Dances of Universal Peace

A crowd of people in a circle, meditative music, simple dance movements, and mantras from a wide variety of world faiths all meld together… Attending a Dance of Universal Peace is an unforgettable experience. In hundreds of dances across the globe, people around the world gather in spiritual centers, churches, schools, therapy groups, and even prisons to participate in this event. There is usually no audience; everyone, regardless of skill, is encouraged to join.

By blending sacred phrases, scripture, poetry, and the beauty of nature, participants are able to strengthen their connections to each other, the earth, and their own spirits. In other words, the dances bring them closer to universal peace, step by step.

Samuel L. Lewis, known by many as Murshid S.A.M. (the title being Arabic for “guide”), was an American Sufi who introduced the Dances of Universal Peace on June 24, 1968 in an attempt to unify people — to lower the arbitrary veils that separate us. This year, nearly 150 events were held to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Dances.

Each year, the scope of the movement grows to include new areas and people. How have the dances evolved in recent years? How has the current political climate affected this movement? Let’s dive into the issue:

Finding Peace Amidst Geopolitical War Games

Lewis’s home country has changed a lot since his death in ‘71. Trump’s administration, increased racial tensions, the Me Too movement — the face of the politics in the U.S. has changed drastically in the past several years. Due to a wide variety of factors, from food and water scarcity to America’s national security policy, the country has been politically fractured.

In spite of these divisions, people have sought ways to call for unity and harmony. Dances permit communities to demonstrate their tolerance and acceptance of diversity in the face of an intolerant administration. In a manner, these events are a form of passive protest. Rather than responding to discrimination with violent action, participating in these dances signals that peace is always an option.

Of course, political unrest isn’t unique to the U.S. In recent years, the Dances of Universal Peace movement has gained traction around the globe. In areas like Russia, Turkey, and many Latin American countries, political unrest has spurred people to find an outlet. Dances of Universal Peace work as a valuable collective healing practice in these troubled times. The Dances allow people to find common ground and connect with each other on a deep level, regardless of race, religion, or nationality.

When Murshid began guiding students in dance, he started with only a few students. As the movement he started has expanded, it has grown to encompass thousands. The global expansion of this movement is a product of the fact that many people have become discontent with the arbitrary lines between nations. Globalization in the business world and technology have also facilitated this mindset, as they have opened new lines of communication and exposed us to new cultures.

How These Dances Create Peace and Love

Recent years have shed light on why these events have worked so effectively. In our individual journeys, we must commit to self-love, and attending a Dance of Universal Peace is a great step in that direction. There are many reasons why they improve our mental, emotional, and physical well-being.

Dancing and music are powerful tools for improving our holistic health. As Murshid S.A.M. once said, “(Dance) takes us beyond ourselves, bringing an initial taste of the state of non-being, which is really a balm for the soul.”   However, as recent research has proven, it can also heal the mind and body.

The physiological changes that occur within us when we engage in these activities can improve our mood and overall well-being. Listening to music and dancing can increase the amount of dopamine in our brains, a neurotransmitter responsible for making us feel happy and rewarded.

Dance and music also affect our bodies in many therapeutic ways. In fact, it may even be helpful for treating disease. According to an article on Medical News Today, “Dance and music therapy is being investigated for its potential use in the treatment of diseases such as Parkinson’s and autism.

Finally, these events allow us to create and strengthen social bonds. In recent years, specialists have found that socializing improves our holistic health, even reducing our likelihood of developing dementia. There’s no question that the life-long bonds that these dances create have led to healthier, more social lifestyles.

Given these insights, it’s no wonder that Samuel Lewis’s movement has grown into the worldwide phenomenon it is today. As this movement continues to expand, it will doubtlessly open dialogues, forge new social connections, and improve our well-being. In addition to helping us find inner-peace, it will continue to inch society closer to worldwide peace.

Are you interested in attending a Dance? Let us know in the comments below.


This is a collaborative post supporting our Peace In Peace Out initiative.

