Ayurveda: Health for Body and Mind Conference 2017

Flowers floating in a bowl

Thank you for joining us at
Ayurveda: Health for Body and Mind
October 6-7, 2017
Loyola Marymount University

Videos from the conference are available below

  • The Yoga Studies program at Loyola Marymount University offered a two-day conference exploring health and the Ayurvedic tradition. Scholars, medical professionals, and practitioners came together from India and North America to share the clinical and historical benefits of yoga, herbal medicine, meditation, and Ayurveda. The conference concluded with the annual Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award, honoring John Hagelin, Ph.D., and his work with Transcendental Meditation.  

    2017 Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award

    John Hagelin, Ph.D., President of Maharishi University of Management

    John Hagelin, Ph.D., is a quantum physicist, science and public policy expert, educator, and author committed to promoting peace, consciousness, and a grand Unified Field theory. He is the leader of the Transcendental Meditation movement in the United States and one of the world's pre-eminent researchers on the effects of meditation on brain development. His teachings on the Maharishi effect demonstrate the ability of group meditation to address critical problems in the field of education, rehabilitation, crime and social violence, and post-traumatic stress. In addition to his position as President of the Maharishi University of Management, he is the International President of the Global Union of Scientists for Peace, the Director of the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy, the President of the David Lynch Foundation, and the Chair of the Center for Leadership Performance.  

    About the Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award

    The Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award is given annually to honor an individual or organization dedicated to fostering understanding between cultures, peoples, and disciplines. The award ceremony is a celebration of culture and diversity, jointly sponsored by Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts, the Department of Theological Studies, and the Navin and Pratima Doshi Professorship of Indic and Comparative Theology.

    Learn more about the Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award.

    Yoga Studies

    Loyola Marymount University offers the first Master of Arts in Yoga Studies in America. Graduate students engage in deep study of Yoga philosophy and history, Sanskrit, elements of physical practice, comparative spirituality, and study of India. LMU also offers a selection of Yoga Studies certificates which are open to the public. Topics range from Yoga Therapy to YogaEd/Yoga in Schools, Mindfulness and Social Change, and Philosophy courses. Each summer master teacher Ramaswami visits campus to teach in the Krishnamacharya tradition, and twice a year the University offers 200 hour teacher trainings called Yoga and the Healing Sciences. 

    Learn more about Loyola Marymount University's Yoga Studies program.

    Loyola Marymount University

    LMU is a private Catholic university with 6,000 undergraduates, 2,200 graduate students and 1,100 law students from diverse backgrounds and many perspectives. Our seven colleges and schools boast best-in-the-nation programs in film and television, business, education and more. Our stunning campus in West Los Angeles is a sun-soaked oasis overlooking the Pacific coast and a model of sustainability. We're rooted in the heart of Los Angeles, a global capital for arts and entertainment, innovation and technology, business and entrepreneurship. Our mission is grounded in a centuries-old Jesuit educational tradition that produces extraordinary men and women dedicated to service and social justice. We're proud of more than 85,000 LMU alumni whose professional achievements are matched by a deep commitment to improving the lives of others. 


    Ayurveda: Health for Body and Mind conference is made possible through the generosity of Navin and Pratima Doshi and supported by the Clinical Professorship in Sikh and Jain Studies, the Yoga Studies Programs, and the Department of Theological Studies at Loyola Marymount University.

  • Introduction and Welcome

    Robbin D. Crabtree, Ph.D., Dean of Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts
    Christopher Key Chapple, Ph.D.
    Nirinjan Khalsa, Ph.D.

    Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award & Lecture

    Conferral of the Doshi Family Bridgebuilder Award to John Hagelin, Ph.D.

    Higher States: The Neurophysiology of Enlightenment

    John Hagelin, Ph.D., President of Maharishi University of Management

    John Hagelin unites breakthrough discoveries in quantum physics and string theory with the ancient science of consciousness (yoga and Ayurveda) to forge a unified understanding of consciousness and the physical universe—thus revealing a profound connection between our inner and outer realities: mind and matter. This emerging paradigm presents a complete and cohesive “Theory of Everything” in which the individual is truly cosmic.

    Health and Healing in Jainism and Sikhism

    Healing Mantras in Jainism part 1

    Bhaktamar Ellen Gough, Ph.D., Emory University

    The recitation of the Bhaktamar Mantra has been employed as a Jaina healing technique, gainging popularity in the 18th century. This session approached this practice from historical and clinical perspectives.

    Healing Mantras in Jainism part 2

    Manju Jain, Ph.D.

    Healing Mantras in Jainism part 3

    Amressh Mehta, Ph.D


    The Living Vitality of Your Authentic Self

    Shanti Shanti Kaur Khalsa, Ph.D

    Health care providers seek to address problems of illness and suffering. To elevate the experience of health recovery, it is important for the healer to stay well in the process. The flow of prana serves to enhance the radiance and spirit of both healer and client, awakening the sacred in the self and the world.

