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Garuda Das Kaviraja

  /  Garuda Das Kaviraja

Garuda Das Kaviraja

School of Bhakti Teacher

Garuda Das Kavirāja is Professor of Philosophy and Religion at Christopher Newport University, Virginia and Director of Studies in Religion. He is also Distinguished Research and Teaching Faculty at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley. He lectures around the world on his translation of the Bhagavad Gītā, on the philosophy of Yoga, as well as on the teachings of the Krishna Bhakti tradition. When he is not lecturing, he guides, counsels, and mentors students on living the life of the heart or bhakti.


Garuda Das has taught and lectured at Harvard University, the University of North Carolina, as well as Duke University. For two years he was a visiting professor of Sanskrit at the University of Virginia. He is regularly consulted by and participates in dissertation committees as a reader or advisor for doctoral candidates in Europe and America. Oxford University has invited him to England on several occasions to conduct doctoral dissertation examinations. He has presented numerous papers at professional international conferences in India, the United States, and Europe. In 2013, he was awarded his university’s highest recognition for Excellence in Teaching and Mentoring.


He has been practicing various forms of meditational yoga since he was fourteen years old, when he became a vegetarian (and later on a vegan) and became a serious student of the Bhagavad Gītā. In 1972, he took up the life of a bhakta and received harināma and brahminical initiations from A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Śrīla Prabhupāda in 1974, committing himself to the Brahma-madhva-gauḍīya tradition of Krishna Bhakti. He has been faithfully serving ISKCON and the devotees within ISKCON, in various capacities, for nearly fifty years.


Garuda Das has over one hundred publications, including several books, encyclopedia and journal articles, as well as book chapters and reviews. He is also Senior Editor of the international periodical, Journal of Vaishnava Studies. He published the books, Dance of Divine Love: India’s Classic Sacred Love Story: The Rāsa Līlā of Krishna from the Bhāgavata Purāṇa, with Princeton University Press (2005), and Bhagavad Gītā: The Beloved Lord’s Secret Love Song, with Harper Collins (2007).


Book projects on which he is currently working are the following: The Bhakti Sūtra: Concise Teachings of Nārada on Sacred Love and Bhagavad Gītā Concordance: Comprehensive Word Reference with Sanskrit and English Indexes, both to be published by Columbia University Press; The Yoga Sūtra: Concise Teachings of Patañjali on Perfect Union, to be published by Yale University Press, and The Yoga of Love: Sacred Bhakti Poetry from the Rāsa Līlā of Krishna, to be published by Oxford University Press, New York.


Among his publications, he is known for his own translation of the Bhagavad Gītā published by Harper Collins Publishers, with over 40,000 copies sold since 2007. Garuda Das’s Bhagavad Gītā: The Beloved Lord’s Secret Love Song has garnered numerous invitations from the world famous Smithsonian Institution—an honor rarely afforded anyone, including members of the academic elite—where he has given over three dozen lectures on the philosophy of the Bhagavad Gītā, comparative religious thought, and related subjects since 2007.


Garuda Das also holds the highest standing registration/certification in the yoga world with the rating of E-RYT 500 (Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher at the highest 500 hour level) bestowed upon him by Yoga Alliance, Arlington, Virginia. He is also recognized by Yoga Alliance as a Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider (YACEP).



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