Why do we meet

Sangamam: Why should we meet? What should we do?

Note: The first part [are we (not) Keralites?] of this article is generic and the second [aryanet introspection] is specific to the aryanet sangamam. The first part is meant to set the ground for the second.

Part 1: Are we (not) Keralites?

Do we (Keralites / Indians) often engage in discussions in an attempt to change and transform the system? (Intellectual) debates often provide an emotional journey to charge or discharge along individual biases (likes and dislikes). In this attempt don’t we waste a lot of energy? Does it result in any fruitful outcome?

Who is interested in the sustenance of such a habit of Keralites in Kerala? Printed and visual media, writers and politicians are interested in having several issues alive. Magazines which cover only social and political issues survive with several “known non-issues.” The situation aggravates when India's 'national' media lacks social diversity, as it does not reflect the country's social profile.

Issues are kept alive for a certain period (Indians have short memory when it comes to such issues) through serious deliberate discussions and emotional charges or discharges. Newer issues are injected in (created) providing enough diversity to beat the “law of diminishing marginal returns.”

Every meeting / event provides a forum for such emotional charging and discharging. Or rather in every social activity / function it is easy to notice people coming together to go through this ritual. It naturally results in bringing individuals closer to or away from each another.

Part 2: Aryanet introspection?

It is sincerely hoped that our Sangamam will not and should not move along the above lines. In every aspect of the meet, we must take up issues objectively and rationally. The time that we spent on any issue should be worth enough.

Quoting George Jessel, “The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.”

There is a saying in Malayalam, "???? ????? ??? ??????." Care must be taken not to be carried away by popular ways of “suggesting” and “starting up initiatives” which are not sustainable. Attention is brought to the case of the Aryodayam newsletter, which did not receive (generate) the expected interest among aryanet members, and has seen its own death. There were calls to share and publish member profiles to know each other better and to prepare a community database. Where do we stand on that now?

Every one is busy, however, if we have an aim to come together and to help each other, we have to find some how the needed time to share.

If we are here to start anything, we must work out the strategy and plans to sustain them. We have to prepare ourselves with such a mindset which can assist in creating an appropriate conducive atmosphere.

What is the dare need for aryanet to meet? Though the aryanet members were exchanging emails and had limited meetings, most of us are strangers to each other. Several of us might have met before but we are within aryanet as strangers. The sangamam is meant to bring us closer and to take away the strangeness. We need enough time for ourselves to make this happen at the sangamam.

Hope that we do not follow what Mary Tyler Moore has coined, “Sometimes you have to get to know someone really well to realize you're really strangers.”

Aryanet is a virtual group with strong but diverse potentials which can be channeled to help the aryavaisya community at large. We can deliberate on the possible ways how such diverse potentials can be combined to form a focused helping source with clear missions and plans. For this to happen, aryanet has to interact with relevant local bodies. However, for the success of such meetings, aryanet should be sure of what we are able to offer / extend. In order for such plans to take shape, aryanet has to meet few times and debate on possible assistance. We can bring in the local bodies for a dialogue session at the planned sangamam as a first step in this regard. In this manner, we can understand the local issues better and effectively, which will assist us a lot to work towards what to give back to the community.

Looking forward to a successful sangamam.

Dr. Prahlad Vadakkepat

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