The Advanced Practices Curriculum

Acceptance into The Advanced Practices includes:

  • 300 contact hours of Advanced Yoga Teacher Training, Advanced Tantric Techniques and mentorship
  • Discounted rates on classes and workshops at Darshan Center
  • Two private Ayurvedic consultations

Module 1: "The Language of Yoga"
September 3 - October 11, 2015

In this opening Module we distinguish and define the key concepts of yoga from its remedial study, to its advanced practices in the form of language. We study Sanskrit, the language of Yoga and The Vedas, learning not only the importance of language as a means of communication and creation, but the concept of Shadhabrahma, or sound itself, the most fundamental aspect of matter.

We will learn and distinguish a large vocabulary of terminology through the study of Samkhya Philosophy, which forms the basis of all yoga philosophies and practices, as well as Ayurveda, the science of life, and Vedanta.

Beyond intellectually understanding the concepts of Samkhya, we will also embody them through advanced yogic and tantric practices including advanced DharanasDhyana and advanced Pranayama.

We will delve into Samadhi, the most basic form of human consciousness, both experientially and intellectually via the Samadhi Pada of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. We will survey the history and philosophies of Yoga, Tantra and Veda, while understanding their role and reflection of the natural evolution of human consciousness.

We will begin our in-depth study of advanced Asana Practice with an introduction to the practices of Hatha Yoga laid forth in the Hatha Yoga Pradipika through a survey of the Shatkarmas, and basic Mudras.

Finally, we initiate our in depth study of human anatomy with an understanding of it's relation to Samkhya philosophy by understanding the Koshas, or levels of its existence. We will further explore the Koshas and their relationship through the exploration of Marma points, and accu points, which serve as "junction points" between each level or Kosha.  We will learn to identify these points with the use of traditional latin terminology including muscles, tendons and bony landmarks.

Through this approach we confront the therapeutic effects of Asana by exploring the concept of Prana, its definition and qualities, and its expression in the meridian system. By the study of the Lung and Large Intestine channels, we will look at the effects of asana on the immune system, as well as disorders involving the respiratory system. We will use these channels as a means to cultivate advanced practices in Pranayama and Meditation.

The following topics are addressed in detail:

  • Sanskrit 1:  Understanding Mantra and Brahmana, the power of Sound and Silence
  • Survey of Tantra, Veda and Yoga:  Its history and context in relation to human consciousness
  • Samkhya Philosophy:  It's Terminology and Ideas; Understanding Purusha, and exploring Prakriti through the Tattvas
  • Patanjali Yoga 1: Yoga Sutras, Chapter 1, Samadhi Pada
  • Hatha Yoga 1
  • Anatomy 1:  Understanding the physical body as a microcosm of Prakriti
  • Introduction to Marma Points: Creating physiological balance on all levels
  • Introduction to the Meridian System: Understanding individual muscles, their relationships and functions via the Sinew Channels
  • Therapeutics of Asana 1:  The breathing System, and Immunity
  • Advanced Pranayama and Meditation 1
  • Advanced Asana Practice 1:  A survey of Classical Asana
  • Special Topics 1:  Introduction to Thesis

Module 2: "The Practice of Yoga"
November 5 - December 13, 2015

This module delves into the methodology of Yoga and it's practices. From the most outer aspect of Yoga, or Yama, through the deepest, most subtle state of human consciousness, Samadhi, we will explore the full range of practices known as Patanjali's Astanga Yoga or "eight limbed system". We will examine entire systems of yoga which arise from the Niyama limb such as Jnana and Bhakti, while embodying those systems through self-inquiry techniques and a cross cultural survey of classical and modern Bhakti texts.

We will begin the study of Ayurveda, of both understanding it's principles to applying them to our lives to enrich our health.

We will continue our study of Asana through the exploration of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, examining and embodying the advanced concepts of PranaTejas and OjasMudras, and the little understood practice of Bandhas and their related Granthis.

We will deepen our understanding of the physical anatomy through the esoteric study of the Chakras, and Nadis, and their relationship to physical and mental functioning and health.

We will apply this methodology to the advanced practice of Asana, learning the cultivation of grace and ease in Asana, and in life.

We will explore the dynamics, both physically and energetically of Backbending, it's precise and proper alignment and practice, and the therapeutic effects resulting from their correct execution. By exploration, both intellectually as well as experientially through the practice of advanced Pranayamas, and meditations, of the Stomach/Spleen, Heart/Small Intestine Channels, we will understand the healing potential of Asana on specific digestive, and emotional disorders.

