By Shaileen Shah – Tasting the Mango (TTM) – Convention Co-Lead
I could not let this anniversary go by without acknowledging and celebrating it. It was one of the most fundamental experiences of my life, leading to a lot of learning, growth and friendships. So I am sharing some of my memories and experiences plus previous articles of:
The 5th Young Jains International Convention: Tasting The Mango
The convention was iconic, pioneering, innovative, creative, high energy, ahead of its time and brought out the best in those who helped create it: teamwork, trust, working from our strengths, a shared vision.
Segments of the convention were taken on outreach to Manchester, Northampton and South London.
Join us on Tues 23rd Aug 2022 at 8pm – 9pm for a TTM catch up for those who attended and also for those who hadn’t.
Some of my iconic memories are:
- The opening on Friday night with a hall full of people; the lights turned down and “Let’s get ready to rumble…” starting of Haddays ‘Life will never be the same again’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyaGQPjXGyE
- I still get goosebumps when I recall a young teenager, Paarul singing “Search for the Hero Inside yourself”
- TTM Fridge magnets and T shirts sourced by Raj
- Prakash teaching us the dance moves to ‘Don’t blame it on the sunshine’ by Jackson Five
- Ashik patiently and repeatedly sharing the Dharma with us
- Priya Kothari making large colourful jigsaw pieces of the Jain path to Moksha
- Priti actively encouraging people to be involved in sharing the content (in particular of the Star Wars stories)
- 12-20 people on stage doing a ‘Mango Dance’
- Stamp of feet! Stamp of feet! Clap! Stamp of feet! Stamp of feet! Clap! As we led the few hundred attendees to be on their feet in the afternoon clapping and stamping feet and singing at the top of their lungs to Queen’s “We will Rock You”
- Buddy, you’re a boy, make a big noise
- Playing in the street, gonna be a big man someday
- You got mud on your face, you big disgrace
- Kicking your can all over the place, singin’
- We will, we will rock you
- We will, we will rock you
- One morning, Sanjay bringing boxes of mangoes so each attendee could have a mango – literally ‘Taste the Mango’
- Ashik initiated the sponsorship with Rubicon Drinks to supply boxes of Mango and Passion Juice for the 3 days
- Star Wars figurine keychains given as memento to the attendees – again sourced by Ashik
- Punit and others dressed as Jedis plus a lightsaber battle on stage
- Priti overlaying on the the ‘Search for the Hero Inside Yourself’ with the Dharmic messages
- Closed eye process on Sunday; at the end of convention we took everyone on the journey again from Friday evening to the current moment of key messages and memorable moments.
This is part of the communication that was sent to the attendees who registered to attend:
TASTING THE MANGO – fun key fundamentals, whole-mind common-sense approach – UK
5th Young Jains International Convention
London, UK, 23 – 25 August 2002
“Just as a mighty mango tree is hidden within the stone of the mango,
Even so, O man, divinity itself is hidden within you.
Rest not until you uncover it.”
In order to find the divinity that Bhagwan Mahavir referred to (above) we must understand the path to moksha beginning with the fundamentals of Jainism. These will be explored using the four fun keys;
(1) Play Full Out,
(2) Have Fun,
(3) Capture It,
(4) Use It, in order to fully engage in the experience of the Convention and to leave with tools and techniques that you can apply to your life.
The whole-mind, common-sense approach refers to interactive sessions appealing to the creative and rational mind. The senses (which we all have in common) will be engaged, using music, visuals, movement, etc. Elements of Jainism will be pieced together like a jigsaw puzzle so that we see the whole picture of Mahavir Bhagwan’s message.
Due to Pujya Shri Chitrabhanuji’s commitments in the USA, resulting in extensive travelling, his doctors have advised that he needs to change his schedule in August. Consequently, Pujya Shri has decided that it would not be wise to travel to the UK this August and hence we regret to inform you that he will not be joining us as the keynote speaker at Tasting The Mango.
Delegates have found past Conventions to be most beneficial. The Convention will provide you with the opportunity to meet people and make new friends. You will learn and discover more about yourself in a creative environment. Workshops will focus upon the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle.
Please bring the following things with you to the Convention:
- a printout of this registration letter
- a notebook and pen(s)
- a pair of sunglasses
- a printout of Past Lives of Mahavir Bhagwan. This will be used during a workshop session.
You will learn and discover more about yourself in a creative environment. Workshops will focus upon the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle.