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SPIC MACAY: Raison d’etre

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Presentation on SPIC MACAY - Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth - A non-profit voluntary movement to spread the awareness of our living heritage

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SPIC MACAY: Raison d’etre

  1. 1. SPIC MACAY: Raison d’etre Reasons for its existence ( Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth) Education: Gateway to Information Or Knowledge & Wisdom?
  2. 2. A Macroscopic View Non- formal Education Schools Colleges University “Making it at any cost.” Uninspired Self-centered Practical products. Information Information Information Brightest take up other jobs Many Jobless Remaining join as teachers ( barring exceptions)
  3. 3. • DISCONTENTMENT. • DISHONESTY. Eg. LARGE SCALE COPYING IN EXAM, CLASSES NOT BEING TAUGHT. • A GRAB FOR POWER. Eg. STUDENT UNIONS, ETC. • UNIVERSITIES & COLLEGES CLOSED FOR A LARGE PERCENTAGE OF THE TIME. • A GENERAL APATHY. RESULT
  4. 4. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO OUR BRIGHTEST STUDENTS? PROFESSIONAL COURSES BRIGHT STUDENTS ENGINEERING MEDICINE BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES ETC.
  5. 5. ABSTRACT COURSES (requiring the finest minds) OTHERS PHILOSOPHY LITERATURE PURE SCIENCES CLASSICAL ARTS CLASSICAL LANGUAGES ETC.
  6. 6. RESULTS INCREASING GROSSNESS IN SOCIETY. INABILITY TO GRASP SUBTLE & ABSTRACT CONCEPTS. EXAMPLES: • THE WAY OUR FESTIVALS ARE BEING CELEBRATED. • CONFLICTS IN THE NAME OF RELIGION. • ABSTRACT & MEDITATIVE ART FORMS LIKE DHRUPAD & KOODIYATTAM ON THE VERGE OF EXTINCTION. • BRIGHT COLOURS, GAUDY LIGHTS, BLARING MICROPHONES. • RESEARCH WORK IN UNIVERSITIES: CURSORY & SHALLOW.
  7. 7. TWO MODELS WORTH EXAMINING 1. ‘MODERN’ MODEL: (where we are heading) • PRIVATIZATION • INCREASE IN THE ACCOUNTABILITY OF ALL PARTIES • MONEY AND TIME PRESSURE RESULT: GREATER EFFICIENCY IN THE TRANSFER OF INFORMATION 2. ‘TRADITIONAL GURUKUL’ MODEL: ( not possible to use without modifications in the contemporary context) • NO MONETARY & TIME PRESSURE • SUBTLETY, INSPIRATION, ABSTRACTION & RESPECT FOR THE MYSTICAL FORM THE KEY INPUTS. RESULT: OUTPUT OF THE HIGHEST ORDER
  8. 8. SUFI MYSTIC HAZARAT INAYAT KHAN’S DESCRIPTION OF THE FOUR STAGES IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF ART: 1. IMITATIVE ART SUGGESTIVE ART CREATIVE ART 4. THE FOURTH ASPECT CAN ONLY BE DEVELOPED THROUGH MEDITATION, BECAUSE IT COMES LIKE A MIRACLE. IT IS NO LONGER ONLY ART BUT IS A DIRECT EXPRESSION OF THE SOUL…
  9. 9. A SIMILAR IDEA MAY BE APPLIED TO EDUCATION 1. IMITATIVE STAGE: Eg. 2+2=4 2. SUGGESTIVE STAGE: Eg. SOLVING SIMPLE PROBLEMS,THE SOLUTION OF WHICH IS NOT TOLD TO US 3. CREATIVE STAGE: Eg. DEVELOPING NEW MODELS & SOLUTIONS USING NEW IDEAS - ORIGINAL RESEARCH WORK 4. MEDITATIVE STAGE
  10. 10. REACHING THE FOURTH STAGE RESULTS IN THE COMMONALITY OF EXPERIENCES AS EXPERIENCED BY: • AN ARTIST • A MATHEMATICIAN • A PERSON IN LITERATURE • AN ASTRONOMER • ETC. TO SUCH A PERSON WE GIVE A TITLE: Ph.D. ( THE NAME OF THE SUBJECT) i.e. DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY ( the road he took to reach that state) TODAY THERE ARE VERY FEW TRUE Ph.Ds.
