Experience

Young students in engineering

The workshop has been included as a compulsory part of the academic curriculum. It has led to a major rethinking among the students. They have been reflecting on what their goals are, the place of money in life, the joy one derives in relationship, and in seeking knowledge and not merely on jobs and the money they get out of it. They have become relaxed in their self, and become more sensitive to relationships with their friends and family, and regarding society and nature.

People from different walks of urban life

People from different walks of life are affected by the workshop. Many realize the lack of time they give to their family in their relentless pursuit of wealth, and even more importantly, the way they behave with their children, spouse or old parents. Many such people are affected profoundly and come back to further workshops with their family members, again and again.

Criminals in jail

The workshop touches criminals in jail most directly. Those who are seething with revenge, slowly start realizing that in fact their "enemies" are not bad. They are to be pitied and not hated. In turn, they themselves get depressurized and relaxed. This eventually gets reflected in their day to day behaviour with other jail inmates and with jail authorities. Bilaspur jail experience shows that some of the most violent criminals with also the worst behaviour inside the jail got totally transformed.

Social workers from NGOs

People working for uplift of downtrodden in rural and urban areas are greatly affected by the workshop. It dawns on them that along with work on employment generation, agriculture, irrigation, health, sanitation, scientific tempers, it is also important to work on "understanding" of the self and on relationship, without which their work and successes are short lived.

Farmers and rural folk

Rural folk today are in a state of demoralization. They are being told that they are backward, and need to be developed; that they are ignorant and do not know what is good for them; that they need to study English and IT without which there is no future. The present political structure and political parties has led to a breakdown of the community decision making. High powered marketing along with TV has led to a loss of community life and led them to yearn for Pepsi and the "luxury of city life". They do not realize what they possess - clean air, clean water, and a stronger possibility of a wholesome life with fulfilling relationship in family and community. Experience of rural people who attend the workshop has been that they feel a sense of empowerment regarding themselves and what they can do at their own place. Rather than treating farming as an unworthy activity, they see value in what they are doing. The importance and necessity of physical labour for all, comes out as a corollary.
       Established business men who have done the workshop have taken up sustainable or "zero-input" farming where all the required resources for farming is generated from farm land itself. Several experiments in renewable energy are also in full swing. They are deriving happiness out of farming and physical labor.

People with spiritual background

People with spiritual background usually take time to come to terms that one can talk about "human values" without bringing in elements from mystery or unknown. Many are elated at this discovery. People from different faiths - Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Islam, Christianity - have started getting deep into a process of self-exploration after doing the workshop, and are able to see that the human values can be derived through this process of self exploration by each one of us and are the same as professed by their respective faiths.