Even for a real estate magnate, a 12,000-acre land acquisition is an enormous deal. In September, the Isha Foundation did exactly that.
A transaction value of nearly $3 million crossed the divides of Van Buren, Warren, and Sequatchie counties to bring this U.S. destination site to nearly 15,000 acres and make it the largest Isha Center in the Western Hemisphere.
To bring this into perspective, this is roughly 18-20% of the total acreage in Warren County.
Trent Navran, who is a member if the Isha Foundation communication team, a resident and full-time volunteer, spoke of future plans for the newly acquired acreage. Navran said that 70% will remain untouched and underdeveloped in the plan.
“Tennessee forests cover 14 million acres over this state, and we want this center to serve as a reflection of this rich land,” said Navran. “Our aim is to preservice the soil. The organic content of soil is fading and we have reached a critically low level. This is why our vegetables and grains do not have the nutrients they used to have. We have acquired the land to preserve the vast majority. We want the portion which is to be developed to be done in an environmentally friendly way.”
Hiking trails and housing are portions of the intended plans of the remaining 30%.
Two residential areas have subdivided land available for residential dwellings, Isha Enclave and Isha Village. Lots ranging from $20,000 to $40,000 are open for public acquisition once an application is submitted and the approval process is complete. Homes will range from $200,000 to $550,000 with the possibility of adding tiny homes as well. Currently, no lots are available for purchase, but surveys are being conducted in order to offer more.
The Isha Foundation was founded in India during the mid-’90s by Sadhguru, who is referred to as a yogi, mystic, and visionary. Isha is located atop Harrison Ferry Mountain off Highway 8. The development includes, among other things, a welcome center, hiking trails, studio apartments, a kitchen, and dining hall.
Globally, Isha hosts 11 million volunteers in some capacity. Locally, the Highway 8 location has 100 full-time volunteers who are also residents. These volunteers work for the Isha Foundation in return for housing, food, clothing, yoga and other services.
Many additional part-time volunteers, who also serve at Isha, pay for housing and food but receive yoga and other services at no charge. Housekeeping and groundskeepers are the only staff on the Isha payroll. Volunteers are predominately housed in the dorms or studio apartments. Isha payroll consists of predominately housekeeping and groundskeepers.
Prior to the COVID pandemic, the number of visitors ranged from 50 to 100 persons per day. Special events such as World Peace Day, International Day of Yoga, Mahashivarathri, and Guru Pournamai may bring up to 1,500 guests per day.
These events fill Isha lodging and nearby motels with some guests traveling as far as Chattanooga, Murfreesboro and Nashville to find hotel accommodations. Guests are welcome every day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. year round.
Vegetarian communal-style meals are served in the dining hall at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Currently, the hall seats up to 500 people.
Mahima Hall: Known to many as The Dome, this is a 39,000-square-foot, free-flowing meditation hall. It’s the largest in the Western Hemisphere and required 1 acre of carpet for floor covering.
Adiyogi: The Abode of Yoga is the place for special offerings and processes. It is a 30,000-square-foot, two-level structure, which is home to a 21-foot statue depicting the image of Adi Yogi.
Welcome Center: Here the consumer will find health and rejuvenation items, yoga gear, crafts, books, clothing and more.
Buildings: Executive suites and dorms directed toward physical health. There are 3-7 day retreats available at an approximate cost of $950. A stress escape and detox session is also available in the package. Full schedule therapies which include massage, oil applications, hikes and yoga programs and available. Rooms in the rejuvenation areas overlook mountains and wooded scenery.
The next session is planned for December. “Our licensed massage therapists are specially trained in holistic therapy in South India at the APV Institute.” said Dr. Kalpana Rajdev, managing physician at the Isha Care Clinic.
Day Visits: Free of charge.
Yoga Namaskar: Offers Benefits for Entire Body – Free 20-minute sessions
Bhuta Shuddhi: Purification of five elements - $150 includes your kit
Ayush Kriya: For a long and good Life – One-hour session includes a coin offering of your choice – $2,100 gold, $333 silver, $150 copper. After the offering, the coin remains at the abode.
Vijaya Apranam: For success and prosperity – 50-Minute Session – Cost for process includes a coin of your choice – $3,000 gold, $625 silver, $555 copper and you keep the coin as a reminder to your connection to the abode.
Klesha Nashana Kriy: For cleansing the energy body – 50-Minute Session - $111
Bhuta Shuddhi Vivaha: Sacred wedding process – Email Offerings@AdiYogi.org for details
Namakaranam: Rite of naming your child – One-hour session - $311
Anna Prasanam: To nourish a child’s health – One-hour session - $250
Vidyarambham: To enhance learning & support knowing – One-hour session - $250
Inner Engineering - Isha Institutes flagship program which was designed by Sadhguru. In this class, you learn a 21-minute kriya called Shambhavi Mahamudra Kriya. It is offered online with a fee of $150. For in-person costs or other questions concerning classes, please contact the welcome center either in person or online at www.isha.sadhguru.org.
“It is not a church. It is not a replacement for your faith. For every discipline, there is a master teacher and Sadhguru is the master teacher,” said Allison Murry, yoga instructor and a member of the Isha communications team.
The Isha Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-religious service organization that receives the majority of funding through contributions and program services. As of fiscal year ending 2019, the total revenue for the Middle Tennessee location was more than $25 million and net assets greater than $45 million.