العطاء

يقول الله عز وجل: “لَن تَنَالُوا الْبِرَّ حَتَّىٰ تُنفِقُوا مِمَّا تُحِبُّونَ”.
المعطي؛ اسم من أسماء الله الحسنى، ويروى أنّ رسول الله (ص) ما سأله أحد شيئًا إلّا وأعطاه.

للعطاء أنواع عدّة، ففي بعض الأحيان يكون المُعطَى علمًا أو مالًا أو جاهًا أو دمًا أو جهدًا أو وقتًا.  فالسلوك الإنساني والتعاطف مع الآخر وإعطائه الوقت لسماع شكواه ومساعدته هو عطاء سامٍ، ولو لم يتضمن منفعة مادية. فالابتسامة عطاء للآخرين وقد تتفوق في بعض الأحيان على العطاء المادي.

شاركْتُ في تحدي سكون وسلامالمتمثل بالتخلي كل يوم عن ثلاثة أشياء من خزانة ملابسنا لمدة اسبوع. في البداية كان سهلًا عليّ انتقاء الأشياء لأننا كنّا ننتقل من فصل إلى فصل. وبعد مرور حوالي الثلاثة أيام، أصبحت الخيارات ضئيلة وأصبح الموضوع أصعب. أخذ مني الانتقاء وقتًا أكثر ولكني أكملت التحدي. أحببت ذلك كثيرا وأتمنى أن ينتشر العطاء والسلام في مجتمعاتنا. 

تعلمت من هذا التحدي أهمية العطاء وهو ليس التبرع بمبلغ من المال أو إعطاء ما لا نحتاجه فقط، بل هو اقتناء ما نحتاجه والتبرع بما يزيد عن حاجتنا. كما أنّ له منفعة على الصعيد النفسي، فالعطاء يبعث المشاعر الإيجابية ويقلل من النزعات السلبية. أثبتت بعض الدراسات أنّ العطاء يعزز فرزهرمون “الإندورفينمما يؤدي إلى ارتفاع المزاج. فليس أفضل من أن تعطيَ شيئًا للآخر ومن دون انتظار أيّ مقابل.

إنّ العطاء يساعد على التمييز بين الأنانية ومحبة النفس. فالأنانية تتمثل بالإجحاف في العطاء بينما محبة النفس تتجلى بالرغبة في تطويرها والسعي إلى الكمال والعيش بوعي. والتطور وبلوغ الكمال يتعزز بالعطاء. فالذي يحب نفسه يعطي الآخرين وينشر المحبة في محيطه. لذا علينا تعزيز المبادرات التي تدعو إلى العطاء وتشجيعه وذكره خلال عملنا وخلال جلسات التأمل لنصل إلى عالم يملؤه التسامح والحب والخير والتعاون

يقول أبراهام لنكون: كلما تقدّم عمرك ستكتشف أنّ لديك يدان، واحدة لمساعدة نفسك، والأخرى لمساعدة الآخرينفلنمدد أيدينا للخير. وأختم بالقول أنّ تجربتي في هذه الحياة علمتني أن العطاء هو أجمل شيءٍ في الوجود.

Don’t believe all your thoughts!

What you hope for in life, does it tend to happen?

Take a moment to think of your dreams. How much time do you allow for concrete and specific actions and act to make them happen?

Living life governed by habits creates comfort, ease and also an autopilot mode decisions. It is when we no longer stop to look at or question our day-to-day life, see weather we have ownership over our time and energy, if our actions and decisions serve us, if actions and decisions go towards what we dream of and envision for ourselves.

People are driven by various motives: career, wealth, stability, family, a partner we are committed to; all serving the greater purpose and search for happiness. Weather it comes from outside – the happiness we wish and feel – or from inside, it  is entirely our making.

The brain is a record of the past.

The moment you start your day, the brain is a record, a collection of memories that can remain in the past or shape the present.

Each memory has an emotion associated with it. What do you feel if the memories are sad? Do you have the strength to deal with it and keep a joyful and hopeful mind? 

The result of emotions leaves a print on the mind. Then how and what you think creates your state of being, your mood; it determines your lifestyle.

If you believe your thoughts, the past will determine your destiny.

If you can’t think greater than how you feel, you are thinking and living in the past. You are creating your past – all the past habits connected to what is known in life.

Each person has a set of routine behaviours: same things that are repeated through the day, same people, same emotional buttons. To a certain extent, the day is governed by the routine, it grows into a program. You lose your free will to a program.

Some studies show that by the time a person is 35 years old, there is a memorised set of behaviours, beliefs, attitudes that lead to functioning like a computer program.

There will be moments in life when you  feel you need a change. But your life, your body, your emotions most of the time are on a different program. It is never easy to change and seems to get even more challenging as we grow older.

Meditation can play a crucial, transformative function. Its role is to teach people how to change the brain.

It gives us time to slow down, see the system, how it operates, as if seeing yourself from outside. From here you can take actions and make changes.

Often we wait for a time of crisis to make changes. But you can act in a time of pain, lack of direction or can do it in balance and when you feel joyful.

Don’t settle to live in stress or survival mode and always think of the worst possible outcome! Change is even harder to make from there. When everything is conditioned by past experiences and thoughts, the servant becomes the master.

The result is that you are in the known, you are living in the known and making the same mistakes – till you learn the lesson. Being in the known is familiar and leaves little room for growth.

In meditation mental barriers and beliefs in yourself and the world are left behind. It’s a process conditioned by the meditation experience itself. Time and inner space expand.

The best way to predict the future is to create it.

There is a simple way to reprogram and renew the mind: close your eyes, rehearse an action, visualise it and manifest it.

When we feel better inside, we act and manifest on the outside differently. You become a creator of your world.

Same thoughts lead to same decisions, emotions and actions.

The more you become conscious, the less you drift away and get lost into your day.

In meditation you know yourself and renew yourself.

Dare to see your life in analogy with a garden: if you plant a garden, you tend the soil, you pluck the weeds from past and current year. You plant the seeds with hope and water them with care. If you are not moved and driven by an image of the future, you are left with the memories and habits from the old life.

For the TIPS that will help you turn off the autopilot setting in your brain and start making more conscious choices in your daily life, go here.

Photo Credits: Echo Yan@unsplash

Why Everyone Needs to Practice Meditation

Based on my own experience as a meditation trainer, people wonder a lot about when and why one needs to maintain meditation practice. Should that also be a misunderstanding of what meditation is all about? Possibly. According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, meditation means, “engage in contemplation or reflection, or to plan or project in the mind”. But this is not what we are talking about. In fact, the real word which stands for meditation is actually called Samadhi, which means “standstill, peaceful and focused at one point. In this article, we are basing our argument on some facts about the function of our brain which is, in a way, conditioned by the state of our mind.

The three main parts of our brain

In her article “How meditation boosts creativity and innovation”[1], Bianca Rothschild (2014), explains the three main parts of the brain and their functions:

1) Neocortex: the newest part of the brain which is essentially concerned with what can be considered the important stuff: creative thinking, problem solving, visioning, hypothesising, strategizing.

2)The limbic system: located below the neocortex, and is simply said to be the area of processing our emotions,  motivations and memories. If we are feeling emotionally out of balance or distressed, this part of the brain gets activated, and our brain becomes ‘busy’ dealing with the stress and emotions at hand; it won’t allocate any resources to our creative thinking.

3) The reptilian brain: the oldest part of our brain, concerned with our survival and primarily activated by the adrenaline hormone; it is where our fight or flight responses originate. This is the laziest part of our brain; it only wants to process things which it deems critical to our survival.  The reptilian brain also includes sex impulses, and if the idea is ‘mate-able’, dangerous or threatening our survival in any way, it will get passed upwards, and hence has a hard time getting to the neocortex.

