David began his work between two nations in 2004
2012 – 2013 has see an escalation of our Yoga Beats Conflict Charity work, which is directly supported by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. 2014 is set to be even bigger !!
Fund Raising Events Update
David myself and Paul have organised some amazing fund raising events over the last 2 years and we have been totally overwhelmed with the support and generosity of the everyone involved. We are also very humbled and blessed with the private donations from the wonderful souls, who believe in the work being done and we send a massive thanks out to all of you !
Fund raising events have been held right across the UK, ranging from several events held at The Swallows Leisure Centre in Sittingbourne Kent ( Serco Leisure ), who kindly donated the venue to us, a big thank you to the team there!!….. There was a Yogabeats Garden party in August 2012 in Rainham Kent, thank you Irene for allowing us to use your wonderful garden.These kind donations enabled all monies raised to go directly into the Conflict Fund.
A big thank you also to The Devon Yoga Festival who in 2012 helped us raise funds, for Yoga Beats Conflict as well as another two charities. Events in Cheshire and Manchester over the last 2 years have also raised awareness and even better much needed funds, many thanks to Tabitha and Marilyn for their continued help and support, so much love to you both.
The 2013 London Yoga Show donated the proceeds from David’s workshops to Conflict, a big thank you to the event team.
In 2013 we were joined by Sama Fabian Yoga Elder, who held a fund raising event in Wales to fund her flight costs so she could join us this November in the Middle East, a massive welcome and thanks to her selfless service for all our friends on the West Bank.
2014 will see further fund raising events please check out web site regularly for information on these events.
Middle East Project
2012 saw a dramatic escalation of Yogabeats work in the Middle East. We held a joint event In Jaffa Israel, at the Peres Peace centre seeing 25 Palestinian and Israeli students come together on a beautiful May evening on the sea front, a celebration of peace through yoga.
This was followed in the October by a large gathering of 113 students in the West Bank at Beit Jala, both sides again sharing an electrifying passionate event for peace at the same time as the war on Gaza was simultaneously happening!!! We repeated this again in Nazareth in June 2013.
During the June visit David and I spent a couple of days in the West Bank, taking Yogabeats to Nablus and Ramallah, receiving a fabulous welcome from all the students, teaching separate sessions for men women and children, and a promise to return, and return we did !!
In November we undertook a 12 day tour of the West bank, thanks to everyones generous donations. David and I were joined by Sama Fabian, which meant again that we could teach larger groups of men women and children,in separate sessions (in accordance of Islamic tradition) in schools, universities, villages, refugee camps, and to cancer patients and staff. We visited Nilin, Tukarem, Bethlehem, Hebron Nablus and Jenine to name just a few, there were 29 classes teaching over 700 students, so many we just lost count.
The group of 11 Palestinian students in Bethlehem in 2011 has now seen 3 of them becoming yoga teachers, truly amazing, our dream is to help this continue, as we feel there is a real passion from the people we taught yoga to, along with a genuine need, although it’s only a handful of teachers at this time our wish is that their numbers will grow.
We finished the 12 day tour with a joint event in Nazareth, bringing both sides again together in a pure celebration of both peoples cultural differences, which is the Yogabeats philosophical template for interior and exterior al peace!
June 2014 has seen the first Yogabeats 4 Step Foundation course being held in Bethlehem, 20 amazing students attended, men and women joined together to learn the Yogabeats Philosophy. It was truly a joining of like minded special souls, David and I have not experienced any thing like it in our life times !!!…. The course was gifted to the students, and we will be returning to hold a second course in November !!!!…
An Evolved Soul
This is the picture of a being of total light and love who unannounced hobbled into my foundation course on crutches on the second day, just because he heard I was in town teaching. He entered the room with a face beaming full of smiles and sat down on a chair at the back of the room.
Some people in the overcrowded space, turned around in disapproval and even ‘tutted’ cos physically handicapped people are mostly shunned in Arab societies … So I suddenly said ” did you guys feel a change right now in the room, kinda like the sun just came out.. ?! Cos there is a master who has just entered the room and is sitting over there at the back( they all turned around and stared.. I carried on !) do you know the courage the strength of mind it takes for someone like him to come here today, have you any idea what sort of giant it takes to self elect and make the effort to decide they wanna come here and sit amongst us?!!!!!!
