Riding The MovedByLove Waves :)
--Khushmita Sanghvi
9 minute read
Jul 3, 2017


Last week, 14 anchors from different parts of India came together for a call to synch up on various moving parts of Moved by Love ecosystem. Not everyone is aware of all the parts, so below are our notes to share the updates ...

High-level view:

  • Overall, we're seeing increasing fluidity of engagement, which helps build a resilient community.
  • Local deep ties are supported by HHH retreats, Awakin Circles, Karma Kitchen (like Hyderabad), 1-day retreats (Baroda), and other projects (WisdomCrafts).
  • Virtual deep ties are supported by Laddership Circles, Awakin Dialogues,and ServiceSpace calls.
  • Virtual loose ties are supported by monthly newsletters, thematic newsletters (Seeds+T, Art+T), global newsletters like DailyGood and KarmaTube.
  • Local loose ties are supported by public talks (by so many of us, including JB/AB) and media coverage (Seva Cafe).
  • Untapped opportunity lies is building more pathways across the matrix of virtual/local and loose/deep ties.
  • Question:what should be the focus of our year-end tsunami? :) Where are we weakest, at the moment?
On Laddership Circles:
  • Pilot 6-week circle got rave feedback. One step and three bows for Parag!
  • We opened invites for next second. Got 54 applicants, so we opted to host 2 concurrent circles (16 fellows, 8 volunteers) that start in two weeks!
  • Given the interest, word on the street is around 2 more concurrent circles after current circle completes. (Just FYI, Meghna's hand was seen squarely on her forehead during the time of this comment.)
  • Smita-ben wants to hold a Laddership Circle for NGO retreat alumni. She's already got one anchor. :) And maybe Awakin Dialogue circle post Laddership.
  • Swara: in some cases, Laddership Circle before retreat may lead to stronger ripples at the retreat?
  • Question:with 40+ expected alumni by year end, should we host a Laddership Retreat, or invite to Startup Service, or just a sleepover at Sanskruti's? :)
On monthly HHH Retreats:
  • We average about 15 retreats per year,of which about half are HHH (Hands, Head, Heart).
  • Lots of public interest -- we're waitlisted every time.Sheetal wondered if 2 retreats/month are possible, but no one wondered why Khushmita is currently sitting by the Ganges.:)
  • Attracting ample volunteers as well. For July retreat, more than 20 volunteer applications!
  • New technology has streamlined the processes dramatically, and allows for greater clarity on emergence.
  • Post-retreat, engagement matrix is visible. Pathways to engagement spectrum has been organic, but has scope for improvement.
  • Question:how can we engage interest of retreat alumni? (Perhaps dream up vol opportunities, like Ashima's Community Weavers idea listed below.)
On Education Spectrum:
  • After Jan retreat, we've engaged with many school principals (including Rishi Valley most recently). It's mostly been an uphill task, though, since mental frameworks are significantly different.
  • Year end, we propose another CQ retreat with aligned schools, to build the field a bit more -- and then we can all join Swara in doing this. :)
  • Vijayam-ji's upcoming Laddership Circle immersion will also be a great asset.
  • Summer internship:a version of 10-week internship that Audrey hosts in the US could be a good variant to explore in India as well.
  • Shaaliniis connected to local schools in Aurovillethat are ready to pilot new ideas.
  • Question: should we create a Happier School Charter(like Charter for Compassion) that retreat participants agree on,prior to the retreat? If so, what would it look like?
On Local Action:
  • Labor of love has been resonant way to differentiate NGO-impact-orientated effort from volunteer-run transformation-driven service.
  • Awakin Circles in 26 locations around India have proven to be "gentle but solid" foundation for local action; we're currently finishing up a survey with each circle.
  • Pandya Sisters just hosted a local retreat in Baroda,with 30 folks. Felt effortless. Unless you're Jiggy, who was anonymously :) working on this blog.
  • Ragu and Nisha are continuing to till the soil in Tamil Nadu, and figuring out way to bridge offline and online.
  • Purvi's started new Awakin Circles in A'bad and is hosting a 1-day village retreat, centered around a computer center.
