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From IQ To CQ (Compassion Quotient)

In Bombay today, we held a Compassion Quotient circle.  Initially, we thought we could sit with dozen of our educator friends; but then at 45 RSVP's, we moved to a bigger venue, and as it grew to over 75 RSVP's, it became a talk of sorts.  Technically, I'm not even an educator, but I covered my tracks by opening with a twist on the Coomaraswamy quote: "An educator isn't a special kind of person.  Every person is a special kind of educator." :)

After I opened with some remarks, I invited couple people to share.  Just randomly, I asked one of the principals (Rekha) to share and she said, "Back in my younger years, I was a single mom and I had a neighbor who would always prepare meals for me, help me in raising my child, and do just about anything I need -- every day, year and year.  She never seemed to get tired of selflessly helping me"  After some touching stories, tears streamed down her eyes as she continued, "I've never shared this before. It so happens that it's her birthday today.  And she's in this room right now." 

It was that kind of a space.

More than 50 schools were represented in that room.  As everyone shared, more and more ideas got generated.  Integrating kindness into our lives, our schools, our society clearly was the call of the hour, and it felt so right -- and natural.  "We teach who we are" and being-the-change found a deep resonance in the room.  I sense you'll hear a lot more of those ripples.

Side story: The woman who hosted the event (Mona) shared some powerful stories of her great-grandfather and Gandhi.  It turns out her great-grandfather was the one who had supported Gandhi prior to South Africa, and then sent him a ticket to come to India and continued to support him (mostly financially) till the end.  I continue to be amazed at how abundantly Gandhi karma seems to intersect with ServiceSpace. :)  

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