Isha Foundation U.S.A. Presents Isha Fest 2011: A Celebration of Life, Enlightenment, and the Raising of Human Consciousness

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Isha Foundation U.S.A. invites you to the third Annual Isha Fest: A Celebration of Enlightenment happening Saturday, September 24, 2011.

Isha Institute of Inner-sciences, in McMinnville, Tennessee, is an emerging yoga, meditation, and retreat center nestled in the heart of the Cumberland Plateau, heartily welcomes you and your family to Isha Fest 2011: A Celebration of Enlightenment. A jubilee brimming with Olympic spirit, Isha Fest commemorates the anniversary of yogi, mystic, and Isha Foundation founder Sadhguru’s self realization, the International Day of Peace, and the innate potential of human beings to achieve global wellbeing through the raising of one’s own consciousness.

Celebrated since 1994 as a major festival at the Isha Yoga Center in Coimbatore, South India, Isha Fest has sought to showcase the athletic, artistic, and cultural contributions of cultures throughout the world, especially those which, perhaps over-looked, explore and transcend the human experience. Isha Institute of Inner-sciences began to hold the festivities exclusively in 2009. Much like its Indian counterpart, the U.S. Isha Fest seeks to bring together Isha meditators and non-meditators alike from across the country in a fun-filled day of games, sport, revelry, music, dance, international cuisine and cultural exhibitions. Ultimately a day of thanksgiving and acknowledgement of spiritual awakening, the activities planned for this year’s Ancient Olympic theme promise to bring forth the Highest from every participant.

According to Sadhguru, “The sacredness of a sporting event is that individuals rise beyond their limitations, achieving a state of abandon that is usually known only at the peak of spirituality. Thus, sports have always been a part of Isha; all our programs have an element of play – as to play is to live, and to live is to play. Being a sport means you are willing to play. Willing to play means you are involved or alive to the situation in which you exist, and that is the essence of life. If there is anything that is truly close to a spiritual process, in the normal course of life, that is sports."

Swami Vivekananda, (the Indian sage credited with bringing yoga and yogic philosophy to the West in the late 19th century),went to the extent of saying, "In kicking a ball or playing a game, you are much closer to the Divine than you will ever be in prayer. You can pray without involvement, but you cannot play sports without involvement, and involvement is the essence of life."

Short and long distance runs, relays, dodge ball, volleyball, ping-pong, foosball, soccer, kayak races, disc golf, Corn hole, Frisbee and water-balloon tosses are just a few of the “Ancient Greek” tournaments scheduled to test both team and individual athletic prowess at this year’s Isha Fest. Puzzle, jumble, chess, and Jenga competitions will stretch the mind while a separate Kiddie Olympics and Children’s Tent insures there will be plenty of activity and chances to win medals for competitors of all ages. Artistic performances including dance and music exhibitions as well as poetry-slams will be featured throughout the day.

Isha Fest is a free event, open to the general public. Festivities will commence at 9:00am on Saturday, September 24,with a massive game of Dodge ball on the “Acropolis,” and will continue throughout the day at various venues around the Isha Institute campus. A complimentary vegetarian breakfast and lunch will be served, and food-stalls will be open to support the Foundation’s on-going projects. A public Open House at 2:00pm will provide visitors the opportunity to tour the center’s grounds, spend time in the Institute’s consecrated spaces (including Mahima, which at 39,000 square feet, is the largest domed meditation structure in the Western Hemisphere), and learn Isha Kriya, a simple yoga and meditation process that can be practiced anywhere. A not-to-be-missed Closing Ceremony featuring a video address by Sadhguru and multi-cultural performances by Comunidade de Capoeira Angola Atlanta, aerialist Amy Powell of Chattanooga Aerials, and Sounds of Isha USA will be web-casted live beginning at 6:00pm CST, followed by a celebratory dinner at 8:00pm.

While preparations are on to make this year’s Isha Fest the most memorable yet, there is even greater significance to this year’s theme than taking home one of the 255 available medals– these Olympics will bring together teams and individuals from across North America to work together, to play together, and more importantly, to strive for something larger than they could ever have achieved on their own. As Sadhguru has said, “For the first time in human history, we have all the necessary resource, capability and technology to address every human problem on the planet. The only thing that missing is inclusive consciousness in human beings. The most important thing that needs to happen right now, urgently, is raising of human consciousness. If this doesn’t happen, everything is wasted upon us.”

For more information on Isha Fest or to register for one of the day’s numerous competitions or activities, please visit: or call the Institute at 931-668-1900.

Isha Institute of Inner-sciences is a unique space created by Sadhguru for human beings to deepen their experience of life and to reach their ultimate potential. Located on a forested 1,200-acre mountain-top campus in Middle Tennessee, Isha Institute offers a variety of programs that provide methods or anyone to attain physical, mental, and spiritual wellbeing. To learn more about Isha Institute, campus programming, and upcoming events, please visit:


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Leslie Crespi

Kathy Campbell
Isha Institute of Inner-sciences
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