  • In Ahmedabad, Seva Cafe continues to attract lots of attention; Sheetal to step up innovations as he moves to A'bad later this month.
  • In Hyderabad, Ambika and gang launched KK-- and aims to be a monthly feature. Suchi has been anchoring weekly Awakins too.
  • In Auroville, Deven and Shaalini have been cultivating a lot of strands and maybe ripe for 1-day retreat.
  • In Pune, Vinitis continuing Karma Meals.
  • Bombay and Surat continue to hubs for lots of circles and action.
  • But hey, what really is local these days? Sister Lucy was in London recently (proof!) and Sam Beard was in Japan and Parag is coming the US.What's next?Well, how 'bout S2 going to Lebanon for a month to do local masti with Samar? A sweet ripple of Awakin Dialgoues.
  • Speaking of glocal, :) for the last year, every week a group of folks come together for Awakin Dialogues-- and now all Laddership Alumni are thinking hosting such calls as well.
On Startup Service:
  • For the last four straight years, we've held Startup Service retreat around alternative questions.
  • In Auroville, as many are countering momentum towards market economy, Deven, Manoj and various others feel it could be ripe for a potential startup.
  • Jaideep: if we throw in dosai for breakfast, can we bring Startup to Bangalore? "We need it." :)
  • In Bangalore, next week, Jaideep and Madan are piloting a 3-hour gathering with 25 startup founders, to see how they handle love. :)
  • As options emerge for longer-term housing,are there creative pathways to support generosity entrepreneurs?
  • Question:should Laddership Circle be a pre-requisite for Startup participants?
On work + transformation:
  • Kishan: small practices led to TCS retreat which led to a broader 21-day kindness challenge -- which even led to a woman saving someone's life! Yes, she was a black belt but this was a different kind of strength. :)
  • Deeper engagement leads to deeper service; when one participant was in a play, 15 co-workers went to support it; when another was in hospital, every day different employees went to visit. #WeCare
  • Neerad is looking to pilot some ideas at Janardhan's CXO Summit in Bangalore, to bring some practices.
  • Sheetal-ben is working with Nilesh-bhai and Ketan-bhai to see if we can add value-based interventions to ICAI's mandatory 15-day course.
  • Question:can we collate various resources across the ecosystem, contextualize them to Indian context, and create one-pagers? If so, Po promises to do his famous Kungfu-Panda move. :) (No, not this one. :))
On Inclusion Community:
  • Nov 11th,Inclusion Summitwill create a tidal wave of loose ties around inclusion related themes.
  • As a direct ripple of last year's MBL Inclusion Retreat, Nov 10th fundraising dinner has shifted to friend-raising, with the idea of building deeper connections.
  • Ferose and Sridhar have been attended MBL retreats, but JD's still not out of the woods -- they still have one foot on the other side of fence. :) Mobius strip ki jai!
  • Jaideep and IIS gang propose cultivating deeper-ties with round 2 of Inclusion Retreat (with a focus on care-takers). I'm sure Priyanka is ready to ride the scooter again!
On Gandhi Ashram:
  • Meghna's report and soft launch ofgandhiashram.com
  • 100 years of Satyagraha, which drew PM visit. In her speech, Ela-ben referenced "Akhand Gandhi" (unified Gandhi) referencing her kinship with Jayeshbhai and a possibility of a Gandhian vision.
  • Gandhi Ashram Trust sapling has sprouted and a proper fence is built around it; as it grows, we anticipate more fruits that we can give away. :)
  • Sanchi is working intimately with Vinaya Mandir schools; we're now supporting 100 more girls due to some an unexpected financial offering.
  • Two weeks back, Gopalkrishna Gandhi (ex-governor of Bengal) visited. He was quite moved by our collective work.
  • Question:can Gandhi Ashram become a hub for transformative volunteerism?
On Meghna Crafts (wait, no, that's Wisdom Crafts):
  • Lots of hand-made art is generated for retreats. Rockstars like Drishti and Riddhi.
  • Divyang's movie initiated a 21-day bowing challenge and diary.
  • Currently doing 21-day reverence challenge with 8 artists including Rupali, Anupreet and bunch others.
  • Kindness Diaries went for 2nd print run. Yay. Bhumika ki jai! And Mindfulness Diary is almost done, with mindfulness in each pencil stroke.
