Written by Viviana LaBarca
Machik Program Intern & Rising Senior at Montgomery Blair High School
As a new Program Intern at Machik, I was both excited and a little nervous for the third Khabda on June 22nd. I had an understanding of the event but lacked the experience regarding the conversational aspect of Khabda. I am so grateful to share my first experience participating in Machik Khabda, and I hope my perspective does justice to the intellectual, cultural, and social value of the event.
After helping to set up Khabda DC space, I was eager to sit down and enjoy a film. The fourth floor of Eaton House is a great space for the screening of a 2013 Tibetan documentary: Valley of the Heroes.
If Khabda were a street, it would be a two-lane road with surprising views at every turn. Not only was Valley of the Heroes an insightful and entertaining film, but the people with whom I watched the movie added new perspectives I would not have encountered otherwise. As I am not Tibetan, I had an outsider viewpoint and lacked the cultural context that others were able to provide in the after-film discussion. For two hours, we shared and listened to each others’ views. I cannot emphasize my appreciation for Khabda enough. Knowing that people at other Machik Khabdas around the world were also watching and discussing Valley of the Heroes only added to the magic of my first Khabda. I hope to celebrate many more Khabdas in the future and engage with new people every time.