Breathing books, bleeding hearts


“Silence is the source of great strength”

On this context an event  was organized under Shivalik views, by group of young girls in Le Cafe, Sector-17, on March 18, 2018.  “The Breathing Books ” organised in association with Nurture Nature was inspired by the concept of Human Library. The entire event revolved around few human books who  narrated their journey, what inspired them to be a writer, what were the hurdles in their lives and how they overcame those hurdles.

The identities of the speakers were not revealed, but their stories were enlisted under various titles, namely  Unacceptable to being Loved, Nomad-Story Collector,Silver Linings and A Nosh of Life.

The audience was very excited and had high hopes from the speaker. As Harshita, a member of the crowd, said, “By reading a book we get indulged into our own thoughts, ideas and sometimes fail to understand the pain,emotions that the author actually wants to bring out through the story”  To add on Nimisha, another audience member, said, “I really want to see how they will be describing the journey of their life in few minutes because the entire struggle of their to wrap up in a hour or so is really challenging” 

The event began on a very graceful note with an interactive session with the speakers. The ratio of each group was about 1:5. So it was really comfortable for the listeners to interact with the speakers. The narrator of the Nomad Story Collector began by describing how as a young girl she craved for her family’s love and affection and how eagerly she used to wait for her parents to come to her boarding school bit was dejected each time by their sheer neglect. The feeling of being alienated by her parents lead her to the zone of depression and loneliness. She turned into a rebel as an adolescent. But this brave lady ended up paving her own path and investing in books. She considers books to be her Soul Companion. And thus, a lonely, rebellious, confused adolescent turned herself around into a strong, independent and self-sufficient woman. At the moment she teaches at the Manchester University and was a journalist while residing in India. She completely believes in the saying, “There is nothing completely black or white,everything in this world is grey”

The book Silver Linings was all about how in a country like India it is all the more demanding to deal with disabilities due to societal prejudice and lack of access to resources. The narrator has been visually impaired since the age of six. She recounted in her own words, the challenges she had to face and the courage it took for her to overcome each setback.

A Nish of life began her journey with the saying “Take everything with a pinch of salt”, the doctor advised. ‘Why ignore rest of the flavours?’ She asked.” 

She had around 15 epileptic seizures. But she ended being a successful writer and overcame all the hurdles that perked up in her life. One can only imagine the amount of determination that would’ve taken!

The next book Unacceptable to being loved was narrated by the co-founder of the Petal Poetry, a society to provide a community-based platform for music, art and poetry, and to bring forward people and help them showcase their talents.  She lost all her childhood because she was unacceptable to her parents. But her determination and will power ended up transforming her into a person who was loved by everyone. She symbolises courage and bravery. She strongly believes that everyone in this world is fragile but they do have the strength within themselves which won’t let them give up because everyone has the magic of kindness and love to offer within them.

The organizing team was overwhelmed by the success of the event.  “The major challenges we faced were to bring different books of different genres under one roof. For this we had to do a lot of research and even exploited our contacts for this” stated Shivali, a member of the organising committee. Shivani further added, ” we look forward to conducting such events in the future also.  I believe such events wipe out the evading social stigma prevailing in the society.” 

The programme was concluded by the members of Nurture Nature. They gave away saplings to the speakers and thereby promoted the plantation drive.

About the author:

Ashwathi Nair (MCM DAV 36)


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