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Community Philosophy Reading Group: Beginning Bhagavad Gītā with Lisa Mae and Monicka


Oct 11, 18, 25 and Nov. 8, 15 and 22, 6-8pm

$108, all proceeds to be donated

This 6-part series is open to all seekers that would like to study (or continue) to read and study the Gītā in a community setting. We will read parts of a simplified translation, hear some discourse on some of the meaning behind the text, have some self-directed discussions, chant verses and kirtan, spend time in contemplation/meditation and in general be together in company and conversation.

For this group, we will be reading from Bhagavad Gītā: Talks Between the Soul and God, translated by Ranchor Prime. To honor fellow group members, we ask that only those who can attend at least 75% of the meetings join the group. You will need the translation of the Gita that we are using, and a journal and pen. If you chant on japa meditation beads, you can bring those.

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In yogic tradition, The Bhagavad-Gītā is an essential text on yoga practice in the world, on the battlefield of this life, right in the middle of the mess, where we examine the paths of yoga practice in relation to Action, Love and Wisdom and look into their timeless teachings. The Gītā has remained a vibrant source of wisdom across time and circumstance, because it illustrates that spiritual life happens here, now, in these bodies and these lives, where we can transform our understanding of our current circumstances into potent spiritual practices through dharmic purpose. Ranchor Prime’s version adopts a non-sectarian approach, emphasising the link between spirituality and self-development, and allows for easy entry into the text for many seekers.

Once our group is established, pre-reading will be assigned, along with some questions for contemplation for each meeting. Please do register in advance!

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About Lisa Mae:

I have been a diligent student of Philosophy and Religious Studies since age 17, and earned my dual-degree B.A. in both at NYU. I’ve been a lifelong seeker, voracious reader and incessant question-asker, and have been practicing yoga in some form since 1990. But around 2005 and by my great good fortune I read one of Swami B.V. Tripurari’s translations of The Bhagavad Gītā, and was transformed. His wisdom, guidance, and living realization of Bhakti yoga have been illuminating the path for me ever since, guiding me to share the beauty and wisdom of bhakti in my small way. This yoga center belongs to and is in service to him and we offer our support to both the Sri Caitanya Sangha and the Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math with the proceeds of this space and this workshop. I seek to serve the grace of all the teachers that have offered their generous help by extending their hand to me, most especially my beloved guru. I know in these troubled times where many are questioning hegemonic systems (and rightly so) it is, for some people, somewhat controversial to have a guru, but I have one, and it totally works for me. My guru himself gave me the blessing and the encouragement to chant and to teach by sharing the wisdom of the source tradition of Bhakti Vedanta philosophy as he shared it with me by way of Gaudiya Vedanta, and I humbly mess this up daily but ask for blessings, forgiveness and guidance as I stumble, that I might share something useful on the path to transcendence.