Enhanced creativity and emotional intelligence

Mindfulness meditation has been scientifically proved to be a great technique to improve creativity. “The kinds of things that happen when you meditate do have effects throughout the body, not just in the brain.”[2].  Elsewhere, the study published in May 2016 in the medical journal PloS One[3]  showed that one session of relaxation­response practice was enough to enhance the expression of genes involved in energy metabolism and insulin secretion and reduce expression of genes linked to inflammatory response and stress. There was an effect even  among novices who had never practiced meditation before.

Certainly, meditation has positive side effects: it reduces the reactivity of the reptilian brain, increases resilience, stimulates the neocortex, as well as improves emotional intelligence[4]. All these factors assist in getting ideas flowing directly to our best creative thinking brain – the neocortex. According to the research conducted on American company’s employees regarding their ability of problem solving, the result shows that non-meditators had more cognitive rigidity than regular meditators; they also had tendency to apply difficult or outdated solutions to easy problems, based on their past experiences, which was not the case of regular meditators who are more creative.

Conclusion

Everyone deserves happiness and peace of mind on one side and creative thinking on the other side. Unfortunately, our everyday life has so many happenings which are often unpleasant and at the end deprive us from being joyful and creative as our brain becomes busy dealing with stress and emotions. The good news is that everyone has a solution in their hands, and it is meditation practice.  So, the choice is YOURS.

 

References

[1] Bianca Rothschild, How meditation boosts creativity and innovation, july 2014

[2] The Benson-Henry Institute for mind-body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital

[3] In http://www.bl oomber g.com/news/ar ti cl es/2013­ 11­ 22/har var d­ yoga­ sci enti sts­ fi nd­ pr oof­ of­ medi tation­ benefit

[4] Bianca Rothschild (2014)  in Op.cit

Beyond Happiness, Above Rainbow

I remember way back while in high school, I would get sick just from worrying. I had a harsh inner critic that challenged most of the things I did and planned to do. It was very easy for me to appreciate and admire others but seldom did I find anything I did good enough. Even when people praised me for something I did, it didn’t make me feel any better or less depressed. This negativity that plagued me affected every aspect of my life and eventually I would go to sleep hoping to wake up in the skin of someone I admired. Often I would imagine myself chasing happiness like it is a rainbow, hoping to catch it―wear it round my neck like a shawl against self-loathing―then live happily ever after.

Most people can attest to have experienced depression, stress or anxiety at some point in life. It is the silent ail of humanity no one bothers to talk about because unlike cancer, it is not visual―maybe not as deadly―but this is a misconception. Daily we search for happiness. It is our human nature to do so, but too often, we get lost on our journey to finding it, habitually due to expectations from family, friends, work and relationships.  In an effort to please everyone we lose our focus and in the process; lose ourselves. To which I would say “There is no greater tragedy!”

In the words of Steve Jobs: “If you want to make everyone happy, don’t be a leader, sell ice cream!”

In our quest for social validation, we shift our attention to material possessions. We fill our wardrobes with designer clothes and shoes; get a fleet of cars, amass academic diplomas, get married, have kids, tick off every item in society’s happiness checklist. Still, we lack inner peace, that little ingredient that makes life valuable.

Because we are here to live our best lives, we owe it to ourselves to live consciously and deliberately and most importantly, wean ourselves from the delusion that happiness is a destination because it is not. Happiness is an infinite journey with beautiful surprises, it is you when you free yourself from worry and fear; it is you when you realize that your happiness depends solely on you. That is when you do not need to chase the rainbow anymore; – it is always there!

Photo by Leo Wieling on Unsplash

Look Inwards, Act Outwards

Personal growth happens from the point where we can be at peace with difficult questions, with thoughts that are troubling us, from the moment we can celebrate good qualities without the rise of ego. It happens when we allow the space to apply certain methods to find out what our passion and mission is.

In the words of Antoine de St. Exupery “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” One needs to be willing to put in the time and effort to identify those aspects connected to one’s passion, mission, vocation and profession and proceed with consistent planning.

Genuine answers don’t often come when we are busy, running, stressing out and feeling exhausted, but from the place of inner balance and calm.

