sbv

Spoken

Upcoming

2022 CSWR/Wonderstruck Symposium on Embodiment

July 29, 2022 - August 01, 2022

The theme of the symposium is “Embodiment,” but we are particularly interested in accounts of the subtle body, and other extra-ordinary or super-normal embodied possibilities.

The symposium is a collaboration between the Harvard Divinity School Center for the Study of World Religions' new initiative, Transcendence and Transformation, Wonderstruck, and Five Books. We hope to bring together members of the T&T initiative and other experts on extraordinary embodiment for a three-day gathering in a beautiful setting.

Tantra: The Body and The Release, an Esalen Signature Series, Part 3: Maṇḍala: The Macrocosm and the Microcosm

August 12, 2022 - August 15, 2022

What is the relevance and significance of the maṇḍala (“circle”)? In this workshop series we aim to individually and collectively understand maṇḍalas and related sacred shapes and their importance in Tantric traditions. We will also show how the geography of Esalen could be perceived as a sacred landscape or maṇḍala. Our focus here will be on the historical development of the maṇḍala and its connecting link between the internal and external worlds.

Podcasts

The Yogic Studies Podcast

32. Sravana Borkataky-Varma | Hijrās, Women, and Gender in Śākta Tantra

In this episode we welcome back to the Podcast, Sravana Borkataky-Varma. We catch up on her latest book projects, research, and teaching at Harvard Divinity School. We discuss the categories of so-called Classical Tantra vs. Neo Tantra, and some of the nuances of the scholar-practitioner. We discuss gender and transgender, particularly within the hijrā communities, and the recently formed Kinnar Akhara. We then preview the upcoming course, YS 120 | Women and Gender in Hindu Tantra—detailing its four modules: Sacred Transgender Identities, Temple Wives, Guru Mothers, and Superwomen Gurus.

The Yogic Studies Podcast

8. Sravana Borkataky-Varma | Śākta Tantra, Female Practitioners, and Misperceptions of Tantra

In this episode, we speak with Dr. Sravana Borkataky-Varma about her experience growing up in India, receiving initiation into a Śākta tantra lineage at Kāmākhya, discovering Religious Studies and the academic path, her doctoral research, the role of female practitioners, tantric sexual rites, being censored by Facebook, online pūjā services, and much more.

Yogic Studies

YS 106 | Śākta Tantra: Yoga and Hindu Goddess Traditions

This online course surveys the rich tapestry of Goddesses within the Hindu Śākta traditions—and uniquely explores their living relationship to the practices of Yoga.

Esalen

Yoga Alliance

Unpacking Tantra: Defining the Meaning of the Word Tantra, Part 1

This robust three-part workshop series explores the meaning and relevance of the term Tantra, the types of authority and authenticity debates that shape the global-digital world of Śākta Tantra, and the relevance of additional terms such as Goddesses, Initiate, and Adept. Part 1 seeks to define Tantra, specifically.

Unpacking Tantra: Gender in Hindu Śākta Tantra, Part 2

This robust three-part workshop series explores the meaning and relevance of the term Tantra, the types of authority and authenticity debates that shape the global-digital world of Śākta Tantra, and the relevance of additional terms such as Goddesses, Initiate, and Adept. Part 2 analyzes the status of women and the third gender in the world of Hindu Śākta Tantra.

Past

The Hindu Margins: Third Gender and Women Spiritual Partners

This lecture focused on the Hindu view of life from the margins. While the “Hindu margin” is a fairly large heterogeneous group, this lecture laid the lens on the third gender, Kinnars (pejorative term hijṛā) and spiritual partners, categorized as “consorts.” Both these groups were discussed within the ritual praxis of “lived religions,” within the larger world of Śākta Tantra (Goddess esoteric traditions).

The Myth, Reality, and Freedom of Tantra

For the first time in Esalen's history, Tantra will be offered from its roots, 1500-year old history, and cultural context. Co-leading a series of workshops in 2022 is Sravana Borkataky-Varma, lecturer for Harvard Divinity School and founder of Lumen Tree Portal.

Himalayan Institute of Cultural & Heritage Studies Presents The Unlocked Series Lecture 15d

Dr. Sravana Borkataky, Lecturer, Harvard University & University of North Carolina-Wilmington speaks on Hybrid Hinduism: Study of Hindu Traditions from Alternate Lenses

Divine Feminine Revealed: Shakta Tantra

LMU Yoga Day 2020 Interview: “Divine Feminine Revealed: Shakta Tantra” Sravana Borkataky-Varma with Serenity Tedesco

Stanford Medicine Covid 19 Message

Sravana Borkataky-Varma, Hindu Traditions Lecturer, Harvard University