A new yoga center opened its doors in State College Sunday afternoon, and will offer more than just its namesake.
The Bhakti Yoga Center will also offer counseling, nutrition and mental health services, and it’s a nonprofit community center as well.
“That’s what makes us happy is to be able to give as much as we can, give of ourselves, give of our skills, give of our knowledge,” said Nick Toney, one of the Directors of the Center.
The location is officially open for business on East College Avenue in State College, and they’ll be bringing culture back to yoga.
“Yoga has its origin in a great spiritual tradition in India, and we’re going to be focusing a lot on that spiritual tradition,” Toney said. “We’re trying to make this a place where the community can be enriched, can be nourished, can be inspired, and can learn more about themselves. So, we’re going beyond the (yoga) mat, off the mat, and taking yoga into our practical life.”
Toney says they plan to do that predominantly through a special type of yoga that is blended with music, called Kirtan.
“Kirtan is a Mantra Meditation where everyone sings Mantra together,” he said. “It creates very powerful sound vibration, which affects the mind in a way that we see ourself in a deeper sense, we see our relationship with the world around us in a deeper sense, it’s a beautiful experience.”
And while Toney says Kirtan isn’t brand new to the us “So, Kirtan has been going on for a long time, it’s been in America for 50-60 years of course, it’s been in Asia for thousands of years.”
He said a center dedicated to the practice is, and given the mental challenges of the past year and a half, he believes sharing the practice of yoga is of the utmost importance.
“We believe strongly, from our own personal experience that the practice of yoga, especially the spiritual aspect of yoga, helps to deal with a lot of the issues that we have in life,” Toney implored. “Obviously, dealing with our stresses and our anxieties but also in relationships, in personal health, physical health, there’s so many ways yoga can nourish and enrich our lives, and we just want to make that available to people.”
They’ll be offering free yoga classes every Tuesday at 5.