Reflection on Pateljal

I spend more time and effort working on Project Pateljal but ironically my unpublicized blog still has more views per day. I don’t get it. (Then again, it could be that my IE homepage is my blog…)

Ah well, that aside. I feel reflective today so why not reflect on the project?

I started this project with the naive intentions of helping my tribe and of course myself. Starting a project means a lot on a resume, especially one that mixes community service and culture. Now, 1/4 way through, I realize that every step of the way, I find more and more reasons to make this successful, everything I do leads to more conviction and motivation.

I realized that there is a huge difference between thinking about promoting a cause as opposed to feeling  the need to promote it. I started the project not really knowing how much work I’d put in. I knew the hours, but the quality of effort I’ve put in surprises even myself. I literally spend the whole day researching materials just to put on the website and not just using the epic ctrl+c ctrl+v technique. I’m actually researching, digesting and producing work that people will be willing to read.

And because of that I’ve learnt so much. It’s funny, I feel like I’ve spent on effort reading and more importantly understanding these materials more than I’ve ever had for any assignment in my life. Probably because through my research I’ve genuinely developed curiosity to know more about the people I’m trying to help, a passion to understand them and help people understand them. Sure, I had answers prepared for people who ask ‘why we should know them’, but these days my most honest answer is ’cause it’s bloody INTERESTING.’ I don’t know, I just find it so cool that my research leads me to desolated parts of the web to read what people have written about the topic because quality information about asian aborigines are just so rare.

Being interested in this whole culture, like honestly genuine interested also made me want to make sure people benefit from it. I don’t feel a responsibility to make people benefit, I feel a NEED, an obligation, to make people benefit from it; not for a reason, I just want to make sure everyone walks away with something. It feels weird. All this conviction without reason. And by everyone I really mean EVERYONE. I want everyone to benefit from the cause of this project. I didn’t realize how much the mission and vision mattered to me until I was hit by the idea to make sure that there is a weekly meeting amongst the team to share and review aboriginal culture and people. I could just make the team work and accomplish the project with a wonderful resume to show for it. But I can’t accept it. I WANT them, especially them of all people to really walk away enriched from all this (yes, just because I think it’s awesome.)

Ultimately I realized something pretty darn ironic. We can have all these grand gestures and reasons as to why we’re doing something. But at the end of the day nothing beats the conviction of a simple childish desire to share a yummy ice-cream with your friend. And that’s all this is about. Just wanting to share something amazing with people so that they can enjoy it too.

What more reasons do you need?


Reflection on Pateljal

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