  11. 11. DISCRIMINATION BETWEEN STAGES 3 & 4 IS CRITICAL. A CREATIVE GENIUS CAN REACH THE HIGHEST POINT OF STAGE 3, BUT A QUALITATIVE STEP JUMP IS REQUIRED TO REACH STAGE 4. THIS IS WHAT MAKES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A HITLER & A LORD BUDDHA. MODERN SYSTEM: AT BEST IN STAGE 3 . PRESENT INDIAN SYSTEM: BARELY AT STAGE 2.
  12. 12. TEACHER TAUGHT RELATIONSHIP VERY DELICATE APPLICATION OF PRESSURE EFFICIENT TRANSFER OF INFORMATION (MODERN SYSTEM) RAJSIK NO PRESSURE INEFFICIENT TRANSFER OF INFORMATION (PRESENT INDIAN SYSTEM) TAMSIK NO PRESSURE + INSPIRATION & ABSTRACTION HIGHEST ORDER OF EDUCATION (TRADITIONAL SYSTEM) SATVIK
  13. 13. WHAT ARE THE INGREDIENTS OF THE TRADITIONAL SYSTEM & HOW CAN THEY BE USED TODAY? 1. GURUS - BRIGHT & INSPIRED: FORM THE CREAM OF THE SOCIETY IN THE WEST. THE BRIGHTEST STILL JOIN EDUCATION THERE. IN INDIA MOSTLY THE ‘OTHERS’. A BIG RESPONSIBILTY LIES IN THE HANDS OF THOSE WHO HAVE JOINED IT BY CHOICE. • THE BRIGHT STUDENTS MUST BE WORKED AT. • BEING SMALL IN NUMBER THEY MUST NETWORK. IF DELHI UNIVERSITY TEACHERS’ ASSOCIATION (DUTA) CAN BE FORMED, WHY NOT A CREATIVE TEACHERS’ UNION (CTU)!. EXPOSE BRIGHT STUDENTS TO HIGH QUALITY EDUCATIONISTS THROUGH INVITED LECTURES & VISITING FACULTY (to be carefully chosen).
  14. 14. 2. INSPIRATION- CANNOT NECESSARILY COME 8-9AM ON MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS & FRIDAYS. THE SHISHYA CANNOT LIVE WITH THE GURU IN THE EXISTING FRAMEWORK, BRIGHT YOUNG PEOPLE MUST BE SENT TO LIVE WITH INSPIRED HUMAN BEINGS PERIODICALLY. SCHOOLS, COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES MUST INVITE SUCH PEOPLE TO BE IN RESIDENCE FROM TIME TO TIME. CARE MUST BE TAKEN TO ENCOURAGE THE REALLY BRIGHT & PERCEPTIVE.
  15. 15. NUMBER OF TRUE GURUS IS SMALL. HOW CAN WE REACH OUT TO THE LARGE MASS OF THE STUDENT POPULATION? ANSWER LIES IN OUR HERITAGE IT EMBODIES : SUBTLETY ABSTRACTION INSPIRATION & RESPECT FOR THE MYSTICAL THE FOUR KEY ELEMENTS MISSING IN EDUCATION TODAY. NO EFFORT BY SOCIETY OR HOME- EDUCATIONISTS MUST TAKE UP THE MANTLE.
  16. 16. HOW ?
  17. 17. 1. IN SCHOOLS: WHILE CHILDREN ARE ASSEMBLING DURING BREAKS IN DAY SCHOOLS & DURING MEAL TIMES IN RESIDENTIAL SCHOOLS, CLASSICAL MUSIC SHOULD BE PLAYED OVER THE SOUND SYSTEM. 2. THE DAY MUST BEGIN WITH: YOGA & MEDITATION TAUGHT BY A PROPER YOGA GURU. NOT A MERE PHYSICAL EXERCISE OR A CURATIVE PRACTICE.
  18. 18. 3. ONCE A WEEK, AT LEAST, AN INSPIRATIONAL INPUT… A CLASSICAL MUSIC OR DANCE LECTURE-DEMONSTRATION OR BAITHAK A HIGH QUALITY PRESENTATION OF A FOLK FORM… Eg. BAULS IN BENGAL HARIKATHA EXPONENTS IN ANDHRA PHAD EXPONENTS IN RAJASTHAN THEY ARE CARRIERS OF NOT JUST AN ART FORM BUT OF A PHILOSOPHY OF LIFE… iii) A TALK BY AN INSPIRED HUMAN BEING IN LITERATURE, PHILOSOPHY OR ANY OTHER AREA OF HUMAN ENDEAVOUR. THE VENUE FOR ALL SUCH EVENTS MUST BE A PLACE WHERE STUDENTS WILL MOST NATURALLY COME & SHOULD BE DEVOID OF MUCH FORMALITY [Eg. COMMON ROOMS OF THE STUDENTS].
