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Siddharth Sthalekar's Blog Posts

  The Curious Case of Mihir the Intern

The Sacred Capital office had recently been lit up by the presence of a bright eyed 20 year old. Still a college student, Mihir had come across some of my writing through a friend and after a couple interactions he wished to deepen his understanding of wealth, resources that entity known as money. Right away, there was a strong resonance with some of Sacred Capital’s values. Mihir was keen to learn about the world’s monetary system, traditional forms of wealth and the subtle nuances... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Feb 24, 2015 | permalink

  From Independence to Inter-dependence: Moved By Love in August

45 beautiful souls from Kutch to Lucknow to Raipur to Nagpur and more came together for the Head, Heart, Hands Retreat at ESI Sughad this weekend. While the gathering began with a simple tribute to the Independence of the Nation, it very organically flowed into exploring our Inter-dependence.  From an opening circle that made us all feel right at home, to painting walls and cleaning toilets together at the Loving Community, to holding each other through our most vulnerable moments on t... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Aug 18, 2014 | permalink

  Leadership through shared vulnerability

Just last evening, I was called to share a few thoughts for a panel on 'Leadership'. There's enough people, discussions, papers, research thesis's out there on the topic, but this was special. It was organized by the a group of 15 kids from the Phillips Academy in Massachusetts who are visiting India as part of a program called Niswarth. I've been closely connected with the dean Rajesh and the program through my days in Ahmedabad, as well on my recent visit to the USA so I was delighted to joi... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jul 31, 2014 | permalink

  Reflections from a 6 week journey

From Mumbai to Boston to New York to Washington DC to Seattle to Bellingham to the Bay Area to Boston to London and finally back to Mumbai. It's been an interesting time to say the least - with communities tucked away in the corner of the American continent to posh London hotels to Shudh Desi gatherings which were so 'Indian' they gave even me a culture shock. The trip started with my parents’ simple intention to celebrate my niece’s 2nd birthday. In the past I would've been rel... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jul 30, 2014 | permalink

  A Trek through the Kugti Pass

I've just returned from my first ever trek in the Himalayas - and I'm left with a transformational experience that is going to be tough to articulate in words. As I type, I have a tingling sensation running through my body, not only because of the feelings it evokes within me, but also because of my still-recovering frost-bitten fingers :) Just a couple weeks ago over dinner with a dear friend Kruti, I was listening to her plans to go trekking to the Himalayas. These trips, she explained were... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jun 30, 2014 | permalink

  Unlocking Subtler forms of Capital

This is an excerpt from the Connect India talk in London. It represents a few thoughts I shared for 15 minutes, before opening it out for an interactive QnA. I've had some interesting experiences over the last four years of my journey. From someone on a trading floor, to a bearded volunteer, I've spent the first 29 years of my life chasing money, and the next three years avoiding it. The last few months though, have seen me trying to embrace it in more loving ways. No doubt, my exp... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jun 1, 2014 | permalink

  Operating in the Spirit of Gift

Of late, I have been receiving a few emails and questions in person regarding my relationship to money - whether I'm against it or for it. Also, the age old question of sustainability, and if giving without strings attached makes sense in today's world. I thought it might be helpful to put up some of my conversations (particularly the emails) online. Here are excerpts from a recent one I've been engaging in. Question from a dear friend - 'D': "I am at a juncture where I am barely mak... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on May 2, 2014 | permalink

  Breathing Love into Money

As part of the 30 Day In-turnship that Pratyush had been anchoring, we thought of including an experiment that explored their relationship with money. As part of the experiment, we secretly tagged them with an anonymous note that read as follows: "​Good Morning, and Happy Monday. Today, I have decided to gift the circle a sum of money. Each person in the circle has been burdened with different sums of money based on my laws that you cannot entirely comprehend right ... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Feb 23, 2014 | permalink

  Creating Value, the Gandhi 3.0 Way

Sixty path creators from across the world responded to a compelling invitation to spend 4 days around Gandhi's 66th death anniversary and explore modern manifestations of Gandhian values. We called it Gandhi 3.0. From those in politics to businessmen, spiritual cultivators to social entrepreneurs, the diversity of the gathering was held simply with ties of noble kinship or 'Maitri'.  But days before the gathering even began, volunteers from across the Moved By Love eco-system had been ... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Feb 23, 2014 | permalink

  One Last Lesson in Faith from Raghuhbai

It's just been a couple of hours since I heard the news. One of my dearest friends, and inspirations, whom some people called a 'Love Warrior' passed away last night in a road accident on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. Raghu Makwana, or Raghu Palathi as he was fondly known in his communities was driving on his three-wheeled motorcyle to a relatives home before he came to his untimely death at the age of 29.  Most of you who know me, or have been associated with this blog would be famil... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Feb 9, 2014 | permalink

