This summer many different activities have been going on at our newly started OCHS Kathmandu office. Here are a few examples:
A number of tutorials in Sanskrit and Haṭhayoga have been taking place at the office involving students from this year’s OCHS-NSU summer school.
We had a photo session at Dwarika Hotel with Professor Yatiraj from Nepal Sanskrit University’s Yoga Department, who demonstrated āsanas and kumbhakas. The photos will be published in a new translation of the Haṭhapradīpikā by Dr Bjarne Wenicke-Olesen and Silje Lyngar Einarsen.
Lena Molin, MA student in Religious Studies and Sanskrit at Aarhus University and former exchange student at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, spent one month in Nepal in relation to the OCHS Kathmandu office doing field work for her Masters dissertation on Nādayoga (‘Yoga of Sound’). While in Kathmandu she spent most of her time successfully interviewing Nāth Yogis staying at the Goraknāth temple in the Paśupatināth Temple complex (one of the largest Śiva temples in the world). She has been focusing on their practice of Kuṇḍalinīyoga and Nādayoga and has amongst other things been studying their ārti pūjā which is performed at the Goraknāth temple every morning at 5am and in the evening at 8pm
“I was really fortunate to be able to do my field work via the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies and its office in Kathmandu. It gave me the chance to immediately get down to work in the field, which would most likely not have been possible in such a difficult area as mine (traditional yoga and tantric studies) without this opportunity. On top of this the staff and research assistant at the Kathmandu office was so friendly and helpful that it made it relatively easy to get started on the data collection, transcription and translation in a sensible and manageable way”.
– Lena Molin
Dr Bjarne Wernicke-Olesen has also arranged a number of fieldtrips to visit Nāth Yogīs and Śākta Aghorīs in the Kathmandu Valley with students from Oxford and Aarhus. The pictures posted here are from a visit to Kālī Bābā (Yogīrāj Kālīnāth Aghorī Phalahārī Bābā) at a hilltop near Nagarkoṭ.