FLAME University students once again out did themselves by winning the license to host a TED talk series. This is the second year in a row that the students have managed to attain the license for this event. The central theme of the TEDX talks this year was, ‘Thoughts Uninhibited’. The invited speakers were those who had uninhibited fire in their bellies to master their own fields.
Speakers from several domains with varied experiences and ages spoke at TEDX FLAME University. From a champion para cyclist, also a FLAME alumnus, Divij Shah; to a young internet prodigy, self-taught graphic artist, Dibangshu Moulik; a former radio jockey and present theatre actor, dancer, Aditi Venkateshwaran; to a stem cell scientist, Deepa Subramanyam; an entrepreneurship professor, Kunal Sarpal; to an Urdu poet, Mohammed Sadriwal; all shared inspiring stories with the audience.
In his opening address, Vice-Chancellor of FLAME University, Dr. Devi Singh said, “Along with uninhibited thoughts even unexplored ideas are needed for progress to happen. And the speakers present today will definitely propel these ideas in the minds of our audience here.”
This was followed by the first speaker, Divij Shah, an athlete in his own right. Ever since his childhood he had fostered the dream of winning a medal for his country and his dream was realized in the 6th Asian Para-Cycling Championship, Bahrain where he won the Silver Medal for the country. In a great anecdote about a ‘cracked pot’, he explained the philosophy of his life. He quoted Nick Vujicic, “Pain is pain. Broken is broken. Fear is the biggest disability of all. And will paralyse you more than being in a wheelchair.” He earnestly explained how his disability has only made him better and helped him strive harder to achieve success. He ended his truly motivational and inspiring talk by saying, “Something will always grow with all that you are going through and that something is you.”
Following him, was an Urdu poet, Mohammed Sadriwal, who expressed a story about what was the turning point where his passion for creative writing became a duty to himself to grow his poetic expression and write for his audience. He spoke about his humble beginnings and how he realizes more and more each day that this is what he was meant to do.
From finding the purpose of life, the next speaker went on to speak about the essence of life itself. This talk was of a scientist who is researching stem cells, Deepa Subramanyam. She spoke about the various types of stem cells and how these can actually impact human life in more ways than we can imagine.
Next up was a self-taught graphic designer, Digbanshu Moulik, who has become an internet prodigy. In spite of being discouraged by a lot of people for being academically weak and not having a ‘real’ education like most would say, this young man has made a mark in the graphic design industry and strives to continue on this journey, encouraging others to keep working hard in spite of their circumstances and surroundings.
The next speaker continued the topic of supporting this thought of taking ideas and turning them into reality. Kunal Sarpal, a professor and founding partner of White Collar Legal LLP, which consults young entrepreneurs on new businesses, spoke about how the best ideas come from the most unexpected places and acting on these ideas at the right time in the right way can take you places. He captured his passion rightly by coining, #CreatingTheCreators. He quoted Bishop H.E. Luccock, “No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it,” trying to drive home the point that these unique ideas need a push and encouragement to actualize into their true potential.
The last speaker of the evening was no stranger to talking. She spoke on a radio station for a living. She was Aditi Venkateshwaran. She took a break from her career of being an RJ to rediscover herself. She spoke about the balancing act that every individual needs in order to be who they really are. One need not be tagged or labelled by one profession or one personality. One can be whoever they want, whenever they want. One might use any medium or technology to express oneself but what is important is that one continues and strives to explore this journey within oneself and re-invent each day.
Additionally, there were digital screenings from international TED speakers. Pico Iyer spoke about, ‘The Art of Stillness’ and Sam Harris talked about, ‘Artificial Intelligence’.
All the talks during the event were truly uninhibited and honest. The genuine and earnest stories of the speakers were awe inspiring and motivational for students, faculty and all members of the audience.