Cognitive scientist, linguist, and author Mark Turner had profoundly said, “Narrative imagining — story — is the fundamental instrument of thought. Rational capacities depend upon it. It is our chief means of looking into the future, or predicting, of planning, and of explaining.”
Deeming stories and storytelling as an imperative aspect of life and growing up, this message reminds us of the power of this art form. Finding oneself, holding onto our dreams, turning them into reality, and more — storytelling and the intent with which these stem from, they all play a part in our lives.
However, not all of us are encouraged to express ourselves through imagination and stories. A huge part of India, especially in rural areas, remains unaware of this beautiful way of life, and Kahani Ki Dukaan in Himachal Pradesh is trying to change this. A rural creative expression hub founded by Jasmine Kaur and Anoop Chugh in the village of Gunehar is a heartwarming approach to personal development.
The children here had never experienced the kind of imagination that is beyond reality, where their lives need not be limited to the confines of the village, and where individual roles are more than their chores. Through puzzles, reading, drawing, colouring, performances and other art forms, the children of the village learn to not only express themselves but figure out their own personalities before doing so. Their likes and dislikes, boundaries and indulgences, and dreams and fears are all unpacked here, free of cost.
Kahani Ki Dukaan, which literally translates to a shop of stories, is so much more than an initiative. It is a beacon of hope and possibilities, and a means to help children realise that life is bigger than all that you see and that their journey does not end on the horizon. Here, storytelling in whatever form, is a powerful tool to help them realise that.
Find Kahani Ki Dukaan here.
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