Apart from this, a crucial aspect is to be able to look outside yourself, to be outwards oriented.

To know your life purpose, ask yourself these 5 questions:

  1. Who am I?
  2. What do I do?
  3. Who do I do it for?
  4. What do these people want or need?
  5. What they get out of it, what changed as a result?

Here’s what you can do to make the process easier: don’t overthink, be honest, don’t judge, it’s OK if you are still working on some aspects and you are on work in progress. We are never done with learning.

Having a sense of purpose is an essential requirement to be driven and fulfilled. The important people in life, those whom we rely on and who rely on us, whom we love, cherish, respect constantly help refine our sense of purpose and connection.

Photo credits: Joey Kyber@unsplash

If happiness is contagious, then what makes you happy?

Have you heard that happiness is contagious? Well, there are a few empirically proven studies by behavioural and social scientists suggesting that happiness is not only contagious but it is also positively impacted by the people around.

Nicholas Christakis, a professor of medical sociology at Harvard Medical School in his study on ‘dynamic of spread happiness’ shows that happiness spreads through social networks, which means your happiness have positive impact and could influence the happiness of others as well. Further, spread of happiness is comparatively faster than the spread of sadness. Incredible, isn’t it?

If this is true, then the next question is: what makes us happy? Is it some kind of chemical reaction in our mind that is being activated by certain types of action in our regular life or some more specific environment which our mind prefers? Some studies claim that happiness is a state of mind, and if that is true, then what kind of action leads to it? Based on many studies and human experiences, here are some simple actions, easy enough to practice in everyday life, which make us happy and content:

1) Happiness is a Journey, not a Destination
It’s one journey where the path we have taken matters more than the final destination achieved. We always have a choice for the path to be taken, and this is where we decide which kind of life we want to live. Each day has a new beginning and a story to experience. So, make sure, you live and enjoy the very path taken, as it is the last one.

2) Human brain is great but heart is even more incredible
There is an age old debate on ‘logic’ versus ‘emotions’ until we start understanding the deeper science behind our emotions. They are the ones that make us humane. People who lived happy and fulfilling life consider emotions and social aspect while taking decisions about life, partner, children, family, friends and parents. Time to time, its beyond logic but that’s what helps them live a happy life.

3) Live to experience, as money doesn’t buy everything
One of the best use of money is living the experiences and investing our time and energy for creating great memories. They are more worthy than materialistic accumulation including money.  Science has shown that buying experiences – like, going on a skiing trip or taking an art class – makes us happier than material goods. As per several psychological surveys, people who spend more on life experiences are happier than people who just purchase things.

Photo by Carly Rae Hobbins on Unsplash

4) The Joy of giving
When you give to others, it is bound to give you inner happiness. Kindness, generosity and compassion are basic human values, and it’s an open secret followed by most successful and happy people of our time.

5) Small pleasures are collectively bigger than biggest achievements in life
There is an ancient saying: enjoy the small happy moments of your daily life. Because frequent, small pleasures tend to be different every time, whether it’s sharing tea with friends or reading a new book, we don’t adapt to them and become bored as quickly. Also, there are several such opportunities to live and be grateful about instead of waiting for something big.

6) Don’t compare yourself to others
“Compare and despair,” goes an old saying. We all are different and unique, so when you compare yourself with others, it means you are evaluating apple and oranges at the same parameter. People really do make themselves miserable when they focus on their “relative” well-being. That means how they think they’re doing compared to everyone else.

7) Appreciation is Important
The more you appreciate what God has given to you, the more you will be content and happy. Appreciation is also about encouraging the good inside you to grow further. The art of appreciating what you have and staying happy within your limits, is a factor that needs to be practised.

Let’s try something simple, close your eyes, take a deep breath and think what makes you more happy? Is it the money in your bank account, big car or a trip to your most favourable place or country, dinner with your partner or family? Now the decision is yours.

