It was a unique learning experience for me in multiple ways. The dialogue tried to bring a number of learnings together under the umbrella of spirituality and meditation. It really helped me to incorporate a multi-dimensional approach towards understanding issues pertaining to rural development at different levels. The unique design of the Dialogue includes various brain-storming simulations which is the beauty of this dialogue. It is a process deeply focused on meditation and self-realization part where we try to seek answers from within. Many of my understandings about the rural communities proved false when I really involved myself into a situation. The realizations were quite hard hitting that bursts the myth and pre-conceived notions I had about the ideas of development, self-reliance and the lives that we continue to live at present. I strongly recommend this dialogue to the people who are really confused in their lives and also to those who wish to make sense of what they are currently pursuing in life.
I also feel that this dialogue should find a place in academic institutions, especially the ones focusing on Development Studies, Management Studies and Social Sciences.
Vivek Namdev, Student at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Tuljapur, Maharashtra
I realized that self-reliant societies can produce individuals with a much greater perspectives on life, with a sense of purpose and a new concept of free-will.
I always had questions of free-will and I realize now that it had to do with the mind. Our mind is so interlinked with our environment and our surroundings that if a system like money exists that determines our very lives then free-will becomes non-existent, it becomes as unreal as the concept of currency.
Ajunesh Viswam, Student at National Institute of Design (NID)- Ahmedabad
My one of the important learnings has been ‘HOW’ to look at the world around you- to use logic, common sense and connect the dots.
The world is not easy, it is complicated and projected to us that way. It is our responsibility to ‘understand’ things, keeping aside our biases.
The ‘WAY’ this Dialogue helped me to find is through silence and meditation. To understand myself and expand my understanding and knowledge about the world around me.
Another realization is how ‘Profits’ are running the world- using us, through us. Now I need to see and know what I can do!
Akshita Saini, Student at University of Delhi
The very basic idea of adding the spiritual element into the teaching was something new for me, and it helped me out to realize the importance of self, meditation, common sense and how the basic concepts should be linked with logic.
Ritesh Amar, Student at Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA), Gujarat
I was able to relate everything back to my roots. The concept of self-reliance is a basic common sense that we have forgotten in the world today. I understood a lot of ‘Logics’ even without ‘Details’. All in all this dialogue made me more self-aware while taking even the smallest decision in my life on what effect it will make in a bigger picture.
B. Vineesha , Student at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras
Being a person from completely technical background, the workshop provided me with a very different perspective. I had never given so much priority to the social angle of development. The methodology used in the dialogue has helped me to not just learn but also experience the changes in my point of view while defining ‘Development’.
Gaurav Balani, Student at TERI School of Advance Studies, New Delhi
The dialogue was a life-changing experience for me. It has some powerful and effective sessions which entirely changed my perspective and thought process.
Yash Sharma, Student at Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) Distance Learning
Amidst the pool of learnings, some were more prominent that the others. Realizations and awakenings as to how even the concept of development was subjectively imposed onto the entire human race, thereby changing the course of our lives. Other learnings include the importance of holding onto the basic values and principles of our existence, developing concepts of self-reliance and owning the principles of sense of family and interdependence.
Anuksha Gulati, Student at Delhi College of Engineering (DEC), Delhi