Yoga Vacation Program
May 18 — 21, 2025

Devat Yoga

Working with the Symbolism of the Gods and Goddesses

Gary Kraftsow

The Ancient practice of Devatā Yoga uses the symbolism of the Vedic Gods and Goddesses as a means of helping practitioners realize and actualize what the tradition calls our “innate Divine potential.” Devatā Yoga explores and works with transpersonal and archetypal forces that influence us and reveal our own innate higher potentials —
what the Ancients called our Divine Human Potentials — at the level of desires, feelings, thoughts, and behavior.

Devatā Yoga works with these forces through the symbolism of the Deities — the Gods and Goddesses — to help practitioners:

  • cultivate a living relationship with these forces
  • actualize within themselves the potentials that the Deities both
    contain and reveal

Each session will include:

  • relevant teachings about the Vedic Deity that will be the focus of our Devatā Yoga practice
  • learning to chant the specific Gāyatrī Mantra for that Deity
  • Nyāsa, gestures of the hands toucan the body with the Mantra for the purpose of making the body a seat for, or a temple of, Deity
  • Central Channel pryma with that Gāyatrī Mantra
  • Manasa Pūjā, meditation in the ‘Cave of the Heart’, on that Deity.

In addition, the longer afternoon sessions will include a fully integrated practice that incorporates chanting the specific Gāyatrī Mantra in sana and pryma to support the Manasa Pūjā at the end of the practice. In this retreat, we will work with the symbolism of the Gods and Goddesses of the Trimūrti and the Tridevī. The Gods of the Trimūrti are paired with the Goddesses of the Tridevī:

  • Brahmā with Sarasvatī
  • Viṣṇu with Lakṣmī
  • Śiva/Rudra with Pārvatī/Gaurī/Kālī (also worshipped as Durgā)

Offered as 3 satsangs and 3 workshops (subject to change).

The presentations associated with this Yoga Vacation Program begin with an 8pm satsang on the first day of the program and conclude with a 90-minute noon workshop on the last day of the program.  Click here to read more about the Yoga Vacation Program details and view the ashram schedule for yoga classes and meals during your stay. We suggest you arrive at least one day prior to the start of your program for the optimal experience.

Gary Kraftsow has been an innovator in the transmission of yoga for health, healing, and personal transformation for over 40 years. He began his study of yoga in India with T.K.V. Deśikācar in 1974 and received a Viniyoga Special Diploma from Viniyoga International in Paris, France in 1988.

Gary graduated with a BA, Magna Cum Laude, from Colgate University in 1976 and received his Masters Degree in Psychology and Religion from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1983. Around that time, he opened Maui School of Yoga Therapy. In 1999, he founded the American Viniyoga Institute, LLC. Since then, he has become a renowned speaker and teacher of the Viniyoga methodology at many conferences and schools nationally and internationally.

Gary has successfully developed protocol for two National Institutes of Health studies: “Evaluating Yoga for Chronic Low Back Pain” and “Yoga Therapy for Generalized Anxiety”, as well for the “Mind-Body Stress Reduction in the Workplace” clinical trial for Aetna Insurance Company.

He is the Director and Senior Teacher of the American Viniyoga Institute (AVI®), the author of two books published by Penguin: Yoga for Wellness and Yoga for Transformation, and author of four educational DVD’s: Viniyoga Therapy for Low Back, Sacrum and Hips and Viniyoga Therapy for Upper Back, Neck and Shoulders, Viniyoga Therapy for Depression, and Viniyoga Therapy for Anxiety. He has also produced multiple online workshops: Āsana Unlocked, Pranayama Unlocked, Meditation Unlocked, Yoga Therapy for Depression, Yoga Therapy for Better Sleep, and Yoga Therapy for Anxiety. He is currently creating the AVI Digital Library which offers both live and on-demand classes.


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