  • In the US also, similar crafts movement is emerging in small groups. Internal nickname: 9 nanas. Recently someone created Hugtopus-- octopuses that hug. :)
  • More broadly, Divyang wants to Media + T with Serving Seeds. A photography commons perhaps. And maybe a retreat with positive news outlets?
  • Question: can heart pins become the Smile Cards of MBL?(That is distributed freely, through networks of volunteers.)
Neerad/Sheetal-ben on engagement spectrum:
  • S2's "3C Way": Connect, Community, Compassion. Can we use that framework to work with different communities?
  • Moreover, can we build on a spectrum of journeys, circles, volunteerism and transforming spaces?
  • If you don't know the answer to those questions, meditate on theslides here. :)
On Newsletter:
  • Ashima and Shaalini are twiddling their thumbs since newsletter is so easy to send now. :)
  • What comes next?Two newsletters a month! What what?!
  • Gandhi 3.0 special newsletter coming soon too. And did you know that MaitriTunes has over 2100 subscribers?!?
  • Tidbit of the day: in Romania, Ashima has to wear sunglasses at 8:30pm! She might come indoors and start updating MBL social media soon. :)
  • Question: how to deepen engagement with 10K folks on newsletter? Maybe invite few HHH retreat alumni as online "community weavers"?
On Infrastructure:
  • MBL finances are increasingly clear. Purvi has created some super fancy spreadsheets -- so fancy that she'll be giving a tutorial on it. :)
  • Kishan mentioned that doing 21-day challenges on Whatsapp was a great way to engage. Are they open-source alternatives to Whatsapp?
  • We await a portal for labor-of-love craft offerings -- cShops 2.0! :)
  • Ragu's app title: SeedBack! Or was it BackFeed? It was something backwards and forwards at the same time. :)
  • Jaideep got a demo from Preeta about her Mandala App, which she wants to give to someone who can build on it.
  • Nisha's ProPoor team can be more integrated with MBL and build some features (like NGOpinions).
  • GandhiAshram.com site can be built into a platform for volunteerism across India.
  • Quote of the day: "Ferrari and fuel go hand in glove." (Sheetal was under the influence of Dubai, where cops have Lamborghinis and where Uber app can request an "Uber Chopper!") Good news: our Ferrari is IT (info-tech) and our fuel is IT (inner-t). :)
On Year-End Retreats:
  • Laddership Retreat: deeper ties, host "MBL 2.0" kind of conversations to deepen the dialogue.
  • 10-Day: Jayeshbhai signed up, and apparently it's on Parag's bucket-list. :) (And S2 is heading to a 20-day soon!)
  • Educators Retreat: round 2 of last year's very popular retreat. Remember our friends from Nepal, who took a 3-day bus ride to join -- and launched this song!
  • Startup Service: either in Auroville or Bangalore. It all depends on who wins the lambi-dadhi-walleh-baba match -- Deven or Jaideep!
  • Youth: Gitanjali wants to host a retreat with 15-26 year old youth in Delhi.
  • Mindful Parenting: Suchi's eager to host a retreat, inspired by her book, and has done a lot of leg work for it as well.
  • Awakin Retreat: Sheetal wants to bring local circle coordinators(maybe Bhutan and Dubai too!) at Chinmay Vibhooti in Pune. Remember this?
  • Inclusion Retreat: felt right last year, and particularly since syncs up brilliantly with IIS's ecosystem building efforts.
  • MaitriFest: lots of whirling is anticipated in February. But just a thought from our Rumi fan in Turkey.
  • Dubai Retreat:very keen for a retreat, with Viresh, Natasha, Chandni and others fully ready to support. A weekend trip from India.
  • Poland Delegation: Sheetal, Khush, Audrey and Nipun are part of a Poland delegation with Rev. Heng Sure that will feature Poland's Karma Kitchen, Awakin Circle, 21-Day Challenge, Polish Smile Cards and much more. :)
  • Global spaces: Ari recently paid forward his retreat gratitude; Masami-san is ready to host in Japan; in Scotland, we've been gifted space for a Euro-ladders retreat; in Australia next year, Rev. Heng Sure is excited to host a retreat.
  • Question: should we host an international retreat this year? And if so, which location? We await collective intuition. :)

What else? :) Ah yes, enjoy the ride ...:)


Posted by Khushmita Sanghvi on Jul 3, 2017

10 Past Reflections