A w a k e n I n g  t h e  A e s t h e t i c  A w a r e n e s s

Akshatha is a UKG student at Yellow Train, Coimbatore, and is at the workshop to play.

Currently researching the musical cultures of children, Chee Hoo Lum is an Assistant Professor of music education at NIE, Singapore.Chee Hoo became interested in Jinan’s work after reading 'A Note of Dissent'- the email Jinan had sent to the members of the UNESCO conference in Seoul. Chee Hoo has no specific expectations from the workshop, but is open to everything the workshop may offer.

Principal at Harishree vidyalayam, Chennai, Deivanai’s interest in the workshop was sparked when she received an email about it. Having been an educator for close to a decade, she expresses a sense of dissatisfaction with the current system. She is keen to explore alternatives to mainstream education, and hopes that this workshop could be a springboard for the same.

Pushpa Gopal is also a teacher at Harishree Vidyalayam, Chennai and hopes to fine tune her senses, and achieve a new, different way oflooking at things, particularly, education.

Chitra is a home-schooling mother of two from Coimbatore. She found Jinan’s website by chance, and was fascinated by his ideas on education, some which resonated strongly with her own views. She has brought her two children- Shruthi and Akshatha- to the workshop and hopes to spend time with Jinan and the children, and become more aesthetically aware in the process.

Shakti is a class 5 student from Coimbatore who is being home-schooled. She came to know of the workshop through her mother, and liked what she heard of it. She hopes to learn new things, enjoy nature and make new friends.

Shwetank Powar is a final Year Psychology student from Pune, with a special interest in child and education psychology. Currently exploring his options for postgraduate education, he has been disillusioned with the existing alternative systems of education. Shwetank has been intereted in Jinan’s work since he read an article by him a year ago, and hopes to learn from his insights.

Khoji is from Baroda. He is part of Swaraj University, Udaipur, and loves to travel.  He followed his gut-feeling to Aruvacode after receiving an email about the workshop from a friend. He hopes to further explore his concept of heart-based spaces- Non-Violent Spaces- at the workshop.

Sridhar is an architect from Bangalore who first heard of Jinan through his wife who had met him at a conference. He isn’t sure of what to expect from the workshop, but is on a quest for knowledge He hopes to understand what aesthetic awareness is, and to help his children preseerve their natural selves. Sridhar is particularly interested in the intersection of  aesthetics and spirituality.

Shikha Nambiar is a lawyer from Pune who received the opportunity to participate in the workshop as a birthday present from her mother- a teacher who has previously attended Jinan’s workshops. Shikha intends to trade a career in law for art school, and hopes to connect with her creative side through the workshop.

Devi K from Madurai, is currently awaiting the results of the Civil Services Exam. A mother of two, she has been home-schooling her younger child for the last 10 months. Devi is here to learn. She came to know of the workshop through Sivakumar, and hopes that it will help her understand the many dimensions of ‘sense’, and open herself to the many ways of approaching a single thing.

Sivakumar B, a filmmaker and animator from Chennai has previously attended one of Jinan’s workshops as part of the events at a Tamil Heritage group run by his friend. Father to an 18-month old, he is scouting for the best method to occupy his child without resorting to standard education, and is here to observe and explore.

Ravi, from Pune, has recently begun a travel company. He met Jinan and became interested in his work during the course of setting up tours with a focus on culture and tradition. He hopes to improve his aesthetic appreciation and to enable himself to think from the heart rather than the head.

Joseph is a traveler, seeker who has been on the move since 15 years. Joseph is an amazing soul – patient, loving, humble, wise, uninhibited and fun to be with. He has spent the majority of the last 15 years in the Himalayas on his spiritual quest and generously shared his experiences with anyone who was interested. He also guided the early birds with Yoga.

Jinan, the initiator of the retreat has been exploring the damages of schooling for the past 20 years and was keen to to share the journey and see others felt about the issues.