​Hindu University of America Offers the First Training Course for American Hindu Leaders to become Certified Volunteer Chaplains of the Hindu Faith​


Certified Volunteer Chaplains of the Hindu Faith

“Lead us from unreal to real. Lead us from Darkness to the Light.

Lead us from the fear of death to the Knowledge of Immortality!”  –Upanishads


You Can Become A Volunteer Hindu Chaplain.  At Last, The Course Is Ready!  Are You?

Learn How To Serve In Temples, Medical, University And Other Chaplaincy Settings!

Hindu University of America, in conjunction with Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America, is pleased to present the first Training Course for American Hindu Leaders to become Certified Volunteer Chaplains of the Hindu Faith. The course will be presented at Satchidananda Ashram-Yogaville, in Buckingham, VA, Monday 5 Jan. -Friday 9 Jan. 2015.


Swami Sarvaananda, PhD, one of the main teachers of the course, is seen here outside LOTUS: the Light of the Universe Shrine to all faiths located on the Ashram grounds.


LOTUS has thousands of visitors every year including many Hindus. 


It was created by Sri Swami Satchidananda who taught Hindu and Yogic teachings to around the world. 


The fee for the instructional program for certification is $150.  Accommodations at the Ashram for an individual participant range in price from $300 (shared dormitory room and bath) to $460.  Price for couples is slightly less than for two individuals.  Included:  four nights of room, three Vegan meals a day, three daily meditation sessions, a daily hatha class, and a tour of the inspiring, globally respected, LOTUS temple and other holy sites.  

The main instructors

Dr. Sarvaananda is a Board Certified Chaplain  (BCC) through the Association of Professional Chaplains.  Dr. Sarvaananda spent 15 years in medical and hospice chaplaincy. She is currently on the Board of Trustees of Satchidananda Ashram and is active in many national chaplaincy as well as community projects on and off the ashram.

Madhu Sharma is the Hindu Chaplain to students at Duke University with Masters in Social Work and BS in Engineering. She is an Executive Coach and also on the Board of Directors of Hindu Society of North Carolina. She iis a wife, mother, and  grandmother,


Pratima Dharm is the first Hindu Chaplain in the history of the Department of Defense, having served the US Army for nine years including two combat tours to Iraq. She is an Army CPE trained hospital chaplain. She holds Masters degrees in Psychology and theology, is a trained Yoga and Yoga Nidra teacher and currently serves as Hindu chaplain at Georgetown University, She is a wife, mother, and is involved in US Military and community outreach projects.

HUA is working to establish a Masters of Divinity program to train chaplains of Eastern Traditions to serve anywhere that such services are needed. This course is also applicable for graduate college credit.

We look forward to hearing from you very soon!


Please contact Swami Sarvaananda (swami.sarvaananda@gmail.com, 434 989 4585), before December with questions and confirmation. Reservations for Ashram stays are available through the Ashram Reservation Center, Chaplaincy Program, (800) 858 9642 or 434 969 3121 ext.  111.


#3-Schedule-HUA Pilot Program:  5-9 JAN 2015


Certification for Hindu leaders to become Volunteer Chaplains

Satchidananda Ashram, Yogavillle in Buckingham, Virginia


5th  Mon         4-4:30 orientation to program, certification, etc.

Swami Sarvaananda, Madhu Sharma


4:30-5:30–address “Why Chaplaincy?” “Why are Hindus Needed for Chaplaincy?” (Give basic elements of University-Medical-Temple and other forms of chaplaincy and the need for Hindu involvement)

Madhu Sharma- Univ+Temple: 30 min

Swami Sarvaananda- Med+other, 30 min


6:00 Meditation



7:15-8:15 Elements of Hindu Beliefs especially useful in all chaplaincy (chaplaincy article from Hinduism Today 2010)

Swami Sarvaananda

8:15- 9:15 University Chaplaincy 1—(special needs and skills )

Madhu Sharma

6th Tues         6:00 -8:00 Hatha and Meditation class-

Swami Vidyaananda




9:00-9:50 Balancing 1

Madhu Sharma


9:50-10:40 Listening and communication skills

Swami Sarvaananda


10:40-11:30 Listening and communications skills

Madhu Sharma


12:00 noon Lotus Meditation



1:30- 3:30 Tour of Yogaville, LOTUS Shrine

Swami Sarvaananda, (Sita, staff)


3:45-5:45 Hindu Philosophy and chaplaincy

Swami Karunananda, Raja, Pranayama, Meditation (from book AWAKENING)


6:00 Meditation



7:15-8:30 University Chaplaincy 2

Madhu Sharma


8:30- 9:00 Medical Chaplaincy 1

Swami Sarvaananda (and others)


7th Wed          6:00- 8:00 Hatha and Meditation class, freeing joints Hope Mell



9-9:50 Balancing 2

Madhu Sharma


9:50-10:40 Cultural Bias-personal –

Swami Sarvaananda


Culture: Communial view

Madhu Sharma


12:00 noon Meditation



2:00-3:30 Tools for resolving issues: Chaplaincy’s action, reflection, action,

and Hindu’s adapt, adjust, accommodate methods of dealing with

people/problems followed by some basic Mediation techniques

Swami Sarvaananda


3:45- 5:45 role playing 1 – parent and teen conflicts, young adult concerns.  Madhu Sharma


Aging, retirement, etc

Swami Sarvaananda


6:00  Meditation



7:15-8:45 Temple Chaplaincy Concerns 

(teens, young adults and identification of Hindu/Indian and American)

Madhu Sharma


8:45-9:15 Temple and Medical Chaplaincy: going to and from home, placement, appointments, etc.

Swami Sarvaananda


8th Thurs       6:00 -8:00 Hatha and Meditation restorative class

Rev Saraswathi




9-9:50  Balancing 3

Madhu Sharma


9:50-10:40 stress Management and Chaplaincy

Sw Vidyaananda


10:40-11:30 Dealing with aging, death-

Swami Sarvaananda


12:00 noon Meditation



2-3:30 Military, CISM and Disaster chaplaincy trainings

Pratima Dharm


3:45-5:15  Role playing 2 (Death:Medical, Aging issues)

Swami Sarvaananda, Madhu Sharma, Pratima Dharm


5:15-5:45  Closing Remarks

Madhu Sharma

6:00 Meditation



7:15-9:00 Medical Chaplaincy

Swami Sarvaananda


9th Fri             6-8 Hatha and Meditation class


9:15-10:00  Seven Stars of Hinduism:

Dileep Thatte


10:00-10:30 Military Chaplaincy

Pratima Dharma


10:30-11:00 Closing Remarks



(turn in evaluations)

                        (check out of rooms by noon)



RATE for Volunteer Chaplaincy Certificate Program:            $150 – per person



RATES for Satchidananda Ashram-Yogaville:

(Includes three vegetarian meals, three meditation sessions, one hatha class per day in addition to room and board.)


Four night stay: (Monday 5 January-Thursday 8 January nights, leave room Friday morning by lunch time)


Shared Room, Shared Bath (Dormitory):                                 $300.

Private Single Room, Shared Bath (Dormitory):                    $380. 

Private Double Room: (if bringing spouse)                             $680.

Private Room, Private Bath (Lotus Guest Houses):      

Single                                                                                     $460.

Double (if bringing spouse)                                             $760.


(If applying for Hindu University of America graduate credits towards the future Masters of Divinity program, other fees and requirements will be necessary. Ask for details)



Source: WHN Media Network