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International Themes of Indian Youth as Expressed During Sensitivity Training


Garg Pulin K

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In this paper, the author presents a new approach to Sensitivity training based on Intra-person and Interperson Approaches. The basic concern is with the problem of adjustment on an individual in a rapidly changing Technological society. In this method, the participants are encouraged to talk freely about their psycho-social world and a multiplicity of experiences is thus generated in which the persons can re-examine their feeling structure for purposes of self-review and growth. The trainer in such an approach is more than a trainer – he is a person. This approach was tried out very successfully with five groups of students from a leading Business School over a period of three years. These Seminars also provided data about the very personal and private themes of the youth who attended. The dominant feeling in Indian youth seems to be one of “rejection” and this is also borne out by historical inputs. Four other dominant themes of “Feelinglessness, Loneliness, Independence, Exilehood and deprivation” were also identified. The dominant feeling of ‘rejection’ appeared related to ‘dependency-control’ and the genesis was mainly in the actions of the parents and the significant others. This feeling implies that an individual can only be a role and nothing but a role. He cannot ‘Be’. In a like manner escape from ‘Feelinglessness’ was perceived in excessive task orientation. Loneliness and Isolation resulted from a fear of closeness whilst gaining of ones Independence was preceived to be “ungrateful” as it would mean the ‘desertion’ of others who had done so much for you. This method was found to lead to increased willingness for self-review, through quickly creating a process of empathy and making the participants realise the simultaneous uniqueness and communality with the Universal man.