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Perspectives: Palestinian Women Embrace Yoga for Peace

in World News, YD News

west-bank-yoga

It’s not enough to just say yoga can affect people of all races, religions and regions looking to find peace inside, even when there may not be peace outside. These photos of Palestinian women practicing yoga are a visual representation of it. An article in the Wall street Journal from September 20 profiles groups of women who have turned to and embraced the practice of yoga to help them cope with the stresses of living in a region wrapped up in political turmoil over control of the West Bank.

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In Zatara village outside of Bethlehem, where women’s “sports” are not common, the yoga classes started out slow, but have grown in popularity to five classes a week. The female students have come to find yoga as “part exercise and physical therapy, part spiritual meditation and part women’s empowerment.”

west-bank-yoga-room

Sometimes the practice extends beyond walls and into nearby hilltops overlooking Israeli-occupied settlements.

west-bank-yoga-hilltop

It may sound like a simple, yet sweepingly optimistic statement, but we can’t help feel a flutter of hope and positivity that yoga may somehow help to bridge a gap in the conflict and maybe even help build a path to peaceful resolution. Or at the very least, promote a culture and people of deeper compassion and compromise, even if the political muckety-mucks are still trying to figure it out.

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We invite you to read the whole article on WSJ.com (which has a paywall, so if you get stuck, go here. shhh.)

Images by Tanya Habjouqa for the Wall Street Journal.

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3 comments… add one

  • Chris

    It’s a welcome first-step.

    If Yoga can help even one human somewhere on the Planet to liberate himself / herself from the ArabicPlague of Islam, then more Power to Yoga !

    Time for some Plain-Speaking :

    1) Islam is NOT a Religion of Peace.

    2) Islam is not so much a Religion, as an Affliction, hence the label of ArabicPlague.

    3) Islam has no followers, ONLY victims, known as Moslems, who try to spread their affliction to other healthy individuals, being driven to do so by SchadenFreude ( a malicious Spread-the-Grief, why-should-I-suffer-alone Syndrome ).

    4) Islam has never, ever been spread by peaceful means, it has ALWAYS been spread by the Sword of Islam, accompanied by the Deceit of Islam. Even the Arabs of 7th-Century-Mecca were themselves once FORCIBLY converted to Islam by PedoMo and his band of Thugs from Medina,

    5) Even some thinking individuals remain trapped in the ArabicPlague, as they become overcome by Stockholm-Syndrome, which causes them to foolishly align themselves with the very same disgusting Plague, that’s responsible for having brought so much pain into their own lives.

    6) The Eastern Religions ( such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism) are the only known Cures for the ArabicPlague.

    7) Consider : In 5000 years, there has not been one single Hindu Jihadi or Hindu Terrorist, one single Hindu Conquistador or Hindu Inquisition. Not one single woman anywhere has been stoned to death by Hinduism, for some frivolous reason like “Adultery”.

    There is not one single ANGRY, Vengeful Sky-God in all of Hinduism. Hinduism believes that every single Soul can, with diligent effort, be elevated to Godhood and Moksha.

    8) The valiant Hindus of India have single-handedly faced the ArabicPlague for 1400 years, at immense cost to themselves, thus saving the World from being consumed by the ArabicPlague. It’s high time the rest of the World now did their bit to help check the ArabicPlague.

    9) Islam is the Disease, and Moslems are the Disease-Carriers. We should not hate the Disease-Carriers, but rather, only the Disease itself.

  • Chris

    10) The Nazis of Hitler’s Germany committed the Genocide of 6 Million innocent Jews, and Nazism is, rightly, regarded as an evil thing. Islam, meanwhile, has slaughtered Billions upon Billions of Innocents over the last 1400 years ( for the ‘Crime’ of not embracing Islam), and yet we call Islam the ‘Religion of Peace” ?

    11) The ArabicPlague is a terminal Disease, bringing about the death and destruction of the Disease-Carrier, as well as those around him / her.

  • What a great article and great story! I wish these women to find peace by practicing yoga.
    Namaste

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