“It’s bad enough . . . when a country gets colonized, but when the people do as well! That’s the end, really, that’s the end.”― Tsitsi Dangarembga.
Our history books teach us that Vasco Da Gama discovered the sea route from Europe to Asia in 1498. He is hailed as a hero for his fearless pursuit into the unknown and coming back with the promise of future trade. What is not taught or even acknowledged is how these discoveries were anchored in narrow interests of profit and followed a harrowing account of loot and plunder to advance their interests. In the case of India, it continued for the next 450 years. The political response to these historical events may vary in different contexts. But, they stem from the common ground in our psyche: the unhealed trauma of the past and our distorted sense of self.
At Ritambhara, we are on a quest to explore this process of decolonisation through dialogue. Being true to our roots, we aspire to anchor this in our shared pursuit of discovering the Dharmic Mind - A mind that doesn't fragment, extract or wage war but throbs in harmony and alignment with the eternal flow of life itself.
We propose that an expansive mind is possible, which aims towards collective healing and growth. A Dharmic mind seeks to revitalise the self, other and context. This mind has been the contribution of Indian Wisdom Traditions.
Our intention is to reclaim an embodied sense of self through personal practices. The guiding question for this would be, “How does one re-envision oneself so that we build a future that is distinctly different from the colonized past and the colonizing present?” This mind would focus on discovering the truth and dialoguing with others rather than co-opting them through questionable means. The result would be a mind free from the dogma of organised religion and the limited worldview of reductive rationalism often misunderstood as ‘science’.
Although our historical heritage is replete with this knowledge, each generation has to do the work to imagine and co-create its future. The times we live in are particularly challenging. It feels more demanding than ever to live a dharmic life; a way of living that is filled with compassion and enables an authentic unfolding of oneself.
The process involves the participants engaging in inner work through a framework developed by Sri Raghu Ananthanarayanan. Please note that these are experiential sessions to enable a reflective space for contemplative dialogues. We will explore our sense of belonging and the trauma of our shared past as it impinges on our psyche and manifests in our bodies. The first session on July 30th will be an introductory one where we will share more about the process and frameworks of exploration.
Six Sessions (4 hours / session) over three weekends.
July 30 & 31 | Aug 6 & 7 | Aug 13 & 14
9 AM to 1 PM Indian Time (+5:30 HRS GMT)
Note: Limited stipends are available for deserving participants. Please address your request for scholarship to firstname.lastname@example.org with details.