  19. 19. CAN THE ELECTRONIC MEDIA HELP?
  20. 20. TWO PROBLEMS: 1. THE CONTROL OF THE ON-OFF KNOBS IS IN THE HANDS OF VIEWER 2. MTV, STAR TV, DD, ZEE TV INCREASED COMPETITION MORE TITTILATING PROGRAMMES OF THE TWO MINUTE MAGGIE NOODLE VARIETY INEVITABLE DECREASE IN PROGRAMMES OF DEPTH
  21. 21. HENCE THE KEY LIES NOT IN THE ELECTRONIC MEDIA BUT IN SCHOOLS, COLLEGES, & IN UNIVERSITIES. HERE WE HAVE CAPTIVE OR SEMI-CAPTIVE AUDIENCE WHOSE LEVEL CAN BE RAISED BY REPEATED EXPOSURE TO THE BEST…
  22. 22. IT MUST BE MADE CLEAR THAT WHAT HAS BEEN SUGGESTED ARE POSSIBLE LONG TERM SOLUTIONS TO THE PROBLEMS OF EDUCATION. THE SHORT TERM SOLUTIONS HAVE NOT BEEN EXAMINED IN THIS PRESENTATION… ONE MIGHT ALSO COMMENT THAT ALL WHAT HAS BEEN PRESENTED SOUNDS GOOD ON PAPER- BUT WE HAVE IN OUR OWN LITTLE WAY EXPERIMENTED WITH THESE IDEAS FOR THE PAST 27 YEARS & HAVE ACHIEVED A MEASURE OF SUCCESS…
  23. 23. … the quest continues
  24. 24. The vertical ‘EYE’… the inner Eye, the Eye of perception & inquiry ever alert in the pursuit of truth
  25. 25. Historically
  26. 26. Chronologically speaking … 1972 1977 1980 SPIC MACAY BIG-BANG l Sporadic concerts Columbia University Defined Direction In India First programme at IIT Delhi First LEC-DEM 1972-76 1979 1979 First FEST First Yoga Camp
  27. 27. Chronologically speaking … 1981 1988 1995 SPIC MACAY In 6 cities First LEC-DEM in Schools Folk Arts & Crafts Films,Talks Scholarship Scheme First Program Abroad EYE Schools Convention Virasat 1982 1986 1991 1993
  28. 28. Chronologically speaking … •1972 The "big bang" of SPIC MACAY at New York •1972-76 Sporadic concerts at Columbia University, under the aegis of the India Club of Columbia University •1977 More defined direction in India •1979 A two-day programme at IIT Delhi of Ustad Bismillah Khan, Dagar Bandhu, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and Ustad Shahid Parvez •1979 First LEC-DEM series •1980 First FEST in a number of educational institutions all over Delhi •1981 First Yoga camp •1981 SPIC MACAY in Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Calcutta, and Kharagpur •1982 First LEC-DEM in schools
  29. 29. Chronologically speaking … •1986 Introduction of folk arts & crafts, films & talks •1986 Scholarship scheme and the first annual convention •1988 First programme conducted abroad •1991 EYE Magazine •1993 First schools convention •1995 Virasat launched for the first time •2001 World Virasat •2002 Holistic Food •2002 SPIC MACAY Foundation programme
  30. 30. Conceptually aim is not to fight Westernisation but the process of deculturisation.
  31. 31. SPIC MACAY is an affirmation of … .. the need to conserve & promote an awareness of our rich cultural tapestry among youth through focus on the classical arts with its Rituals, Mythology & Philosophy and to facilitate an appreciation of their deeper values
  32. 32. the need for a critical mass … … an inspired perspective a solid value based education absorption of aesthetics & spirituality … the movement is educational in spirit & character and locates itself in educational institutions … in a world bombarded with information … increasingly technical, mundane competitive world it provides
  33. 33. Aspires to capture … … the pulsating & dynamic vitality of youth .. incorporates this vitality to cajole them into being custodians of what is actually their birthright namely their heritage, roots & identity … … seeks to provoke thought & a genuine spirit of enquiry in the young
  34. 34. The spirit of Voluntary work … … effectiveness of voluntary work in inculcating a spirit of service … volunteers from all walks of life … emphasis on participation without hierarchy & formalism.
