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Story | Research
19 November 2019

Food for the mind, and for the soul


Yoga and meditative sessions at Doha Learning Days promote healthy minds

Promoting healthy minds and bodies has been a key focus of WISE’s Doha Learning Days festival, which, over the last few days, has hosted an array of sessions and workshops ranging from meditative yoga to stress management for adults.

Vishnu Swasthi, who has presented a series of yoga-related workshops at Doha Learning Days that focused on helping visitors deal with stress and anxiety, said: “It’s about how to use the mind.

“When you meditate, everything is fine. The problem is when you find yourselves in real-life situations – how you manage your mind; how you manage energy; and how you manage emotions.

“This was the focus of a Doha Learning Days session called Meditation Life Mastery. We are trying to equip members of the community with the tools and techniques they can then go and use in their day-to-day life.

“It’s not just about sitting. When someone is working, how they can improve their concentration and focus, and improve their productivity. If you manage the mind, it can affect other areas of your life. This is what we aim to teach. People are distracted often. So it’s about reducing distractions, while increasing mental capacity. And, ultimately, it’s about mental health.”
Alongside Vishnu, Yama Yoga has hosted a number of sessions around wellbeing, meditation, and yoga, while Daniel Matallana invited members of the community to take part in meditation and personal development sessions designed to help participants connect with a deeper sense of self.

“I love the concept of coming together and creating this community of innovation and communication at Doha Learning Days – it’s a good match,” said Daniel.  

“Leadership is something that I have been thinking about and am passionate about, and I wanted to explore how I can bring the concept of meditation into the world the business and companies, as well as parenthood. At Doha Learning Days, I have trained people on how to become mindful leaders.”

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The yoga and meditation workshops have been part of Doha Learnings Days’ Wellbeing & Sport sessions. The experiential festival, which has been taking place in Education City and is organized by Qatar Foundation initiative WISE, has run over the last six days.

Each of its many workshops, sessions, and discussions have centered around three specific themes: Deconstructing Existing Learning Frameworks; Re-centering Learning around Human Values; and Re-learning How to Build Thriving Societies.

Doha Learning Days is being held in the lead up to the WISE Summit 2019, which is taking place at Qatar National Convention Centre from November 19-21. More information about the summit is available at

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