    Treating Neurological Disorders with Ayurveda

    Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa, Yogaraj, DN-C, RH, LMY, NCTMB, CC, NAMAPM

    The brain is complicated. Healing the brain, more complicated still. By any measure, neurological disorders are among the most challenging conditions to treat. Ayurveda has a spectrum of low-tech, high concept methods that stand out as exceptionally successful for these conditions. After nearly fifty years of integrating natural medicine into contemporary medical practices, we are witnessing substantial clinical progress. This talk looks at the dramatic advances and new understandings in migraine, seizure disorders, dementia and developmental delay.

    Ayurveda in International Perspective

    Time Matters, Chronobiology and Ayurveda: A Cutting Edge Behavioral Approach for Optimizing Individual and Societal Health 

    Nancy Lonsdorf, M.D. 

    One of the three main categories of disease causation according to Ayurveda, the traditional health system of India, is kala or “time,” including daily and seasonal rhythms. Whereas the dimension of time has largely been ignored in the contemporary practice of medicine and preventive health, Ayurveda prescribes specific times for sleep, eating and exercise as well as seasonal behaviors. Recent discoveries in chronobiology and chronotherapeutics provide remarkable validation for the Ayurvedic prescription of specific timing for routine behaviors. Findings document marked physiological modulation by circadian and seasonal cycles with effects on mood, cognition, metabolism, immunity and weight, as well as impacts on the treatment of hypertension, cancer, asthma, depression and other disorders. Recent scientific research and clinical experience in chronobiology will be examined in light of Ayurvedic principles, and the implications for improved societal health through widespread implementation is explored.

    Ayurveda and its Relationship with Yoga & Meditation

    Ramkumar Kutty, B.A.M.S., founding Director, Punarnava Ayurveda, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

    Sattva (mind), Atma (self) and Sharira (body) are the tripod of life. When health is defined in the early texts on Ayurveda, it is described as a “balance of the elemental body, and clarity, purity and happiness of the self, the senses and the mind.” Ayurveda, yoga and meditation work together to enable this state of health to be achieved. While each of them are complete in themselves, Ayurveda focuses primarily on the body, yoga focuses primarily on the mind, and meditation has self-realization as its final goal. All three practices have their origins in the Vedas. This talk explores the origins, definitions, goals and inter-relationships of these different systems with the primary focus on health.

    Art and Science of Vedic Counseling

    Suhas G. Kshirsagar, B.A.M.S., M.D., Pune University Gold Medalist, Ayurvedic Healing, Santa Cruz

    Vedic Counseling is a newly emerging paradigm which integrates Ayurveda, yoga, Jyotish and Vedanta. It is a perfect way to address the totality and diversity of human life. Vedantic counseling is a powerful approach to integrate spirituality in medicine. It is a consciousness-based approach to health and well being.

    Ayurveda and Yoga Therapy: Modalities of Healing in Yoga and Meditation

    Healing the Spirit of a Broken World: Bridging the Art of Ayurveda with the Science of the Social Brain

    Jay Kumar, Ph.D., co-founder of the Applied Brain Science Research Institute for Health & Wellbeing The precipitous rise in depression, anxiety, PTSD, and addiction are manifestations of an underlying epidemic arising from social and spiritual disconnection. Former US Surgeon General Murthy declares that the greatest health crisis of our generation is the illness of isolation. Both Ayurveda and brain science concur that our “diseases of despair” are a result of having become socially and spiritually disconnected in an over-connected world. This talk will address how Ayurveda’s ancient medical doctrine conceptually aligns with contemporary findings in brain science and behavioral studies to promote an integral paradigm of health with the aim to cure humanity’s diseases of despair and to heal the spirit of a broken world in our Age of Disconnection.

    Educating Yoga Therapists as Lifestyle Management Experts

    Lori Rubenstein Fazzio, DPT, PT, MAppSc, C-IAYT, founder of Mosaic Physical Therapy

    “Lifestyle diseases” are responsible for the majority of deaths worldwide. With the rising prevalence of these conditions, it is evident that additional treatment approaches are necessary. Yoga Therapy and Ayurveda may be optimal solutions for the management of these conditions. Yoga Therapy is an inexpensive and effective strategy for management of lifestyle disease, however, it has yet to become standard of care. This talk discusses the evolution of Yoga Therapy education as well as the challenges and benefits observed over the past five years. Dr. Rubenstein Fazzio has been supervising Yoga Therapists within a western medical clinic as part of the Yoga Therapy Rx Clinical Internship.

