We began our operations in 2019, with the objective of offering authentic, immersive and transformative Yoga experiences in multiple modes and forms across the world. We were initially apprehensive of the reception we would receive in the Yoga world considering the presence of a large number of established players, however the overwhelming response to our activities in the current year has laid these apprehensions to rest.
Due to COVID all our activities during the year were held online. The enhanced reach compensated for the disappointment of not being able to hold our planned retreats and residential programs.
The Annual Report of our activities for the year 2020-21 is given below:
Lockdown Reflection Series Webinars : During the initial phase of the total lockdown, we initiated a Lockdown Reflection series of webinars every week from mid-April up to mid-June, 2020. This series aimed at helping people to use the opportunity of ‘being home’ to reflect on yogic wisdom and its application in daily life. Each session was well attended by more than 150 to 200 participants.
|1||13-04-2020||Ekatattvabhayasa – Yogic Wisdom for Our Troubling Times Part 1||Dr. Vinayachandra Banavathy|
|2||27-04-2020||Ekatattvabhayasa – Yogic Wisdom for Our Troubling Times Part 2||Dr. Vinayachandra Banavathy|
|3||02-05-2020||Yoga Nidra – The Science & Art of Relaxation||Sri Omkar|
|4||08-05-2020||An Immersive Experience into Bhaktiyoga: The Art of Surrender||Dr. Subbu Bhaiya|
|5||18-05-2020||The Transformative Power of Mantras||Dr. Anuradha Choudry|
|6||25-05-2020||Mindfulness to Meditation||Ms. Neha Racca|
|7||30-05-2020||Body – Working with Somatic Intelligence||Sri Regeesh Vattakandy|
|8||06-06-2020||Health & Well-Being: Yogic Perspectives||Yogashri N V Raghuram|
|9||13-06-2020||Finding an Anchor in the Midst of Change: Insights from Yogasutra||Smt Nrithya Jagannathan|
- Integral Well-Being Series Webinar – New series of webinars has been initiated under the theme Integral Well-being. The first of the series was led by Dr. Yatendra Kaundinya who spoke on Yogic Insight into Taoist Tradition & Practices on 1st September, 2020.
- Weekend With Wisdom – From December 2020, we initiated one event every month that would allow seekers to sit with a master, scholar, teacher at length to explore one subject in a detailed manner over a day or a few days. The following is the list of WWWs that were conducted.
|1||18-12-2020||Yogas of the Bhagavd Gita – Jnana||
Swami Chidananda, Head, Fowai Forum
|19-12-2020||Yogas of the Bhagavd Gita – Karma|
|20-12-2020||Yogas of the Bhagavd Gita – Bhakti|
|2||24-01-2021||Yoga of Sage Vasishtha||Yogashree N. V. Raghuram, Founder & Mentor, Yoga Bharathi|
|3||27-02-2021||From Intelligence Quotient to Spiritual Quotient||Dr. Mayur V. Kaku
|4||28-03-2021||Antaranga Yoga: Yoga of Inner Transformation||Sri Raghu Anantanarayan Founder, Ritambhara Ashram|
Global Festival of Yoga
We organized the world’s first online ‘Global Festival of Yoga: Celebrating Wellness’ from 21st June up to 31st July, 2020.
The festival was organized in collaboration with Indian Yoga Association (IYA), European Union of Yoga (EUY), Global Peace Initiate of Women (GPIW), Center for Soft Power (CSP) ,Ritambhara Ashram, Ritambhara Wellness, Vyasa Houston and Vyasa Singapore.
A series of talks, panel discussions, philosophical and scientific presentations, practice & experiential sessions were held three times a day catering to different time zones including the Far East, Indian, European, Eastern & Western (American) time zones.
