Meet the Director

Christopher Key Chapple is Doshi Professor of Indic and Comparative Theology and founding Director of the Master of Arts in Yoga Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. He has published twenty books on topics that include studies of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Yoga, and religion and ecology.

Christopher Key Chapple
Graduate Yoga Studies Director Christopher Key Chapple

Dr. Chapple began his study and practice of Yoga while in high school in upstate New York. In 1972 he joined Yoga Anand Ashram in Amityville, New York where, along with his wife Maureen, he helped establish a vegetarian restaurant, an art gallery, a bookstore, and a community education center.

He earned his bachelor's degree at Stony Brook University in Religious Studies and Comparative Literature, with a specialization in Sanskrit and Tibetan language and literature. He completed his M.A. and Ph.D. in the History of Religions at Fordham University, focusing on the intersection between Buddhism, Vedanta, and Yoga. He served for five years at The Institute for Advanced Studies of World Religions at Stony Brook where he also taught undergraduate classes in Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Yoga. He joined the faculty of Loyola Marymount University in 1985.

Dr. Chapple is a featured teacher on He serves on the advisory boards for the Forum on Religion and Ecology (Yale), the Ahimsa Center (Pomona), the Dharma Academy of North America (Berkeley), the Centre of Jaina Studies (SOAS, London), the South Asian Studies Association and the International School for Jaina Studies (Delhi).

Dr. Chapple is dedicated to the teaching of the whole person, body, mind, and spirit, through the modalities of book learning and experience as provided in Yoga traditions.

For more information on Dr. Chapple, his publications, and research, click here.

Letter from the Director

Welcome to Graduate Yoga Studies at LMU!

Since the 1960s, Loyola University (the name changed to Loyola Marymount University on the occasion of merger with Marymount College in 1974) has been deeply engaged in interfaith dialogue and in various modalities of spiritual formation. Our Graduate Yoga Studies offerings build on this long-standing tradition. This degree program provides students access to the linguistic tools of Sanskrit, the physiological knowledge developed over centuries both in the West and from Asia, and the various theological traditions that have informed the study and practice of Yoga.

Yoga has taken many forms over the years, providing meditation techniques, psychological strategies, and movement sequences that have helped lessen the large and small pains encountered in daily life. As we move through the year, please avail yourself of our special events, including Yoga Day and the annual Doshi Bridgebuilder Award, which this year includes a conference on Ayurveda. Our new and continuing graduate students, along with our many certificate students at LMU's Center for Religion and Spirituality, are forming a wonderful community of shared practice and study.

Hope to see you soon,

Chris Chapple