I never expected to travel to this part of the world. I never expected to become so involved in the TEDx community. I never expected to have this life. And I am old enough, and not wise—but wise just enough—to appreciate the gifts, fully. The world got a little smaller for me this past two weeks. And I am forever changed by the people and places I experienced. Peace within us translates in every language to peace among us.
But before we dived in and worked on the direction of TEDx going forward, we needed to figure out exactly what TEDx is and why it grew at the rate it did. There was never really one answer to this. I found this fascinating. TED had set out clear guidelines within which TEDx organizers must operate. But that’s all. They had really just set the parameters and then left the community to self-regulate and grow in any direction. You may not think this is of any significance. But imagine being the custodian of TED, potentially the most influential brand in the world and letting it reign free for high-impact over achievers around the globe to run with and drive in whatever direction they believed fit. But it is THIS openness and freedom that has resulted in the impact of TEDx, as each organizer can leverage the brand and attune their event to the relevance of their community. And from this, create true value which fuels the growth of TEDx as their communities and markets keep being inspired and wanting more.
I went to the event very curious and even excited for having had organized a TEDxYouth at the end of last year. I left as a human more human, with broadened horizons and an enormous extra dose of brilliance in my eyes. Since I have returned to Brazil, many people have asked me how the trip was and, as much as I try to tell the details, I cannot share many of the things that I had felt during the conversations and workshops. No, words are not enough to translate the intensity of these experiences.
André Gravatá, organizer of TEDxJovem@Ibira, on his experience at TEDxSummit.