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Oxford Day School: Yoga - From Ancient to Modern

Our Continuing Education Department is holding its next Day School at Corpus Christi College on Saturday 24 November. The theme is Yoga - From Ancient to Modern.

Yoga has gained great popularity in the modern world, but the history and meaning of yoga remain a mystery. In this Day School we examine the development of yoga through ancient texts and modern practice. History and text tell us a lot about where yoga comes from and attempts to use it to achieve liberation, immortality, union with God, and even health.

It's taught by: Dr Nicholas Sutton, Director of our Continuing Education

OCHS Exhibition: Hidden Treasures

From Monday 26 November to Friday 30 November, the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies is holding an exhibition: Hidden Treasures in Private Academic Collections 

This exhibition aims to discover and reveal an unknown aspect of the lives of Oxford academics at the Centre of Hindu Studies.

It brings their individual interests closer to the public. The idea is to display unusual examples of what these scholars collect, as a matter of personal preference, when they travel.

The Swami Haridhas Giri Scholarship

At the end of June, 2016 our Centre was graced with a visit from His Holiness Swami Niranjanananda Giri, who leads the Sri Gnianananda Giri Peetam, near Kanchi, in Tamil Nadu. Swamiji was accompanied by a small number of his followers, including children, and came to hear about the development of Hindu Studies in Oxford, and for a tour of the city.

The trip was arranged by Dr Dharshana Sridhar, and was the culmination of a series of meetings Dr Sridhar led to explore the possibility of establishing a scholarship for gifted students through the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies.

OCHS launches online Sanskrit course

In 2015 we asked our students what course they would most like us to develop? The overwhelming favourite – with about 75% of the vote – was Sanskrit.

Three years later, the OCHS is launching its newest course Introduction to Sanskrit, which is now open for enrolment for a 22 April start.

Introduction to Sanskrit  is based on part of Zoë Slatoff's book, Yogavataranam: The Translation of Yoga. This course – suitable for beginners and improvers –  focusses on pronunciation, reading and writing the alphabet, and some basic grammar. 

The course is tutored and developed by Zoë Slatoff – one of

Friends Event: Envisioning Krishna in the Bhagavata Purana

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 2 June 2018 - 6:30pm

This talk introduces exquisitely detailed paintings that were originally part of lavish books of the type commissioned by royals and nobles in Hindu kingdoms across northern and central India during the early modern period. While some of these books (or illustrated manuscripts) visualise literary, religious and historical texts, many pictorialise epic and mythological narratives. Of all the mythological narratives presented in these works, perhaps the most pervasive is the Bhagavata Purana, and in particular its Tenth Book that recounts the adventures of Krishna.

Friends Event: Love and War in the Bhagavad Gita

Leicester Friends Event
Wednesday, 4 April 2018 - 6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Anuradha Dooney of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

Prince Arjuna stands on the battlefield facing family, friends and revered elders in conflict. The conch has sounded and a war of epic proportion has begun.  Yet the Bhagavad Gita is renowned for its teachings on bhakti or devotion to God. Does the Bhagavad Gita then advocate war? How can we reconcile Krishna’s teachings on love with such a scene of violence? How can love be Krishna’s teaching when He instructs Arjuna to fight?

Friends Event: Pathways to Purush

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 5 May 2018 - 6:30pm to 9:00pm
A talk by Dr Ramesh Pattni of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies
 
Meditation has been practiced over millennia in one form or other in almost all religious traditions. The traditions in Hinduism also emphasise this practice in a variety of forms including those of Vedanta and Yoga. We look at the systematic development of meditation practices in the classical Yoga of Patanjali, their philosophical basis, the objective of each stage of meditation and their ultimate goal. Be prepared to meditate with some practical examples!
 

Aarhus-OCHS Workshop

A participation-by-invitation workshop was organised by Dr Marianne Fibiger, Aarhus University, in collaboration with Dr Bjarne Wernicke-Olesen, OCHS, aimed at networking, funding applications and to facilitate an in-depth discussion amongst scholars. The workshop was funded by the South Asian Religion research unit (SAR) at Aarhus University, Denmark.

The workshop addressed new research and insights into the relationship, overlap, and interplay between ritual performance and the uses of texts and body within South Asian religions historicallly and presently, in South Asia and beyond.

The

Friends Event: Paths to Liberation in the Bhagavad-gita

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 3 March 2018 - 6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Nick Sutton of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

In this talk we will explore the view that the Bhagavad-gita advocates a number of different paths to liberation from rebirth, including karma-yoga, raja-yoga, jnana-yoga, bhakti-yoga, and dhyana-yoga. We will then focus primarily on knowledge and devotion, looking at how the Gita explains these two paths and how it tends to draw them together. The question will be raised as to whether Krishna has a preference for one path over the others or whether he regards them simply as different roads leading to the same goal.

"Speaking of Bhakti" Day School: London 20 January

Saturday 20 January

The Rembrandt Hotel
11 Thurloe Pl London, SW7 2RS

Bhakti – the heart-felt expression of love for a deity – is a rich and important aspect of Hindu tradition.

In this day school we journey through bhakti, how it is expressed, and to whom (or what). We find an array of bhakti forms, yet they all contribute to the rich tapestry of temple worship, sacred literature, spiritual practice, song, poetry, art and dance.

This day school introduces you to key theological ideas underpinning the practice of bhakti and charts the journey of its expressions through the ages.

Click here for

Don’t Mind! The Concept of Mind in Hinduism

Birmingham Friends Event
Saturday, 27 January 2018 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Ramesh Pattni of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

Is mind matter? Is it other than matter? Never mind, doesn’t matter! In this talk we engage your mind and explore the concept of mind in Hindu systems of philosophy, in particular Yoga and Advaita Vedanta which have different conceptions of mind, how it is constituted and how it works. Find out about the sophisticated models of the mind which existed long before modern psychology came into being.

Friends Event: Don’t Mind! The Concept of Mind in Hinduism

Leicester Friends Event
Saturday, 3 February 2018 - 6:30pm to 9:00pm

A talk by Dr Ramesh Pattni of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

Is mind matter? Is it other than matter? Never mind, doesn’t matter! In this talk we engage your mind and explore the concept of mind in Hindu systems of philosophy, in particular Yoga and Advaita Vedanta which have different conceptions of mind, how it is constituted and how it works. Find out about the sophisticated models of the mind which existed long before modern psychology came into being.