NEW DELHI: Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, ranked 5th best overall university in India in the 2021 NIRF rankings, has launched an online certificate program in Hinduism. title “Introduction to Hinduism.” The course, delivered by the university’s International Center for Spiritual Studies, will run for 200 hours over six months. The course fee is Rs. 10,000 and anyone over the age of 16 can enroll in the program via https://amrita.edu/ahead/
Lectures by over 30 eminent scholars will provide students with an in-depth insight into the texts, traditions, philosophical schools and worldview of Hinduism. This includes expert teachers from Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, senior scholars who collaborate with the university, professors from various universities across India as well as traditional Brahmachari and Sannyasi scholars from Mata Amritanandamayi Math. Students will have the opportunity to interact with scholars through live interactive sessions and panel discussions. The course is divided into five units including introduction, fundamentals, literature, philosophy and practical aspects of Hinduism.
Brahmachari Achyutāmṛta Chaitanya, Dean – Amrita Darshanam, said that while it is not possible to explore the depths of Hinduism in a 6-month course, the topics covered touch on almost every aspect of it. “The aim of the program is to awaken young people to the profound worldview offered by Hinduism. We have selected topics and condensed them so that they can be served to students in a limited time, and they will be invited to explore the topics on their own,” he said.
Sivanandan DS, Asst. Professor, Amrita Darshanam, said, “The course will provide an overview of Sanatan Dharma, which is one of the major philosophical systems in the world. Students will gain insight into the various texts, traditions and philosophical schools of Hinduism. They will be able to understand and apply this ancient spiritual and philosophical wisdom in their personal and societal domains.
Teacher. Balakrishnan Shankar, Dean – Faculty of Engineering, Amritapuri Campus, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, said, “Amrita University is based on the underlying philosophy of unity, love and compassion. Therefore, we have established this school called Amrita Darshanam, to shed light on India’s glorious past and the essence of Indian society. We need to explain the ideals of Indian philosophy in the language of modern society and make them relevant to people. It is a great challenge and an opportunity that Amrita Darshanam is working on.
Brahmachari Achyutāmṛta Chaitanya, Dean – Amrita Darshanam, added, “The emphasis on spirituality is part of the vision of a well-known humanitarian and spiritual leader, Sri Mata Amritanandamayi (Amma), Chancellor of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham. Amma says that values, culture, morals, ethics and spirituality are essential for all human beings. Some famous quotes from our scriptures say that the real goal of education is independence in every sense of the word. Education for life is provided by all educational institutions, but education for life is provided by Amrita Darshanam.
Amrita Darshanam also offers a 6-week online certificate program in “Mahabharata Upanayanam” and a 4-week program in “Essence of Hinduism”. About 170 students have registered so far for the Mahabharata course and 120 students for “Essence of Hinduism”. Of this number, at least 30 to 40 students are foreigners.
Amrita Darshanam will also conduct a two-day advanced public Mahabharata workshop, named “Dharma Darshanam”, 12-13and February 2022. Conceived as an exercise in critical reading, it will be a set of intensive scholarly discussions of selected texts by Vyāsa Mahābhārata, as well as commentaries, opinions and popular articles. The workshop will provide a chance to discuss, contemplate and understand Vyāsa’s Mahābhārata.
The International Center for Spiritual Studies is a center of excellence for study and research around spiritual studies with a focus on Indian philosophy, arts, literature, culture, tradition and society. The Center offers free education courses for undergraduate students of all disciplines on topics such as Indian culture. It has a graduate program, a master’s degree in philosophy and a doctorate. programs in philosophy, spirituality and interdisciplinary studies.
Amrita Darshanam classes offer valuable lessons in how to face life with courage. The course instructors are a mix of monks and professors, with lots of live interaction between students and teachers. To give an example, an example of a course module titled, ‘On Pratinja’, offers background of Bhishma’s Pratinja, comparison with Sreekrishna’s Pratinja and Arjuna’s Pratinja, how we take Pratinja in everyday life, supremacy of Dharma over Pratinja. There are many other such case studies to dispel the ambiguity about Hinduism. In the future, the Center will offer courses on Ramayana Sopanam, Yoga Sethu and Introduction to Vedic scriptures.