"For many years, I carried a deep longing in my heart and a vision that appeared frequently in my dreams - to belong to a circle of yoginīs that would practice and study, soar the heights of ecstasy and tread the depths of despair together - with the single collective and individual goal of svatantra. A yoginī channels exquisite devotion, incisive knowledge and meticulous application for the goal of freedom from the known. It is my great good fortune to have found this circle of yoginīs who selflessly serve the Great Goddess here at Svatantra Institute."

~Kavitha Chinnaiyan, Krṣṇa Janmāṣṭamī/Kālī Jayantī, September 2023

"What I had been seeking all my life was the end of seeking."



Joanne Tognarelli

Through studying with Kavithaji, Joanne has learned that the challenges of life are what offer our greatest opportunities for growth. To face these in a practical manner and with continuous self-inquiry are keys to our growth. She recognises the profound impact that these esoteric teachings have when translated into practical application and is thrilled to see the institute continue to evolve. 

Kristen Beifus

Kristen practices conflict coaching and mediation with a focus on workplaces.

Her desire for radical transformation drew Kristen to Kavithaji's all-encompassing, women-centered, embodied teachings for householders.

Laura Humpf

Laura is honored and eternally grateful that Kavitha Amma found her. She is a mental health therapist and yoga therapist based in Seattle and has been at Kavitha Amma’s feet since 2018 working on various inspiring and illuminating projects and programs. 

You can learn more about Laura at www.seedyogatherapy.com. 

Shri Steep

Shri (Jenna) Steep is a long-term student of Kavithaji and an ardent devotee of Devī. She is profoundly honored to be a part of the operational team at Svatantra Institute and for the opportunity to learn directly from Kavithaji. 

Tanuka Gupta

With more than 25 years of professional experience as a Clinical Psychologist working with individuals with developmental disabilities and mental health disorders Tanuka was seeking a spiritual foundation that would help her growth as a woman juggling work and home, which she found through Kavitha. Her teacher soon taught her that her whole life was her sādhanā and there is no split between work and personal life.  This experience was further enhanced when Tanuka had the blessed opportunity to join Team Kavitha. Her heart opened wide to the power of women working in perfect alignment and support of each other. She learnt that approaching life’s issues with clear and honest intentions, pragmatism, rational and precise communication but with detachment to the outcome were key to harnessing creative flow and ensuring success.

Tanuka feels that being part of this space of power, devotion and commitment is the sādhanā of a lifetime. Tanuka manages the Svatantra Sphota and Sphota Stambha programs for Svatantra Institute.

Tatiana Lokis

Tatiana has been exploring different paths all converging into a journey towards well-being and personal growth. She completed a training in classical homeopathy, as well as a yoga certification which inspired her to offer programs for mental and physical health adapted to a multitude of contexts. Tatiana is also involved in business management and loves the growth that comes with being in this field.

"Kavithaji’s grace and wisdom reveal the true meaning of what it is to be wholesome in this world. Studying with Kavithaji has radically changed my perspective in a personal and professional sense, helping me understand the inherent non-separation of all aspects of one’s life and its implication for personal evolution and growth. I am thrilled and honoured to be a part of the team of women who empower each other and the greater community of practitioners by their relentless devotion to the teachings."

Vanitha Ratnam

Vanitha is a long-term student of Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan. She is passionate about reading, writing, art and design and helps coordinate activities with the team.

Vanitha was instrumental in developing the Svatantra logo. She brings her intuitive artistic gift to the Svatantra offerings and social media designs.

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