Episode: 27

Unpacking What Yoga Philosophy Means in its Truest Sense with Dr. Shyam Ranganathan

Welcome to Episode 27 of Let’s Talk Yoga!

I’ve been wanting to do an episode on yoga philosophy since day 1 of this podcast. But was looking for the right guest to share with all of you. I’m thrilled to bring Dr. Shyam Ranganathan to share all things yoga philosphy today!

We covered the subject of what encompasses yoga philosophy and the end goal of studying all about yoga philosophy. Dr. Shyam also shares his knowledge on how to measure progress, the dangers of interpreting yoga based on experience, and also some of the consequences when wannabe experts and philosophers speak about yoga philosophy.

We further discuss Hinduism and its relationship to yoga. There’s an endless discussion about yoga philosophy. If you’re curious to learn about what yoga philosophy means in its truest sense, hit play right away.

Dr. Shyam Ranganathan is a researcher, scholar, and author. He is a faculty at the Department of Philosophy at York University in Ontario, Canada. He is an expert in the neglected traditions of Indian moral philosophy with practical questions of how to live, what to aim for, and what we should value including yoga. He writes in the areas of Ethics, Political Philosophy, the Philosophy of Thought, Philosophy of Language, Philosophy of Religion, and Asian Philosophy, especially Indian Philosophy, Indian moral philosophy, and philosophies of meditation.

Episode Highlights:

  • Dr. Shyam talks about how yoga and philosophy became parts of his life
  • How western imperialism affected yoga
  • Dr. Shyam talks about the dangers of loosely interpreting something and what we can do about them
  • The definition of yoga according to Dr. Shyam
  • What the yoga philosophy encompasses
  • Is there an end goal in studying yoga philosophy? Is the progress measurable?
  • Where to start your yoga philosophy journey as a modern yoga teacher
  • Is it important to find yoga teachers of South Asian descent or those who have extensive Sanskrit studies when approaching yoga philosophy?
  • How long does it take to learn yoga philosophy?
  • Hinduism and its relation to yoga

Connect with Dr. Shyam Ranganathan:

Dr. Shyam’s website

Dr. Shyam’s Instagram

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Featured Guests

Dr. Shyam Ranganathan

Dr. Shyam Ranganathan is a field-changing researcher, scholar, author and teacher of philosophy, and an expert in the neglected traditions of Indian moral philosophy, which covers practical questions of how to live, what to aim for, and what we should value—including Yoga. After over 20000 teaching hours and 3000 students, in 2019 , Dr. Ranganathan founded Yoga Philosophy (YACEP and CYA-RYSGOLD), a scholar practitioner initiative, to bring research based knowledge about Yoga and Philosophy to practitioners.


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