Ananda’s comprehensive meditation teacher training (MTT) is now available in a 10-week, 100% online format. OMTT (Online MTT) incorporates the very best practices of modern distance learning. As a result, trainees have been amazed at how supported they feel, because the teachers engage with them nearly every day. Trainees are also surprised at how well they get to know their classmates, even though they never meet in person; discussion forums, team projects, and practice teaching via Skype take the “distance” out of distance learning. The biggest surprise for many trainees is how much their own meditation practice improves; they didn’t expect that from an online course.
Although we recommend taking the in-person version of Ananda MTT if possible—there’s no substitute for being in the powerful spiritual vibrations of Ananda Village—OMTT is a great alternative. In case you’re wondering which version of Ananda MTT to take, here are some points to consider:
- Both versions cover the same material, use the same manual, and award the same certificate.
- OMTT consists of 10 week-long units. Coursework for each unit must be completed by the end of the unit, but within that constraint, you can do your coursework whenever it suits your schedule. There is only one “live” webinar, and even that is recorded for the sake of those who cannot attend.
- OMTT involves about 80–90 hours of coursework, which includes 20–30 hours of guided sadhana practice. The in-person Ananda MTT entails about 60 hours.
- Each format has advantages. Here are some of the main ones:
- In person: As mentioned above, the uplifting environment of The Expanding Light promotes deep meditation; it cannot be duplicated fully online. You won’t have all the distractions that happen at home, so you can dedicate yourself 100% to meditation and learning to teach it. You’ll have in-person access to the instructors—and your classmates—every day. The personal connections that happen are beautiful and often enduring. The course’s timeframe is much shorter than OMTT’s.
- Online: You need not uproot yourself from your everyday life (or spend vacation time). You’ll have more time to assimilate the material and practice your teaching. You can experience OMTT’s many video classes and audio-guided practices over and over, which makes learning much easier. OMTT offers you even more learning experiences than does the in-person course, and it covers some topics in greater depth. OMTT is less expensive.
- During OMTT, you will make 3 videos of yourself teaching, and post them online. It’s not difficult—and it’s getting easier all the time—but you should know that Ananda doesn’t provide tech support for that, or for using Skype. Ananda does offer tech support for using the course website, which in any case is easy to use and intuitive.
- To do well in any online course, you need to be organized and a self-starter. You also need to decide whether you can fit one more thing into your everyday life. And of course, you need to be comfortable working in the online environment.
- The in-person Ananda MTT counts toward both Level 2 Ananda Yoga Teacher certification and Yoga Therapist certification with the International Association of Yoga Therapists. OMTT does not yet count toward either of those certifications, but we hope and expect that to change within 2 years.
- OMTT is taught by Nayaswami Diksha and Nayaswami Gyandev. If you have questions, please contact either of them.