Kuldeep Singh can be reached out at twitter @Kuldeep_lko

Photo credits of the featured image: Willian Justen de Vasconcellos on Unsplash

Know Your Passion To Lead a Happier Life

Happiness will never come to those who fail to appreciate what they already have. To access and manifest the best version of ourselves, we first need to look inside with honesty and apply careful and persistent effort. Learning as much as we can about our passion and mission in life is directly related to the amount of happiness we experience.

The quest for self, the “why am I here?”, “what is the reason for being?” never gets out of fashion. If we begin with asking ourselves “why am I here?” – we might not get too far. Instead, here is a simpler and a more structured way to start:

Ask yourself and write down the answers to the following questions:

1) What you Love (it helps identify your Passion)

2) What the World Needs (it helps identify your Mission)

3) What you are Good at (it helps identify your Vocation)

4) What you can get Paid for (it helps identify your Profession)

Then, you can answer some additional questions to help you get more detailed answers about yourself:

1) What do you Love? What aspects of your life bring you into your heart and make you feel most alive?

2) What are you Great at? What unique skills do you have that come most naturally to you? What talents have you cultivated and what do you excel at even when you aren’t trying?

3) What Cause do you believe in? What change would you most love to create in the world? What would you give your life for?

4) What do people Value and pay you for? What service, value or knowledge do you bring? Something that people need and are happy to pay for or share some value in exchange.

Keep the list close and update it each time you feel like you discovered something new about yourself or connected with what you already know. The answers usually reveal when we are in the flow and engaged completely in what we are doing. Look back with honesty and identify these moments in your life.

Doing this will help refine your focus, attention and be more selective with your time and what you engage in. Allow less time and space for activities that take away your energy and do more of what gives you the positive energy. Don’t be afraid of failure. You won’t know if something is rewarding unless you’ve tried it. Life is made by our daily choices and habits, not predetermined. Knowing your mission and passion will bring more happiness and joy on daily basis.

Photo credits: Jenna Anderson on Unsplash

Honra tu verdad y siéntete feliz

Los seres humanos llegamos al mundo con total pureza y con la verdad más sincera de quiénes somos. Llegamos como un vaso completamente vacío que a medida que nos hacemos mayores, vamos llenando con mensajes que escuchamos de nuestro alrededor.

Estos mensajes con los que llenamos el vaso, terminan siendo nuestra personalidad. Por este motivo, podemos afirmar que dicha personalidad no somos nosotros en estado puro, sino que es el resultado de una mezcla de situaciones de nuestro entorno. A la vez, nos damos cuenta que nuestra personalidad no es algo con lo que nacemos, sino que es algo que creamos para amoldarnos a lo que nos rodea.

A veces ese carácter que creamos y ponemos dentro del vaso, no se parece en nada a nuestra verdadera esencia. Cuando esto pasa, nos sentimos vacíos e infelices sin saber muy bien por qué. A mi esto también me pasó, y te lo cuento en el siguiente link.

En estos casos, debemos verter del vaso lo que nos molesta y llenarlo con lo que realmente nos hace sentir realizados.

A continuación, comento unos consejos que ayudan a conectar de nuevo con nuestro YO más auténtico, el YO de verdad:

-Hacer lo que se dice y decir lo que se hace

Muchos son los que ya han escuchado antes esta frase, pero realmente decirla no permite sentirse mejor, es integrarla en nuestras células y actuar de esta manera lo que marca el cambio. Las personas que se han tomado esta frase en serio, han experimentado verdaderos milagros en sus vidas.

-Seguir nuestros valores

Muchas personas hablan de valores, pero pocos saben qué son realmente los valores y lo más importante: cuáles son los suyos. Nuestros valores son nuestras prioridades, aquello que para nosotros es tan importante.

Hay que decir que no todas las personas tenemos los mismos valores y esto está bien, porque lo importante es que cada uno de nosotros actuemos según los nuestros.

