David Hans Barker may not have had the best start in life but has turned things around for himself. Now he’s made it his mission to help others gain mastery of their own lives, through meditation and education.
Born in Mysore, India, to a British Indian mother and a father of Jewish European descent, David is the Founder of YogiLab, Co-Founder of Guide Education, and a meditation teacher. His early years were spent trapped in a cult called ‘The Children of God’, until his mother escaped with David and his three siblings. They all fled to the UK, where she raised them as a single parent in a rough area of London. In his teenage years, David found himself involved in gang-related violence and crime, until he realized that he had a choice to break this regressive mental cycle.
“I was just full of all this hate and blame. I remember blaming everyone – my poor mum for struggling to look after us. Then my dad for not being there, blaming God, blaming the government, whoever, my friends, the other kids we were fighting with were all at each other’s throats as well. And then I just realized that none of this was happening without me choosing to be involved in it.”
Finding himself angry about everything, he now believes it’s the best thing that could have happened to him. “It was a rock bottom moment, as I call it my quarter-life crisis.”
Realizing he didn’t know the answer to his problems, David decided to experiment on himself to work out what actually produces happiness. This self-experimentation went on to inspire the current-day YogiLab logo – a yogi inside a conical lab-flask, “because the whole point is that we’re all our own laboratory”.
“My family and I always thought we were victims, because we were poor, raised by one parent, we didn’t have any money. And I realized that that’s not the case, that we’re the ones creating our lives, and so I just started experimenting with myself to see what I could do right now to make my life and my family’s life better.
By the age of 27, David had achieved financial independence, and not soon after he was a self-made millionaire. But David has never forgotten where he came from, nor the difficulties he overcame. He was finally able to properly thank his mother for working so hard to support them all by buying her a dream home in the leafy West London suburb of Ealing – not far geographically from where he grew up, but socially a long way from the streets of Southall.
“I got to buy my mum her dream house, a double-fronted Edwardian place in Ealing. I told her that my bosses had given me some properties to manage, and offered to show her around. When we finished the tour, I gave her the keys and told her it was actually hers. She burst into tears – we’d managed to bring our whole poverty circle full cycle.”
Seeing first-hand how much meditation helped himself and his family deal with real-world issues and how it had such a profound effect on his life, he now wants everyone to have access to the same power, regardless of their circumstances.
“Meditation is a practical skill – not just a spiritual hobby of the elite – which is why we’re bringing it to the people,” he says.
His mission is clear: to deliver meditation to 80 million individuals – 1 percent of the current global population, in line with The Maharishi Effect. This is linked to the belief that if 1 percent of the population meditates, it will produce measurable improvements in the quality of life for everyone.
One starting point in this mission was the creation of YogiLab, established to deliver meditation as a real-world skill, bringing the worlds of business and spirituality together, and applying meditation to all areas of life.
Their physical space is The Istana in Uluwatu, Bali, which today harnesses the experiences of each of his tribe to bring a multi-purpose and next-level venue on the cliffs of one of the world’s most spiritual locations. Having originally offered free meditation online during the pandemic, when meditation centers were forced to close down, YogiLab now has over 15,000 people signed up and has reached over 130,000 people since July 2020.
New methods are being adapted to reach even more, including the creation of YogiLab Meditation Hubs, guides to help people create and run their own meditation centers. And not forgetting ‘Spiritual Hustler’s Day’ to bring meditation to the real world, and to create the 80 million meditators needed to trigger the Maharishi Effect.
David has just launched his new book ‘Vision: Master Your Inner World to Shape Your Outer World’. On why he wrote it, David says that visualization works but it’s got a bad reputation because there are some missing elements to the process that don’t usually get taught. “I feel so strongly about this, that I think visualization should be taught in schools to kids. It should be the first step in us planning our future.”
David is also passionate about making education accessible to everyone, which he’s already started to achieve with Guide Education, a UK-based EdTech platform that he co-founded with its CEO Leon Hady.
According to a UNESCO study, 68 million more teachers are needed to meet global education demands, and Guide Education aims to help fill this gap.
“We want to be the ‘Netflix for Education’ in that world, to get it to everyone,” he explains. “In the same way that we are sharing meditation with everyone via the Yogilab, we are aiming to give mainstream education to everyone through Guide Education.”
Having already provided free education services to over a million people, Guide recently received over US$8 million in funding from the UK Government Future Fund and other private investors.
With COVID-19 having precipitated a shift towards home-based and remote learning, David and Leon saw the possibility to offer high-quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all.
Its wealth of offerings include free resources such as revision guides for students, home-schooling advice for parents, and lesson planning tips for teachers. Other resources range from Guide Connect Teacher Development portals and teacher-training courses, Tuition Kit exam revision modules, and Exam Marker guides.
“The whole purpose of this company was that Leon and I both came from poor families, and we wanted to make education available to everyone around the world,” David says. “Education levels the playing field and as long as we lack quality teachers, our education systems will always be unequal. That’s why we want to get this to everyone. It’s time for the monopoly to be over.”
From Pocket Change to Power Player: The Strategic Ascendancy of Yvenson Israel
Yvenson Israel’s entrepreneurial saga is a gripping narrative of resilience, strategic foresight, and triumph against the odds. Emerging from humble beginnings with only a few dollars to his name, Yvenson, affectionately known as Vince in entrepreneurial circles, has orchestrated a remarkable journey to become a titan of industry.
Raised in a single-parent household, Vince assumed the mantle of responsibility at a young age, driven by the desire to provide for his family. However, he soon realized that traditional paths to success were fraught with limitations. With unwavering determination and an innate understanding of the power of ownership, Vince embarked on a daring quest for financial independence.
The pivotal moment in Vince’s journey came when he ventured into the world of Business Consulting. Recognizing the seismic shifts in the digital landscape, particularly the burgeoning dominance of Amazon and the exponential growth of the ecommerce sector, Vince strategically positioned himself at the forefront of this revolution. His vision? To harness the limitless potential of the digital realm and carve out a path to entrepreneurial eminence.
Over the course of several years, Vince meticulously cultivated his consulting enterprise, transforming it from a modest venture into a powerhouse operation with a global footprint. With a keen eye for talent and a knack for strategic scaling, he assembled a team of like-minded individuals who shared his passion for innovation and excellence. Together, they propelled the business to unprecedented heights, with monthly revenues soaring into the millions.
However, Vince’s journey was not without its challenges. Faced with adversity and setbacks, he remained steadfast in his resolve, drawing inspiration from his humble beginnings and unwavering belief in the power of entrepreneurship. Each obstacle became an opportunity for growth, fueling Vince’s relentless pursuit of success.
At the heart of Vince’s triumph lies his mastery of the Amazon platform. What began as a supplementary income stream during his college years blossomed into a thriving enterprise, catapulting Vince into the spotlight as a leading authority in the world of ecommerce. Through his guidance and mentorship, he has empowered countless individuals and businesses to achieve unprecedented success on the Amazon marketplace, cementing his legacy as a pioneer and trailblazer in the field.
In essence, Yvenson Israel’s story is a testament to the transformative power of entrepreneurship. It is a testament to the indomitable human spirit and the boundless possibilities that await those who dare to dream. From pocket change to power player, Yvenson Israel’s journey is a testament to the enduring legacy of vision, determination, and strategic brilliance.
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