THE STORY OF GROSS NATIONAL HAPPINESS
TEDxNewHaven took place on April 28th on the topic of „The Art and Science of Happiness.“ Nima Tshering, an engineer by training, a public servant by profession, and a “servant leader” by passion, was the first speaker at the conference.
Before coming to Harvard, Nima worked as an assistant to the King of Bhutan at the Office for People’s Welfare and Wellbeing, serving the poorest of the poor at their doorsteps.
One day, he met a destitute woman named Aum Demola in a remote village in Bhutan. “Her most prized asset was her leftover meal from the previous night that she kept under lock in a wooden box in her bamboo hut,” says Nima. “She had the key around her neck.”
Tears well in Nima’s eyes as he recalls. “This experience taught me the real meaning of you don’t know where your next meal is coming from. It shook my conscience. It gave me a calling.” He spent the next three years walking to more than 300 remote villages in Bhutan, helping thousands like her.
Nima believes that you can change the world better when you truly lead with empathy. “Happiness is being human first,” Nima smiles.
Take a look at his TEDx talk, in which he tells the story of Gross National Happiness. Learn about the philosophical concept behind GNH, its history and its meaning for the Bhutanese society at large.