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Samyuktha PC

Chai Kadai

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How to create a welcoming and free space for dialogue?

David Bohm, J. Krishnamurti, and several other pioneers on creating forums for dialogue and exploring dialogue as an attitude and process, did not do it easily. Dialogue, is in fact, one of the hardest things for human beings of the 21st century to be a part of, because we are already the sons and daughters of cults, opinions, political parties, ideologies and so on. We are mostly 'dollys' (clones) walking around propagating the same old wine without an internal process of dialogue and without a willingness to be part of a larger dialogue.

Since, dialogue expects the participants to leave all their wants for a specific goal it doesn't seem so inviting or glamorous. When I started this small collective in South India called 'Chai Kadai' (which literally means tea shop) my idea was to develop a space where people can explore and experiment with creating these spaces through art, design, literature, etc.

As any questioning journey, the depressing days are uncountable. But, the wonderful days when we watch something get created stands apart in memory. TED for me is such a space. Where ideas flow freely, get picked up on their way and flow freely again. However, TED being primarily in English, makes it extremely difficult for me to take it to many in my city.

Having thought about creating a TED event, there is a certain intimidation of class that sets in when we gather ten people in front of a mike and thousands to listen. It is a good sharing platform, but where is the space for dialogue, for all those "not-so enterprising ideas".

Anyway, I have personally been exploring how to create a physically, intellectually, socially, and emotionally free and safe space for dialogue. I would like to speak to architects, designers, academicians, artists, or just anyone to understand the process of dialogue better for myself and our collective. I hope creating such a space is not merely a utopian dream, but a possibility in small scale in many numbers. This is our dream.

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    Sep 4 2011: "I like to play cards with some of my hand shown, but the big cards hidden. The thing is... they will still know you are hiding the big cards, BUT they will still not know what you have hiding." - I forgot lol

    I would like to say most people want to be socially literate, they want to fit in easily with anyone. What stops this are subcultures and sub-subcultures involving fashions, musics, ideas, and/or overall degree of "band wagon" personality, in my opinion.

    If you want to get along with people, look around first, be quiet. See how the people who are being looked at the most are behaving, and prepare to act! "Fake it til you make it" Is my favorite quote. It can mean two things.. One, you fake it and pretend to be it, until you are caught or stop faking... or two, you fake it, until you are it!

    Universal rule of thumb, talk as much as they are talking unless they welcome it.
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      Sep 4 2011: I am for silence. Have you seen this movie called Rhapsody in August? Please do watch if you get some time. It is by Akira Kurosawa.
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        Sep 4 2011: No But I will take your recommendation.

        Thank you.
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          Sep 4 2011: :) Watch. I think you might like it. However, about being socially literate, what do you mean? Can you expand on that for me, please?
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        Sep 4 2011: What do most people talk about around you? What are the major interest? Hobbies? etc.

        What is the pop-culture of the group or person in which you want to associate with? What are the trends? The styles? Etc.

        Usually people have friends that are in the same interest areas as they are, this tends to be tainted by those whom wish to use others for benefits.

        Simply, if you do not know anything about the other group or person from signals or information. You are just going have to ask a lot of questions. If you want you can demonstrate sincere intention/interest and that would more than likely make them accept you as you are bringing positive emotions. .

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