Por ejemplo, una persona que considera el valor de la libertad como muy relevante, le puede costar trabajar en una oficina donde le dicen lo que tiene que hacer y qué horario seguir en todo momento. Le dolerá seguir en este trabajo porque no tendrá la libertad que tanto aprecia. De todas maneras, este trabajo sigue siendo ideal y perfecto para otra persona.

-Decir siempre la verdad sin miedo

Esconder la verdad, significa no honrarla. No debemos tener miedo a no ser queridos, aceptados o gustados por otros, al fin y al cabo, no tenemos que gustar a todo el mundo. Pero si nos aceptamos, nos queremos y nos respectamos a nosotros mismos, ya tendremos el apoyo de la persona que más necesitamos.

-No decir sí cuando se quiere decir no

Muchas veces respondemos que sí para complacer a otra persona, pero realmente después nos arrepentimos y no nos sentimos a gusto. Decir que no apetece o que no se quiere, no significa hacer daño a nadie, siempre tenemos la opción de decir no con compasión y palabras amables.

-Responder en vez de reaccionar

La diferencia entre responder y reaccionar se encuentra únicamente en 3 segundos. Contar hasta 3 antes de dar una respuesta, permite dejar el tiempo suficiente para escuchar y contestar lo que realmente somos.

-Eliminar “tengo que” del vocabulario

La verdad es que no tenemos que hacer absolutamente nada, nosotros hemos elegido hacer lo que vamos a hacer. Así que podemos cambiar perfectamente el “tengo que” por el “yo elijo”. Cuando decimos “no puedo venir porque tengo que trabajar”, en realidad, esta es sencillamente la opción que hemos preferido.

Una persona auténtica es aquella que siempre honra su verdad y sabe que tiene elección de tener y hacer todo lo que le plazca en cada momento. Una persona auténtica se responsabiliza de su vida y crea su propia historia. Una persona auténtica abraza sin miedo el papel del jugador, el áarbitro y el juez en su vida porque está convencida de qué ella mejor que nadie puede afrontar todos estos papeles.

Una persona auténtica únicamente escucha su verdad, porque es la única que le permite sentirse libre y feliz.

Hay más información sobre el camino hacia nuestra verdad aquí.

How I started my Journey to Inner peace

Light of peace.

How does it feel to ask for something and then, somehow, in some way,  it’s given to you?  How does it feel when you just need it and then you have it? How does it feel when your inner voice is heard by the universe that conspires to make you accomplished? What if what you asked for wasn’t a lot of money or fame but only peace and stillness of the mind in the middle of a life full of stress, wars, anxiety and selfishness? This is the story of my journey to inner peace at Heya Fellowship.

“I want to rest! I need a rest.”

I remember myself in the staff room in the hospital I do my training in. I was tired, out of breath, thinking about how I have to see the patients, then go to the university for my master degree exams before meeting my professor for my PhD. Afterwards, I would go home to find the house shores waiting for me and in the middle of all this not forget to call my family to make sure everybody is doing alright. Later I would meet my friends because I have a social life too. While thinking, I felt exhausted and I closed my eyes and said a prayer: “I want to rest! I need a rest. “

An opportunity to rest and learn

The same evening while on social media I came across a  link of the “Heya Fellowship “by Peace Revolution. The name gave me the curiosity to learn more about it over the internet. A self development program; meditating everyday while listening to the calm voice of the peaceful inspiring meditation professor through accessible videos on the platform; having a coach to share my daily unique experience of meditation, was new to me. And here it began, a new experience of life, a new vision, like diving into the unknown but the safe secure unknown that was getting clearer day after day.

After getting engaged with the program, I was honored to participate in the Heya Fellowship, the peace retreat for women from The MENA region.  Despite all the challenges that I faced in the process of travelling; there was a force that made everything possible for me to get to Georgia. It was like a power from above was helping arrange everything. Because I believe that things get attracted to you in the same way you are attracted to them. And if you want something so much, you will absolutely have it.

Meeting strange beautiful women I knew before

I arrived in Georgia and once there, met beautiful strong women, the other participants. I was so familiar to them as if I knew them a long time ago. It didn’t take so long for us to connect, laugh and share ideas together. We shared about our stories,  our experiences in life, where we came from, and our inner peace journey.