  Karma Kitchen in Kochi

The power of simple, pure intentions never ceases to amaze me. Sheetal and I were invited for the Giftival 2014, to be hosted in Kerala in the first week of January where we were joined by 35 beautiful souls from across the world in an effort to deepen their commitment to Gift. For three days, we held space together for our vulnerabilities and our dreams at the Pepper House in Kochi. And as always, you see the love from the circle spill over into the neighbourhood community in incred... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jan 8, 2014 | permalink

  A Gift Carnival in Kochi

The power of simple smiles and hugs never ceases to amaze me. Sheetal and I were invited for the Giftival 2014, to be hosted in Kerala in the first week of January. On the first day of the gathering,  35 participants from across the world got together to deepen our journeys in the spirit of Gift. Jayan, our local host thought it would be best to begin the night with an evening of inspiration with about 60 guests from his community in Kochi.  A beautiful talk was scheduled for th... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jan 8, 2014 | permalink

  Serving from the heart in Delhi

Earlier today, I received a call from an unknown number. As I picked up the phone, a cautious, almost apologetic voice asked if it was a good time to speak. Turns out, it's Kavita Aunty - Pratyush's mother from Delhi. Initially, I thought she must be worried about her son who's on a pilgrimage in Gujarat with no means of communication. To my surprise, there wasn't any mention or questions of his whereabouts. She believes I think in the same way that her son does (that most would find divergent!)... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Dec 28, 2013 | permalink

  Gifts on a Birthday

It was the 19th of December again. Over the past couple years, I've actively tried to be 'against' celebrating my birthday :) But my experience with last year taught me to not be as much of an activist :) Although I didn't make a big deal out of it, I was just blown away by some beautiful gifts I received. In the morning, Lahar decided to offer her gift by writing letters to 10 people that she was grateful for! My uncle decided to 'Smile' at 5 strangers during the day, while Madhusudan... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Dec 19, 2013 | permalink

  Moved By Love in December

42 friends from diverse backgrounds gathered at the ESI Campus in December 2013 to hold a space for a special kind of generosity. One that was rooted in unconditional openness and offering in the spirit of a 'Gift' towards one another. It was no surprise then, that the collective could hold the diverse journeys of all the participants - from a 14 year old girl from the slums of Pune, to an ascetic from the Himalayas.  The intention was set right from the opening circle - with moments ... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Dec 16, 2013 | permalink

  The Economy of Permanence

Through time spent in the Gandhi Ashram eco-system, I've often come across writings and books that exposed me to radically different constructs. One of the authors I came across was J C Kumarappa - a Gandhian economist who did some stellar work in re-constructing the theories of economics in a decentralized, service oriented context. During his years as part of the freedom movement, he invested a great deal in understanding India, and the spirit that has sustained it's communities for millennia.... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Dec 1, 2013 | permalink

  The Passing of our Beloved Gopal Dada

More than fifty years ago, Vinoba Bhave's Land-Gift movement happened to pass through the small town in North Gujarat. Several hundred people had gathered to hear the great Vinoba Bhave share his wisdom through stories from their movement that was sweeping the country in a wave of love. As people huddled into a small school class-room in the town of Unjha, Vinoba began to speak. It was then that he shared the concept of the 'Shanti Sena' - the 'Warriors of Peace'. At a time when the Cold War had... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Nov 19, 2013 | permalink

  Maitri Milan

Just after the Diwali of 2013, 50 'Ladders' from across the cities of India and the world gathered together for three days at the ESI Campus in Sughad. The circle was held by people from all walks of life -from successful entrepreneurs, to community leaders at the forefront of the development world, musicians from all over the world and volunteers who serve through small acts of kindness. In what was termed 'Maitri Milan', or a gathering of Noble friends, the intention was set right from the s... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Nov 11, 2013 | permalink

  Moved By Love in August

Micro-Moments of Inter-connection What happens when we begin to trust the infinite organizing power of the Universe and hold space for 30 noble friends from across the world. What if we shared a circle for 3 days centered not on common opinions and projects, but on simple values of oneness and generosity? The magic was palpable right from the opening circle of sharing. A young doctor from Mumbai shared his transformation in empathy and decided the most valuable gift he could offer was ... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Sep 2, 2013 | permalink

  Empty, Gather, Ripple

On the 21st of July, 26 noble friends from the local community around Pune met to deepen their commitment through 'Inner Service'. A circle that began with a resounding thought by Madhusudan on what service meant to him - "I have been reflecting since returning from a recent gathering in Switzerland - I wish to be like a Banyan Tree. After decades of offering shade to sentient beings, the mother trunk slowly hollows herself - allowing the newer roots to support the whole. And thro... read full story

Posted by Siddharth Sthalekar on Jul 23, 2013 | permalink