30-hour Yoga Philosophy immersion module with Emil Wendel
Taught by: Emil Wendel, with Anouk Aoun Wendel
Location: Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Pharping, Nepal
Cost: 130,000 Nepali rupees (approx. USD $1,130)
We live at a time when people place more and more trust in outside sources to make or influence their decisions. As a result, many of our critical decisions are made, for example, by algorithms, with no philosophical framework for understanding ourselves, our values, or what is truly right for us.
A willingness to return to ancient philosophical and spiritual questions will determine the future that humankind moves towards – questions of getting to know ourselves, of what is good, what is a good life, what is a good relationship. These deep and searching conversations are sidelined by much of modern culture, yet remain highly important and practical questions.
Those who engage with philosophies such as those developed by the ancient yogis will be more equipped to navigate modern life on their own terms, in a way that fulfills them and truly contributes.
In this retreat, Emil Wendel presents the history of Yoga and the richness of Indian thought – its fascinating evolution from its roots in Vedic times, its flowering 2500 years ago, through the Tantric variations, and into the development into today’s Modern Postural Yoga.
The course entails 24 contact hours of philosophy lectures, 3 hours of self-study, and 3 hours of audio-visual material with discussions. There will also be hand-out papers to study and prepare for the daily classes.
Resonating with the Tibetan Buddhist value for the union of method and wisdom, the retreat recognises that philosophical study is richer when underpinned by practice. We will therefore embody the theoretical knowledge with a daily 90 minute Pranayama and Meditation class by Emil, along with an Asana class taught by Anouk Aoun Wendel.
The retreat also includes free time to walk around the temple premises and nature paths, meeting with the monks of the Monastery, and time to contemplate the teachings as the sun sets and the mighty Himalayas go to sleep.
Click for the Yoga Philosophy Curriculum
Who this yoga philosophy immersion module is aimed at
This particular retreat in Nepal is an opportunity for all teachers and interested Yogis alike that wish to cultivate their knowledge of the history and philosophy of Yoga.
No specific qualifications are needed. Any prior exposure to Yogic or Indian philosophy will make the material more accessible. There is a reading list for registered participants that may provide support; this preparation is entirely optional, though.
Please note, however, that the course requires long hours of attention, and a good degree of physical health is recommended for the Pranayama and Asana sessions.
For those holding Yoga Alliance teaching certification (200 hours upwards), the course contributes 30 hours of Continuing Education credits recognised by Yoga Alliance, and enables you to guide your students on a deeper philosophical engagement with their practice.
If you are not a teacher, you will receive a diploma mentioning the course character and the hours attended.
One of today’s leading minds in Yoga Philosophy, Emil was born in Switzerland but has lived in Asia since the mid-seventies, much of it in Nepal between 1980 and 2005. During his many years of residency in Nepal and India, he studied Sanskrit along with Hindu and Buddhist literature, thought and ritual in their original context.
This allowed Emil an exceptional insight into the depth of Indian Civilization and its underlying currents. It brought him into contact with several remarkable human beings and teachings, including adepts representing different branches of Yoga.
Emil remains deeply passionate about philosophy and especially its application in Yoga. His rare depth of knowledge, coupled with an even rarer ability to articulate, conceptualise and curate conversations on yoga philosophy, profoundly impacts the way his students think and live, in a way that is both deeply accessible and inspiringly expansive.
His study of a variety of Âshram traditions and treasured time with Sadhus and living Buddhist masters have brought a strong appreciation of the subjects of Mantras and Mudrâs. This extends to other methods of Pratyâhâra (sense-withdrawal) and Dhâranâ (concentration): ancient yogic tools which may, over time, bring about that delightful state of true meditation (Dhyâna).
Emil is a highly regarded guest on numerous teacher training programs and retreats, including with Yoga Arts of Australia, Purple Valley of India, and training schools in Bali, Singapore, Thailand and Japan. He teaches on the subjects of Prânâyâma, meditation and yoga philosophy, and their applications in daily life.
Anouk Aoun Wendel
Working primarily with Asana, Pranayama and mediation in her teaching, Anouk weaves yoga philosophy into her classes, bringing Emil’s teachings into an embodied practice.
Anouk seeks to guide students to establish a practice that assists them to become awake and self-observant, to center themselves in times of chaos and to cultivate a sense of serenity in life. She is fascinated with exploring what lies beyond our physicality.
Anouk teaches from a belief that respect and being kind to one another are foremost virtues in our life journey. Remaining joyous and non-dogmatic along our spiritual practice helps to cultivate a lightness of being.
Anouk has become a sought-after guest on several teacher training programmes; including those led by Julie Martin in India, Linda Madani at Intuitive Flow in Bali, and Louisa Sear at Yoga Arts in Bali.
Venue for our yoga philosophy module in Nepal
This retreat is hosted in a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in the foothills of Nepal’s Himalaya’s – the gift of a unique collaboration with Mahalaya.
For Tibetan Buddhists, the hills of Pharping where we immerse for our retreat together is one of the most sacred and important pilgrimage sites, as it is where the second buddha Guru Padmasambhava (“Guru Rinpoche”) attained the state of enlightenment, before going on to establish Buddhism in Tibet. The monastery is surrounded by paddy fields, and the beautiful yoga space within the monastery overlooks the foothills, and – when the weather is clear – gives us stunning views of the sunrise over the snow capped Himalayas.
The monastery which is our home during the retreat makes important contributions to the preservation and sharing of the Buddhist teachings, and our stay there helps to fund education for the many young monks from remote areas of Nepal.
It is the perfect place to go within and practice.
The guest accommodation has spacious and modern rooms, comfortable beds for deep and refreshing sleeps, all with attached bathrooms.
Accommodation is on a twin-share basis, and the retreat fee includes a delicious, vegetarian and substantial brunch and wonderful healthy dinner each day.
Course fee and practicalities
The fee is 130,000 Nepali Rupees. At the time of writing, this equates to approx USD $1,130. Payment details will be sent to you on confirmation of your place.
The fee is all-inclusive from when we pick you up centrally to when we return you to our meeting-point at the end. It includes: return transfer from central Kathmandu to the monastery in a comfortable private bus, twin-share accommodation for 7 nights, all your delicious vegetarian meals, world-class teaching from Emil and Anouk, and trips during the retreat.
Our departure will be from a centrally located meting-point in Kathmandu at 2.30pm on Sunday 14th March 2021. We will gather there from 1.30pm and travel together to the monastery by private bus.
We will return to central Kathmandu by 1.30pm on Sunday 21st March. From there allow an hour to travel to the airport if you are planning to fly that day.
Simply complete the Registration Form and we’ll help you from there.
On securing your place with a deposit, we will also send you the retreat welcome pack, full of information to help you plan your visit.