Full Time Faculty


Christopher Key Chapple, Ph.D.

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 AnimalsEarth, 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)


 Headshot, for Faculty profile

Ana Funes

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.

Part Time Faculty


Lori Rubenstein profile photo

Lori Rubenstein Fazzio, DPT, PT, MAppSc, CYT, YTRX

 Lori Rubenstein Fazzio has a B.S. in Physical Therapy from Boston University, an Advanced Masters Degree in Manipulative Therapy from the University of South Australia, and received her doctorate from Massachusetts General Institute of Health Professions. Dr. Rubenstein began practicing Yoga in 1993. Interested in the scientific applications of Yoga Practices on health, she was the lead investigator with Dr. Ellen Langer at Harvard University in a randomized control study entitled “Effect of Mindfulness on Memory and Function in Chronic Pain Sufferers”. Lori was on faculty at Mount Saint Mary's College from 1999-2014 and helped to create the curriculum for their Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.   Lori has been teaching in Loyola Marymount University’s Yoga Therapy Rx since 2008 and is the Clinical Director of Level IV where she mentors students in an interdisciplinary chronic pain program at the Simms Mann Venice Family Clinic.  She is on faculty in Loyola Marymount University’s Master of Arts in Yoga  Studies and has appeared on "Good Morning America". Lori is the founder and owner of Mosaic Physical Therapy in Los Angeles www.mosaicpt.com.  


Dr. Urmila Patil 

Dr. Urmila Patil is an instructor of Sanskrit, Hinduism, and World Religions. She started studying Sanskrit at the age of thirteen and went on to receive her BA and MA degrees with a major in Sanskrit grammatical, literary, and philosophical traditions at Mumbai University, India. After receiving her PhD in the Asian Cultures and Languages Program at the University of Texas at Austin, she worked as a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the South Asia Department at the University of Pennsylvania. Here she taught Sanskrit and Indian Epic Traditions. She also worked as the Acting Director and Instructor of the Hindi Program at the Lauder Institute, an affiliate of the Wharton School of Business. She recently taught Asian Religions and Hinduism at the University of California at Irvine. Her research interests include royal gastronomy, Sanskrit intellectual history and social identities in the early-modern and colonial periods.