    Ayurveda for Self Care

    Felicia Tomasko, RN, E-RYT 500, Editor-in-Chief of LA YOGA Ayurveda and Health

    According to the teachings of Ayurveda, our immune system represents the intelligence of the body. Taking care of this system is a daily practice. We can utilize simple yoga sequences combined with Ayurvedic wisdom to strengthen the intelligence of the body

    Psychological and Spiritual Aspects of Ayurveda for Self Care

    Siva Mohan, M.D. M.P.H.

    Siva explores psychological and spiritual aspects of Ayurveda as a foundational part of self care and as paramount to the cultural integrity and efficacy of Ayurveda.

    Thus Spoke the Sages: Ayurvedic Medicine on Environmental Issues and Dharma

    Acharya Shunya Pratichi Mathur, President of California Association of Ayurvedic Medicine

    In this time of global environmental crisis, Ayurveda invites us humans to deeply inquire into the self, thoughts, and behaviors. Ayurveda declares, “actions impact the environment as much as the environment impacts us.” Ayurveda teaches benefits to the entire planetary ecosystem by suggesting measures that guide the human consciousness to walk in the path of Dharma. Acharya Shunya explains rare teachings of Ayurveda from the Charaka, Samhita, and highlights Ayurveda’s stand on environment, consciousness, and planetary health.

    Super Aging: A Holistic Mind Body Approach to Anti-Aging

    Robert Schneider, M.D., FACC, FABMR, Director of the Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention, Maharishi University of Management

    In this talk, Dr. Schneider discusses a holistic mind body approach to anti-aging based on principles of Integrative Ayurveda in light of modern medical science, 30 years of NIH-supported clinical research, and the practice and teaching in evidence-based, integrative medicine. It included his work on prevention of heart disease and other chronic disorders associated with aging.

    Building a Smarter Gut for a Smarter Brain: Understanding the Gut-Brain Connection Through Ayurveda

    Kulreet Chaudhary, M.D.

    In this talk, Dr. Chaudhary explains her personal journey with Ayurveda first as a patient to practitioner and then as a neurologist uncovering the gut-brain connection through both the eyes of modern medicine and Ayurveda. She explains the fascinating connection between the brain and bowels and the impact it has on behavior, brain health, and weight gain. This lecture is an interweaving of both a personal and scientific approach to Ayurveda in the modern world.

    Practitioners of Western Medicine on Prospects for Health and Wholeness: A Reflective Roundtable

    Mani Bhaumik, Ph.D.
    Rahul Navin Doshi, M.D.
    Anjana Kamdar, M.D.
    Vikram Kamdar, M.D.
    Harvinder Sahota, M.D.

    Moderated by Nitin Shah, M.D.

    Mind, Body, and Brain: Neuroscience-Based Investigations of Contemplative Practice

    Sahib S. Khalsa, M.D., Ph.D., Laureate Institute for Brain Research, Assistant Professor of Community Medicine at the University of Tulsa

    This talk describes a series of experiments intended to illuminate the essential role of neurobiology in mind-body communication. It starts by describing the different pathways of inner body signaling (or ‘interoception’) that are necessary for the maintenance of physical well-being, followed by illustrations of how the central nervous system continuously monitors and adjusts to changes in the state of the body. The middle of the talk describes systematic investigations of interoceptive experience across a number of different contemplative traditions. It ends with the introduction of a novel approach to modulating body signals, reduced environmental stimulation (aka ‘floating’), that may have relevance for both contemplative practices and physical and mental health.


    Yoga: The Psychophysiological Science and Research Evidence

    Sat Bir Singh Khalsa, M.D., Ph.D., Harvard Medical School

    Yoga is an ancient behavioral practice historically focused on spiritual development that also facilitates the development of the skills of mind-body awareness or mindfulness, self-regulation of internal physiological and psychological state, and physical fitness. Yoga is becoming increasingly popular as a contemplative practice, for the promotion and maintenance of health and wellness, as preventive medicine, and as an adjunct therapeutic intervention. This presentation provides an overview the scientific research evidence on the underlying mechanisms of yoga practice supporting the rationale for these applications of yoga.

    Ayurveda and the Microbiome

    Robert Keith Wallace, Ph.D., founding President of Maharishi University of Management

    In Ayurveda, food is regarded as medicine, and the key to ideal health lies in a balanced state of the gut. The term microbiome describes the microorganisms that reside in us, as well as the genes they contain. Most of these microorganisms are located in our gut. Recent research has revealed that a poor diet can disrupt the microbiome and harm the gut lining, causing a toxic inflammatory state, which ultimately leads to disorders from heart disease to Alzheimer’s. Ayurveda offers practical procedures to restore the integrity of the gut and reestablish balance in our mind and body. As a result of research on the microbiome, many of the most important concepts in Ayurveda can now be understood scientifically.


  • Download full Ayurvedic Conference Program (PDF)