  35. 35. VIRASAT • A festival with performances & workshops in – folk and classical arts – film classics – crafts – talks – theatre – yoga & meditation – walks to monuments – holistic food – world heritage • Held in different educational institutions • Close interaction between students & artistes
  36. 36. FEST • A chain of concerts featuring the exponents of Indian Classical Music & Dance. • Provide students opportunities to witness several young & upcoming artistes perform in separate slots with senior artistes.
  37. 37. LEC-DEMS • Lecture demonstrations aim to create an audience having a greater understanding of different aspects of our heritage. • They are informal & facilitate a closer interaction between the students & the artistes. • Artistes demonstrate their art forms with the help of explanations. • They help develop a wholesome understanding of not only the art form but also the artiste as a practitioner of a certain way of life.
  38. 38. TALK SERIES • Inspiring talks by enlightened individuals • Topics from various walks of life like – The arts – Environment – Philosophy – Development – Spirituality – Literature – The folk arts
  39. 39. YOGA / HOLISTIC CAMPS • Powerful facilitators for inner growth • Holistic camps are live in camps • Students and others stay for a given period of time away from their normal routine • Experience another way of living focused on simplicity, good health and spiritual training • Experience leaves one more centered - at peace with oneself and the world at large • Holistic development of the mind, body & spirit
  40. 40. Classical, Folk Arts & Craft Workshops • Lays greater stress on participation • Exposes students to the depth of the individual behind the art form • ‘Sangath’ with inspiring human beings
  41. 41. The Scholarship Scheme • Opportunities to aspiring ‘shishyas' to live for a month in the summer vacations with 'Gurus' who have dedicated their lives to their respective fields • Fields include classical music and dance, social work, art, theatre and spirituality • The time to apply is by February seventh each year
  42. 42. CONVENTIONS • Conventions held in states twice a year • National convention held every year in June • Brings together country-wide members at a common platform • Comprises organisational discussions, talks, films, crafts, yoga, classical and folk performances by the maestros • Brings in clarity of the organisational and conceptual framework of SPIC MACAY
  43. 43. • Quarterly magazine of Indian thought • A written word movement • Covers the arts, literature, development & philosophy THE EYE
  44. 44. SANDESH • A newsletter brought out every two months • An important tool for communication between thousands of volunteers all over India & abroad • A platform for meaningful interaction to take the message of SPIC MACAY further
  45. 45. The World Heritage Group • With the entire earth becoming a global village, the World Heritage Group aims to bring the best of heritage from different countries to the youth in educational institutions all over the world
  46. 46. Organisation
  47. 47. Organisational details … •Founded in 1977, as a non-profit, voluntary, non-political and participatory student movement •Registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 •Gets the benefit of Sec 80 (G) tax exemption •Central executive body in New Delhi •Worldwide network of schools, colleges & educational institutions
  48. 48. • The movement which started with one event in 1972 in New York and another in 1977 in Delhi, caught the imagination of the youth and began to grow geographically and content-wise • While on the one hand, the idea had to be painstakingly introduced in minor doses, on the other, there was a clamouring for programmes in schools and colleges • In the year 2003 – 04, 1600 events were conducted in about 200 cities all over India and abroad Growth
  49. 49. The spread in India
  50. 50. The spread abroad United States of America, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Russia, Germany, Gulf, Pakistan, Norway…
  51. 51. Funding … •Conducts its programmes by raising funds through : •Universities, Colleges and Schools •Central & State Governments •Public & Private sectors •Corporations •Charitable trusts •Individual donations
  52. 52. The future … • As the SPIC MACAY movement spreads both geographically and in content, great care must be taken that the direction and intensity are not lost and that at least a glimmer of the original spark remains
  53. 53. The future …RichnessRichness New levels of richness and reach attainable Reach ENABLERS Students as the River Teachers and other Seniors as the Banks…
  54. 54. How you can help
  55. 55. You can help … •Direct funds for the activities •Yearly financial support to constituent schools, colleges, institutes for funding the programmes •Provide support facilities like stay and travel •Encourage activities by more involvement of teachers and students •Help in the setting up of SPIC MACAY chapters •Adding such activities to the curriculum

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