Ann Arbor Vedanta Symposium

The first Ann Arbor Vedanta Symposium (A2VS) will be held at the University of Michigan will be held on November 11, 2017. The two major goals of the symposium are:

  1. Ensuring that the message of the Vedanta philosophy reaches a wider audience.
  2. Exploring how the Vedantic philosophy can help us cope with mental health issues such as stress, depression, anxiety, and addiction.

We hope that we will be able to organize A2VS every year. Each year we will focus on a particular sphere of human endeavor that can be seen in a fresh light though a Vedantic perspective.

Venue: Forum Hall, Palmer Commons, 100 Washtenaw Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

When: November 11, 2017 (Saturday )

The tentative schedule of the symposium is as follows:

Session 1: The Message of Vedanta

Time: 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Distinguished Speakers:

  1. Revered Swami Tyagananda (Head Monk of Ramakrishna Vedanta Society of Boston, U.S.A. and the Hindu chaplain at M.I.T. and Harvard)
  2. Dr. Jeffery D. Long (Professor of Religion and Asian Studies at Elizabethtown College, Pennsylavania)
  3. Dr. Bina Gupta (Curators' Professor Emerita, Department of Philosophy, University of Missouri)

Topics of discussion include:

  • What is Vedanta?
  • What are the Different Perspectives on Vedanta?
  • How to Practice Vedanta in Daily Life?

Break For Lunch (12-2)

Session 2: Vedanta and Mental Health

Time: 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Distinguished Speakers:

  1. Revered Swami Chidbrahmananda (Monk, Vedanta Center of Greater Washington D.C.)
  2. Dr. Parag Patil (Associate Professor of Neurosurgery, Neurology, Anesthesiology and Biomedical Engineering, University of Michigan)
  3. Dr. Elizabeth (Libby) Robinson, MSW, MPH (Mindfulness Teacher, Ann Arbor Center for Mindfulness Leadership Team)

The speakers will speak about mental health and the perspectives Vedanta offers to understand and deal with mental illnesses and disorders. Likely topics of discussion include:

  • What is Depression?
  • What is the Vedantic Perspective of Depression?
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Vedanta


We gratefully acknowledge funding support from the following sources:

  • Distinguished Faculty and Graduate Student Seminar series