Suffice to say, everyone began to see and view him with new eyes ( At which point I launched into a tirade about how “concepts “and the “egoic, conceptualised mind ” can so easily blind a person
to viewing human beauty only through the tiniest of prisms!) his very presence and courage to join us took the entire room and the foundation course up to another level, on the last day everyone had realised how “Hamdan’s” participation was the deepest of teachers, and in the “Love line”
( where one person walks down between two long rows of people with their eyes shut while everyone whispers in their ears why they are so special and loved) everyone assisted his walk, and it was probably the most moving moment of my entire life to witness!!
Projects we will be supporting in 2014 will include :
Our work in the Middle East in 2014 will continue to evolve and grow, with a short West Bank tour and second foundation course planned. This pivotal work demonstrates the real contribution yoga actually makes for peace, while all around the Politicians carry on going around in endless circles.
We will carry on sponsoring, students, and facilitate new yoga teachers to be trained, by giving them the tools to take yoga into their own towns and villages, and to empower a people deeply caught up in a struggle for their very own way of life, and community.
Other initiatives outside of the Middle East are YBC working with victims of domestic violence in Liverpool. To working with victims of social devastation in Glasgow and Toronto.
Millions of years ago
humankind evolved sufficiently
to be able to stand up on their back legs,..
and became known as Homo Erectus, .
after several million years had passed humankind evolved sufficiently
to develop the frontal cortex of the brain
and became known as Homo Sapiens
In the early part of the 21st century
an extraordinary land mark event took place
in the Middle East ,.
.a giant wall was constructed by an invading Semitic tribe
who would not allow another related semitic tribe
to co exist on the same land,.
(this tribe displayed all the classical human psychological “emergency emotions”
inherited from a mass genocide by a radical German tribe back in Europe )
,..humankind had taken a nose dive
an evolutionary “u turn”
and had devolved into what became known as “homo ridiculousness”
The wall became an effrontery a symbol that flew in the face of all of human kind
Who had arisen through thousands of years
fear fuelled conflicts and wars
Personally it’s enough ,…Halas!
None of the traditional ways it seems, in which we organise and monitor
international relations at governmental levels ,actually seem to work,.
but what always works are beyond political diplomacy are ,…people
and the compassion of the human heart,..
ask the Dalai Lama
ask Mother Teresa
Both of whom I interviewed at the height of the Bosnian War
ask the Christ
the prophet blessed Mohamed
ask Socrates ( before they poisoned him)
their answers are all the same
their is only one truth
and it’s the same for all peoples everywhere
If we audaciously stop abdicating our responsibility to this world
and traditionally placing it in the hands of politicians
If we start attempting to trust one other
and action that intention personally
we will find that there is only one rule
one code of conduct
that can sort out this world
and put us all back on the path of evolution
and that’s LOVE
Remember there are no problems in this entire world that enough love cannot heal !!!
David’s Bethlehem Blog
“What does one say,
how does one choose
Where does one stand
which truth is true
Two partners one dance
and not either or
A spider spins between two points
For spiders spinning is law
For how to make choices
And just realise
That love is a spider
To not spin a lie ,……?”
Above are some words that quantify for me the emotional tearing that one always experiences every time one confront the ridiculous “Wall of Paranoia”that divides the two nations of Israel and Palestine, and how the human heart tries non the less to spin it’s love wherever it can, no matter what the odds against it!,……
On this “Yoga Beats Conflict”trip Sarah Stephen and I entered the West Bank via a cab ride up to the Bethlehem check point, days before I had narrowly missed being totally wiped out by a speeding car in a hit and run in London, a guy who was also texting whilst driving suddenly accelerated his car across a road intersection as I was crossing the street, at the last moment I somehow I managed to jump out of the way, but had torn the head of the bicep and ligaments in my right shoulder as I slammed my arm down on the bonnet of the speeding vehicle the irony was that in spite of my many close “shaves”in war zones I might have made my grand finale in the so called peaceful city of London and as a result , the arm had only a 20% range of movements, this meant that the regular yogabeats sessions already booked had to be cancelled except for the men and women of Hebron (Sarah and I were the first western teachers on our last trip to the West Bank with the wonderful Sama Fabian, to be privileged to teach yoga at the epicentre of the conflict there)
and so that was the one other engagement we retained outside of the Four Step Foundation course in Bethlehem in order to keep this vital life line open ,with our new students there, living right at the epicentre of the conflict.