The following topics are addressed in detail:

  • Sanskrit 2: Mantra selections from Rk Veda, the Bhagavad Gita and the Brahmana Sutras
  • Ayurveda 1:  Its principles and applications
  • Patanjali Yoga 2:  The Yoga Sutras, Chapter 2, Sadhana Pada
  • Hatha Yoga 2
  • Jnana Yoga 1:  Understanding the Intellect
  • Bhakti Yoga 1:  The Art of Devotion
  • Kriya Yoga 1:  Introduction to Kriya Yoga
  • Anatomy 2: The Koshas in relation to the Tattvas; the chakra system
  • Marma Points:  A continuation
  • The Meridian System:  A continuation
  • Advanced Asana Practice 2:  The cultivation of grace and ease in Asana and in Life
  • Therapeutics of Asana 2:  Asana for digestive and emotional disorders
  • Advanced Pranayama and Meditation 2:  The Practice Techniques
  • Special Topics 2:  Teaching Methodology

Module 3: "The Perfection of Yoga"
January 28 - March 7, 2016

In this module, we examine both the practical and esoterc aspects of Yoga, and their mutual relationship. Through in depth study of the Bhagavad Gita, we will gain isight into the profound system of Karma Yoga, which answers the most fundamental questions about the nature of existence.

Combined with the exploration the Vibhuti Pada of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, we will come to understand the fundamental concept of Siddhi, or perfection in action.

We will confront the concept and process of Samyama, the key to perfecting action. We will apply the concept of Samyama and similarly related "technologies" to the study of Asana, focusing on how to perfect "challenging" poses such as arm balances.

We continue to delve into the meridian system in the exploration of the bladder/kidney, Pericardium/Sanjao channels, in which we will look at the therapeutic effects of Asana on emotional disorders as well as metabolic, and hormonal problems, and problems of the skeletal and nervous systems.

The following topics are addressed in detail:

  • Sanskrit 3:  Selections from Rk Veda and Brahmana Sutras
  • Ayurveda 2:  The Practice of Ayurveda
  • Patanjali YogaThe Yoga Sutras Chapter 3, Vibhuti Pada
  • Bhakti Yoga 2:  Practice in Bhakti Yoga
  • Kriya Yoga:  Kriya practice
  • Karma Yoga 1:  Understanding the Origin of Action
  • Anatomy 3:  The anatomy of the mind
  • Marma Points:  A continuation
  • The Meridian System: A continuation
  • Advanced Asana Practice 3:  The perfection of Asana
  • Therapeutics of Asana 3:  Therapeutics of Asana in the treatment of hormonal, metabolic and emotional disorders
  • Advanced Pranayama and Meditation 3:  Practice Techniques
  • Special Topics 3: Teaching Methodology; Thesis 2

Module 4: "The Attainment of Yoga"
April 7 - May 15, 2016

In this final module, we will be confronting the concepts of Kaivalya, or ultimate liberation, and Brahm, ultimate reality, which are both apparent in the final stage of yoga practice. We will study the key concepts of Vedanta philosophy, the culmination of The 6 major schools of Vedic thought, with readings from the Mandkhyopanishad, and the Kaivalya Pada of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras.

We will discover the ultimate purpose of action, in the study of the Bhagavad Gita, and gain insight into the purpose or reason to perform action.

In our Asana Study, we will continue to explore the psycho-physical effects of Asana through the study of the Gall Bladder and Liver channels, the Avarohan(Du) and Arohan(Ren) channels, and finally Shushumna Nadi (Chong Mai).

We will examine how Asana can be used therapeutically in cases of depression, joint problems, and digestive disorders, as well as the effects of Asana on human states of Consciousness.

These concepts are integrated in the completion of learning advanced pranayama and meditation techniques, which allow for the experience and embodiment of the channels and their relationship and effects on the physical body.

The following topics are addressed in detail:

  • Sanskrit 4:  The Mandukhyopanishad
  • Vedanta:  The Science of Ultimate Liberation
  • Patanjali Yoga:  Yoga Sutras Chapter 4, Kaivalya Pada
  • Bhakti Yoga 3:  Advanced Practice
  • Karma Yoga 2:  Understanding Perfection on Action
  • Kriya Yoga:  Kriya practices
  • Anatomy 4: The Anatomy of Consciousness
  • Marma Points:  A Continuation
  • The Meridian System:  A Continuation
  • Advanced Asana Practice 4:  Asana as a means to Yoga
  • Therapeutics of Asana 4: The Effects of Asana on Mental/Emotional Problems; The Effects of Asana on States of Consciousness
  • Advanced Pranayama and Meditation 4:  Practice Techniques
  • Special Topics 4:  Thesis Completion