, NJ), and Onyx Yoga (Warren, NJ). He is a regular speaker at, and past board member of, the Bhakti Center (New York City).