On a sleepy rainy morning
We paint a bright blue sun
Drawn into this unfolding
There's nothing we can't learn
We flock together, in multicolour
Each of us like none
We fly in the sky, we smile and sigh
We sing and dance as one
To conferences & schools, structures of
We go and add the word "un"
We tear up every tyrannical rule book
And have a hell of a lot of fun!
Together in walkouts of various ways
Together in mess & churn
In surrender to the dazzling light
Of what makes our hearts burn
With no marks to get, no hoops to jump
And no credits to earn
We break walls in minds and hearts
to do what cannot be done
This isn't just a new chapter or a book
We're making the whole library turn
And inviting the librarian to join IMA
Even if she may be stern
We're mothers birthing the newness
Of the world our hearts oft yearn
As our ways shall spread & roots go deep
That lost ancientness shall return
It can't be stopped, stolen or silenced
Cos its already really begun
And one fine day, we'll smile at the sky
and our bright blue sun!
By: Abhishek Thakore
Over the four days, we will be sharing our work together, discuss ideas for strengthening the Alliance, plan the next steps for collaborative projects, visit a few learning centres close to Deer Park, meet and exchange our experiences, and learn from the wisdom of inspiring spiritual leaders of classical wisdom traditions.
People running alternative universities, people's universities, learning programs, etc. for youth (between 18-35+ years of age) all over the country. These groups are working on learning programs involving - self-designed learning, explorations of Self, sustainable living, social justice, community living, systems change, social entrepreneurship, alternative politics/governance, etc. Essentially, these are initiatives that challenge the status quo models of higher education.
21st May - 24th May, 2019
Deer Park Institute,
Bir, Himachal Pradesh.
Around 60 practioners of alternative education met at Bir, Plamapur for Indian Multiversity Alliance (IMA) annual gathering. This was the fourth meeting of the IMA. The location was chosen so that we can have the maximum out of this experience in the lovely heat of the tropics. The gathering was hosted by the Deer Park.
There were around 60participants from across the country representing different organizations. The names are enclosed in the Annexure.
- Annual Meet up of Multiversities Alliance members ( www.multiversities.net ).
- Reconnect to and review our core values.
- Review our earlier plans, experiences and activities and cargo (responsibilities).
- Encourage cross pollination, mentorship and synergies among member participants
- Sharing of practices, models and innovations to further evolve the national agenda of Re-imagining Education with newer members, leaders and change makers
- Co-create new projects for mutual collaboration, greater social impact and personal growth of leaders.
- Visit sustainable, learning spaces (Sambhavana & Avishkaar) in Himachal Pradesh to learn, share and reflect as a group
The day started with the Ice breaker and short introduction of the partners through an exercise.
Manish welcomed all the participants and gave an introduction of the IMA especially for the new participants and where are we today.
Claude Alvares gave a very inspiring background and touched upon the significance of the IMA in the present context. A video of the same is attached along with this report.
Brief presentations by the new projects taken under the IMA last year: During the 2018 meeting new projects were conceived and launched like Traveller’s University, Gap Year Programme, Converse Action.
- Rahul and Ashiq presented their work over the year about the traveler’s university.
- Aneeta presented about the Anubhava – Pan India Gap Year Programme
- Deepankar and Chetan presented their project of Converse Action.
- Abhishek presented project Youth Fest 2069.
- 52 livelihoods was also presented.
Post lunch a Mela of different new initiative which have joined the IMA was organized. Some of the projects who shared their ideas and projects were Sambhavana, Avishkaar, DEFY project, Youth Link,Jail University, Gnostic Center, storytelling.
The second day started with debriefing of the first and harvesting the feelings which emerged on first day. There was great sense of community which the participants felt.
The day was focused to provide space to the partners who wish to start new projects. It was an enriching half a day where everyone contributed their idea and energy to support the projects which are at the idea level.
Prashant who hosted us at Deer Park presented the vision behind the deer park and gave us an understanding work related to Classical wisdom which they are focusing on.
A visit was organized to understand the Buddhist culture. We had a guided tour of the Bhumang Jampaling Monastery. We witnessed the vening class of debate which the students have as part of their studies. A student spends 18 years to learn about Buddhism.
The day started with the debriefing of the last day. The facilitators harvested the need of the various participants.
The third day focus was to initiate the collaborative projects and strengthen the new ideas which were emerging which can be undertaken under IMA.
We had 6 ideas which emerged for more understanding. The groups took space of their choice and the different participants choose different projects to interact with.
The participants were divided into smaller groups and brainstormed on any new collaborative projects. Some of the Following projects made their presentation
1. Sustainable Campus
2. I lead
4. Rediscover India
Some of the participants did sewa at the Deer park farm. They helped in harvesting the wheat field and preparation of the mulch.
Soon the final day arrived, which started with a check in. carrying on with the enthusiasm of participants, various cargos were made after much deliberation which took different roles and responsibilities. Following cargos were made:
1. Communication (Website Updates, Content Group & Newsletter)
2. Learner Forum/Festival
3. Heart stewards
4. Mentoring new team
5. Next gathering
6. Knowledge team
A steering committee was also presented to the participants which actively met throughout the gathering to chalk out the strategy of the network.
Smaller groups were formed in order to harvest the learning of the gathering.
At the end we had a beautiful and powerful silent closing ritual facilitated by Harsh and Mohit.
The group visited Sambhavana and Avishkaar post lunch to understand their organisations’s work.
The gathering concluded with the determination to take forward the movement with more strength and increase the number of learner’s and partner organisation who align with the vision of the IMA.