Technology helps us automate the status quo. And now, Artificial Intelligence (AI) accelerates that process exponentially. TV took 75 years to reach 100 million users, while Netflix got there in 10 years, ChatGPT in 2 months, and Facebook Threads in 5 days! With this alarming pace of disruption, and a status quo that has squarely placed us at the doorsteps of poly crises, can the potent levers of AI leapfrog us to a more humane future? Can AI serve the public good in areas that are often overlooked by commercial markets? What is the architecture for holding AI datasets, models and evaluations as a public commons? And, how can we align AI not merely to our economic intentions but to our aspirations of a more compassionate society?
On January 7th, a small group of pioneers -- from Vallabh Bhanshali (founder, ENAM) to Lalitesh (founder, Google India) -- are convening at FLAME University in Pune to dialogue around AI possibilities that help us shift from extraction to care, transaction to relationship, and polarization to community. When social media has hacked our attention and AI promises to disrupt our intimacy, we want to counter "artificial intimacy" with concrete pathways to deeper connection, collective creativity, and an ethic of serving the greater good.
When the first telephone arrived in India, Gandhi was one of its first users! Post independence, when asked about his greatest fear for the country, Gandhi replied: “Heartless intellectuals.” He felt that just as scientists work wonders by investigating the laws of nature, each one of us could unlock "infinitely more wonderful and subtler" capacities by aligning with the "Law of Love". While he predicted that scientists of the future will unlock these dimensions of human potential, he emphatically added -- from first-hand experience -- that such a Law of Love operates with even more precision than electricity or gravity.
How, then, do we add heart to our technologies? ServiceSpace has convened a global "heart tank" of 80 innovators and have piloted a CompassionBot and a broader "decelerator" to boldly experiment around these inquiries. Below is a recent talk at a global IDG Summit in Sweden where Nipun Mehta offers a compelling articulation for aligning AI with Heart Intelligence:
To join us in holding these uncommon questions around the intersection of technology, community and compassion, please apply here. Since this gathering is designed for intimacy, we may not be able to accommodate everyone -- but we will keep all applicants posted with follow-up materials and ways to co-create new possibilities for serving the greater good. Thank you!
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
In an increasingly volatile and complex
world, can we identify patterns that point us to an “elegant simplicity
” on the other side of complexity?
In the 17th century, René Descartes famously drew a line between mind and matter. Through the larger arcs of history, scientists of the West have optimized for innovation in the field of matter while the saints of the East deeply investigated possibilities in the field of mind. Today, particularly with the advent of AI (artificial intelligence), those lines between mind and matter are blurring dramatically. For the first time in history, engineers and theologians are asking the same questions: free will, causality, consciousness, identity. Can we align the wisdom of the East and West, as we manifest AI innovations?
This retreat emerged unexpectedly in a dialogue between Vallabh Bhanshali and Nipun Mehta. It is hosted by FLAME University
, the first liberal arts college in India; and organized by the Moved by Love community, whose volunteers have collectively anchored hundreds of retreats
across India. In addition, the global ServiceSpace community -- which has recently launched a pioneering CompassionBot
and is holding nuanced inquiries around AI + Inner Transformation
-- is also cultivating follow-up actions.
- Inspiring participants. Lots of great hearts are coming together!
- Uncommon questions. For quick-fix, binary, either-or answers, we already have Google and ChatGPT. :) Here, we aim to hold questions while leaning into its nuances first.
- Noble Friendships. Our hope is to nurture a rich matrix of friendships among unlikely friends.
- Volunteer Run. It's run entirely by volunteers, so there's no solicitation, pitches, agendas. Just practice of love.
The retreat is held at the Flame Campus in Pune -- with ample spaces for small group discussions, collective meditations, and an abundance of serenity. More details will be posted here shortly, and will also be emailed to the confirmed participants.
The retreat formally begins on Jan 07 (9:00AM IST) and ends at Jan 07 (5:00PM). For those who can stay afterwards, we'll have an optional "fireside chat", over an informal dinner.
Once you apply, and we're able to confirm you, you'll get an email with all the logistical details.
Through our time together, we will sit in circles to learn from each other’s experiments and challenges; hear and engage with some innovative speakers across sectors; engage in many group practices that nurture our collective inner transformation. Plenty of opportunities to engage the head, hands and of course the heart. Plus a few surprises!
Over the last decade, such retreats have brought together thousands of people from wide-ranging backgrounds. Perhaps what magnetized them was a simple organizing principle: We are not merely what we do, but who we become by what we do. If you resonate with the notion that inner change and outer change are intrixicably intertwined, and if you are moved to cultivate deep connections with kindred spirits, this retreat will likely speak to you! Beyond that, we'd recommend leaning on your heart's intuition -- more often than not, "heart knows today what the mind will know tomorrow." :)
If you have any questions, please contact us anytime. To co-create our sacred field of emergence, we welcome you join us!
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