Swami Veda Bharati, founder and spiritual director of The Meditation Center in Northeast Minneapolis, will lead the 2009 Himalayan Yoga Tradition Congress at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul from July 17 through August 1. Drawing distinguished Yoga scholars, teachers and practitioners from across the globe, the two-week congress, to which the public is invited, will consist of: lectures on Yogic science, philosophy and meditation; meditation and hatha yoga practicums; silence retreats; an interfaith weekend; and a concert and daylong workshop with renowned kirtan musician and author of The Yoga of Sound and Jesus in the Lotus Russill Paul.
Born into a family of Sanskrit scholars in India, Swami Veda Bharati, formerly Dr. Usharbudh Arya, has long been known for his expertise on ancient Yogic texts, including Pantanjali’s Yoga Sutras and the Vedas, the oldest works of Sanskrit literature. A poet and prolific author, Swami Veda has also influenced thousands as a master teacher of meditation in the Himalayan tradition, a major branch of Yoga whose roots go back thousands of years to the poet-sages of ancient India. Traveling internationally for over 60 years, Swami Veda holds the distinguished title of Mahamandaleshwar, recognition granted to those few Hindu monks reaching the highest level of spiritual accomplishment.
With an interest in interfaith unity as well as scientific research, Swami Veda has joined efforts with world political and spiritual leaders from the United States, South America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, and Africa, including members of the World Congress of Faiths and the World Parliament of Religions. He has served on the World Council of Religious Leaders. In addition, Swami Veda has worked with neuroscientists and researchers worldwide to explore the scientific, medical and therapeutic aspects of Yogic meditation.
No stranger to the Twin Cities, Swami Veda held an appointment as lecturer in Sanskrit at the University of Minnesota from 1969 to 1972. In 1971, he founded The Meditation Center, a local resource of the Himalayan Yoga tradition, an integrated, scientific and experiential approach to meditation and overall well-being. The Meditation Center offers a wide range of classes and workshops throughout the year.
The July congress’s program offers unique opportunities for those new to Yoga, as well as experienced teachers and practitioners, to learn about and experience its ancient wisdom in the context of modern life.
“We are excited to host this series of amazing events, which includes a little something for everyone,” said Veena Haasl-Blilie, president of the Board of Directors of The Meditation Center. “We hope that many people will take advantage of being in the presence of such accomplished teachers, attend a lecture, sign up for a workshop and enjoy the peace of silence.”
Events, including opportunities to participate in The Meditation Center’s silence retreats directed by Swami Veda and other senior teachers, are open to the public. Information about The Meditation Center is available at www.TheMeditationCenter.org. Registration information, a full listing of the July program and other details about the congress can be found at www.HYT-TTP.com, by e-mailing info@HimalayanYogaTradition.com or by calling 888-YOGATTP.
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