The first day was wonderful getting to know better the MENA women. Then the adventure just began. They took our cell phones as expected. Yes; its bliss to take a break from being always contactable and accessible on social media. When you come to Heya, you are here to rest, to know yourself better, to leave the past behind, and get into your journey to inner peace. Whenever you miss someone, you would see this person in your mind, your heart, your dreams, in the zone that no one can have access to except you. This is a zone you have neglected a good time of your life. The zone which is your inner self, inside and always there when everything is gone.

Each day at the retreat center

With no electronic devices, we woke up every day at 5 am to meditate in the sweet fresh breeze of the green garden of the scout center we were staying in. At this time, while listening to the birds singing gratefully to the beginning of a new day, I could feel the air and the light, it felt like swimming. During the meditation, you just have no weight, you are like a feather, like a butterfly. Then came the yoga class, stretching the muscles of the body, all of them, even the tiny little ones always forgotten in the crowded days of life. They are all breathing, happy to be there with you and to be felt. Then we would have breakfast in the dining room, full of energy, full of love, full of power to share. We would face each other, smiling as we shared delicious food that we brought each one from our country. Each day, every day, one amazing lady would presents to us the sweets she brought, its name and how it can be made.

Afterwards each day brought with it energizing activities, women circles and other meditation sessions full of calmness, relief, belief in peace, life, love, and every good value of this life offered. The women were like angels. Every time one of them would say unforgettable words to empower, encourage, and make us stronger. With each word, we became more confident, filled with the love of life and new way of seeing life afresh.

The little girl grew up

I was a little girl before joining the Peace Revolution meditation retreat. During the retreat, I grew up. The two unstoppable invincible women Aseel and Nesreen made the retreat magical and successful. They taught me how to be active, well organized, and ambitious. The greatness of what they were doing and how they were conscious of it did a lot inside of me. Further, every woman, especially Jehan with her spirit and her lectures and also late night stories just lifted me up like Helium.

LP Pasura our teaching monk made the retreat insightful. He was like a godfather to us, full of wisdom, experiences of life, intelligence and eloquence. His ability to let us express all what was inside of us brought the best of everyone of us. He gave us lectures, guided us through meditation sessions, answered our questionings, our fears and anxieties. This gave us the relief that we could shout loud and scream all what was inside of us and turn it into a light of peace, goodness and share.

Guidelines to nurture inner peace at the retreat

In those five days, we were followed eight acts of self discipline:

  • Do not kill or hurt any creature even the tiniest one
  • Do not steal or use what is not your belonging
  • Do not use intoxicants, alcohol or drugs
  • Do not involve in romantic or sexual relationships
  • Do not speak too loud or too much
  • Do not use electronic devices like phone cells
  • Do not eat heavy meals after 12:30 pm
  • Do not use make up or dress extravagantly

Those acts helped us be more of who we are, basic like babies, a pure reminder of how we can be in everyday life.

The five days of self discovery, inner peace, heart centered talks, being free from material things that owe us, passed so fast like a beautiful dream. With each passing day, the little girl who used to do everything without feeling it just because it has to be done, has started to feel every single breath and every movement she makes. She is finding peace inside of her and beginning and feeling engaged to spread it to everybody else.

My final lesson to you, dear peaceful soul reading my inner peace journey

  • Truly be who you are even if you are different in an acceptable way. You are just special. You are magical. You are invincible and you are not chocolate you can not satisfy everyone and you are not supposed to be trying to do so.
  • Do everything in your life mindfully, do not let life pass you by, feel every little thing you are doing.
  • Be grateful everyday because every day is a new chance for you to be who you want to be, to make the world a better place.
  • Find peace within yourself and spread it to the whole world.
  • Believe in yourself, in the good inside of every human being, have faith in humanity, it can be saved, it can be better.
  • It’s a magical life every day, every moment, feel it and live it fully.