Notice for Course Participants:

Registration for the Devī Māhātmya Course will end on October 8th at 8:00pm PDT. Live Streaming of sessions will continue on our Facebook Group for Non-Registrants.


Myth, Philosophy, and Ritual

A Free Course on the Devī Māhātmya
with Ācārya Sthaneshwar Timalisna

12 Sessions on Sundays from

8:00am-9:30am PDT on Zoom

Beginning on Sunday, October 2, 2022


Devī Māhātmya, also called the Saptaśatī or Caṇḍī, is the foundational scripture of Śākta Tantrism and one of the most widely read and recited texts in the Hindu world. Although it is found embedded within the Mārkaṇḍeya Purāṇa, every verse is considered a mantra and many Āgamic teachings can be found condensed and encoded within the myths and rituals suffused throughout the text. The re-enactment of these myths forms the basis of the major Hindu festival of Navaratra and because of this, Śākta practices have entered into mainstream culture. Despite the preservation of many variations of the text, including mantra versions and over a dozen traditional commentaries, the deeper meaning of the scripture has been lost over time.


The objective of this course is to explore the devotion, philosophy, and ritual surrounding the Goddess Durgā and to disseminate esoteric teachings preserved in the commentarial tradition and obtained through oral transmission from classically trained Ācāryas.


This course is divided in twelve lectures. The first lecture captures the summary of the myths distributed in three sections of the text. The second and third lectures focus on deciphering the myths, using both contemporary Western and classical Śāstric approaches. The course then introduces the philosophy and rituals surrounding the text in two lectures. This constitutes the first section of the course. In the second section, the course expands upon four central prayers, the Rātrī Sūkta, Śakrādi Stava, Devī Sūkta, and Nārāyaṇī Stava. 


This course explores the deeper layers of the Devī Māhātmya beyond the narratives and their symbolism. It connects the Śāktism in Devī Māhātmya with Trika Śāivism, the Sarvāmnāya tradition, and broader Śākta philosophies. Accordingly, this course also examines the ritual dimensions of Śākta Tantrism.


Beginning on October 2, 2022, classes will be held every Sunday from 8:00am-9:30am PDT on Zoom. Each class will consist of a Lecture Presentation followed by a Question and Answer Session. Recordings are made available to stream on the website following the completion of each class.


Register for the course using the form below.

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