with Swetha Rao-Devigere
musical accompaniment by Francesca Nicosia
Ancient Indian scholars have a lot to say about Love! Love and Detachment are seen as essential qualities to be cultivated and practiced for our personal evolution, and eventually liberation. But in modern society, these two are thought of as opposing traits. Love and attachment have become synonymous! Which of these approaches then is truly Love?
Join us for a talk and kirtan to explore these questions.
Vedic teachings such as the Bhagavad Gita, Vedanta and Yoga philosophy can help us to understand Love in all its forms. Love starts with devotion to being in relationship with one’s Self, those around us and universal Divinity. It includes deep work with the yamas and niyamas – the ethical principles about how we treat ourselves and our fellow beings. It also requires an understanding of our consciousness – its components and their inter-workings, so that we may practice self-observation and discernment in our daily lives. And, it must be interwoven with the concepts of detachment.
Where to start? We will look at passages from key Vedic texts and consider how we can use their wisdom to refine our outlook and guide our responses in everyday life. This program will weave discussion with musical kirtans in the tradition of Bhakti Yoga – the Yoga of Love, led by Francesca Nicosia.
This is meant to be a fun and meaningful community event that will give you a taste of how to work yoga philosophy in daily life. No prior knowledge is needed.
This event is free. Donations are welcome.
All proceeds will benefit the Yoga Blessings Fund – for Adeline Yoga students who need support affording a consistent yoga practice.
Swetha Rao-Devigere is from Bangalore, India, where she grew up in an atmosphere of daily Vedic chanting and hymns, owing to her family’s practice of Bhakti Yoga. Swetha has been singing and performing since she was three years old. Having been exposed to Sanskrit and multiple Indian languages from an early age, she is naturally able to read and assimilate ancient Vedic texts written in Sanskrit. This ability combined with a gradual interest in Eastern philosophy led her to become an avid student of Yoga, Vedanta and Buddhist literature since 2005. After her Masters in Information Systems and working in business and tech for nearly a decade, Swetha shifted gears and dedicated herself to service through Yoga. In 2014 she began to earnestly practice and study Iyengar Yoga, and graduated from Adeline Yoga’s 2-year teacher education program in 2018. Swetha continues to study with her mentors at Adeline Yoga while also serving as our Student Support Coordinator, to welcome and support our students in their yoga journey.
Francesca Nicosia has been chanting and leading kirtan for over a decade. She grew up in a musical family and started playing piano and singing in choirs at a young age. She was first exposed to the sacred music of India during a semester abroad in Northern India, after studying vocal performance in college. While living at Shoshoni Yoga Retreat in Colorado, chanting became an integral part of her daily sadhana and she was blessed to play with members of the ashram’s acclaimed kirtan band, Shiva’s Garden. Francesca regularly led kirtan in Denver and Boulder before moving to the Bay Area in 2010. Chanting is her musical prayer and offering on the path of devotion, or Bhakti yoga. As a Certified Iyengar Yoga Teacher and instructor at Adeline Yoga, she loves sharing her deep love for this devotional practice as a way to open the heart, still the mind and take refuge in our innermost experience of the Divine.