If much of our usual days were spent

If the end of 2017 could have been one the best times of your life, what magic could have happened?For us, What we experienced in the last few days of 2017 was completely unexpected, and it came in the form of Gramya Manthan, a 10-day rural immersion journey where we explored with empathy, life in villages while staying with them.No phones, no TV, and 41 amazing people from 20 different states with as many kinds of love as there were hearts. A community was built where we simply promised to live each day with respect and admiration as the sun rises and in thanksgiving as it sets.While so much of our usual days were spent in “doing,” and not in “being”, here in the immersion we started each one of it with a minutes of silence, allowing ourselves to take a step back from whatever was going on in our lives and connect and express all that had been unspoken for so long.In the circles of sharing it was a lot easier to react than it was to hold the thought and we learnt that no matter how thin you slice the bread, there are always two sides of it.We shared stories about our lives and learned to sit together for the gift that it was…an opportunity to know each other, to learn how strong we all were. We realised that beautiful people do not just happen. From waking up at 6 in the morning for a moment of silence to the Gratitude walk on the last day which left almost each one of us crying, we learnt that quantity is not as important as quality when it comes to friends and that no matter how good a friend is, they’re going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them, for the relationship is more important than the ego.As we walked, hopped and hobbled meeting people of different kinds we remembered that being handicapped was only a state of mind and the most amazing people have known defeat, suffering, struggle, loss, and still have found their way out of it. On the last day of our Stay in Ahmedabad, each of us had a cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us in our lives. We shared our gratitude for everything we’ve been blessed with. Family, friends, and continued support from everyone.?? ?? ???? ??  ?????? , ?? ?? ???? ?? ?????? ???? ??? ?? ???? ???? ??? ?? ????,  ???? ?? ?? ???? ????? ??? ?? ?? ???? , ???? ??? ?? ?? ??? ???? ??? ?? ????…Its rightly said that when you reach for the stars, you are reaching for the farthest thing out there. When you reach deep into yourself, it is the same thing, but in the opposite direction. If you reach in both directions, you will have spanned the universe.No individual after this journey stepped into their same world again twice, for it was not the same world and they were not the same individuals.Youth Alliance is working to build a movement of passionate young leaders for social change. They do this by conducting programs where they give experiential exposure in urban and rural space taking individuals on a journey of rediscovery – to find and speak their own truth, to listen to each other and build a common language. Journeys that engage the faculties of head, heart and hands and shift the narrative from ‘you-or-me’ to ‘you-and-me’. To know more about them and get regular updates about their programs visit *Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in different cities.