What I always find so extraordinary is how elegantly the design of life can be when we are forced to get out of its way, but because of my injuries I was forced to emphasis the philosophical/ meditation/Pranayama/Bandha sides of TheYogabeats practice, and this resulted into the most extraordinary reception from the Palestinians for the course!
What happened was that during the four days of the foundation, the course itself quite naturally began to morph into a vehicle that matched the needs of the students ( I never hold to rigid forms in anything, whether postures or thoughts ) and specifically offered up psychological/yogic tools which the students in the West Bank could utilise to cope and internally transcend the enclosures and environmental restrictions of their existence .
Such was its success that we have now scheduled two back to back courses ( one an advanced course alongside a beginners ) with the support of our host and dear sister Nahed, this November, when we plan to return, inshallah !
Meanwhile the devastating conflict of everyday life in the West Bank goes on regardless of anything one might try to contribute within the current political climate, and on the last night there, all check points were slammed shut, due to a new political drama being outplayed and in similar fashion having found myself caught within a world embargo placed upon Serbia in the 1990s ,one was only able to contribute towards a peaceful resolution within a extremely limited band of space, yet it is my contention and inspiration today, that it was just those little contributions from individual pockets of resistance that finally collapsed the stale mate of the dictatorship of Slobodan Milosovic,s national strangle hold upon Serbia!
When I filmed an interview with Milos Forman in New York to speak up against the insanity of the three sided Yugoslavian War raging back in 1994 (the director of “One flew over a Cuckoos nest”)
“there are two sorts of people in this world, one ,who use bullets tanks fear and concentration camps
and the other who use theatre Plays Music Films Yoga and the Arts, the thing is WE must never stop because if we do THEY win!”
Or to put it in another way from the Serbian street mythology of that time
” Your either part of the solution or part of the problem”
Peace Out…. David Sye ….
Dublin Moynalty Festival Blog
On the 20 of June (the longest day and the shortest night of 2014 collided )
on that auspicious pagan calendar date Yogabeats was booked to head up the festival and a large tent at the top of a beautiful green hill had been allocated for the event … A great crowd jammed into the tent but just at that point it was discovered that there was no electric supply to power the ghetto blaster I always use …so the event was delayed to sundown which gave the festival a chance to find an extension cable …. So during this period they asked if I would speak about Yoga Beats Conflicts recent trip to the West Bank and the conflict resolution work I have been involved with
going all the way back to 1990 in the former Yugoslavia and my work in the Middle East since 2004 … The interest was intense and totally supportive and many people even made financial donations to the work that will carry on in November this year… So a big shout of thanks to all of you who contributed financially and also to all those whose words of support make me understand this work touches everyone’s hearts !
After the YBC talk and Q n A a great gathering of people walked up the hill to the Yogabeats tent ….
And for the next couple of hours this huge crowd of souls laughed and enjoyed all the asanas in the Yogabeats practice … Until the final mix of ” Let the Sunshine in” completely sent everybody over the top and the crowds were jumping and screaming with joy … Until I asked everyone to drop into Savasana position at the end and enter a deep rest full visualisation … You can see this in the picture with the little girl sitting up looking at me !
Thank you everyone I met at the Moynalty festival and for all those who will now join me at the Yogabeats Four Step Foundation Course in September in Dublin !
Much Love David Sye x
For further information about Yogabeats Ireland please contact Danni Gonzalez Ares on
00353878147248 or email firstname.lastname@example.org