"Your life’s work is to discuss and impart the essence of Vedanta, and to inspire others to live the dynamic, courageous chaste life of love and dedication. Be yourself a ‘Sandeepany’ who lights the lamp of Truth in others."
- Swami Chinmayananda
Studies at a Sandeepany Institute are intense and intensive. Fully dedicated to the disciples' spiritual education and growth, the two-year residential course is standard in its syllabus and traditional in its teaching method. Swami Chinmayananda knew that the curriculum of the Vedanta Course had to be well-rounded to develop both the head and the heart of the students.
Since the focus of the exhaustive curriculum is Advaita Vedanta, the primary trio of the Hindu scriptures called the Prasthana-Trayi is studied. These are the major Upanishads, Bhagavad-gita, and Brahma-sutras, and they are examined using Adi Shankaracharya’s detailed commentary on these texts. To aid understanding and provide greater depth to their knowledge, students are also taught Sanskrit grammar. Training in Vedic chanting, particularly the various Suktams and the Vishnu Sahasranama, are incorporated in the daily routine. As students have to soar high on the wings of both knowledge and devotion, the coursework also includes an in-depth study of devotional texts and hymns composed by great spiritual masters.
"The significance of studying at Sandeepany cannot be easily put in words. There, one can learn Vedanta in a logical progression of thought. Without that, the learning remains random, like the study I was doing before the Course. If only one could fully grasp all that is taught in the Vedanta Course — how amazing that would be!"
- Brahmachari Eric Chaitanya, resident Acharya of Krishnalaya, Piercy
The curriculum is as follows:
• Sanskrit and Sanskrit subhashitas (wise sayings)
• Vedic Chanting
• Texts that introduce and inspire: Tattva Bodha, Bhaja Govindam, Atma Bodha, Upadesha Sarah, Sadhana Panchakam, Panchadashi (Ch. 5, 10, 15), Vivekachudamani, Drg-Drshya Viveka, Aparokshanubhuti, Vakya Vritti, Advaita Makaranda, Vedanta Sarah, Sad-Darshanam, Vedanta Dindima, Hastamalaka Stotram, Nirvana Shatkam, Maneesha Panchakam, Shivapradhakshamapana Stotram and Dakshinamurti Stotram
• Shrimad Bhagavad-gita
• The Upanishads: Isha, Kena, Katha, Mundaka, Aitareya, Taittiriya, Prashna, Mandukya with Karika, Chandogya (Ch. 6-8), Kaivalya, Amrta-Bindu and Shvetashvatara.
• Brahma Sutras (Sutras 1-4)
• Devotional Texts and Hymns (some studied in-detail; some in general, with select verses): Shrimad Bhagavatam, Tulsi Ramayana (Ramacharitamanasa), Adhyatma Ramayana, Valmiki Ramayana, Vishnu Sahasranama, Narada Bhakti Sutra, Hanuman Chalisa, Mukunda Mala, and Madhurashtakam
• Other Texts: Yoga Vasishtha, Tapovana Shatkam, Purusha Suktam, Jivanmuktananda Lahari, Manah Shodhanam, Bhakti Sudha, Dhyanasvarupam, Maya Panchakam, Kaupina Panchakam, Svarupa Anusandhana Ashtakam, and Dhanyashtakam.
"In this work of yours, if your sadhana is not continuous, you will be unnecessarily wasting your time, the public's time, and the public's money. Your words will have no effect at all unless you are regular in your contemplation, meditation and private study."
- Swami Chinmayananda