The Festival hosted 112 sessions in total featuring 124 experts, teachers, artists, doctors, scientists and researchers representing diverse traditions and practices of Yoga. About a third of them were practical sessions including asana, pranayama, meditation, yoga nidra, bhajan & kirtans etc. which were offered by leading practitioners bringing many forms of yoga practices on one platform. The presenters were from 25 different countries including Bahamas,Turkey, Ireland, Singapore etc. The list of eminent speakers and practitioners can be found at https://www.indicayoga.com/events/month/2020-07/
We also organised 12 panel discussions on significant themes like Yoga & Human Unity; Yoga & Mystical traditions of the world; Dharma, Yoga & Economic Well-being and Yoga & Unity with Nature: Perspectives from Indigenous Environmentalism, that were specially curated by GPIW for event with a special panel on Wellness in workplace by experts from the Rekhi Centre of Excellence for the Science of Happiness, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur.
More than 10,000 active seekers registered for the event and each session was well attended by about 150 to 250 enthusiastic participants.
Dr. Vinayachandra Banavathy and Dr. Anuradha Choudry were the curators.
For all academic activities such as research, courses and conferences, we act as the knowledge partners to our parent, Indic Academy. Our progress for the year in each of these functional areas is given below :
We invited applications for Short Term Research Fellowship on Yoga to study the academic and experiential learning landscape in the field of Yoga in the month of August 2020. The study intended to cover the horizon of Yoga programs that are being offered by various academic/ semi-academic institutions and universities across the world. In addition to the academic programs, the study intended to examine the teacher training programs and therapy certificate courses and the competent/professional bodies that certify these programs and courses.
Two scholars Ms. Auroshikha Rath, US and Mrs. Varlakshmi Venkatapathy, India, were awarded the fellowship for three months. They have since submitted their reports.
We conceptualised, designed and delivering the following online courses:
- Essentials of Yoga Tradition & Philosophy (EYTP): A 2-credit (30 hr) online course started from 15th October 2020 to 14th February 2021. This course designed by Dr. Vinayachandra Banavathy & Dr. Anuradha Choudry seeks to acquaint participants with an all-encompassing overview of the Yoga Tradition, Philosophy, Texts and Practices – starting from its origins to present times. It further seeks to facilitate the understanding of the core of the Yoga philosophy along with the essential aspects of the greater yoga tradition. About 56 participants from across the world completed this course.
- Yoga 360 (Y360): This 2-credit (30 hour) course led by Smt Nrithya Jagannathan, Director, KYM institute of Yoga studies, intended to provide a 360-degree perspective of multiple facets of Yoga as a philosophy, as a practice, as a system of health and healing and also as a science of the mind. The course commenced on 13th January with about 62 participants.
- Bhakti Yoga: Philosophy, Practice & Transformation (BYPPT): This 2-credit (30 hr) certificate course led by Dr. Subramanian Ananda Venkata (Subbu Bhaiyya) focuses on Bhakti as an inevitable component of Yoga and its relevance in the contemporary situation as it takes the aspirants into an immersive study of the Bhakti philosophy, substantiated by experiential practical techniques leading to self-transformation. About 30 participants have enrolled for this unique programme.
Conference on Philosophy & Praxis of Hatha Yoga Unravelling the Text and Traditions:
We announced a call for papers to explore the following issues on the above theme:
- Origin, history & development of Hatha Yoga
- Studies on Natha, Siddha & other traditions
- Influences of & interaction with various traditions including
- Vedic rituals and practices
- Shad darshanas
- Tantra & Shaktism
- Shaivism, Kashmiri Shaivism, Vaishnavism etc.
- Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism etc.
- Dance & Martial Arts
- Texts & Manuscripts
- Documentation & Temple Iconography
- Light on Practices, Techniques & Methods
- Living Traditions, Teachers & Lineages
- Dynamism & Modern Innovations
- Colonial and Contemporary Perspectives
We have received an excellent response from various scholars and practitioners and are looking forward to co-hosting the Conference on April 23-24.
I would like to thank all those who have made this progress possible and look forward to authentic, immersive and transformative year ahead.
Dr. Vinayachandra Banavathy
Director, Indica Yoga