Full Time Faculty
Dr. Christopher Key Chapple is the Doshi Professor of Indic and Comparative Theology and Director of the Master of Arts in Yoga Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. His research interests focus on the renouncer religious traditions of India: Yoga, Jainism, and Buddhism. He has published several books on these topics with SUNY Press, including Karma and Creativity (1986), Nonviolence to Animals, Earth, and Self in Asian Traditions (1993), Reconciling Yogas (2003), and Yoga and the Luminous: Patanjali’s Spiritual Path to Freedom (2008).
He has also edited and co-authored several books on religion and ecology, including Ecological Prospects: Religious, Scientific, and Aesthetic Perspectives (1994, SUNY), Hinduism and Ecology (2000, with Mary Evelyn Tucker, Harvard), Jainism and Ecology (2002, Harvard), Yoga and Ecology (2009, Deepak Heritage), and In Praise of Mother Earth: The Prthivi Sukta of the Atharva Veda (2011, with O.P. Dwivedi, winner, translation prize, Dharma Academy of North America). His most recent books are Poet of Eternal Return (2014) and Sacred Thread (with Beth Sternlieb and Cristina Anunes, 2015, both with Nalanda International / Sri Yogi). Two edited volumes will appear in 2016: Yoga in Jainism (Routledge) and Mind, Morals and Make-Believe: Engaged Emancipation in the Moksopaya/Yogavasistha (with Aridam Chakrabarti, SUNY). He also is editor of the journal Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology (Brill).
Chris serves as academic advisor for the International Summer School of Jain Studies and on the advisory boards for the Forum on Religion and Ecology (Yale) and the Ahimsa Center (Pomona). In 2002 he established the first of several certificate programs in the study of Yoga at LMU’s Center for Religion and Spirituality and founded LMU’s Master of Arts in Yoga Studies in the fall of 2013.
1980 Ph.D. Theology, Fordham University, U.S.A.
History of Religions Program Dissertation: “The Concept of Will in the Yogavasistha”
1978 MA Fordham University, U.S.A.
Thesis: “Tson Kha Pa and the Synthesis of Buddhism in Tibet”
1976 B.A. State University of New York at Stony Brook, U.S.A.
Comparative Literature and Religious Studies (summa cum laude)
Ana Funes completed her B.A. and M.A. in Philosophy with a focus on Philosophy of Religion and Hermeneutics at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, with theses on the topics of Advaita Vedanta and interpretations of the Yoga Sutra, respectively. She is completing her Ph.D. in Comparative Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii under the guidance of Professor Arindam Chakrabarti. Her dissertation examines proprioception and bodily self awareness in regards to the notion of subtle body as it is found in Samkhya-Yoga, Vedanta, and Kasmir Saivism using phenomenological methodology.
Ana is certified as an instructor of Kundalini Yoga by the 3HO Association of Mexico City and completed a 200 hour teachers training in Sivananda Yoga in India back in 2007. She has also trained (although not certified) in Iyengar Yoga style and has conducted study groups on the Yoga Sutras for Iyengar Yoga teachers' trainings both in Mexico and Honolulu. She has studied Sanskrit in Pune, India, as well as in Mexico and Hawaii and currently teaches Foundations in Yoga Studies, Sanskrit Texts: Yoga Sutra and Bhagavad Gita, Philosophy and Practice of Hatha Yoga Texts, History of Modern Yoga, and Writing and Research Seminar for the Masters of Arts in Yoga Studies at Loyola Marymount University.
Ph.D. Candidate University of Hawaii (Degree expected 2015 or beginning 2016)
Phenomenology, Indian Philosophy, Comparative Philosophy
M.A. National Autonomous University of Mexico 2008
Hermeneutics, Philosophy of Religion
B.A. National Autonomous University of Mexico 2005
Dr. Nirinjan Khalsa
Dr. Nirinjan Khalsa, Clinical Professor of Jain and Sikh Studies, Department of Theological Studies, received her Ph.D in Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Michigan in 2014. Her work examines both historic and modern Sikh devotional music with particular attention paid to the mystical and embodied realms of performative practice as well as the ideological debates and identity politics surrounding its pedagogy and history. She has conducted ethnographic research throughout Northern India since 2000, including a year as a Fulbright Scholar 2010-11. Professor Khalsa is honored as the female exponent of the Amritsari tradition of Sikh drumming (jori-pakhawaj) by 13th generation exponent of the Gurbani Kirtan parampara. Her ongoing research investigates how the diversity of lived devotional practices and musical styles in the Sikh Diaspora question gendered and religious norms.