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Close Encounters of the Veiled Kind—Blindfolded Conversations

“Sometimes, being behind the curtains frees you from the fear of being judged on your appearance.”

These words by The Psych Club’s President, Richa Smriti, describe the basic idea behind Blindfolded Conversations, organised on the 13th of January, 2019.  The event, held on Sunday, was a stress buster for the students before the upcoming assignment week, as they spoke freely to people and had interactions that were uninhibited by their sense of sight.

The participants, along with their blindfolds, started assembling at the MIT Quadrangle once the event began.  Before the participants were divided into pairs, the members of the club welcomed them by informing the students about the three basic rules of the conversation—one must avoid revealing his/her identity while talking, one must not peek through the blindfold, and one may only remove the blindfold, if the pair mutually agrees to do so. Following this, the participants, with their eyes blindfolded, were escorted to their respective positions where they sat opposite a person whom they couldn’t see, but only converse with.

Although most participants described the event as a healthy activity meant for introverts, many others believed that the event allowed everyone to have meaningful conversations, as they let go of their prejudices.  Some participants discovered their innate ability to start a conversation without introductions and got along really well with their partners. “It’s beautiful when you can connect with a stranger without even looking at them.  I find this concept to be both exciting and comfortable at the same time”, said Palak Soni, a participant who had two meaningful conversations that evening.

While some conversations ended with the participants walking away with their identities concealed, quite a few reached their conclusion with the participants taking their blindfolds off, introducing themselves and leaving the venue with a hope that they will meet again. Without the fear of being judged, people revealed their innermost feelings and truly became more comfortable in their own skin. In what was undoubtedly a success for the Psych Club, a mask of obscurity led to revelations.

Picture credits: Vedant Bhinde, The Photography Club, Manipal. 

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